hogan873 (451) - Joliet, Illinois, USA - NOV 7, 2009
Black like a stout without the thick head. Nice aroma of citrus and light pine hops with just a touch of malt. Smooth and crisp and easy to drink. The brew starts with a caramel and malt sweetness but quickly turns wonderfully hoppy with some nice grapefruit and pine bitterness. Finishes smooth. Nice beer. TheAlum (7164) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - NOV 4, 2009
Pint served on draft at the Mug Club tapping (Flossmoor, IL). Pours a dark roasty black and brown, lighter edges, some darkness, but not opaque. A nice tannish head that dies to a film, laces decent. Aromas are pacific northwest hops, citrus and pine mix liberally on the nose, a touch of roasted and caramel malts, juicy grapefruit, lemon. Initial is medium bodied, a full coating, a nice juicy and piney hop assertiveness tempered by the roasty and caramel malts, not overpowering or strong roast, but enough malt to make a difference on the palate. Flavors grow into the body, roasty malts, toast, caramel as a nice bitterness coats as well. This strikes a really interesting balance, roasty and a bit chocolatey on the backend perhaps, an interesting sweet contrast on the backend, but still largely hop dominant. This is one of the first Black IPAs I’ve enjoyed. Not overdone with sufficient roasted and caramel malt backbone further into the brew, albeit a little underbodied.. I’d like a little more thickness in the body.