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Knuckle Sandwich | Bootlegger's Brewery

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256 Reviews
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Knuckle SandwichKnuckle Sandwich
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bootlegger's Brewery
California, United States
bootleggersbrewery.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jerz on 12-14-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
256
Ratings:
1,081
Avg:
4.28
pDev:
21.96%
 
 
Wants:
432
Gots:
153
For Trade:
4
User Reviews
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Reviews: 256 | Ratings: 1,081
Photo of yourefragile
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a nonic. Thanks Andrew!

Pours a dark, orange-amber with a massive foamy and bubbly cream colored head. Appearance of the head is slightly off as it is overly foamy, but still has long-lasting retention and a few webs of clumpy lacing. Aroma is a punishing blend of fresh grapefruit, grapefruit and more grapefruit. Some pine and sweet malt notes add some depth to the nose, but really... who needs that? :). Flavor is dominated by resiny, sweet grapefruit and abundant bitterness in the finish. Balance is offered by piney hops; the malt backbone has a very hard time making it's presence felt. There is also a hint of solventy alcohol that lingers near the back of the palate and some mild spice. Medium body with active, light carbonation. Balance, subtlety, depth beyond delicious fresh grapefruit hops, etc are not the strong point of this beer, but I don't really think they're meant to be either given the beer's name and label. The booze and the unchecked hop forwardness detracts from the drinkability a little, but this is a nicely crafted fresh hop fix.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a medium amber with a soft white head, nice lace.

S: Tropical notes of pineapple and passion fruit, reminds me a bit of BP Dorado.

T: As with what my buddy DoubleJ said about it, this DIPA is juicy, a wet hop feel almost. Big pineapple, mango and pine, nice complexity. Go here for tropical fruit in an a SoCal DIPA.

M: Medium/full-bodied, easy on the palate, wet/juicy.

D: I liked this DIPA a lot, Bootlegger's is certainly impressing me as of late.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

4/8/2011

Bottle picked up at Olive Tree and poured into a snifter. When I had this on tap I wasn't able to spend as much time with it as I would have liked, so I'm eager to revisit it. This bottle is as fresh as the night is young.

A: Deep orangish amber, much darker than a typical Southern California Double IPA. Big frothy beige head had good retention and scattered lacing.

S: This smells a lot like Hopslam. It has a similar marriage of caramel, grapefruit, and perfumy pine. There's a light candied sweetness that gives the impression of candied caramel citrus. Hell of a nose.

T: The flavor is also awesome, but not quite as good as the nose. Lots of caramel, grapefruit, orange, and pine, with a smooth moderate bitterness and a decided sugary character. Again, the sugary malt is not at all characteristic of the Southern California interpretation of the style, but the beer is undeniably great. This is essentially a Midwestern style Double IPA. Alcohol is deftly hidden for the high ABV.

M: Medium in body with nice carbonation. Mouthfeel is smooth and sticky.

Overall: An exceptional beer. If you're expecting a San Diego Pale Ale, you won't find it here, but you will find a high quality Midwest style Double IPA. This is the closest thing to Hopslam that I've ever tasted, and I can't decide which I prefer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of corby112
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewery and at Bruery Provisions.

Pours a clear golden orange color with a one finger white foam head that quickly settles into a lasting ring.  Streaks of lace left behind.

Floral, dank hop aroma with balance of earthy pine, citrus fruit notes and pale malt.  Strong pine needle presence along with pineapple and lemon peel followed by biscuity malts and subtle alcohol.

Chewy body thats fuller than expected with a really nice balance of earthy, grassy hops, tropical/citrus fruit and pale malts.  Dry and bitter up front with piny hops lingering over the sweeter notes.  Hints of pineapple, grapefruit and lemon peel countered by a  nice malt presence that provides balance without interfering with the hop flavors.  Subtle hints of biscuit and graham cracker before finishing with some boozy heat. The alcohol flavor towards the end of the palate takes away from the hops a bit but overall this beer is pretty good.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From 22oz bomberto Hess imperial pint glass on 1/23/12
*From notes

-- Muchos gracias, Samantha --

A: Pretty God damn dark. like an amber or fair brown ale. A standard pour yields a fluffy two finger head that sticks around. Beautiful and dense lacing rims the glass as the head slowly fades.

S: It's most certainly hoppy. The tropical, almost floral vibe on this is outstanding.

T: How the nose leads to this, I don't know. It's like two different beers, as this is much maltier then I expected. Sure it's bitter and piney, but there's minimal fruit to it. The finish is bitingly dry.

M: Above average, but not much more. The carbonation could use a bit more touch, and the overall body feels like a rough draft.

O: Not the beer I was hoping for. In fact I really don't get where the hype is coming from. The name, maybe the killer label? I don't know man. What I do know is that Knuckle Sandwich is a reasonably good beer, but with so many other DIPA options out there, I don't know if I'd track this down again.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.29/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Ice tea coloring with a slight, bready textured peanut shell toned head that was moderately retaining. Healthy carbonation factor within, with a sticky, thin, lace band.

S: Aroma was sticky pine resins, flowery dry citrus, wet grapefruit, with background nuances of sweetly toasted malt. Decent level of awareness.

T: Toasted malt and dry citrus with juicy grapefruit and sticky pine upfront. Spicy hops, dry mango and tropical fruit hints. Glimpses of toasted sweetness, figs, tangerines-orange spiciness and apple-caramel. Alcohol spiciness of cinnamon and tarragon.

M: Sticky hop resins, sticky malt with a fairly sharp bite of carbonation. Very good malt depth, dry, spicy bite of hops off the tongue.

O: Overall big sticky malt body and sticky hop resins and as good as advertised. A very good mixture of juicy hops, sweet malt, dry hopping and alcohol spiciness. Incredible drinkability, the 10% abv is nearly non-detectable behind the big malt backing and hops and adds a nice deal of spiciness. A bomber goes way to quickly, a worthy repeat anytime and one i wish i had access to. Received as xmas present, the price + shipping cost is worth the endeavor.

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Photo of jbaker67
4.41/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

deep dark orange. Perfect one finger of thick head. Nose is predominantly grapefruit, with a bit of spicy hop notes and pine. It’s the grapefruit that’s dominant though. Medium body. Decent malt character, but this one is all about the hops. First two thirds on the palette is fruity hop flavor, grapefruit rind and maybe peach. Back third is pleasant bittering. A great beer

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Photo of beertunes
3.34/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to 2beerdogs for this one. Poured from hated 22oz bottle into 10oz goblet. Poured a lightly hazy orange-amber color with just a thin cap of light tan head, which then settles quickly into a thin ring. No real retention or lacing.

The aroma was all hops, no malt showing through at all, mostly grapefruity citrus and a bit of pine. On the tongue, a sharp alcohol flavor was the first thing to be noticed. Then, those big citrusy hops came through, and there was just a wee bit of light malt across the middle of the palate.

The body was somewhat fuller than typical for the style, which I like when a beer has a strong alcohol flavor, which helps smooth out the flow across the palate. But, that is what probably what gives the beer it's somewhat sweet & sticky finish. Drinkability was OK, the alcohol left the finish with a bit of lingering hotness. Overall, a good, solid take on the style. Worth a shot if you see it.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A darker dipa color, this one clocks in at dark amber, auburn, burnt copper kind of vibe. 1/3" head. Aroma dropped heavy notes of hops, fruity, Americana proprietary and even some caramel notes that weren't heavy.

Taste was wonderful, low, soft bitterness, amazing malt body that hides immense alcohol. Plenty of woody pine notes accompanied by peach hop tones. This one is solid and one of the easiest drinking bottled 10%+ beers around.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, Shane! An awesome extra right off my wants list! I gather this is from the early January release.

Pouring surprisingly dark for the style, this is a clear, coppery red with a dense, off-white head that recedes to a disk, leaving a little lace. The nose is rather pungently hoppy with pine and spruce being most noticeable. Definitely spicy, the aroma definitely brings lijjat papad. Some malt sweetness is present too, but this is mostly driven by the hops . Reminiscent of Brass Knuckle, this is great stuff, a solid 4.25

The palate opens with a blend of sweetness that's a blend of both malt and hops. Mango, pine and spruce are all present, along with a mild toffee/ caramel character. I have a feeling my palate is permanently destroyed, 'cos this doesn't taste all *that* bitter, and it is tempered by the mild sweetness. Quite fruity, I do get some stone fruit as well, with some peach and maybe apricot. Drying on the finish, this has a little caramel, dark brown sugar and a moderate hoppy bitterness. Carbonation is mild, working quite well with the beer. Alcohol does appear, especially towards the finish, but it manages not to take too much away from the experience. Ultimately, the juicy, fruity hop character is an absolute pleasure to partake in, but having just finished my last pint of ABLE, this doesn't quite match up. Still, an excellent effort from this new to me brewery. Thanks again, Shane!

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.39/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to jodan for sending me the bottle.

A - Pours a dark orange, almost brown in color with a tan head. The head fades a bit, but not completely. Some lacing left on the glass.

S - Strong grass, pine, and some orange peel.

T - Same as the smell, but with an equal malt balance.

D - Good carbonation, and a bit heavier than most DIPAs.

O - Smell is awesome, taste is just a step below. Great DIPA.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.61/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Rather dark for a dipa, usually the best ones tend to be in the orange, vein, but this one here was best described as brown. Looked good though. Amazing aroma, plinyesque to say the least. Swirling hop varieties in a massive dry hop, even some good malt aroma of caramel comes through.

Great taste, low bitterness, hides the alcohol quite well, you really start to feel it though (not taste) as you get towards the end of a bomber of these. Lots of pine without the bitterness, same for the pineapple. Such a smooth mouthfeel to the beer.

Extremely highly recommended. A must for any self proclaimed hop head. Especially the one dimensional ones. This one is unique enough to expand some palates who don't like anything but big hops.

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Photo of jrallen34
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle poured into my Narke glass...A super dark ipa, dark copper bordering on a shiney brown, semi clear. A huge tope head of about five fingers emerges77, a fluffy head that looks great. The retention is good and lacing is awesome, literally coats the whole glass. Stunner...An equally impressive aroma that instantly reminds me of a stronger Daisy Cutter. Grassy hops with caramel, no hints of alcohol or pine typical in a DIPA, love it! A unique hint of vanilla on the finish...The taste matches the muted dipa notes on the aroma, but they take it a bit too far. I like that its not an alcoholic pine bomb, but then again it could use more flavor overall, just pretty light. The front is very malty, caramel, and again some vanilla. Pineapple shows off some great notes as well, especially as it warms. The finish is a very smooth pine resin taste and sensation, not overly bitter, doesn't attack the senses...Mouthfeel is ok, lighter for a dipa, especially on the finish...Incredibly easy to drink for 10%.

A huge and positive surprise. An easy to drink malty dipa that I really enjoyed.

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Photo of maximum12
3.92/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Redundant thanks again to Kyle2k10 for a trade that is reaching epidemic proportions, & knocking this long-time want off my list. 22 oz. bottle split with my wife.

First, nice bottle art...then the pour, which is lively, orange, & looks like is has hops, malt, & water. Orange, filtered, middling clear. Nose is promising, pine, grapefruit, with a backing band of light, sweet fruits.

Knuckle Sandwich is...balanced. Stingers of caramel come out of the firehose with bruising force. The pine & grapefruit in the nose comes through, but it's held down by the malts. Waves of sweet follow; a slow, moderate, lingering bitterness rounds the beer off. I'll give its due for being easy drinking, this is a beer of mass destruction.

A very good beer; a little less balance & heavier hand on the hops would have pushed this skyward easily. So close to great in this mouth. But, heck, I'd never turn one down.

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Photo of trxxpaxxs
3.53/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to BrewtifulMind for gifting this bottle to me. I've wanted to try it for quite awhile...

A: Pours a nice copper/amber with about half finger of off-white head. The foam takes a while to dissipate, but leaves great lacing on the glass as it drinks.

S: The nose has components of big citrus, malt, and flowers. It smells nice, but it's a little too sweet for my liking.

T: It starts out sweet with a nice balance between malt, hops, and booze. The bitters mellow out the malt in the middle, and the alcohol comes on strong in the finish.

M: Full bodied beer. Sweet and syrupy to start, finishes coating and boozy.

O: Good beer, but not my favorite. I'm happy to have tried it, but I don't know if I'd ever seek this out again.

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Photo of Rutager
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pretty clear, rich amber-orange, nice finger of cream coloured, sticky looking head. Sweet malts, with citrus and ripe tropical fruits and a bit of sharp alcohol on the nose. Big sweet malts, citrus rinds, some over-ripe tropical fruits. Medium-full body, medium-low carbonation. Big IPA here, good stuff.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.38/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A friend shared this bottle and I had mixed feelings about this beer. It looked like it was a dark orange color with a small wispy head. The smell was quite hoppy, pine and citrus. The flavor was also nce and hoppy with more pine but it was also sweet, syrupy, and astringent. I was happy to only have to finish eleven ounces because a full bomber would be too much.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes taken from 9/29 from the craziest bottle share that i have ever been a part of. Thanks so much to the NYC and Hoboken crew for letting me participate in this incredible day of drinking long time wants and insanity.

Thanks kindly to Mike? for sharing.

a - clear amber thing bubbly head with spotty lacing.
s - smells awesome. IPA crossed with an amber.
t - heavy butterscotch. Amber IPA.
m - a bit boozy
o - overall Amber IPA hoppy butterscotch

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Photo of scottfrie
4.55/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into tulip.

A: Pours a deep golden amber with a thick and greasy tan head that faded into an oily collar that left strings of thick lace down the glass.
S: Super fresh a potent scent of citrus medley coupled with tropical fruit nectars, flower gardens and perfume. Tropical fruits are sweet and mix well with an onslaught of grapefruit, orange zest, sweet ripe tangerines and clementines. Flowery perfume pokes through the mix as well.
T: Bitter yet smooth notes of grapefruit pith, tangerine juice, orange rind, and sweet passion fruit, mango and papaya. Notes of flowers and sweet fruit nectars bring up the finish, and the aftertaste is tingly and sweet with a slight note or two of the base malt. Sweet tropical fruits linger long after the swallow.
M: Thick and heavy mouthfeel, syrupy but not overly oily, greasy, or sweet. Carbonation is tingly and smooth, with a chewy body and extremely well hidden alcohol.
O: Impressive nose, impressive tastes, very impressive mouthfeel. Drinks like a beer half the ABV. More than just a citrus bomb in taste, there is plenty of other hop profiles layered in the flavors. Nose is phenomenal, I definitely enjoyed this one.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.45/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up at the brewery while out in Cali for the Bruery RS Party. Big thanks to womencantsail and t0rin0 for bringing this one to my attention as I would have otherwise overlooked it while there. Served from bottle into a Green Man snifter. Poured a deep red-orange with a one finger very light tan head. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, orange zest, caramel, and citrus hop. The flavor was of sweet malt, citrus, citrus hop, bitter hop, and alcohol. It ha d medium feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a damn nice DIPA. You can defintely tell this is a higher-ABV brew. The citrus aspect in this one is nothing short of excellent. A pretty nice flavor all-around going on here. If I'm honest, the alcohol aspect of this one definitely hurt the drinkability. If you haven't tried this one before, you definitely need to make the effort.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.48/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Bright orange color with a small head and good lacing. No where else to really go with this one.

S - Tropical fruit, grassy hops, little bittering, nice citrus. Caramel malt backbone is surrounded nicely by the hops. Good stuff.

T - This is a great tasting and shockingly awesome beer. Citrus hops and tropical fruits and a nice sweetness and the caramel in the malts is not overpowering. Alcohol is indetectible in this one.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbionation.

D - Dangerously drinkable at 10%, and a grea beer I'd love to have again.

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Photo of Marius
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at a tasting. Very dark brown pour with a tan head. Smells of citrus hops, grapefruit. Tastes like malt sugars, honey, citrus and caramel. Bitter-sweet aftertaste.

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

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to PretzelCity for this.

4.5 A: Almost opaque plum color. Two fingers of super creamy off-white head with good retention and plenty of lacing.

4.5 S: I'm really liking the nose on this. Great balance between the hops and malts. Hops are floral foremost (and powerful!) with grapefruit and pineapple next, then pine. Malts are a half step less powerful than the hops. Lots of crystal malts with plum fruitiness and a light toastiness.

4.5 T: Like the nose, big hops and big malts. Again lots of grapefruit and pine. Undernearth, this is a bit more citrusy than the nose, but just barely so. Pineapple and orange are featured here. A slight touch of herbalness as well. For the malts, there is plenty of caramel again, apple and plum fruitiness, and a touch of toastiness. Mild yeastiness to round this out.

4.0 M: Heavier medium body. Good moderate carbonation. A tad bit chewy with only a moderate creaminess. Still good here.

4.5 D: I had heard this tasted like Hopslam, but I don't think that's really a fair comparison. The hop profile definitely reminds me of Hopslam, but that's about as far as the similarities go. What we have here instead is a quite tasty, East Coast style DIPA. The hops work really well with the solid malty backbone. Very enjoyable experience.

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Photo of rawfish
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark rusty hue, clear with a large fluffy off white head. Moderate clumps of lacing and good retention.

Huge floral aroma, spicy, grapefruit and pine resin. Very punchy with slight caramel sweetness and butterscotch syrup.

Solid malt undertones of caramel and and bread integrates well with a spicy and herbal hop flavor. Pine, sweet onion and spicy tobacco, no citrus at all in the hops. Alcohol is very prevalent and lingers along with a steady earthy bitterness.

Medium bodied, hefty alcohol on the palate, really punchy. Dries decently.

Probably one of few IPAs I've had with no citrus flavor in the hop profile , the malt is really interesting building a varied spice note, more like a really hop forward double red ale. Great nose, heavy hitter on the alcohol. Grungy and rugged DIPA.

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Photo of Satchboogie
3.87/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a tulip

A: Pours copper, slightly hard to see through, 2-finger off-white head. Tight head with foamy top, great retention, and good lacing.

S: Huge orange, grapefruit, pineapple, pine, and mango. Very tropical. There seems to be a good bit of sweetness. Slight hint of vegetal in the background.

T: Big let-down from the nose. Not as much tropical and bright fruit as I was expecting. More herbal and pine with a lot of astringency, lots of grapefruit. Extremely sharp flavors and bitterness. Big sweet malt base akin to a fresh American Barleywine. Sharp bitterness in the finish (semi-dry), slight vegetal quality too. Alcohol is warm and noticeable in the taste.

M: Close to full carbonation, moderate carbonation. Sweet and malty and a semi-dry finish, not all that crisp/clean and refreshing (a tad bit boozy).

O: This is more like a fresh American Barleywine than a DIPA in my opinion. It doesn't have that bright, clean character with a light malt base that I come to expect from a DIPA. To sweet and almost briny at times. The alcohol presence isn't bad for a 10% beer, but I also don't like any alcohol character in my IPAs/DIPAs. A good DIPA, but overhyped I believe.

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Knuckle Sandwich from Bootlegger's Brewery
4.28 out of 5 based on 1,081 ratings.
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