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Cottonwood Frostbite - Foothills Brewing Company

Cottonwood FrostbiteCottonwood Frostbite

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very good

89 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 89
Reviews: 13
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.08%

Brewed by:
Foothills Brewing Company visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Embrace the long winter nights in the company of Frostbite Black IPA. A careful blend of barley and roasted wheat malts deliver a clean finish, backed up by a big blast of Pacific North West aroma hops.

(Beer added by: nUgZ on 11-17-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 89 | Reviews: 13 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cottonkoozie

North Carolina

3.81/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - very dark brown, not quite black. Reddish around the edges. Poured a 1 finger head that has pretty good retention. Good lacing

S - Piney hops, with roasted malts. The hops come through up front though. Also an underlying booziness. little bit of a funk in there too that I'm not sure how to describe, i think its due to the mending of smells between the strong hops and malts together.

T - Very good. The hop bitterness hits up front but the malts quickly fall in. Like the smell the hop presence is mostly pine notes, with some citrus notes to boot. The malts offer roasted chocolate and coffee flavors. Somewhat boozy finish.

M - full with excellent carbonation level. Somewhat resinous. Much like a good IPA.

O - Very good overall and somewhat unique. Almost reminds me of a blend between a porter and an IPA.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2014 01:20:59 | More by cottonkoozie
Photo of myelo


3.66/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

An American Black Ale, that some people also call a Black IPA, although how an ale can be "black" and "pale" at the same time eludes me. Well this one is black … with some hints of dark red at the edges … topped with a 1/2 inch tan head that hangs around for a while.

The aroma is very hop forward, fresh pine resin and citrus, with a mild roasted malt background. The taste follows, with initial hops and then moderate bitterness (mid-70s IBU) and mild chocolate, molasses malt with a very slight hint of ethanol. The body is light with moderate carbonation.

Overall, pretty tasty. It doesn't really strike me as a typical winter brew because of relatively light body, low alcohol, and lack of a large malt structure but it's a nice beer anyway. In fact if blindfolded I would have thought this was an IPA.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 18:53:16 | More by myelo
Photo of rangerred


3.96/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass out of a growler.

Pours a very deep, dark brown with a one finger light tan head. The head retention is better than average with pretty decent lacing as well.

Aroma is a nearly perfect example of what an American Black Ale should be. Toasted malt and dark roasted coffee mixed with pine with along with just the slightest touch of citrus. Very nice.

The hops become more readily apparent in the flavor compared to the aroma. Lots of pine and earth with just the slightest hint of orange peel. Some minty notes too but all quickly overtaken by a very high bitterness. The pine lingers through the bitterness as does the roast and coffee which is constantly present in the background. Just a slightly sticky finish.

Overall, this is a really good beer and much better than I thought it would be. I am really a fan of this style and this is one of the better examples I have had.

Serving type: growler

02-15-2014 21:55:04 | More by rangerred
Photo of dbell23


4.39/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Shawn at Libation Station for the recommendation. I went in looking for a stout but when I tried this one I changed my mind and I'm glad I did. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Black like a stout but with a towering beige head that lingers. Great lacing. Nice looking beer.

Smell is different and really nice. Definitely piney but with some malt sweetness. If you took away the hops it would probably have a stout aroma.

Taste is great. Mild hops to start. Super balanced in the middle with hop/malt finish. There is a mild lingering hoppy finish that is really good. Mouthfeel is like an ipa. Good carbonation with slightly smooth finish.

Overall a really good and different beer. Like a hopped stout. I've had similar beers but this one is a keeper. Will definitely buy again, hopefully next weekend.

Serving type: growler

02-09-2014 02:51:01 | More by dbell23
Photo of Mojo


4.29/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle -> tulip glass

A - deep opaque black, as black as a moonless night, as black as my ex-girlfriend's cold, cold heart. Small one inch khaki colored head, with awesome retention, and awesome lacing.

S - interesting nose, not overpowering at all but I get roasted nuts, pine , bread, and floral

T - There is a subtle molasses like tangy sweetness present. The finish is roasted nuts, coffee, chocolate, and a nice bitterness that slowly materializes.

M - pretty thick. Moderate carbonation, small aftertaste, though not unpleasant.

O - A pleasant surprise. I loved this far more than I anticipated. My biggest regret was that I only bought a single bottle last time I was in NC.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2014 03:39:46 | More by Mojo
Photo of aleckpa

North Carolina

4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 10/24/13

Served in Dogfish Head Signature Glass

A: Pours a pitch black, I can't see anything through it. There is about a finger's khaki colored head. It retains some head, but maybe more so around the edge of the glass. I do get some lacing.

S: This smells like a spruce pine tree.

T: Similar to the smell. Piney hops, some citrus. Some roasty, malty on the finish but more hop taste. I like Black IPA's like this.

M: Light body, crisp and clean. Some carbonation.

O: I really, really enjoyed this beer. This is my second time having it. The first time I had it in a tulip but I did not get as much of the pine. For this review, I used the Dogfish Signature Glass and got more piney scents and it tasted better. I believe this is a good representation of the style and I will certainly seek this out in the future.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2013 20:15:25 | More by aleckpa
Photo of jpro

South Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle from Sam's in Durham. Poured into a Piraat tulip glass...

A: Pours a black-brown, with a light brown head - about a thumb's worth; minimal retention leaves no lace.

S: Piney, resinous hops; some grapefruit in there, too; not much besides some hoppiness... may some really light notes of burnt sugar.

T: Sweet, piney hops; some citrus / tropical fruit, but mostly resiny piney hops... wow. Malt profile is pretty low... not much besides a shade of char on the finish.

M: Lighter bodied; moderate carbonation; has a pretty intense bitter finish.

O: A really nice American Black Ale / Black IPA; fairly drinkable due to a lower abv and lighter body; it's a little dry on the palate, though - would be nice to have a little more malt to back up the hops. Nevertheless, a nice beer from Foothills.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2013 01:39:43 | More by jpro
Photo of Onenote81

North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had this one on-tap at the brewpub. Light ruby edges make this one just less-than-black. A nice small cap of foam on top leaves perfect sip rings on the glass edge. Excellent nose bursting with notes of pine scent, citrus, fresh crushed hop pellets. Great inviting hoppy scent!

Good body. Not too thick, easy to drink. Moderate carbonation. Well-balanced. Juicy, flavorful hops make up the bulk of this one. Nice bitter pop to it, but great citrusy flavor. Some mild cocoa-like sweetness noted, a little dry character on the finish. A good dark bitter beer. I like this one better than their standard IPA I think. Nice work retooling this one, Foothills.

Serving type: on-tap

01-15-2013 01:02:45 | More by Onenote81
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - black with a little lacing of brown head

S - huge citrus notes, piny, roasted malts, faint chocolate

T - earthy, spicy hops, piny, chocolate, faintly roasty finish

M - medium bodied, a bit thin, smooth, well carbonated

This was a nice beer, but it didn't have great balance. The hops and malts at times were a bit at odds. The malt was overly chocolaty while the hops were spicy and bitter. It was also a tad thin for my liking. With just a few minor tweaks this would have been a really solid offering. It's worth trying though if you're in NC and enjoy Black IPAs.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2012 14:26:26 | More by tdm168
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice to see a new updated Frostbite from Foothills.Poured a deep dark chocolate with ruby highlights,a thinner light tan colored head atop.Earthy and piney hops stand out most in the nose,a bit raw wich isn't a bad thing.Dark roast coffee and eathy tones up front on the palate with piney hops coming into play late along with some raw woodiness.This is a solid ABA that's pretty dry and raw wich again isn't a bad thing.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2012 23:25:25 | More by oberon
Photo of dbrauneis

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Foothills Brewing Company in Winston-Salem, NC.

A: Pours an opaque very dark brown (almost black) in color with very light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall creamy beige head that barely reduces at all leaving a half finger thick film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of dark roasted malts and citrus/grapefruit hops with some lighter notes of chocolate and coffee.

T: Moderate flavors of dark roasted malts upfront with some lighter notes of chocolate and coffee. Following that is a moderate flavor of citrus/grapefruit hops with a lighter amount of pine hops. Light bitterness which does not linger.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Light amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: Enjoyable and pretty easy to drink. There is a good balance between the roasty malt flavors and the citrus hops - kind of like a porter and an IPA which is what I expect for this style. Much better than the spicy winter warmer that was under the same name before Foothills acquired the Cottonwood brand.

Serving type: on-tap

11-29-2012 05:04:04 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of wedge

North Carolina

4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown color with a lush, stick-y looking head. The aroma is very oily upfront...green hops, grapefruit juice, and pine resin over a smooth, not-so-roasted chocolate and coffee malt base. Big, delicious hoppy flavor. I don't remember the old recipe tasting anything like this. Spicy, piney, and green...almost minty. A little rough in the attack, taking over most of the flavor and not leaving much room for the malt to come through. Good stuff though! Medium bodied and bitter. It doesn't scream "winter" to me, but that's cool. This will be in my fridge again soon.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2012 19:51:16 | More by wedge
Photo of nUgZ

North Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. This is a brand new offering from Foothills. It's available on tap and in 6 packs. I've had both.

A: Pours a very dark brown, almost black color. One finger head and nice lacing.

S: Lots of hops up front along with a nice malt presence. Some chocolate and coffee aromas as well. Very inviting smell.

T: Lots of roasted malts and bitter hops. Great balance between the two. Almost like an IPA and Stout blend.

M: Light to medium bodied with good carbonation. Easy to drink.

O: Overall, this is a very good beer. I'm very excited to have it available for these colder winter evenings. Very balanced and extremely easy to drink. An excellent value at $8 for a 6 pack. Get some if you can!

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2012 19:34:22 | More by nUgZ
Cottonwood Frostbite from Foothills Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 89 ratings.