Specialty Beer XXX Black Double IPA
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Specialty Beer XXX Black Double IPASpecialty Beer XXX Black Double IPA
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American Black Ale
3.99 | pDev: 8.52%
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Specialty Beer XXX Black Double IPASpecialty Beer XXX Black Double IPA
Notes: To commemorate the 30th anniversary of Specialty Imports' specialty wine and beer import business, Midnight Sun Brewing Company brewed a very special beer--a black double IPA--to honor this Alaska company's long-term success.

This Specialty Beer Black Double IPA celebrates Specialty Imports' success in importing and distributing the world's best wines and beers to the appreciative folks in Alaska. This "Specialty Beer" brings together smooth, dark malts with intense aromatic hops to create a wonderfully balanced yet committed-to-flavor ale.

87 IBU
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Reviews: 81 | Ratings: 178
Photo of boralyl
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This is my first "Imperial India Black Ale" that I have tried (to the best of my knowledge). It's definitely the appears like the anti DIPA. Poured into a tulip glass I get 2 fingers of light brown head. It has great retention and leaves globs of lacing. The beer is almost pitch black.

S - A pretty heavy malty aroma comes off of the beer. Roasted malts, and light coffee and the most pungent. Towards the end of the nose piny hops and citrus become present.

M - A medium-full bodied beer with moderate carbonation. It's smooth and creamy most of the way, but towards the end you get some of the hops oils showing up.

T - A mix of roasted malts, coffee, citrus, and pine. It seems like a bad idea to for all of these flavors to be combined, but it actually works. The roasted malts are balanced by some west coast hopiness. The hops linger in the finish, a good combination of citrus and pine, leaving some bitterness. It finishes pretty dry.

Quite an interesting brew. Even though you get a roasted malt flavor, it's easy to tell this is an Imperial IPA, and not a stout of any kind. It's got a west coast IPA taste and finish that most certainly screams Imperial IPA. Check this one out for sure, they are also oak-aging this one and releasing it in Fall 2009.

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Photo of urwatuh8
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to lakersfan16 for trading me this bomber.

As soon as I open the bottle, I was hit by a big hop aroma.

Poured black. Deep brown around the edges when held up to light. Centimeter of cream colored head. Nose is a huge blast of hops. Great lacing.

This beer is definitely a hop bomb first and a dark beer second. Some of that electric-y, licoricey dark malt flavor up front, but the biggest sign of the blackness is in the finish.

I found the finish a little bit of a mess. But better as it got warmer. I recommend drinking this beer warmer than a typical DIPA, the flavors seem to blend better then.

A bit creamy, but the hops and the carbonation fight back.

This is pretty good for a black (D)IPA, but it's still not a style I'm sold on.

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Photo of jgrgas
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was lucky enough to get an imperial pint at Bailey's Taproom via a special delivery from Alaska (kudos to Saraveza for recommending Bailey's for the second 1/6th barrel). I believe this occasion marks the only time Midnight Sun has been on draught in Portland, as well as my first review on BA.

Pours a dark brown, almost black, tan head, minimal lacing.

Like others have stated, the aroma is dominated by hops, though I picked up a noticable spicy hop note woven between the citrus hop aromas.

The aroma moves into the flavor nicely, as citrus and spicy hop flavor dominates the intial reception, though without any acerbic back of the tongue bitterness. The hop flavor quickly moves into a dry roast, pleasantly acidic from the dark malts, balancing out the flash of west coast IPA notes. The malts and hops work together exceptionally well. Both characteristics have their place in this beer without butting into one another. It was an extremely gratifying experience to have both the hops and dark malts distinctive and smooth.

I've had issues with Black IPAs before, mainly finding them to be unbalanced (I'm reminded of a few where the roast/coffee notes completely destroyed any chance at labeling it an IPA). Each time I try the style I am nervous that I will either find something unfocused or a beer that would be more appropriately termed a hoppy porter/stout. This beer is an example of what I would truly call a Black/Dark IPA and I would drink it often if it was available.

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Photo of gford217
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber courtesy of lakersfan16 poured into a tulip.

Pours dark chocolate brown out of the bottle and looks almost completely black in the glass underneath a small off-white head that dissipates fairly quickly to a ring and swirl of bubbles on top. Lacing is minimal.

Aroma is dominated by the bitter hops with grapefruit and some earthy tones as well. There are some dark roasted malts as well, but the hops are what stand out in the nose.

The first taste is as expected given the nose with a big blast of bitter citrus and floral hops. There is a big dark roasted malt backbone with some coffee hints before the big biting bitterness of the hops assaults the palate in the finish.

The mouthfeel is very creamy but with tons of prickly hop juice on the palate. An interesting balance.

This is a unique take on the DIPA and one which I enjoyed. Plenty of dark malts in the base but with a massive hop profile that brings the bitterness in spades. Very nice.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle right out of the box.

Pours dark mahogany with a blackish pitch and a ruby hue. A two inch head of whipped tan foam stood steady before crawling back down the glass, and settling into a solid skim coat on the surface of the brew. Vertical ripped sheets of lacing throughout the glass.

Aromatics lead off with a blend of espresso grounds, grapefruit, bitter chocolate, and skunky weed. Hints of char, garlic, cut grass, and pine pitch follow through.

On the full side of medium bodied with a slightly chewy mouthfeel. Creamy and velvety.

Ripe grapefruit, dark roasted malts, crushed garlic, and oily herbage start the palate. Green and resinous beneath charred overtones.

Finishes with a drying, firm bitterness and garlic studded grapefruit. Lightly acrid char lingers almost indefinately.

A big, charred hop cocktail. A definate skunky, fresh "wet-hop" quality is apparent as well as plenty of grapefruit. The bitter, roasted, and almost smokey character may be in the lead at this point though.

More mad props out to Tim for another killer Ak. brew!

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.23/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black DIPA (DIBA) brewed by Midnight Sun to commemorate Specialty Imports 30th Anniversary.

Pours a nice deep black with some ruby highlights around the glass. A nice pillowy head of tan foam retains very nicely and leaves good lacing.

Nose is mostly big west coast hops and bitter dark malts. Not alot of sweetness in the nose, mostly just standard big IPA hops.

Flavor is very nice. A good portion of west coast hop flavors in here, along with a nice malty backbone. There is a tiny bit of a roasty flavor in here, like a burnt...something. Maybe a bitterness from the malts, hard to say considering there is so much bitter hop flavor in here. The finish is nice and dry, and hop flavors linger on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very nice, carbonation is dead on, and this is nice and smooth without being too slick, and has a great dryness on the finish.

Drinkability is once again pretty good. The 8.5% in here really doesn't show up too much.

Overall a very complex and interesting IPA. or, IBA...er DIBA. yeah. Anyway, certainly one to grab in this new world of melding styles. A very cool beer.

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Specialty Beer XXX Black Double IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 178 ratings