onceblind (4472) - Denver, Colorado, USA - AUG 4, 2012
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
On hand at Denver Summer Brew Fest 2012. Semi clear dark brown with a slight ruby highlight, and a persistent but small light khaki head. Aroma is kinda earthy and roasty with notes of black malt, herbal hops, and some grassy hops with a faint touch of espresso. Taste is plenty sweet with roasty dark grains and light light espresso tones, a touch of grassy hops, slight bitterness, and more dark malt sweetness. Very pleasant and roasty sweet.
FlacoAlto (3810) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 4, 2012
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
A steady pour into my Bruery Tulip produces a three finger thick, brown tinged, tan colored head; the beer leaves quite a bit of lacing stuck to the sides of my glass as it recedes. The beer is a dark, concentrated brown color that shows a brilliantly clear, concentrated amber / dark-plum color when held up to the light. The aroma is hugely, expressively, hoppy; ample lychee, concentrated tangelo zest, concentrated floral citrus, kumquat zest, apricot, and guava are all noticeable. Softer, supporting notes of toasted, whole grain bread that has been lightly burnt, dark grain husks, and hop notes of herbal, slightly dank, pine, and touches of woodiness. The non-fruit side of the hop character is accentuated by the roast aromatics, and I like that it plays only a supporting role here; so often the dark / roast notes in Black IPAs make the hops harsh and sharp, and this just isn’t that.
Sharply bitter up front, with a zippy carbonation that accentuates the bite, bitter roast malt, and a lingering, toasted whole grain character in the finish. Floral, fruity, expressive hop character defines this beer; it is a bit reduced from the nose, as the roast malt plays more of a role in the flavor, but still one can easily notice notes of lychee, tangelo zest, orange blossom nectar, and huge peach flavors. Sharper hop notes of pine, hints of dank character, touches of herbal notes, and even some lingering menthol. The body of this beer is quite light, this is dangerously quaffable, and drinks a lot lighter than a beer of this strength should; there is just enough viscosity and malt body to this beer to carry the fruity hop character.
This is a beer that is right up my alley; this is the best hop expression that I have had in a Black IPA, the focus on floral, tropical fruit, and citrus is just something I can’t deny. I really like that the roast malt doesn’t get in the way of the hop character; so often it adds harsh, acrid notes to the hops, and it just doesn’t do that at all here. This is a beer I wouldn’t mind having a whole lot of in the beer fridge.
Chuckaduck (661) - Highland Heights, Kentucky, USA - AUG 4, 2012
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a dark brown-black with a fluffy, bubbly graham cracker head. Aroma is very fruity (prunes/raisins), crisp pine, citrus, grapefruit, pineapple, some grass, earth. Smells great. Taste is really fruity right out the gate, raisins, them some bitter lemon peel, pine and juniper, finish is part baker’s chocolate and part fruit rind. Very drinkable, creamy mouth feel. goes down very smooth. Light lacing. Both complex and simple in its execution. This isn’t as malty as usually I like my darker beers, but its still very good and I would drink it again.
bierkoning (10500) - La Tropica, NETHERLANDS - AUG 4, 2012
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared by Ceasar. Deep dark brown color. Almost black. Blackcurrant, rye, lemon and melon in the aroma. Roast, rye bread and blackcurrant in the flavor. Roast. Tannines. Sweet with an almost sugary finish. Would be 4+ with less sweetness.
gyllenbock (4959) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - AUG 4, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle at the hotel room in New York, bought at Whole Foods Bowery in August 2012.
Black with a large tan head. Nice hoppy aroma with roasted malt. Also a light smokiness. The taste was nicely balanced with a lot of hops. Not extremely bitter and heavy. Smooth and really drinkable. Propably the best Black IPA that I have tasted to date.
STL_Drew (153) - Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - AUG 3, 2012
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Good head, off white, great lacing. Mostly diminishing, great hoppy aroma.
Sweet start with bitter finish.
Medium body dark active carbonation
bmerz (715) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - AUG 3, 2012
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draught at Breukelen bier merchants. Tapped today. Near opaque black brown with ridiculous lace. Big citrus pine spice and fresh rye bread. Flair is grapefruit, resin, cedar, spice and bitterness aft the end. Very soapy but prickly mouth feel. Love this.
anders37 (17224) - Malmö, SWEDEN - AUG 3, 2012
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draft @ the brewery. Pours a dark amber almost black color with a small tan head. Has a roasted malty hoppy piney rye aroma. Fruity malty hoppy bitter piney flavor with hints of licorice. Has a fruity malty hoppy bitter piney finish.
rayOfBeer (672) - El Cerrito, California, USA - AUG 2, 2012
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle: black with large tan head. Aroma is hoppy pine and grapefruit with a touch of roast grain; ends a little catty. Flavor is resiny pine mixed with some grainy bitter chocolate and a little tartness and toffee in the end. Palate is mostly dry, light bitter and a rather thin body for all the flavor. Ok beer but I was hoping for a more cohesive flavor and malt balance.
5000 (6298) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - AUG 2, 2012
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle: Black is right, large pillowy tannish head, very nice lacing. Very nice lacing in fact. Moderate pithy nose, zesty, with some burnt orange peel. Smooth on the tongue, hoppy, semi-sweet, not overly bitter. Very nice balance, and very silky. Very very smooth. Not too heavy, but nice as it is. This is superb! Not as black as others, but thats fine with me. Roastiness is mild, but seems in check. This one is clean, not overly bitter, with a nice crisp sweetness you don’t often find in this style. Probably my favorite of the style so far.