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RATINGS: 166   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.77   SEASONAL: Spring   IBU: 87   EST. CALORIES: 255   ABV: 8.5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Originally brewed in 2009 to celebrate Specialty Importsí 30th Anniversary, XXX Black Double IPA is now produced each winter. XXX offers bold, American hop character ó comfortably cloaked in dark, luxurious malt. This exciting ďwinter warmerĒ will take the chill right out of your bones. Curl up with this session-beer-meets-nightcap.

Sometimes XXX just means 30.

In 2009, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Specialty Importsí specialty wine and beer import business, Midnight Sun Brewing Company brewed a very special beer--a black double IPA--to honor this Alaska companyís long-term success. In 2010 this beer was added to MSBCís "seasonal double IPA" line-up.


3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Ratman197 (9063) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - FEB 24, 2011
Bomber poured a clear dark reddish brown with a small lingering brown head. Aromas of charcoal, earthiness, grapefruit and pine resin. Palate was medium bodied and smooth with a dry finish. Flavors of roasted malt, earthiness, grapefruit and light pine with a smooth dry lingering bitter roasty finish.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
JoeTheYounger (1127) - Claremont, California, USA - FEB 22, 2011
Bottle from Bottle Barn in Norcal. Black pour with off white head. Aroma was roasted coffee and hops. Nice roastiness with nice balanced bitterness. Frothy medium carbonation. Great Black IPA

3.4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Hoptagon (239) - Arlington, Virginia, USA - FEB 18, 2011
22oz. Bomber. Pours a dark brown/black color with almost no head. Nose is chocolate malt and roasted grain with a tiny bit of citrus hop in the background. Flavor is essentially porter like with very few indications that it was intended to be an IPA. Has a toasted grain flavor with some dark chocolate notes and an intensely bitter backbone. There are also some subtle grapefruit hop flavors around, but they are light and dominated by the dry and roasty character of the malts. The palate is soft and a little creamy with strong carbonation. The finish is too harsh with lots of pepper and some burnt tobacco leaf flavors. Overall I found this one a little disappointing and maybe a bit misleading. Not sure how a hoppy porter qualifies as a "double black IPA".

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
beerguy101 (5267) - Newark, California, USA - FEB 16, 2011
Tasted at the Triple Rock Sour and Barrel Aged Fest on 2/13/2011. This Imperial Black IPA pours a medium black to dark black color from the tap. Medium sized beige to tan colored head with decent retention. The aroma is roasty malt, chocolate, citrusy hops and fruity. A medium bodied Black IPA. The malts are chocolate, fruity and sweet. The hops are citrusy and floral. Nice balance. Good carbonation. This beer is somewhere between a hoppy porter or stout and a black IPA. Tasty if a little hard to categorize. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
fidel (1302) - Livermore, California, USA - FEB 8, 2011
Poured very black, roasted malts, coffee, piney hops, little dark chocolate.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
GT2 (7900) - Carlsbad, California, USA - FEB 7, 2011
651mL. Finally getting to try this. The pour is a clear, deep cola ruby that looks all but black in the glass. A medium sized, coffee tan head erupts with great retention and leaves nice webby lace. As the drink vanishes, there remains massive, yellow, sheety lace. Aroma may at one time have exhibited massive aromatic, dank hops. But this beer has undoubtedly mellowed out and gained some complexity with age. The nose here is more akin to a smoked porter with big bacon, coffee, bitter chocolate, smoke and caramel layered atop what remains of lemon zest and fresh grapefruit dry hopping. Taste is more like an ultra bitter porter than Black IPA. Insane amount of cocoa, dark chocolate, black pepper, and roast. Very soft and creamy mouthfeel rather than astringent and chalky. Wow.

4.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
madvermin (86) - California, USA - FEB 6, 2011
Poured this one to kick start the super bowl festivities, and boy did it get things going. Appeared jet black, with a nice grayish head that was not ample, but certainly held its own. No tinges of color on the sides, even when held in the light. Lacing was phenomenal - this one was a great looking beer. Smell was of roasted malt, toasted grain, coffee, and some non-specific hop bitterness. It was crisp while still being full bodied in terms of aroma, although the lack of a specific hop smell was a bit off-putting. Taste more than made up for that though, with an awesome combination of strong roasted coffee and a clean hop bitter body. Toasted grain and dark chocolate fight an ongoing battle with an awesome leafy, earthy bitterness that doesnít quit. Finish is a fantastic blend of black coffee and hops, both of which end bitter, that leaves your mouth semi-parched and aching for more. Really a fantastic, chewy beer in terms of texture, and coated the palate like a champ. Drinkability was great too, as you couldnít taste the abv at all, and each sip led you to want that next one. Finest beer Iíve had thus far from Midnight Sun, and thatís saying something.

3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
CheersMate (1299) - Fremont (Seattle), Washington, USA - FEB 4, 2011
22 oz. bottle from All Things Wine in Renton. Iím surprised to see that they had this there. Nearly opaque, and black in color. This has a messy, and frothy head. I donít know how long this has been out for, but this has a strong roast aroma. There is a SUBTLE hop aroma, and even with that, I canít determine much; however, the roast is a nice thing to smell. Wow, this might have been a Black IPA at some point, but itís a damn good porter right now. This has a slight booze flavor, but itís not bad. The roast aspect is quite nice. It has an almost salty quality to it. There is a pine bitterness that seems to be coming through more and more. Itís mixing quite well with that roast flavor that I had mentioned previously. The flavor is quite nice. The hops are really coming through. This was bottled close to three weeks ago. Not much of a texture on this thing. A bit of milk and soy as well in the flavor. This is ok, but from Midnight Sun, I was expecting something quite stellar. If this were a porter, Iíd give it a better score, but this is a Black IPA. Sorry on that one, I canít budge.

4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
5000 (6031) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - FEB 3, 2011
Bottle:   Fairly black, deep brown hues on the edges, large frothy light brown head, fairly nice lacing.   Would never know this as a Black IPA by looking at it.   Roasted malts up front, some charred wood, but also as a faint sweet ginger snap cookie background.   A little resiny too.   More hoppy on the tongue than the nose suggested.   Some resiny citrus peel flavors, mild roastiness.   I like this one in that its an IPA first, with the charred wood/roasted malt being a bit more subdued on the tongue.   Not sure I would think this as a Black Double IPA, but as a Black IPA it is very good.   Body and mouthfeel are fairly full.   Not really malty, or a malt bomb that I prefer, but its well balanced.   Does have a somewhat sweet malty roasted backside, with some candied citrus peel.   Yeah, this is good stuff!

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
neepsntatties (1114) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JAN 18, 2011
22 oz. bottle from, "AKfaust". Colour... nearly black with a moderately thick tam head. Nose...what a roasty beast! Some hops here, but the roastiness really seems in charge. Palate... much like the nose as the roasted malt is prevalent here as well as a roasted Brasil nut character with woody hints to boot. It wasnít until the back of the palate that I really noticed the hops! Suddenly, itís like I just drank a chilled cafe Americano with a grapefruit spritzer (I mean that in a good way!)! Quite an interesting brew, indeed.


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