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Blackfriar - Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The

BlackfriarBlackfriar

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

137 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 137
Reviews: 118
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 10.51%


Brewed by:
Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: daledeee on 12-02-2003)
View: Beers (12) |  Events
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Ratings: 137 | Reviews: 118 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of djoprahwinfrey
djoprahwinfrey

Manitoba (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - slightly hazy dark copper pour, 1/2 finger of sparse big bubbled head, fairly fast dissipation into decent lace ring

S - fruity, pear, grape, melon, a bit of sourness, malty

T - strong dark fruits to start with plums, black cherry, pear, some sour grape, some pepper and spice in the middle to a rather clean and slightly dry finish

M - high carbonation, sharp, slight dry aftertaste

O - enjoyable and warming. this one crept up on me

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2013 09:36:11 | More by djoprahwinfrey
Photo of doktorhops
doktorhops

Australia

3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second brew from the Inveralmond Brewery is Blackfriar, and firstly I must say I love the sound of this ale - dark, brooding and powerful like a good beer should be. Plus there's a picture of a druid making shit in a pot, implying that druids might kick back and sip this brew whilst preparing for their next animal transformation... who doesn't like druids? No one!

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: A deep murky amber body with a sticky off-white head that dissipates to a lace ring.

S: Brandy note upfront followed by dark fruits such as; plum, raisin and fig. Finishes with buttery diacetyl and a hint of herbal hops. So far it's a festive ale we have here.

T: That buttery diacetyl is very prominent in the flavour, along with tastes of macerated figs, caramel malts, Brandy, bread yeast and the finish is a slight herbal hop note. Smooth, balanced and with more butterscotch than you can fit into a packet of Werther's Originals.

M: Medium bodied with a light UK pub style carbonation.

D: Top marks for fitting this much diacetyl in a brew. The flavours mix well and it's a decent Scottish ale. Does it compete with the likes of Skull Splitter? Depends on if you like more of a butterscotch flavour or more of a stronger more balanced ale. My money is definitely with Skull Splitter though this is a semi-reasonable substitute.

Food match: Did someone say butterscotch pudding? No, it's not sweet enough for that, however it would match a nice Medieval banquet with roasted pheasant, terrine of game meats, confit of duck and spiced roasted pig on a spit.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2013 12:09:32 | More by doktorhops
Photo of Murrhey
Murrhey

Montana

3.74/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 500ml standard pressure-cap bottle into a pint glass in high elevation Kalispell, Mont.

A- Two-finger off-white head atop a walnut colored body. Active carbonation, long retention, great lacing. Fine looking beverage.

S- Surprisingly tangy, roasted malts. Aromatic but not too floral.

T- Roasty, sweet malt body. Tangy, tasty.

M- Rich, smooth body with a bit of a carbonation tang.

O- I didn't describe this beer well. It's good, but it's hard for me to tell you why.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2013 06:02:32 | More by Murrhey
Photo of soju6
soju6

Missouri

3.73/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a dark copper color with a fair head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Aroma of dark fruit, caramel, bit of nuts and spice.

T: Taste of caramel sweetness, dark fruit, trace of spice and chocolate. Mild bitterness and the finish is quite dry.

F: Moderate body, smooth and warming. Alcohol is well hidden.

O: Enjoyable beer. Goes best with a cold evening.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2013 00:59:08 | More by soju6
Photo of puboflyons
puboflyons

New Hampshire

3.73/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 500 ml. bottle marked 2310. Sampled on December 16, 2012. The label is very nice so I expect I will add this bottle to my collection.

It pours a very milky amber-copper with a soft mocha head that sticks around for awhile.

The aroma has all of those Scottish Wee Heavy sweet esters including caramel malts, toffee, bubblegum, and brown sugar.

The body falls into the medium range.

The aroma is sweet but the taste is significantly more bitter with caramel hops evolving into a lingering hop finish. Biting to a degree but very nice.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2012 19:19:31 | More by puboflyons
Photo of heygeebee
heygeebee

Australia

3.48/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

BB Jan 13

Pours a dark brown mahogany body with a two finger fluffy white head. Head stays for a while lovely clingy lace.

Aromas of butterscotch caramel roast malt toffee. All to style.

Taste is a malt driven version of all of the above. Starts well but begins to fade in mouth and become slightly watery and too light of flavour for the ABV.

Mouthfeel light carbonated and somewhat watery

Not sure if this wants to be a Big Beer or a sessionable beer. The ABV should say big, but the end result is a sessionable tasting ale, at a non-sessionable ABV

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2012 12:01:26 | More by heygeebee
Photo of codyhotel
codyhotel

Manitoba (Canada)

3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - pours with a large, thick head that holds well which I very much enjoyed. Clear, orange-ish to amber colour.

S - More hops than I expected, fruitiness. Good amount of toasty malts, bit of yeast.

T - Lots of sweet caramel malts and honey, some earthy fruits, and a hint of chocolate on the finish. Hops give it a nice dryness and tartness for balance, but the flavour isn't really there.

M - Medium body, medium carbonation, very smooth feel. Dry finish, leaves the palate fairly clean.

Overall, a pretty good beer. Very drinkable, great to sip on.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2012 01:38:08 | More by codyhotel
Photo of cambabeer
cambabeer

Florida

3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a good ale. The deep brown color has a head that sticks around. The smell is malty for sure, with some hops in the background. Definitely smells sweet. Big taste, malty and sweet, with the hops and alcohol taking off the edge of the huge malty character. The alcohol is prevalent in the middle and the aftertaste is bitter yet fruity. Buy this, it's good. Not world class, but good.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2012 07:07:10 | More by cambabeer
Photo of dansmcd
dansmcd

Australia

4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy, dark reddish amber with a creamy finger of head and nice streaky lacing.

S - Sweet and spicy, orange peel hops, caramel malt.

T - Lovely toasted malt with english hops, cumquat, orange, honey, toffee, with some smoke and a wee nip of scotch whisky. Lovely.

M - Full bodied but not too heavy, moderately carbonated.

O - Very drinkable and I will certainly buy again soon.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2012 02:29:31 | More by dansmcd
Photo of FightingEntropy
FightingEntropy

Minnesota

4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Christmas Eve day outing with my nephew, and digging for beers in the lackluster list at Old Chicago in Sioux Falls. Picked Black Friar before pulling it up on my database and realizing I've had it before. However, the last bottle was highly rated from 2004, so not a bad idea to try it again to see how my tastes have changed.

From the Inveralmond website: Blackfriar is one of three ancient orders of monks central to the history of Perth in Scotland. The monastery of the Blackfriar was built in 1231. In 1437 James I of Scotland was assassinated by traitors there.

Hazy light copper ale with shimmering amber with light from the window. Head thin and disappears quickly. Dishwater brown with irregular bubbles while it lasts. Caramel, toffee on top of light biscuit and earthiness. Mineral in background that's characteristic of Scotch ales. Light spice or sharp note that I'm note sure of the source. Strong caramel and malt taste. Same spice from yeast, maybe, that leads to an assertive aftertaste that's pleasant. Warmed up, the beer opens up and is more balanced. Mineral background disappears and just leaves a clean spice.

In looking over some of the other reviews, I'll definitely will be on the high end of this beer--2004 and now. In part, I'm going to guess that some drank the beer too cold and too fast, as it changes character significantly as it warms. Or, this beer just matches my palate.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2012 23:42:16 | More by FightingEntropy
Photo of eric5bellies
eric5bellies

Australia

3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank from my Duvel tulip

A - Pours a nice red mahogany coulour with a tight two fingered, off white head that retains very well.

S - A little bit of hop and malt but not massive.

T - Nioce toffee flavours and complimented by some small hop and roasted malt.

M - Medium body and carbonation

O - A solid Ale without being spectacular

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2011 16:18:02 | More by eric5bellies
Photo of danieelol
danieelol

Australia

3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Good colour- red/ochre with good head and lacing.

S: Really sweet candies (malt). Almost a peaty/corny note in there. Some sweet green apple and oxidation.

T: caramel, roast, apple, toffee. Tastes really three dimensional, like there's always something going on in the background. Some good hop bitterness, some good alcohol dryness and some good sweetness. Also some piney hops and really a mounting hop bitterness. Very well balanced.

M: Highly carbed and just good all round.

O: Whatever it's meant to be, this beer nails it. Skilfully brewed and recommended, even if it's not my favourite style.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2011 13:39:47 | More by danieelol
Photo of Zimbo
Zimbo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amberish brown and almost sparkling this had a fluffy thin head with some faint tablet toffee on the nose.
Some finesse for this style of beer with a bit of a twist at the end of the longish malty almost rich taste.
Not at all cloying. Insanely drinkable and rather on the light end of this particular style of beer.

Serving type: cask

04-29-2011 10:50:56 | More by Zimbo
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.45/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Reviewed from notes taken during a January 2011 trip to Glasgow, Scotland. Served from a cask into a pint glass. It was served off a just-freshly tapped cask; this beer couldn't be fresher unless I were at the brewery.

A: Pours a clear dark amber. Thin head of fair retention.

Sm: Fresh albeit musty scent of barley. Difficult to detect individual notes with me broken nose.

T: Nice body - multiple notes unexpected from the nose. Near malty finish, it's lacking in unique flavour.

Mf: Very smack-your-lips crisp like, but a bit too smooth. Nice cream on the finish. Too wet.

Dr: Hides its ABV extremely well, but it's pricey. Overall, I'm unimpressed.

Serving type: cask

03-08-2011 01:10:34 | More by kojevergas
Photo of irishevans
irishevans

Alaska

4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

[From Notes]
A- Pours a two finger light yellowish-white head, like the color of a liver injury patient (trust me I know). the body is a light, almost golden yellow around the bottom, it's more of a bright hazy orange as it goes up eventually to almost an amber color at the very top.

N- bready, yeasty, malty. some caramel and other sweet hints. smells like it's a total Malt Bomb.

T- Malt-a-Rific. Caramel light bread yeast, slight fruitiness. a hint of molasses. All this is countered (albeit very slightly) with just the right amount of herbal hop flavor. it also has a bittersweet finish that goes on much like the energizer bunny.

M- the right amount of dryness, perfect graininess level, and a nice tingle in the jowls.

D- Lovely sipping beer, and a much easier drinker than I had expected @ 7%. I really do quite like it, but it's no Full Curl (bring back the Dall Sheep M-Sun!!!)

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2011 01:17:38 | More by irishevans
Photo of Phelps
Phelps

Arizona

3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beeradvocate has this one labeled as a Scottish ale, while the brewery lists it on their site as a Scotch Ale. Poured from a bottle with a best before date of Nov. 2007. Rather old, but in this state I'm not bound to find it any fresher.

Pours a deep maroon caramel color, slightly hazy and topped with half-finger head of sandy tan that lingers for a while. Some fat stripes of lace are left behind as I drink.

Smells a little oxidized. Buttery toffee mixed with caramel, dried apricot and raisins. Sweet and rich.

Butter again in the flavor, but tempered with a nice bready toastiness. Lightly bitter dark malt hits the sides of the tongue, along with raisins, apricot, caramel and a slight tinge of ethanol. Sweet before a dryish finish

Medium light body, very slightly fizzy, with light massaging, tongue-numbing carbonation. A little weak and runny.

From reading other reviews, it seems the buttery toffee notes are a common occurrence with this beer. In that case, it's stood up well to the test of time. A sweeter interpretation of the style, but decent.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2011 20:18:39 | More by Phelps
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a nonic)
A- This beer pours a hazy glowing deep copper body with a chunks of yeast suspended with a strong carbonation. The head is a bubbly light tan that last for a few sips.
S- The aroma of cooked apples and malt has some fruity qualities and some light toffee notes underneath but the aroma is otherwise very clean.
T- The tart bitterness in the finish is the stronger flavor although even that is soft. There is a softer sweetness of malt with some dry biscuit and honey malt notes followed by a water wort flavor. There is a solventy alcohol tasted in the finish but the bitter flavor lingers after the finish.
M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a tight fizz in the finish and some alcohol burn that grows a bit as the beer opens.
D- The bitterness of hops dominates and that doesn't even have the hop flavor to support it. The malt has some floral cleaner quality with the alcohol heat and that makes this a bit tough to get through.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2011 03:39:05 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of MirImage
MirImage

Texas

4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A slightly opaque reddish copper base with a white head that poured nicely and stayed with the glass, decent lacing.

Smell: Sweet malty. Earthy notes. Cannot pick up much hop aroma but it is a Scotch Ale.

Taste: Some roasted malt flavors but reminiscent of a stout. A pleasantly sweet front which dries out in a back. A little more of a roasted favor than I am use to with Scotch Ales, very good though.

Mouthfeel: Very good feeling around the mouth virtually no carbonation bite.

Drinkability: It started tasting a little hot after a while. Not something I want to drink a ton of.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2010 02:43:48 | More by MirImage
Photo of AndyAvalanche
AndyAvalanche

Massachusetts

4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel Tulip Glass. This beer is a little different in color than I expected. It has the orange/amber glow color as a double IPA or Belgian Pale Ale. Not much clarity to it, it has a creamy white head, but it goes away pretty quickly, not much lacing. The smell is very good, but doesn't really smell too much like a Scottish Ale. Hoppy with some sweet malt flavors, and a little buttery. The taste is a step up, again with the sweet malts, caramelized, a little bit of a butterscotch flavor and a hint of liquorish flavor in my opinion. Grainy taste and has a Hoppy aftertaste. The mouthfeel is very good. Full bodied, creamy with a slightly dry finish from the hops. Slight bite, and good carbonation tone, very drinkable. Haven't had it in about 4 years, the first real import I had and what got me interested in trying new beer. Even though I've had many different Scottish Ales in the past, this one is certainly different from the rest. Good beer, I'd recommend anyone to try it.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2010 17:38:24 | More by AndyAvalanche
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

2.65/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a light brown color ale with a nice foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of grain and cereal with some dry notes and limited sweetness. Taste is also dominated by dry cereal with lightly unrefined grain notes and minimal residual sugars. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. A bit too dry and grainy for my taste.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2010 16:59:48 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of avalon07
avalon07

South Carolina

3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a slightly cloudy consistency. there was a huge amount of foamy, very long-lasting head. Average lacing.

S: Smelled like most Scottish Ales: Caramel, malt, maybe a little fruit.

T: Tasted of roasted malt, caramel, molasses, fruit, and alcohol. Not as dynamic as you'd expect, but it does get better as it goes along.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: Despite some unevenness, this is a drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2010 13:18:10 | More by avalon07
Photo of BieresDesMoines
BieresDesMoines

Iowa

3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a caramel color with a big head and some good lace. The aroma is very earthy and woody with a distinct oak and vinous note but the aroma is dominated by ripe red apple. The flavor is nicely earthy and hoppy with some fruitiness and overall very dry and woody. This beer improves quite a bit as it warms, which is wild because I opened it at room temperature. As it warms it gets a much fruitier character with some good caramel maltiness. Palate is nicely full. Tasty.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2010 06:07:00 | More by BieresDesMoines
Photo of seanyfo
seanyfo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint served by handpump into imperial pint glass at the Guildford Arms in Edinburgh

A- A copper brown body with a creamy tan 2 finger head that produces lovely lacing and with impressive head retention

S- Caramel/toffee malts. Faint background fresh hoppy bitterness.

T- Lots of caramel sweet malts, hint of creamy chocolate, a roasted malt note with a very understated hop bitter finish. Nicely balanced.
Alcohol well hidden!

M- Low carbonation, full body

D- Excellent scottish malt profile which is not overdone with a clean refreshing hop note in the finish. ABV dangerously hidden.Delicious

Serving type: cask

03-28-2010 21:18:56 | More by seanyfo
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jkwalking for sharing this beer.

The beer pours a murky orangish-brown with a white head. The aroma is sweet fruit with some caramel malts. The flavor is very sweet with some caramel and toffee malt. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2010 22:34:21 | More by Mora2000
Photo of gfreed
gfreed

Massachusetts

4.43/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium-colored and slightly foggy with a deep head, somewhat off-white and large-bubbled; almost like iced-tea with a root-beer-float head. From the first sniff I could tell this would be a good Scottish ale; it has plenty of malt in the aroma with a teeny bit of a sting from hops; perhaps a little bit sour as well. Some caramel and even a little WW bread is present as well. The body is not too dense but there's a enough resistance that it doesn't feel all that thin; low carbonation makes it feel a little heavy as well. Caramel and lightly smokey malt predominate in the taste-- I could have had five of these except at 7% ABV I'd be wobbling across the kitchen in no time. A pint was enough for this evening, but I'll be buying more.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2010 03:52:26 | More by gfreed
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Blackfriar from Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The
87 out of 100 based on 137 ratings.