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Midnight Hoppyness | Knee Deep Brewing Company

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Midnight HoppynessMidnight Hoppyness

Brewed by:
Knee Deep Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by KevT on 09-13-2013

For Trade:
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Reviews: 44 | Ratings: 324
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%

Bottled 4/8/14.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. A foamy curtain of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, chocolate syrup, and slight citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with chocolate syrup, citrus juice, and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that has an interplay of cocoa and citrus characteristics that make this one almost like a chocolate orange candy all around.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of metter98
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a finger high tan colored head that died down, leaving a patch of bubbles in the center, a collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of citrusy hops are present in the smell along with notes of roasted malts and slight hints of pine.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste starts out with flavors of citrusy malts but these are quickly replaced by flavors of roasted malts that linger through the finish. The hops also contribute a light to moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I found this to be a very enjoyable beer as it does a nice job balancing flavors of citrusy hops and roasted malts.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of biboergosum
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, a purported 'Imperial Black Rye India Pale Ale' - not gonna even try to parse that one, so let's drink it instead!

This beer pours a solid black abyss, with subtle basal cola edges, and three fat-ass fingers of puffy, rocky, and bubbly brown head, which leaves some inconsistent broken webbed lace around the glass as it slowly blows off.

It smells of roasted, somewhat meaty caramel malt, muddled pine resin and burnt leaf green notes, some free-agent wet ashiness, warmed orange, lemon, and red Texas grapefruit citrus flesh, a twinge of bittersweet cocoa powder, and further earthy and weedy hop bitters. The taste is gritty, grainy, and lightly toasted caramel/toffee malt, very mild spicy rye astringencies, a bit of stale cafe-au-lait, chocolate wafers, some mixed pine, citrus, and floral hoppiness, more damp ash isolate, a vanilla-tinged dark sugary character, and weak earthy, leafy, and floral hoppy add-ons.

The bubbles are fairly understated in their palatal pinging, but adequately supportive otherwise, the body a solid medium weight, and generally smooth, just a wee bit of char lurking about, looking for a place to happen. It finishes off-dry, the grainy and caramel essences of the malt trying to shake off the lingering smokiness, which appears to have consumed the hops.

For the style, this is aiiight, as Cascadian Dark Ales, by nature, still seem an unnecessary thing to me. Maybe it's the ably integrated 19-proof booze luring me in and obscuring my better senses - no, this is indeed well-made, the 'midnight blackness' not overpowering, and allowing the hops to at least show their stuff before blotting them out. Baby steps, I suppose.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a clear dark black color ale with a large dark color head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of green hoppy notes with light citrus flavours and some dry roasted malt. Taste is a nice mix of dry roasted malt with some green citrusy hoppy notes with medium bitter finish. Body is a bit light for style with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol notes. Not a big fan of the style but this one was quite enjoyable.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 5/7/2014. Pours dense pitch black color with a 2 finger dense and rocky tan head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, chocolate, cocoa, coffee, spicy rye, dark bread, floral, grass, pine, and floral/roasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of bright citrus/pine hops and dark/roasted malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, chocolate, cocoa, coffee, spicy rye, dark bread, floral, grass, pine, and floral/roasted earthiness. Good amount of pine/grassy/roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, chocolate, cocoa, coffee, spicy rye, dark bread, floral, grass, pine and floral/roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, balance, and robustness of bright citrus/pine hops and dark/roasted malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and fairly creamy/sticky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome imperial black IPA! All around great complexity and balance of bright citrus/pine hops and dark/roasted malt sweetness; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of mactrail
3.72/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

They call this an "Imperial Black Rye IPA." It seems to be a new twist on the "Cascadian" theme. This stuff is firewater with a hoppy burn that never goes out. Opaque dark brown in the really big duvel snifter with an adequate beige head.

Not overly carbonated on the tongue, which is a good thing because it's extremely acidic in addition to the alcoholic prickle. Massive aroma of some night-blooming flower growing in the barnyard. The flavor is so big you have to come at it from different sides. Burnt malt, burnt house, burnt lips. Serious, massive bitterness with some tar and wintergreen notes. Some barbecued peach and mango.

I wouldn't call this drinkable, being so rough and ridiculously hopped, but the hop fanatic will find it a worthy challenge. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at Bottlecraft in North Park in San Diego.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a shaker pint, the beer is jet black, with mahogany highlights around the edges, and a low profile, frothy, light tan head. Nose of dank, resinous hops, subtle grapefruit notes, and a roasted malt backbone. Flavors are roasted and resinous forward, with a pine pitch character, tangy grapefruit blast, on a roasted bitter coffee backbone. Subtle chocolate notes round out the palate, with sticky green hops highlights. Some tropical fruit characteristics, too. Smooth and light bodied, with a roasted, bittersweet, and resinous aftertaste. The finish is slick and slightly dry, with a bitter and roasted linger. Nice, well put together brew.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4/5  rDev -1%

22 purchased at Brewer's Haven Boise yesterday afternoon (but most of the bottleshops will have it too)... Enjoyed tonight from my Funk Fest tulip... Pours the expected black with a pillowy dark tan head... good lacing.

Nose is big pithy citrus hops with some lesser tropical fruity hops.. surprisingly there isn't a strong piney element.. roast malt element is present but only as a mild backdrop and allows the hops to play.

Flavor mirrors the aroma.. traditional Cali IPA bitterness is tempered by the roast malt and residual sugars... hop flavors are again bigger citrus and hints of tropical fruit.. burnt malt comes in on the finish and lingers pleasantly with the hops.

Big body ... No EtOH burn at all, surprisingly... pretty well done, that said I doubt I will buy again because there are too many other fantastic brews out there and I don't really appreciate this style too much.


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Photo of Zorro
3.55/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear black colored beer with a minimal tan colored head.

Scents of Pine and Burnt Coffee. Patent malt is strong. High Hopping plus Patent malt equals carrot. Strong aroma of carrot and parsley.

Starts out sweet and savory. Burnt sugar and coffee tastes. Flavors of caramel and carrot. This is decidedly on the sweet side.

Mouthfeel is thick.

Overall an OK beer on the sweet and heavy side for the style.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Has a hoppy, spicy nose – definite rye notes and a hint of roast but the hops dominate. It pours brilliant deep dark brown with a 1” lightly tanned lacy white foam cap that dissipates slowly. The palate starts with initial hints of caramel followed by light roast backed up and balanced by some hop bitterness with fresh grain especially in the finish. The beer has dark beer roastiness but it is dialed back just enough and the hops have just enough presence to pull the beer back from being a porter or a stout and to evoke an IPA. There are just hints of darker malt sweetness and light chocolate but again the level of hops keep it back from falling into porterdom while the dark malts mellow the hops. It a little oily, medium full body and medium carbonation.

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Photo of barczar
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Not as fresh as it should be, dated 22714.

Aroma is piney and citrusy, with loads of cocoa and a touch of roast malt.

Flavor reveals a base of charred malt, fairly bitter, with undertones of chocolate and a biting resin finish. Grapefruit is well represented, and notes of tropical fruit add subtle complexity.

The bitterness is more overwhelming than I'd prefer initially, but the chocolate malt and fruity hops are redeeming.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.49/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Haw River Farmhouse Ales teku glass. Label says 10/17/14

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a 1/2 inch light brown head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a large side patch of bubbly surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a jagged ring behind.

S- Seamless melding of the piney, resinous notes from the hops and the roasty, somewhat sweet dark roasted malt.

T- Taste mirrors the aroma with some burnt sugar and vanilla flavors added on. Alcohol is superbly well-hidden. Caramel, mild coffee and dark chocolate is revealed as it warms. Bitterness is moderate.

M- Slightly creamy and thick with medium carbonation and a full body.

O- How do they do it? These guys are becoming one of my favorite breweries, beer by beer. They know hops like just about no one else. The only Black IPA I can think of that's better than this is Wookey Jack.

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Photo of maximum12
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my lovely wife for hauling this bottle back from her vacation...err, work trip to San Diego. On second hand, screw that. It's only my due for being left here in the harsh Minnesota cold. Split with aforementioned wife.

The pour is very dark & very carbonated, with light leading bloody around the top eight inch or so of the brew. Nose is that distinctly unnatural marriage of roast & piney hops with a sideswipe of Hershey's Kiss. Not bad, but light.

Midnight Hoppyness probably made early parole. Wild mix of roast, sweet malts, piney hops, & after all that marches by the parade stand, there's a blast of earthy, spicy rye. At the exact moment of rye detonation there's a hump of bitterness: the finish is a tumbling shaker of everything trying to shout at the top of its lungs for my tongue's attention. Smoothness on the palate contrasts with the edged weapon of the chaotic neutral taste bombardment. I was just told I'm "sucking this down" & indeed my wife has twice as much left as I do. Pace yourself, max.

The wild-eyed madness of this brew tickles my fancy & the rye tickles my happy sack; this is an excellent joining of ingredients that aren't easy to meld into an excellent beer: but Knee Deep has succeeded. Thanks dear!

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Photo of FLima
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pitch black color with a thick beige head with decent retention.
Aroma with notes of roasted and smoked malts, rye and some citrusy.
Flavor with notes of rye, dark fruits, pine, grapefruit, grass, vanilla, coffee, licorice and cocoa. Dry aftertaste with a bitter and spiced long lasting note.
Medium towards full body with appropriate carbonation. Alcohol of 9.5% is completely absent.
Beer with great malt complexity and a bold personality that is well balanced with a proper (lots of it) amount of citrus hops.

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Photo of StoutHunter
3.79/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Short Review. This was a pretty solid Black IPA, it was very true to style and it had some nice balance to it. Not much stuck out about it, but it didn't have any off aspects at all and it's pretty much just what I would expect from a nice Black IPA. I would buy a bottle of this if I saw it.

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Photo of Fatehunter
4.11/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours two fingers of tan head on a dark brown body.
The aroma is roasted malt, licorice, spice and earth.
The taste is rye at first, deep lemon bitter, some pine and finishes with some heat.
The texture is smooth.
This is great.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Summer 16 - pours dark black, light tan foam. Coffee dark malt rye nose. Roasted rye flavor. Smooth. Bitter finish, very strong. Usurps the flavor. Closes like burnt coffee. Some grape and fruit flavors hidden within.

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Photo of rawfish
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pitch black with a clumpy mocha head. A bit viscous on the pour. Retention is ridiculously high and the lacing is very tight despite the frothy pour.

Roasted malt provides bready undertones with darker malt aromas of blonde coffee and browned toast, the dark malt is subtle and well integrated. Surprisingly I find the hops in this beer to be tropical and floral, ripe papaya, dried mangoes, pine forest and some earthy mulch blends well with the coffee aroma.

Substantial toffee and bready malt, hints of bittersweet cocoa powder and used coffee grinds. Hops are tropical like the nose but the pine is ramped up considerably, papaya and orange citrus round it out. Beer dries well leaving some acidic burnt malt to toy with the lasting pine aftertaste and astringency left by the alcohol.

Appropriate body and good carbonation, goes down easy and with a really dry, clean malt. Alcohol isn't harsh but it does add some off flavors near the finish.

A good representation of a black IPA, Knee Deep clearly knows what they are doing when it comes to hops. Will revisit.

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Photo of arizcards
4.07/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber from Ground Control on 11-21-15. Bottled on 11-5-15.

Beer poured black with a beautiful tan head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is roasted malts and citrus hops.

Taste is a huge roasted malt backbone offset nicely by a generous amount of citrus hops.

Mouthfeel is medium to full and pretty smooth.

Overall this is a nice black ale, a big bad ass beer that most folks find is an assault on their senses. It is a rough style that for some reason my pallette gets and enjoys. Check it out if you can handle the assault!

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Photo of JakerLou
4.09/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm not a big fan of Black IPAs. I find the smoky, burnt flavor to be too much of a contrast with the citrusy IPA flavors. Just not my thing. Having said that, this is a really good beer. It's not in my wheel house but the bitterness, char (smoke), and citrus flavors are really well balanced. Imagine a really good west coast IPA with a smoky/charred finish. Really well made beer even if it's not my thing.

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Photo of Franziskaner
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color with easily 2 inches of brown creamy foam resting on top. Heavy lacing. The aroma is a light pine aroma with a hint of smoke? That's a bit unique, but I dig it. I taste pine and roasted barley. Wow, that's pretty interesting. The mouth is very sticky and resinous. I have to admit this is a pretty interesting and unique black IPA.

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Photo of PHBoiler
3.69/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pitche black with a big brown head. Roasty and piney on the nose. Really bold flavors that somewhat conflict. Dank, piney, and bitter, then roasty and bitter. It just ends up being a bit bitter for me overall. Not bad, but not easy to drink. The mouthfeel is as it should be.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.76/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

We pop a bomber, pouring into our Great Lakes pint glasses. It shows the darkest root beer brown coloring, with a chocolate milk colored head that stands two fingers tall. This retains well, dissipating into chunky Swiss cheese lacing that is left clinging around the glasses. A chill haze is notable when held directly to light, but no sediment is seen. Carbonation appears to be moderate. The aroma gives a beautiful blend between rich and dank chocolate and coffee malt roastiness, brown malts, and light peaty smokiness, with herbal, citric, and piney hops, light chemical phenols, lactic creaminess, lemon tea, black pepper and distant cinnamon spice, booze, soy sauce, musty cheddar, perfumed lace, and a hint of honey. The taste boasts a hearty, dark, and smoky grain profile of burnt chocolate, coffee, caramel, and brown malts, with lightly wet wheatiness and moldy barley adding an organic freshness to this. Otherwise we encounter notes of sweet and bittering molasses, biting herbal hoppiness, white sugar sweetness, café au lait creaminess, powdered espresso beans, dark cocoa, medicinal phenols, sweet vodka booziness, coiny metallics, peanutty oiliness, pencil woodiness, and green plant saps. The body is lightly medium, and the carbonation is medium. Each sip offers nice slurp, smack, cream, and froth, leaving the mouth fully coated before it dives into a bittering pucker and chalked astringency. The abv is up there for the style, and obviously present, but drinkability remains fair and intact.

Overall, we haven’t been able to get enough of black ales lately. We just love the interplay between the darker side of the malts and the fresh zesty hoppiness that often accompanies it. Here, we felt that balance slide a bit. Despite this, the mouthfeel remained creamy and inviting to the last sip. The hops through both the nose and the flavor, however, were somewhat muted. To this point, the aroma in general, especially when cold, was surprisingly and disappointingly light and seemingly far away. That wonderful hoppy stickiness and freshness was lost, allowing too much room for the singed malt bill. The latter was delicious, but again, the final product just lacked an intensity from the other half of what we felt was necessary. All in all this is a nice beer, but it doesn’t quite compete with some of the other powerhouse black IPAs coming from the west coast on the level of purity of flavor.

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Photo of TerryW
3.96/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

More malty sweetness than hoppiness. This seems to me to be misnamed. Chocolate, coffee, a touch of smoke. Sweet upfront before finishing with pretty sturdy bitter hops. Almost strikes me as being built backwards, but still pretty tasty. Looks great, big firm long-lived head and lots of lace. Sweet molasses nose with a noticeable dose of alcohol. Tasty, big flavor, not what you might expect. Yup, that's the alcohol you're feeling.

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Photo of gonzo000
3.96/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Love the Rye aspects of this beer. I expected more (maybe too much) from the hoppy IPA side. This may have been a distinction I bestowed on the beer, as it is called a Black Ale here on the site as opposed to a black IPA. Beer pours black as night with little to no head to speak of. The nose was of pine hops and rye. The taste was mostly rye with some hops. Nice Flavor.

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Midnight Hoppyness from Knee Deep Brewing Company
4.04 out of 5 based on 324 ratings.
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