Pike Tandem Double Ale | The Pike Brewing Company

Pike Tandem Double AlePike Tandem Double Ale
84 Ratings
Pike Tandem Double AlePike Tandem Double Ale

Brewed by:
The Pike Brewing Company
Washington, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pike reconfigured the recipe for Tandem so it is now brewed with coriander and fermented with Belgian ale yeast as a Belgian-style dubbel. Since it's entirely different from the old Tandem, this listing should be retired and the new one allowed to take its place.

Added by Todd on 10-15-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 84 |  Reviews: 70
Photo of GRG1313
2.94/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a light brown with a short head. Simple white bread/candi sugar nose with hints of carmel. Mouthfeel is medium with flavors that follow the nose-a bit of sweet baked bread with a bit of a malt character. Sounds better than it is.

A simple brew. I'd go with a real Belgian in lieu of this one. Not a favorite.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of biboergosum
3.88/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a slightly hazy reddish dark copper hue, with a few fingers of soapy light beige head, that leaves a bit of lace around the glass as it slowly recedes. It smells of sweet caramel malt, and earthy, spicy hops. The taste is a light pine hoppiness, and lightly toasted caramel malt, with some very faint anise-like spiciness lingering. The carbonation is quite moderate, leaving the body nice and smooth with a good weight. It finishes dry and hoppy, showing a bit of citrus in the end. The 7.5% ABV is hardly noticeable, blended well into a very decent quaffer for a cool spring day.

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Photo of smcolw
2.48/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Deep amber/brown with a strong ruby hue to the liquor. Moderate head with good lasting time. Decent lace.

Smell: strong caramel with a dash of licorice. Light hop in the background.

First impression is that this is a far thinner beer than I expected with a low carbonation level. Reminds me of a homebrew. Mild flavor: some burnt malts and some crystal. Good hop finish, but I would not describe this as hoppy. Nothing "bad" but it just sorta fizzles--sorta like catching a fish below the minimum size: you get some fun, but you're gonna throw it back anyway.

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Photo of russpowell
3.9/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This version weighs in at 7.5% ABV, decanted into a Duvel Tulip. Above average head retention & lacing

Bomber pours an effervescent mahogany with 2+ fingers of tan colored head.

S: Dirt, a bit of chocolate, & some figs & alcohol as this warms

T: Chocolate, a bit of iron, some leafy hops, & slight fruittyness (think dates, raisins, figs) up front. Roasted grain, earthyness, a whisper of licorice, & much more fruittyness, as this warms. Finishes dry with a bit boozey warmth, & jammyness, & bit of peppery hops, plus some booze warmth. Almost gave this a bump to 4.5 on taste

MF: Medium bodied, low carbonation, & fairly dry

Drinks fairly easy for the style & abv. I'd put this up against Allagash any day

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Darkest russet that becomes black cherry with orange peel trim when light is allowed entry. The khaki colored head is a modest two fingers in height after a vigorous pour and is more than capable in the lace department. This is pretty much how I expect a doppelbock, or even a dubbel, to look.

The nose is almost as hoppy as it is malty; no surprise since it was brewed in the Pacific Northwest. I love me some hops, but I hope Pike didn't ruin what is supposed to be a malt dominant beer by adding too many little green cones. Dark caramel, cocoa, earthy pipe tobacco and white grapefruit peel gets it about right.

Tandem Double isn't much of a dubbel and it isn't much of a doppelbock. It is, however, good beer. The first several mouthfuls tell me that it's actually an Imperial American brown ale with a hop fetish. I have a feeling that I'm drinking this bottle pretty fresh, so that could account for the flavor profile. If you aren't a hophead, just age the bomber for a year or so.

The malt backbone is on the sturdy side, with quite a bit of dark English toffee, molasses and date puree. If it contained even a hint of smokiness, I might compare this beer to a Scotch ale. There are plenty of malt sugars (and added candi sugar) on hand to offset the bitterness of the hops. The finish, however, still manages to be impressively grapefruit tangy and alpha acid drying. Complex, it ain't. Delicious, it is.

The mouthfeel is much closer to medium than it is to full. It's also silky smooth and becomes ever so slightly creamy as the beer sits. I was wondering if this might not be a lager... until I glanced at the label and saw 'Double Ale' as plain as day.

Tandem is a tasty little treat for those of us who like hops in just about everything. It occurs to me that this Pike Pub and Brewery offering is perfectly named. Malt and hops work in tandem to create a lip smacking ale that should appeal to a wide range of craft beer lovers... as long as they crack the crown at the appropriate time. Fresh definitely suits me best.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.03/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown 22oz bottle w/out freshness date into a snifter cool.

A - A deep burnished garnet w/ a 2 fingered cream colored head. A spiral pattern of lace clings to the sides well.

S - Malty aromas and bready grain scents w/ a woody hop and dry fruity scent similar to dates. Caramel is a strong aroma aspect found within this ale.

M - A malty feel gets a boost of carbonation early on. A nutty texture gives a certain dry feel. Tinges of spice and grainy texture that lasts until the flavor takes over.

T - An overwhelming caramel malt with dry cereal taste and dried fruit-like apricot and a crisp yellow pepper flavor. A serious roasted German malt flavor follows w/ subtle pepper and more toffee-like tastes.

D - This was described as a Doppelbock at the retailer which isn't far off even though it is an ale. A great taste nevertheless, plenty of flavor. I would drink this any day of the week. A great beer for pairing with a steak.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of Wasatch
3.83/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy off-white head, with some nice thick creamy sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with a slight hop note, with lots of caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, slightly hoppy/bitter, with some caramel. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a tasty brew, glad to have a shot at it.

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Photo of Gavage
3.53/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear brown in color with a short 1/2" head that breaks apart slowly.

Smell: mild roasted tones and caramel sweetness are soft and tough to pull out of the glass.

Taste: caramel, doughy bread, dark fruit sweetness, and very soft bitterness. There is a hint of alcohol and mild roasted tones throughout.

Mouthfeel: lighty crisp at the start, smoother and a touch dry at the finish. Aftertaste is short. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: easy to drink but overall the higher alcohol is not paired with a bolder flavor. Worth a try.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.58/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a four-finger thick, frothy, fairly dense, amber tinged, tan colored head. The beer is a dark, burnt amber color that shows a clear, cranberry hue when held up to the light. Sticky, sweet, caramelized malt aromas are noticeable as I pour this brew and a more focused look at the nose tempers this nicely with lots of toasted malt and browned whole grain bread notes. This is definitely heavily focused on caramelized malt, but there seems to be a touch of herbal / citrus hop character just noticeable underneath the heavy malt. There is a soft, toasted nuttiness here towards the end of the aroma. There is also a fair amount of caramelized, berry fruit notes in the nose.

Rich and creamy up front, sweet malt dominates as it starts to move across the tongue, but a herbal, lightly biting bitterness actual comes in to play and lingers on a bit in the finish (surprisingly for only 25 listed IBUs, though definitely on the light side). The finish really ends with some toasted, whole grain leaning, almost grain husk notes that can't quite dry out the up front sweet malt. Some berry, or sweet raisin notes get wrapped up in the caramelized malt sweetness that is prominent in this beer and there is a soft, but noticeable, grapefruit-leaning citrus character here towards the middle. A touch of almost roasted grain towards the finish can at times taste a bit nutty, but definitely adds a solid toasted whole grain bread character to this beer. While this definitely has a body to it, I like that it has a certain creaminess to it without being overly heavy, it even manages to have a certain quaffable quality to it. As the beer warms up the malt begins to smooth out / over-take the bitterness.

Not a bad beer, you definitely need to enjoy a crystal malt balanced / focused brew, and this does have a touch of malt astringency to it, but it is actually pretty decent.

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Photo of tigg924
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: hazy, milk chocolate brown, 1/4 inch head

Smell: malt and caramel

Taste: a malty start and body, caramel..with a hoppy/piney finish

Mouthfeel: crisp, dry, medium bodied, medium carbonation, with a slighty bitter finish

Drinkability: I could have two or three..Malts dominate and this is a small malt bomb..Moderately complex, but nothing over the top

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Photo of wordemupg
3.85/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bottle aug 6 2009

A nice deep maroon, two finger head that falls quickly and leaves only patches of lace

S heavy malt with some caramel, light hops not too bad

T sweet malt with a little chocolate mixed with spice

M/D nice feel, not too much carbonation, a little creamy, overall quite nice

another good beer from pike this would make a nice winter warmer i will drink again

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: From the bottle, a cola pour emerges with rustic amber highlights glistening from the light. In the glass a cranberry tea color is more suited. The head was buff, short lived, but did manage to lace fairly well with a thin sheet coating. Visible carbonation was medium, with graciously spaced macro-bubbles rising rapidly to the surface.

S: A mixture of some fruity and cola notes evolve first on the nose. Some pears, dried cola and cinnamon all come through of medium strength. A slight hint of smoked dried caramel is detected on the finishing trail along with a bit of dried nuttiness.

T: Some alcohol is first noticed, set against a malty backing. Dried munich malts and caramel are spiced up by some cola, nutty tones, and some fruitiness from the ale yeast. Some light citrus, dried appleskins also appear lightly in the background. The finish is where the alcohol becomes most apparent, along with some woodsy spruce and citrus warming.

M: Full bodied, perhaps the best feature of the beer, with a malty lush feel accompanied by a light tingle of carbonation. Nice hold with its full malty nature that really stands out.

D: The Abv% feels a bit more then its advertised 7.0%, possible feeling upwards of 8% easily. Heavy malted body will limit this consumption wise by numbers, but is fairly enjoyable by the bomber.

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Photo of beertunes
3.7/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at a brewers night at the Green Frog Cafe in Bellingham, WA. Served in a straight pint glass it poured a deep, rich, dark ruby/medium brown color with about an inch of light tan head that had very good lacing and moderate retention.

A malty aroma reaches the nose, with a hint of spice on the end. The smooth, malty flavors are slightly more noticeable than the aroma promised. Some nice earth flavors are up front, then the spice notes kick in on the finish.

Body and drinkability are about average for the style. A very nice brew that I enjoy when it finds it's way around the area. Not world class but certainly worth seeking out.

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Photo of ccrida
3.43/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On draught at the Pub, served it's namesake shaker, Tandem Double is dark brown with small off-white collar and light lace.

Smell is soft caramel malt and a bit of noel like spices, with maybe a touch of citrus/coriander as well.

Taste is very spicy and dry, with some earthy hops and a dry, clean finish. Very similar in profile to their Auld Acquaintance, but with more crystal malt, I'd prefer less spices (or better integration) and more malt depth and esters, which are pretty much non-existent. This is really more like a winter warmer then a dubbel, in which case it's not bad.

Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated with a medium-light body.

Drinkability is a tad above average (as 7% beer, not as a dubbel). Easy drinking but boring other then the out of balance spices, which are at least pretty inoffensive, if just layer on top.

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Photo of Durge
3.98/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark mahogany color, almost cola, with a big light tan head and lots of chunky head. The aroma is a mellow yeast and brown sugar and raisin malt. The flavor is a burnt maple syrup with a hint of scotch and raisn edges. I get some juniper highlights on the tongue. I get some apple nut hints. It's woodsy like a scotch ale but it's quite thin. Finely carbonated but definitely on the watery side. A more resinous touch would go a long way here. It's got a little licorice alcohol presence yet pretty drinkable.

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.38/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sample at the brewpub. Pours a dark brown color with a medium thin and foamy beige head that diminishes steadily. Stringy lacing. Light grassy hops and malt in the nose. Medium body with flavors of malt, yeast and hops. Some fruity flavors are present as well. The finish is sweet caramel and malt at first with a short light hoppy aftertaste. Decent overall.

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Photo of tavernjef
3.66/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Browned, dark, and slightly ruby with a firm, medium capping of frothy creamed, light tanned foam. Some inky stringed lacing sticks across the glass. Looks appetizing enough.

Aroma is slightly dusted with old cocoa over a light dry earthyness of dried dark fruits and skins. Kinda rummy and plummy, but fairly understated for a Doppelbock. No real big malt richness is evident.

And so goes the taste, unfortunately. No real big malt profile is evident here. Taste is low and mild with a slight plum/cherry/ apricot fruityness thats semi dry and quite low ended amongst a tiny poof of roast and toast breadiness thats smurfed into some areas. As it warms and finishes, chocolate malts arise to a fluffy light coating making for a decent rise in character.

Feel is clean and kinda fluffy and close to medium, but not really intregated into the usual creamy, sticky, rich, thick malt body associated with most Doppels.

An Ok Dbock that could use some more malt to nearly every faction of its character but well crafted enough for a pleasurable session.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.83/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mahogany coloured ale, with a small,yet persistant, creamy tan head. Nice. Nice malty aroma, milky chocolate comes to mind. Very nice taste all sweet ,malty good ness,, caramel, toasty somewhat, milk chocolate candy sugar. Ok on the palate, avoids being cloying for one so malty. Overall a very nice beer that malt lovers will enjoy, though hop-heads may find boring. I dont see how this is a doppelbock. More of a darker English Strong.

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Photo of canucklehead
3.65/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Let this one warm up first as the raisiny notes and bock goodness only opens up with time. Not a great Dopplebock but a good one that has subtleness on its side and a nice sweetness balance. Brown in colour with a malty , biscuity nose this beer doubtfully improves with age (unlike Granville Island ) but rather the quiet balance is the key element to this example.

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Photo of RedDiamond
3.38/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I asked the bartender for a pint of Tandem and watched as she poured me a Kilt Lifter. I corrected her on this; she apologized and then immediately started to pour another Kilt Lifter. This time she caught herself more quickly and on the third go I finally got my Tandem.

Even so, I tasted so much smokiness here as to wonder whether at some point the lines were crossed and I still ended up with a Scotch ale. Tandem is a very smoky, rauch-like ale brewed with candi sugar and 10% wheat malt. It is dark tawny-saffron and casually sweet, with a range of melanoidic fruits, and low suds. Tandem doesn't project a lot of flavor and it doesn't service style categories easily. But the available flavors are entertaining in their fruited, smoked complexity and I don't think I'd mind drinking this one again.

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Photo of Vancer
3.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another Pike brought back by my son for the T-day holidays.

Deep cola brown pour in the Corsendonk tulip, a tan head tries to pop up but quickly fades. Good dose of piney hops in the aroma, and the quaff. Although it does have a sturdy backbone of doughy malts to really balance it out. Finishes dry and crisp. Nice bit of caramel and winter spices in this brew, very tasty and a fine fall sipper while checking out football.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.57/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Just arrived in Dallas. This beer is a murky brown color, with a quickly fading head. Nice sweet aroma with a moderate maltiness, and a lightly fruity scent underneath. It's hard to detect any Belgian character here: There's a very lightly coffee-ish flavor with a tad of bitterness. It's fruity in a typical ale fashion, but shows no characteristics of typical Belgian yeasts. And it's a bit watery.

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Photo of Redrover
3.65/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was able to sample this one on cask during my most recent visit to the Pike. It is brown with red highlights. It has a lighter brown head with decent lacing.

The beer smells of lightly roasted malts and brown sugar.

The taste is sweet. I like the lightly toasted malts, which seem to be the backbone the rest of the tastes hang off of. It is slightly smoky and even sweetens a bit more late (perhaps due to the candy sugar).

Nice cellar temp. Slightly thin but smooth mouth. I liked it, but it is a little too sweet to session.

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Pike Tandem Double Ale from The Pike Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.54 out of 5 with 84 ratings
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