Strykzone (5380) - Wood River, Illinois, USA - AUG 31, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Sampled at an esbls tadting. Black pour! Smallish tan head. Cocoa aroma is subtle. Chocolate flavor, onions (!), espresso, This is almost very very good but it falls short because of the hop selection.
Beaver (1420) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - SEP 6, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
22oz bottle. Pours a dark brown black with a frothy creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.
The aroma is roasted malts with piney hops and a little fruit.
The flavor is a some sweet fruity malt followed by a big roast bitterness with a lot of char in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied.
Overall, pretty similar to other black IPAs that just don’t do it for me. Too much roast and char bitterness rather than hop flavors. There is some sweetness and a little fruit and pine, but it just doesn’t seem to go well with the roasted char.
obguthr (4425) - Staunton, Virginia, USA - SEP 23, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Grapefruit and pine nose, light soy sauce component. Clear dark bronze, thin yellow head. Malt forward, char and licorice, sweet orange, finishes with bitter pine. a little boozy. I’m a huge fan of SSSRA, but this is hot and disjointed by comparison.
RyanMM (413) - Ferndale, Michigan, USA - SEP 25, 2011
3.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Pours, well, black. Opaque in appearance in my tulip, with a massive brown head that recedes quite slowly. Aroma presents a lot of chocolate notes in addition to grassy and moderately citrus hops. Immensely flavorful palate. Roast, chocolate, a bit of coffee, followed by an immense wallop of hop notes and bittering that lingers extensively. Despite the color, this is still an IPA, and it tilts way towards the hop site of the balance equation. It’s unfortunately too bitter for the amount of malt body and sweetness for my tastebuds. It’s a really well-crafted beer, but not one to my liking.
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - OCT 14, 2011
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bomber from Sam’s, Durham. Big oily pour is not really what I’d expected from something with "IPA" in its handle. Super potent nose hangs there like a fog. Body is a bit too heavy and slick, and the overall character of the brew is starting to seem consistent. In terms of flavors, the hops get more or less lost in the smoked meat and char and molasses (not to mention hints of anise), making this brew more like Labyrinth black ale than a black IPA to me. So stylistic kvelling aside, is it a’ight? Yeah but unlike previous Stone anny ales, I won’t be looking to stock up. (Come back Emperial IPA!)
Zymurgeist2 (1234) - Redwood City, California, USA - NOV 23, 2011
3.2 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
On tap at rose and crown. Muted roast on the nose. Not what I am used to from Stone, and not what I remember when having this previously....bad lines? Black with reddish brown highlights and brown head that fades too quickly. Hops are more apparent in flavor, with some flora. Also lots of roast from the double black. Good - but not on par with other Stone offerings.
SirLimpsalot (2553) - SWEDEN - DEC 15, 2011
3.2 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Mörk "tåbira"-doft, spritig, stor smak av lakrits och bränd malt. Tung men tydlig humlig i eftersmaken. God men lite obalanserad
cmc619 (499) - California, USA - JAN 24, 2012
3.2 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
From bomber into Green Man snifter. Pours as black as the name implies. Medium brown head that settles down pretty quickly, but leaves a dark, intermittent lag-lacing upon swirling. Aroma is some chocolate, some nail polish remover (alcohol). Some really beautiful whiskey (bourbon) flavor hits in the middle, although it is a pretty hot beer. Hops aren’t overwhelming; more like a match for this giant beer. On second sip, I think the hops may just be intertwined with the alcohol and contribute to a sense of greater heat. The bitterness is definitely felt in the finish. Overall, another (expectedly) bold entry from Stone, but I’ll take their core beers over this one, any time.
Papsoe (25074) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - JUN 16, 2012
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle 65. Courtesy of joergen. Pours pitch black with a beige head. Rather bad, intense greasy hop aroma with a licorice touch. Rich body, heavy licorice, a very herbal and medicinal hop character. Dark charcoal roast. Seems unbalanced to me in both malt and hop character. 160612
RexTalionis (2963) - FINLAND - OCT 5, 2012
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottled. Poured dark brown in colour with a small tan head. Chocolate, coffee, malt and some floral notes in aroma. Coffee and dark fruit in flavour. Roasted malts in aftertaste.