holdenn (2106) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - NOV 1, 2007
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
22oz bottle sampled thanks to drewbeerme. Pours a dark brown with a white soapy head. Aroma of caramel and dark malt with pine and citrus hops. Piney earthy hops are the first flavors riding on those bitter coat tails is nutty toasty with a touch of bakers chocolate. Finishes with a lasting earthy bitterness. Interesting beer, I’m glad I got to try this fresh.
lb4lb (2582) - Austin, Texas, USA - NOV 1, 2007
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Black pour with a big tan head in a tulip. Smell is quite hoppy and some dark malt notes in there as well. Or maybe that is just my eyes projecting that on what otherwise is very IPA like. Taste is strong, bitter, and hoppy. Some dark roast flavors show up, but mostly what you’d expect from a strong rich heavy IPA. Light alcohol presence, but this is still nicely drinkable.
CelticBrew (912) - The Crystal Coast, North Carolina, USA - NOV 1, 2007
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours dark, not quite black. Aroma of pines, grapefruit, hops. Flavour is full bodied, hops, grapefruit, malts and pine resins. This beer is smooth, and is IIPA lovers delight. Stone has done it again!
TAR (2595) - Marshall (Asheville area), North Carolina, USA - OCT 31, 2007
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Dark chestnut. Clingy khaki head deposits patchy lace as the head retreats. Good retention. Mango, resin, mandarin orange, and chocolate pudding fill the nose. Hints of grass, spruce, black currants, dark berries and gluey yeast. Tight creaminess graces the palate. Bottle conditioned. Juicy from the get-go with a well-integrated assault of bitter hop oils and succulent hop flavors reminiscent of pineapple, mango, and assorted citrus (peach, orange, grapefruit). Malt reveals a silky chocolate quality as well as a tinge of biscuity sweetness. Fairly fluffy and defined, as well, yet lends a lovely cottony coarseness to contrast with the juicy hop character. Medium dryness displaces a small portion of the oppressive resins, but, as do the gluey yeast remnants, they still happen to impart too much gooey weight which obscures the more-nuanced hop derivatives. Esters evoke thoughts of plums, black licorice and fresh peaches. Hops flash a fresh dankness, but quickly succumb to the resins. Finishes with an integration of minty alcohol and spicy sprucelike hops which augment the dryness. Roasty bitterness kisses the lingering resins to amplify the spiciness, but an unpleasant aspirinlike astringency remains. Not too shabby, as a whole. It’s just unfortunate that the gluey yeast and resins tarnish what would otherwise be a bright and clean aroma and flavor. Solid mouthfeel and appearance. Fairly enjoyable.
bu11zeye (12576) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - OCT 30, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(Bottle) Pours a dark brown body with a small beige head. Aroma of caramel, rye, grapefruit, pineapple, and light pine. Flavor of dark roasted malt, citrusy hops, rye bread, and caramel malt with a bitter finish.
dpjuart (1097) - Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 30, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
22 oz. Bomber Split with Jeremy. Dark black color with a nice cream head, a bit off white, about two fingers. Nose is absolutely crazy. Big on hops with carmel, plum, raisin and roasted malt. The hops dominate, though. Tast is a bit of roast and carmel, maybe a few dark fruit notes, but overall dominated by hops. It has an "overhopped porter" feel to it overall. I like the idea of a "dark IIPA". Good beer, that I think will get better with a few months in the bottle. In fact, I could have one now.
michael-pollack (4959) - King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 29, 2007
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
22oz. Bottle: Aroma is lightly sweet and medium bitter. Smells hoppy, with notes of grapefruit, pine, resin, Simcoe, chocolate, coffee, and toasted malts. Poured very dark brown in color with a creamy, rocky, light brown, head that lasted throughout. Excellent lacing. Opaque. Flavor is lightly sweet and medium bitter. Tastes of dark malts, chocolate, pine, Simcoe, resin, toasting, and and some grapefruit. Medium body. Creamy, slightly dry texture. Bitter resin finish.
presario (4902) - Stampede City, Alberta, CANADA - OCT 29, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Big lasting head on a very dark beer. Light gives some attractive auburn highlights around the edges of the glass. Strong grapefruit aroma rises as a surprise out of the darkness, hiding hints of chocolate and coffee. Creamy chocolate bread pudding flavour with hops building to the finish. Makes me think of the Dark Lord bread pudding I missed at 3F. A dark heavy body malty IPA. Coffee and chocolate coat the cheeks while hops coat the tongue.
drawde (115) - San Francisco, California, USA - OCT 28, 2007
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: JAN 11, 2008 Strong pine aroma. The hops hit first but then it’s really creamy and chocolaty (especially if you hold it in your mouth for a sec). "Black IPA"? Ok, I guess; sort of a beer that doesn’t know what it wants to be. But I’d be lying if I say I didn’t kinda liked it.
StompBrockmore (316) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 28, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
650ml bomber - Pours a very deep dark brown, almost black out the light. The head is tan and frothy, mountainous at first, then settling to a creamy layer on top. Aroma is wonderful - huge citrusy, grapefruit and orange(!) against some spicier notes underneath. Extremely inviting and refreshing seeming. The flavour is spicier and deeper, with pine mingling with the citrus, some roastier malt, and dark fruit. Very complex and interesting, notably the difference between the aroma and flavour and what is revealed in both. The mouthfeel is creamy and full and the finish is bitter with notes of coffee and chocolate coming forward. Awesome.