Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Sockeye Red India Pale Ale | Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Sockeye Red India Pale AleSockeye Red India Pale Ale
BA SCORE
3.79/5
Very Good
438 Ratings
Sockeye Red India Pale AleSockeye Red India Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed in the bold spirit of Alaska, Sockeye Red IPA is a finely crafted Pacific Northwest-style India Pale Ale with a real bite. Ample pale two-row malt creates a fresh, firm body while specialty malts impart a spawning red hue. The predominant character of this fiesty catch comes from outlandish portions of Centennial, Cascade and Simcoe hops, giving this beer tremendous citrus and floral aroma and flavor.

Determined and bitter but amazingly balanced, Sockeye Red IPA is gnarly enough to take you hook, line and sinker. Forget about a bigger rig; grab a bigger glass.

70 IBU

Added by purplehops on 02-21-2003

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#17,035
Reviews:
221
Ratings:
438
pDev:
10.55%
Bros Score:
3.74
 
 
Wants:
28
Gots:
42
Trade:
2
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 438 |  Reviews: 221
Photo of mhaugo
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of buddyvelt
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of CaptCleveland
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into SA glass. No dating.
Amber-red elixir, initial frothy head settles to tan, 2mm thin head with copious, tight bubbles. Plenty of lacing as the taste progresses.
Wonderful pine, resin aroma, with mango and grapefruit accents; subtle earthy/biscuit notes in the background.
Nicely assertive hops predominate, noted immediately on the front and wash over the buds, smoothed by the malt and leaving a nice resinous aftertaste.
Well done IPA, and at 5.7%, and canned, should be a "go to" brew.

 508 characters

Photo of twelveinches
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Reswald
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Kiniey01
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Another6Pack
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of DucksFan16
5/5  rDev +31.9%

Photo of ElGallo
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of Agold
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of TCHopCraver
3.76/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sockeye pours a a vibrant orange-amber with a very light khaki head. Carbonation looks somewhat small and sparse. Lacing left behind on the pint glass is sticky and intricate.

The aroma has a very resiny, piney, and melon-like hopiness to it, along with a caramel and nutty malt presence. I smell a little metal in the smell, too. Is this from the can, perhaps?

The overriding flavor in Sockeye Red is that of a big, juicy grapefruit blended with pine cone and dank cannabis. I really like how the big fruity flavor meshes with the dry, earthy hop character. A little awkward nuttiness creeps into the profile in the middle. Also, there is a bit of a metallic flavor that really comes out at the end of each sip. I do not think that it detracts from the beer at all, though.

The mouthfeel is sort of an exercise in extremes. At first, it's pretty juicy, but not quite medium bodied, then the hops jump in and slam the juiciness into the ground with their dry dankness. Just a little unbalanced and not smooth enough to be characterized as good.

Overall, I thought the flavors in this beer were good, but it was just a little rough around the edges. Very hoppy and dank and fruity, but that nutty smell and flavor were a little strange. I also thought that the flavors and mouthfeel just did not synthesize perfectly. Good beer.

 1,334 characters

Photo of Exiled
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of MADhombrewer
4.24/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served too cold in what appears to be a 14 oz glass. Had this at a wine bar so...

Appearance- Dark cooper, reddish color. Small, off white head. Little lacing. 3/5

Smell- Pine with a nice malt backbone. The hops still shine bright, though. 4/5

Taste- Big pineiness through out. Malt in the middle but doesn't take away from the hop character. Some sweetness in the end. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel- Very good mouthfeel. Medium. 4/5

Overall - I have always like reds because of the high hop character. This one does not disappoint. 4.5/5

 530 characters

Photo of inlimbo77
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber bottle into Portsmouth pint glass. This can't be right, bottle notch: Feb. 2nd week

A: Pours a really nice looking clear reddish orange color. Finger and half frothy white head. Lots of carbonation off the bottom of the glass. Mild lacing.

S: Even for what I believe is an old bottle, the hops are really nice smelling. I get lots of pine with some citrus fruits. Mild grapefruit as well. There is some malt balance there.

T: I am actually impressed. Sharp hop bite on the top of the tongue. Lingers there a while too. You get solid malt balance in the mid mouth. And the a crisp hop bite during a clean close. You don't get the fruity hops you smelled but you get piney notes. The low alcohol is actually nice.

M: Medium bodied IPA.

O: I am gonna have to go B+ for this one. A solid score for a nice easy drinking beer. Good work AN

 850 characters

Photo of harrymel
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottled Week 4, July, 2011

A: Pours a reddish brown ale with a short lived finger of peanut head which falls to a sheet of the same. Spotty lacing. Great clarity.

S: Piney, and has a spruce tip smell. Some citric rinds and bitter smells. Indicates the smell of bitterness over the top of some decent malts which are sweet and somewhat caramel like. Smells like an Impy Red, not an IPA.

T: Wow, grapefruit. I can't recall having had a beer with more grapefruit (ruby red) flavor. I've had more with plenty of grapefruit nose, but this is like straight grapefruit blended with a beer of darker amber base. Some hints of metallic leftovers.

M: heavy for the style with lively and bright carbonation. Fairly easy finish.

O: Good beer. Miscategorized as an IPA, and tastes like an Impy Red, but I've gotta say it's a good beer regardless. I dig it. Dunno why I've resisted it so long.

 885 characters

Photo of jmdrpi
3.23/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

served on tap at McGinley's Pub in downtown Anchorage.

appears a clear reddish orange in color, with frothy white head. aroma and taste are heavy on the floral hops, but I don't get any malt to balance it out. a bitter finish. carbonation is medium, body is on the thinner side.

overall - I personally like at least some malt flavor to balance an IPA, and none is found here.

 379 characters

Photo of biboergosum
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, a souvenir from a trip to Portland, OR this summer.

This beer pours a clear medium copper hue, with two fingers of thick, foamy, rocky pale tan head, which settles in the same manner as our northern sun (read: lazily), eventually rendering some perfectly consistent hanging bike chain lace around my American pint glass. It smells enchantingly of bitter citrus rind and pine branches, atop a bready caramel base. The taste is bitter pine hops upfront, some astringent citrus following close on its heels, over a still out-matched, but somewhat persistent cracker/bready malt. The carbonation is fairly sedate, the body medium weight, a bit prickly, but that's a-ok when the hops are responsible - any smoothness disruption becoming an afterthought. It finishes still on the hoppy side, nothing overbearing, just a nice pine/citrus blend of stellar, steady bitterness, oblivious to all things malt, even those with good intent.

Purported 'redness' aside, this is just one well-wrought American (West Coast-adjacent) IPA. Despite the lameness of the malt in this here offering, we somehow wind up with nothing resembling a hop-bomb. Hoppy as shit? Sure. Unbalanced? Nope. I'll leave it to better men (or beer geeks) to figure that one out. In the meantime, I'm putting down the rest of this bomber with my favorite self-made nosh.

 1,343 characters

Photo of JohnnyP3
3.87/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 fl oz bomber (from La Bodega) into a goblet. Bottled first week of June 2011. Pours a hazy burnt orange with some amber hues. Head is about two fingers that gradually resides to about one. Hard to see the carbonation due to the haze. Lacing is quite nice--good stickage and frothiness.

Wow, the nose is hop resin delight. Pine and citrus (grapefruit) and tropical fruit duke it out for the lead. So much so that it is hard to pick out any of the malt aromas. But, if you are an American IPA hophead, this smell is right on target for you--very floral and bitter.

The taste features hop bitterness front and center. Not much balance from the malt, although you do get some bready notes at the end. I am hit up front with a bitter bang that only reluctantly gives way towards the finish. There was quite a bit of citrus in the nose, and that is the flavor that plays out in this beer--in the form of grapefruit with a little added spice kick. I had to think about it a little bit, however. In other words, the grapefruit does not scream out grapefruit. Could be some pineapple too. Overall a nice IPA, but left me grasping for something a little more.

Mouthfeel is clean and crisp, perhaps a little on the light side for my preferences. Not a thick IPA by any means.

Overall, not bad. I enjoyed this hop-centric IPA from Midnight Sun. I see this as a good entry point for those looking to expand their IPA and hop horizons--a gateway into the land of no return!

 1,467 characters

Photo of indiapaleale
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour - dark amber in color with some reddish highlights and a nice inch of foamy, off-white head on top. This is rather dark for an IPA and personally I like that as it means there is likely to be a solid malt backbone.

Aroma - sweet, tangy, citrusy with some nice pineapple notes as well as orange and mango. Lots of hoppy smells emanating from this glass. I'm excited to dive in as it's the perfect evening for an IPA from Alaska!

Taste - that first taste hits the lips, the tongue and the back of the throat with a blast of bitter citrus and resiny pine. This is followed by some of that sweet pineapple I caught in the aroma and a malty caramel finish. There are some honey notes as this one warms a bit and those hop flavors start to really stick and dry out the tongue. Delicious.

Overall - definitely more than a just one-sided IPA and the perfect candidate for Midnight Sun's first cans sent down the line. I can imagine this would be a big hit with all the outdoors folks up in Anchorage as it would fill a lot of coolers quite nicely. Great stuff and am glad we were able to taste it while it was fresh!

Would I buy more of it? - if it meant a trip to Alaska I'd certainly love to get more but without that expensive airline ticket I think I'll have to wait until they expand their distribution considerably.

 1,326 characters

Photo of megahurts4
4.37/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Midnight Sun Sockeye Red IPA

Appearance: reddish brown, small head, and good lacing.

Smell: delicious spicy hops.

Taste: nice wet hops and a faintly malty, flowery finish.

Mouthfeel: light and smooth.

Overall:
This has a fantastic aroma, but the actual brew is lightly flavored, while not being watery. It is easily drank and will make an excellent session brew.

 367 characters

Photo of snpub540
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice dark copper with some red highlights to it. It was a clear hue with nice carbonation. Topped of by an eggshell colored head that left some nice sheets of lace.

Smell was piney and citrusy hops and a little nutty malt aroma. That was about it.

Flavor was a caramel and nutty malt flavor. Hops were resiny and pine making a nice balanced brew.

Mouthfeel was ok but not a lot of body going on. Its an ok beer but nothing to write home about. I'm just glad I found something from Midnight Sun in my neck of the woods.

 530 characters

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.05/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at the Peanut Farm in Anchorage. Drink local right?

A - Served a red amber color, crystal clear with a small white ring around the edges with a slight white film on the top.

S - Malty, nuts, wheat.

T - Very Malty, no hop presence at all.

D - Thin body, average carbonation.

O - pretty disappointed. I would not call this an ipa. It could have been a old batch.

 376 characters

Photo of notchucknorris
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this one up while I was in Alaska. Definitely wish I had been able to find more of Midnight Sun's stuff.

A: Honey colored and clear with a one finger white head.

S: Lots of citrus hops alongside a lot of caramel malts. I picked up a lot of tangerine in the smell as well.

T: Biscuity malt with a huge dose of citrus hops. Some caramel malts and grapefruit on the finish. Not the most balanced IPA I've come across, but this one is pretty tasty.

 456 characters

Sockeye Red India Pale Ale from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 438 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.