Double Dread Imperial Red Ale | Mad River Brewing Company

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Double Dread Imperial Red AleDouble Dread Imperial Red Ale

Brewed by:
Mad River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by cswhitehorse on 06-04-2009

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Reviews: 90 | Ratings: 157
Photo of biggred1
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy russet amber with a million tiny suspended yeast particles visable and a creamy tan head that leaves rings of sticky lace on the glass. The nose is sweet roasted malt and fruity hop spice. Nice piney hop flavors balance nicely with a ton of caramel maltiness. Hop bitterness lingers long into the finish. Slippery hop oil mouthfeel, medium bodied. A fine brew.

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Photo of czechsaaz
4.15/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Largely hop dominant but pretty complex. I get lots of typical citrus hops but some floral hops too. There is a nice malt component that smells like biscuit and caramel.

Deep red, slightly cloud. Poured with a pretty solid half inch head that fades to a persistant layer of tan foam over the top with good lacing.

Impressive complexity just in the first sip. Nice malt with caramel and brown sugar notes but also big hops, citrus for bittering, spicy for flavor. The more I get into the glass it seems like oranges, kind of sweet but with a good bitter bite. The afteraste is piney but also a lingering tofee sweetness.

Medium to full bodied with a very nice carbonation level. Jiust slightly warming from alcohol.

Very nice. In fact if this had wide distribution I would probably reach for it over that "humble" beer when looking for something in that style.

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Photo of snaotheus
4.4/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Got it at Whole Foods in Bellevue

Extremely dark ruby amber, cloudy but not opaque, small beige head with the beginnings of some really nice lacing. Smells roasted and malty and sweet.

Taste is sweet and roasty, a little nutty, and balanced nicely with hops.

Mouthfeel is thick and heavy, a little sticky (I might want to call it "chewy"). Pretty drinkable -- I may be overrating it a little bit right now, but this beer is exactly what I was looking for right now (and yes, this is the first time I've ever tried it).

I'll send a picture of the bottle if you want it.

2013-08-24 Trying it again. Bottle has the following code: 065 13 C-1 1031 N. I suppose that would be "bottled in early March 2013", so not the freshest thing in the world.

This one has little floaties (but I poured 'with vigor') and a big beige head. I note a little bit of soapy character. I've tried a lot of hoppy beers in between now and when I originally tried this, but this is still a tasty beer. I'd probably give it a somewhat lower score now.

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Photo of Docer
3.67/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 4-pack at the newly remodeled Fred Meyer on 39th and Hawthorne which now has a great selection! No freshness date.

- Murky dark red and brown ale... lots of yeast floating about... minimal to no head... bit of thick lacing though... but seriously... a ton of yeast all over the beer.. for me that is undesirable..

- Huge caramel malt smell... reminds me of a malty Rogue ale.. smells like many barleywines... little bit of citrusy hop.. some bitterness....

- Very sweet caramel malt... bready... earthy.. some roastiness.. chocolate lingers.... not too bad.... but I hate having a mouthful of yeast... little bitter tidbits....

- little dry, sweet aftertaste... some chewiness....

- Drinkable.. but for an Impy Red... there are many others I would rather indulge in...

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Photo of argock
4.32/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a clear pint glass. No freshness date. Single purchased at Market Street Wine Shop (Charlottesville, VA) for $2.55.

A: Rusty red-amber with thick, rocky, 2-finger head with very good retention and good doses of lacing down the glass.

S: This is one of the best red ale aromas around. Unsurprisingly hops dominate the nose, but the profile is very complex with floral, citrus fruits like orange and grapefruit, and tropical fruits horn in with some pineapple smells as well. Malts are robust but are overshadowed by the hops.

T: A delicious beert aht stands up very well compared to other well-known imperial red ales. Hops are front and center with tons of citrus and pine flavors mingling with some tropical fruit flavors and ending with a strong bitter note. Malts are hefty though and shouldn't be forgotten. Big loads of caramel and pale malts had to have gone into this big beer to provide the countering sweetness.

M: Mouthfeel is coating and substantial with medium-full body and bitter hoppy aftertaste.

D: Stacked up against Stone's Thirteenth Anniversary Ale, Mad River's Double Dread puts a smackdown and shows some complexity and style in providing a huge hoppy treat on a superior maltload to produce a complete brew. Worth looking around for.

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Photo of dbexpert
4.13/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a. dark ruby/brown color, garnet, thin head(may have been way too cold)but solid lacing on the sides of the glass,yeast a float

s.aroma permeates with deep roasted malt, cut by a sweet bitter aroma a red, lol(j/k)if you have had their Jamaican red this is easier,think red stripe then a add two tons of quality, one ton balance and you have a kick ass red with a high abv. and great drink-ability(not the bl kind)

m.balanced,great tight carbonation helps deliver a malt sweetness relieved with a terrific hop bite that dries enough to desire another sip but leaves enough for a long finish of sweetness battling the bite of hops

d.personally, could drink a ton of it never too heavy and is quite refreshing in the heat, seems like enough malt to be comforting on a cold day too, and remember it's style, enjoy with much respect!

p.s. I have had this on tap also, which was also very good. This beer is not hurt by a bottle but a fresh tap is always appreciated, review was done with a bottle sample

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Photo of pinotboy007
4.02/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Caramel w/a rich, bubbly khaki-colored head that leaves some lacing.

S - Malt, citrus, pine, leather, and peat. Very nice!

T - Delicious. Very much like it smells witha refreshing "zing" going on along with an herbal quality. The hops really linger and a noticeable alcoholic heat is there on the finish, so avoid spicy food.

M - Dense and creamy but still somehow refreshing. Only a trace of carbonation.

D - The ABV is too high to say this is highly drinkable, but it depends upon your standard. Avoid the high temps of summer heat on the deck and wait until the July sun sets like we did. Very nice.

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Photo of OldSchoolGamer
3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have only had the Mad River Serious Madness Black Ale before, which was very good. This is their Double Red Ale.

A: Pours a real murky amber/red color. Lots of sediment floating around. Head is tan and leaves very nice lacing on the glass.

S: Pretty typical for an Amber Ale. Lots of caramel and toasted malts. Hops are there, but not as prominant as the malts.

T: Again, pretty typical for an Amber Ale. The hops in here are very herbal and earthy. Almost tea like. Not citrusy or fruity like in many IPAs. Lots of toasted malts with a caramel undercurrent. I will admit, I do note care for hops that give off a tea-like presence. But still, a solid tasting beer.

M: Mouthfeel is actually pretty full. Bordering onto Barleywine territory. Somewhat syrupy. A little too heavy to be refreshing.

D: Again, bordering onto Barleywine territory. Somewhat cloying and full, this is one to sip on. One is enough for the night.

Overall, a pretty solid beer. Not nearly as good as a lot of Double Red Ales out there, this one is true to the style and worth checking out. My biggest complaint about the beer is the hop variety used, but thats all down to personal taste. Too much of a tea-like flavor going on here for my taste. Similar to Rouge St. Rogue Red.

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Photo of atsprings
3.85/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer Raleigh served in a standard pint-glass a crisp amber with a thin diminishing head. Aroma was some sweet malts and slight citrus hops. The taste decent balance of sweet malts and citrus hops with hints of caramel and pine. The beer is medium bodied with fairly well hidden alcohol and decent carbonation. This was an enjoyable beer, but I can't see myself picking this one again until Stone 13th is gone!

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 06/22/2009. I had this on draft. The beer pours brown with a tan head. The aroma is of sweet malt and sweaty, grassy hops. The flavor is of sweet caramel malt with bitter hops and a sweet finish. I thought this was pretty good although a touch sweet.

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Photo of UA8
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours cloudy and dark amber with a tall light brown head.

S- Citrus notes with a backing a caramelized malt.

T- Deep roasted malts, citrus notes, herbal hop bitterness and a touch of pine.

M- Medium to high carbonation but a nice medium viscosity.

D- Quite a hoppy brew but well worth a try. An interesting take on the Imperial red. Another worth beer from Mad River.

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Photo of rkuhnel
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a four pack yesterday from my local NorthCoast Coop. The 12 bottle poured a muddy brown that changes to a cranberry red with with a very foamy tan head with large bubbles that left thick lacing rings as it slowly settled. Nose is malty and full of complex hop aromas showing flowers, citrus, and pine. Smooth and slick mouthfeel. The flavor is actually mild for all those various nuances, and the finish is bitter. This is a very interesting and somewhat unique brew, and like its predecessor, Serious Madness, shows some very creative brewing.

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Photo of Spikester
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy brown with a large two finger head and very well laced. Aroma is brown sugar. Taste is strong bitter hops and semi sweet cocoa. I did not detect the high abv except in the after effects. Very drinkable and smooth. Hard to believe this would be classed as an American Amber. Maybe an Imperial Amber! IBUs must be at least a 60. Dry bitter finish.

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Photo of HalenRush
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Blue Lake Casino's Playstation 777, a stones throw away from the brewery.

A - Pours a deep deep ruby red approaching copper/garnet hues with a nice tightly beaded pillowy head.

S - The aroma is very citrus with grapefruit and tangerine punching through.

T - The citrus comes through on the taste too. Not as malty as one would think an Imp Red to be. I was expecting a raisin like malt flavor.

M - A bit high on the alcohol bite but very warm and relaxing. Easy to drink in spite of its 8.6% ABV.

D - Of course, the moniker "Imperial" attached to any beer would mark it down in the drinkability category. I found this highly quaffable and its easy to forget its ABV. Its smooth character is a polar opposite of its big brother, "Serious Madness".

I'm really enjoying this second installment of this adventure the boys at Mad River Brewing are embarking on. I think this is a good group of guys sticking to their brewing values when the other local breweries (I won't mention) have changed their brewing practices for the worse in this tough economy. Looking forward to the Belgian Golden Ale!

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Double Dread is a limited release beer that I picked up a John's Market. It poured a cloudy dark red with a good 2 finger foam head with decent retention. The lacing was minimal but what was around was sticky.

The aroma was a douse of alcohol in the nose with a deep caramel smell that was lovely. The taste was sweet up front with a really smooth finish. Hop bitterness was moderate. You could taste the 8.6 abv pretty easily but like most doubles, the more drinks and warmer it gets, the smoother it gets. It was moderately carbonated and left me with a happy feeling. It was a very enjoyable beverage and I will buy again.

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Double Dread Imperial Red Ale from Mad River Brewing Company
3.7 out of 5 based on 157 ratings.
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