Drake (8030) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - AUG 6, 2011
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
12 ounce bottle opened 4/11/11. Pours an opaque dark brown color with a large frothy tan head. Good head retention and lacing. Aroma of roasted malts, bitter leafy hops. The taste is bitter leafy, earthy, resiny hops with a roasted malt finish. Medium bodied.
oteyj (2130) - New Hampshire, USA - AUG 6, 2011
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Black pour with a frothy tan head. Lots of resinous pine and citrus with hints of chocolate roast, earth, and a bit of oxidation. The hop character is pretty tasty, but there are a few flaws. Medium body with lively carbonation.
adam42381 (373) - Fort Myers, Florida, USA - AUG 5, 2011
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured from an 12 ounce bottle into a chalice.
Appearance: Pours a dark cola brown, almost black, with a 2 finger creamy light tan head consisting of very fine carbonation bubbles. Excellent head retention and perfect lacing. I donít see how it could look any better.
Smell: Piney hops with a touch of citrus and a hint of malt in the background.
Taste: Pine and sweat cream-like malt up front followed by toasted malt the middle before ending with lemon zest and burnt toast at the finish. Aftertaste is a mix of burnt toast and hoppy bitterness. Very well-balanced.
Mouthfeel: Medium-to-full-bodied with a fairly high amount of carbonation. Goes down smooth.
Drinkability: Excellent drinkability. I could see myself drinking several of these in one sitting. The slightly elevated ABV% is well-masked.
Overall: Excellent beer overall. While I admit I havenít had more than a handful of American Black Ales, this one is the best Iíve had. This is easily one of the best Sam Adams products Iíve tasted and think they could do well by releasing this full-time. If you can still find one, give it a shot.
theOptimator (283) - Sacramento, California, USA - AUG 4, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Aroma is heavy pine resin grapefruit hops as well as roast. Appearance is dark brown almost black with small tan head. Poured slowly, you can tell this will be a thick beer. Taste is very malt forward. Hops pine grapefruit aroma just behind. Some nuttiness. Hops and roast bitterness comes in just before this becomes cloying. Roast and resin bitterness linger nicely. Palate is full. Flavors dont come together quite as well as I would like and it falls a little flat. Overall a nice beer, but lacking something needed to take it to the next level.
PorterPounder (5367) - Tallahassee, Florida, USA - JUL 30, 2011
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Denver, Co. - Tower Liquors - 12 oz bottle - part of the Longshot Homebrew mixer six pack. Jet black, viscous pour, light khaki colored head. Faint spruce-like aroma with some traces of licorice. Flavor is pleasantly bitter with some strong citrus notes, some licorice, a bit of brown sugar. Full bodied and rib sticking. Mouthfeel is nice and sticky. Best of the three in the six pack.
blankboy (5972) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JUL 27, 2011
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
My bottle [12oz] shared with garthicus & HogTownHarry. Pours black with a large lasting frothy light-brown head. Aroma: Yep, that smells like a Black IPA, with toasted dark malt, resiny leafy hops and coffee. Flavour of roasted malt, light leafy hops, a hint of coffee and an average bitter finish. Average to medium bodied. Pretty good.
bigrond (1460) - factoryville, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 27, 2011
4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This was great. Dark pour, deep flavor and an really nice complex palate. Hops, malt, everything....its all in there.
JMerritt (1775) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - JUL 24, 2011
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Black with chestnut tints. Very massive light-brown head with fabulous retention. Grapefruity hops in the nose with some toasted malts at the end - like a breakfast of Grape Nuts cereal with a side of grapefruit. Fresh, peach and grapefruit hop flavor, roast is essentially non-existent. Mouthfeel is a little flat and watery. Surprisingly, this was my first black IPA.
HogTownHarry (6063) - Toronto (Harbourfront), Ontario, CANADA - JUL 21, 2011
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
12oz bottle shared by blankboy with me and garthicus. Deep ruby-brown pour, minimal off-white frothy head. Black IPA aroma - light roast, resin hops. Taste same. Average body, mild carbonation, surprisingly bitter finish.
garthicus (2658) - Dublin, IRELAND - JUL 21, 2011
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks to Blankboy. Appearance: Cola black, small brown head. Aroma: Hops, citrus, leafs, quite bitter too. Flavour: Burnt malt, hoppy, a little chocolate nip, great big hop bang at the end. Nice!