stevoj (5038) - Boise, Idaho, USA - MAY 8, 2017
Draft at Taphouse. Blown away....This is near perfect.Black pour, with creamy beige head, lacing covers the glass. Huge roast aroma, some chocolate sweetness. Taste is spot on, big roast grains, hops, some vanilla, some chocolate. Bitterness lingers forever, along with some nice dark chocolate flavors. Loved this. Angeloregon (2055) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUL 28, 2008
On tap at Barley Browns in Baker City, OR (thanks to Tyler and Shawn for this one!)--Poured a bright orange amber body with a wispy white head and lots of legs on the glass. Hop monster with lingering bitterness and big floral presence. Not as overwhelming as their IPA with bittering hops. At least it didn’t seem that way until I got my growler home and my head starting tingling from all the alphas. Yum! beernovice39 (3270) - Idaho, USA - FEB 13, 2013
On tap. Black pour with an off white top. Scent is citrus and pine with roasted malts. Taste is roasted malt and then a staggering amount of hops, piney bitter finish. Love it! mcberko (17829) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - DEC 28, 2013
On tap at Belmont Station’s Bier Cafe, pours black with a small tan head. Aroma brings out a great mix of roasted malt and piney hops, like a well-balanced black IPA should. Flavour is super pungent, with loads of roasted malt, dry dark fruits, and potent pine hops. Impeccably well-balanced, without any harsh elements. Damn fine flavours. Fantastic double black IPA. pdx77 (1483) - Oregon, USA - JAN 4, 2014
On draught at Apex. Midnight black color. Aroma is sweet and tart tropical fruit, with some dark grain notes. Taste is tropical fruit, dark chocolate and cocoa nibs, roasted malt, and a hint of cherry. Finishes with a refreshing fruit and chocolate aftertaste.
JMFG (1587) - Florida, USA - NOV 3, 2007
Sampled on tap and handbottled. Extremely dark chestnut brown with a tan head. Robust hop aroma - a lot of grapefruit, but a floral undertone - and a bit of nuttiness way in the back. A very light roastiness with a vicious hop wallop behind, mostly grapefruit rind. Great in the bottle, fantastic fresh. A well done brew - mad hops, but the dark character adds something interesting. neepsntatties (1988) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUN 15, 2010
Got to try a sample of the ’08 Stranahan’s whisky barrel version of this from a growler that someone brought to the 2010 pre Fred-Fest tasting at the home of, "hannont". Colour... amber-brown with no head. Nose... HOLY HOPS!! Palate... opens with a nice shot of whisky then follows with loads of flagellatingly sinful hops, scorched pine bark, grapefruit skin extractives and a finish that just won’t quit! fiulijn (20493) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUN 17, 2015
Draught at Beer Mongers, PortlandPrufrockstar (2132) - Moscow, Idaho, USA - APR 26, 2016
Black color with brownish head. Plenty of roasty malts and resiny hops, but not ashy, it’s moderately sweet, full bodied, and the imperial dimension is a good choice for a CDA. The aroma is also a bit cheesy, which I appreciate.
Draft at Chuck’s 85th. First time I had this beer it was listed as "Vintage Chaos" at FredFest 2013. It was the beer of the festival for me. I was surprised that such a great beer came out of an unknown brewery, while the Oregonians I talked to were surprised that Barley Browns was an unknown brewery to me. Anyway, it’s been a few years and I hadn’t seen this one since, which is why I made a special trip to Chuck’s tonight when I should have been working. Anyway, near black pour, small head. Aroma is perfect balance between stout (roast and chocolate) and IPA (big hop presence balanced between resinous and herbal -- stuff that works really damned well with the dark chocolate side of the beer). Taste is again perfectly balanced. Drinks way too easy to be 10ish% (10.3 on Chuck’s list, but I’d guess it’s a moving target). Medium+ body, oily texture, average carbonation. Overall: in my opinion, this may be the perfect imperial black IPA. A lot of these are either hoppy stouts or roasty IPAs, but this one is really a better than the sum of its parts balance of the two. The Vintage Chaos I had years ago may have left a bigger impression on me than this glass, but this glass is still goddamn good. Strongly recommended. boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - NOV 15, 2007
A vigorous pour yields a thin, light khaki head that’s soapy and sparkling, mostly diminishing. The body is very dark brown with mahogany tints. The aroma is chock full of evident bitterness and astringency, with heapings of grapefruit and overflowing pine. In this instance, excess smells terrific. Toasted grains are accompanied by lesser roasted ones. Mild chocolate, coffee are noted as well. No notable flaws, nothing offensive. Alcohol is very concealed. This is quite close to greatness. The flavor introduces a thick, intricate and consistent malt profile that has massive hoppiness interwoven with nice moderate sweetness and minor roast. Carbonation, though a touch on the high side, is adequate and pleasant. The body is medium and smooth. Finishes, toasty, hoppy with ample resiny bitterness. For the size and scope of this it’s really balanced - mainly due to the darker malts and heavy caramelization. Awesome. This doesn’t need work, but with a few minor tweaks this could hang with just about anything. More complexity and this would be a surefire contender every time.