Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Second Hand Smoke | Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
very good
13 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Second Hand SmokeSecond Hand Smoke

Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.40%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Kuaff on 10-13-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 62
Photo of OrestesMethuon
4.51/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A second-runnings of their regular smoked imperial stout, this is an extraordinarily balanced stout—smoked or otherwise. Nice cappuccino-colored head, not as prolific as I might expect, but solid nonetheless. Flavors of dates, plum jam, campfire, burnt malt, black and green peppercorns, and very dry grass. Nose of pine-sugar, natural charcoal, burning pine-nettles, and overripe plums. Big, but pleasant, lingering elements.

 432 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, with little light transmission in the glass and a half finger light brown head that dissipates to large patches with light lacing. Aroma of semi-sweet dark toasted malt, coffee, cocoa and smoked malt. Flavor is smoky dark toasted malt with char, boiled coffee, bitter chocolate, hints of vanilla and licorice. Finishes with residual charred malt and a nice light smokiness. Medium bodied with very light creaminess. A somewhat basic imperial stout base with a pleasant light smoky character. The profile leans towards an import stout, with medium maltiness. Flavorful, but not complex, it supports the smoky malts well. Alcohol well hidden, tastes like a much less powerful stout. I was overdue for a smoked beer and this one hit the spot.

 810 characters

Photo of mawelge
3.62/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Not the best imperial stout I have ever had, but this one does have a few nice characteristics in it's favor.

A pitch black beer with no head after resting for 5 minutes. Body is somewhat thin; more of a drinker than a sipper. As the beer warms you can really enjoy the balanced smoke and malt flavors. I would consider this very lightly smoked, which I tend to prefer.

 373 characters

Photo of John_M
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sat on this for just over a year, which I assume has mellowed it just a bit.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is interesting, as I pick up an aroma of smoked meats, vanilla, dark chocolate and licorice, The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty quickly, though there's something of a burnt toast and dry bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is fairly full, though the beer is not at all heavy on the palate. The beer is fairly smooth otherwise, and the alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile.

An interesting beer, for sure, but probably not something I could ever see myself ordering again. The licorice and hoppy bitterness combination is a bit much, and it seems to give the beer a slightly medicinal quality on the finish.

 798 characters

Photo of metter98
3.89/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color; when held up to a bright light only ever so slight hints of redfish brown are visible at the extreme edge of the glass. It poured with a dark tan head that quickly died down, leaving only a minuscule ring of bubbles as a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of charred leather are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste is dominated by strong flavors of burnt and charred malts and also has notes of leather.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is not a beer for the faint of heart—in some aspects it seems even more intense than a rauchbier. The beer manages to hide its alcohol very well.

Serving type: bottle

 766 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter glass straight from a 22oz. bomber.

Appearance: Thick black color, almost like motor oil. Light bubble on the head maybe rising to a quarter inch tan.

Smell: Light chocolate scent, smells really good but too light. Roasted feel almost like a hot cocoa made with dark chocolate.

Taste: Dark chocolate feel with hints of BBQ, almost a smoked wood taste complimented with hard notes of chocolate.

Mouth: Chewy feel, definitely thicker than most stouts including the many imperial stouts that I have had. Not very sticky as I would like it to be but very passable.

Overall: This brew delivers...slight tweaking can be done and I am guessing that is where Barfliy might come in. A little pricey but still recommended. Enjoy with love my friends. Saud!

 776 characters

Photo of Jeffo
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Doopie brought this one out on beer night a couple weeks back. Cheers dude!

From a bomber into a snifter
IBU: 56
Second runnings of Barfly

APPEARANCE: Pours out black and yields a two finger, medium looking, creamy, dark tan or mocha colored head with good retention. Black body with no real carbonation evident. Head fades to a ring and a dotty wisp. Only the ring remains until the end and leaves some falling dots of lacing down the glass. Classic blacker-than-black Midnight Sun stout look, even on a medium ABV brew. Excellent.

SMELL: Bold nose of roasted malts, dark chocolate, smoked malt, sweet cream and some light caramel. Roasted and slightly burnt with some well measured smoked aromas worth well.

TASTE: Smoky and roasted malts up front. Burnt flavors and more smoked grain at the swallow with a bold and lingering finish is roasted and slightly burnt, with some bitter dark chocolate, sweet cream, a touch of leather, and some well measured though restrained smoked characteristics. Quality.

PALATE: Medium-thinner body and a touch watery on the palate perhaps. Goes down a touch prickly at the back and finishes somewhat sticky. Enough weight, but not quite creamy enough for the style.

OVERALL: Good stuff. Plenty roasted and flavorful for sure, with some well measured smoked nuances working well with the stout base. You can definitely tell this is Barfly’s little brother; a weaker, non-barrel aged relative of equal but different character. The feel could be fuller, but that didn’t take away from the enjoyment for me. Cheers doopie!

 1,570 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

Thanks to Craft Shack for this bottle.

Pitch black the colour is, 2 finger head of tan, lacing...fine it tis.

Deeply malty, a mix of caramel and milk chocolate. Smoke? Sure is light in the nose.

Wow. The 2 malty tastes I get in the smell are greeted by a healthy smokey flavour that blends SO well with the malt both sweet and roasted. Some of that chocolate must be dark as I get some bitter notes in the finish and the long lasting aftertaste.

Medium body, ditto for the co2.

This is delicious. I see it is 56 IBUs, that explains the bitterness. The 8.4% abv is hidden rather well.

 590 characters

Photo of Wando52
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Pours a dark almost black color with a brown head

Smokey, BBQ type smell

Taste does not let you down, chocolate, smoke, coffee flavor

Great beer, I wish there was more than 22oz in this bottle

 233 characters

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.48/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 4.22.14

A - Pours a dark brown with a silky fine dark tan head that fades slowly to clumps on the edges.

S - Snokey, soy sauce, teriyaki.

T - Smooth chocolate, then a huge smokey finish.

D - Good carbonation with a medium body.

O - Smoke isn't my thing, but this one is lake fakey then most.

 313 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass.

Very deep walnut brown and almost black pitched body, very opaque and dark. Head makes about a light chocolate brown finger tall head. Settles to a good thick tan collar, and a very full puck if thin, but not oily or weak.

Classic smoked malts. Hints of beechwood, light smoke bbq and jerky like meats. A real nice hint of sweet coffee like cream roast, maybe even a bit of vanilla poking out on this too. Good balance as well.

A good interesting mix. Controlled tasting smoke in the palate, with some mixing classic large roasted malt. Slightly hot, and also a bit wet, but the flavors still carry. Some light coffee angles mix with the smoke and rich malt sweetness.

Overall a very neat stout in the realm, and the smoke character is also very well balanced and integrated in the beer. It just requires a little more depth.

 875 characters

Photo of b_birra
4.16/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass - I think I poured too vigorously on this one, the head took up nearly half the glass... it's delightfully dark, and the head is tinged a dark brown; if swirled, there remains a caramelly residue on the glass. The head was frothy and dissipated relatively quickly.

For the smell, I'm getting smokiness, certainly, but also a fruitiness that is primarily dates. Perhaps hints of chocolate. The taste also has the pungent fruitiness, but tempered by flavors of smoke and a dry coffee taste that lingers in the mouth. The body is relatively light on the tongue.

Overall, a very fine stout that blends a variety of flavors well - though I do keep coming back to the dates.

 711 characters

Photo of Kuaff
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A new imperial stout I found upon visiting Midnight Sun's brewery. I bought it, brought it home, and poured it into my snifter at cellar temperature.

I has a half-finger, creamy mocha-brown head that settles down quickly. Like Midnight Sun's other imperial stouts, it's unbelievably black.

The aroma has molasses, vanilla, coffee, milk chocolate, raisins, prunes, and just a sublte hint of smokiness. It's kind of yeasty-smelling, like dark rye bread dough. Smells very similar to Moscow RIS, actually, and that is a VEEERRRRY good thing.

Early in a sip, I taste molasses, bittersweet chocolate, and coffee, transitioning into a finish of earthy roasted malts that becomes increasingly smoky the longer I let it unfold. Indeed, it could be said that the aftertaste is a crecendo a smokiness. It is smooth and satisfying for sure. And after drinking it for a while, I find that the smokiness starts doing this little thing with vanilla... the two go off on their own and perform a little harmonized side-show number to my palate's pleasure. I applaud the performance, and an encore leads to another sip.

The feel is between medium and thick, I would say. And the carbonation is fairly high. It allows the flavors to come through splendidly, so I'm happy with it.

A seductively smoky stout.

 1,294 characters

Second Hand Smoke from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
3.98 out of 5 based on 62 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!