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DogZilla Black IPA - Laughing Dog Brewing

Not Rated.
DogZilla Black IPADogZilla Black IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

499 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 499
Reviews: 278
rAvg: 3.36
pDev: 21.13%
Wants: 14
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SurlyDuff on 08-02-2008

True to its IPA roots Dogzilla has a massive hop presence that is Piney and Citrusy. A malty backbone, along with the dark malt gives it a bit of a roasty finish. Brewed with Simcoe and Cascade Hops, Pale Malt, Munich, and Black Barley.

69 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 499 | Reviews: 278 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tlazaroff
3.87/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color, but not black as the style suggests. It has a foamy, white head on top with big bubbles. The smell was citrusy and floral as you would expect from an IPA. The surprise came from the taste, which felt like I was sucking on hard candy! There was no roastyness as would be expected from the color. This one really threw me for a loop, and I liked it! It was my first foray into the realm of Cascadian Dark Ales (Yeah, I like that term better than Black IPA) and I will defiantly seek out more of this style to get a better feel for it.

Photo of ralree
4.11/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A: Rich, deep brown, 1/4 finger laced head, great retention.

S: Great big grapefruit hop smell, toasted malt.

T: Strange smokey flavor (Smoked IPA?), hops are wonderful, strong malt backs it nicely. Just a little brown sugar sweetens it up.

M: Nice and dry, clean except for smoke, astringent, carbonation good, medium body.

D: Really rather hard to drink fast, but sipping is OK.

Enjoyed at the Oregon Brewer's Festival 2010

Photo of kwjd
2.19/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a light brown colour with off-white head. The head dissipates quickly with little-to-no lacing. This bottle must be infected, but it was recently purchased I was told. It had almost a smell/flavour of a bad white wine, mostly sour grapes. Not getting roasted malt or a hop bite that I'd expect from a black IPA.

Photo of flagmantho
3.92/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: dark, hazy, ruby-brown body with three fingers of persistent tan head. Not exactly "black", like the label says, but not bad.

Smell: big dose of piney, earthy and slightly funky hops atop a basic malt flavor; slightly biscuity, reminiscent of a red ale. Not sure what the "black" is supposed to impart here, but the IPAness of the aroma is pretty good.

Taste: hops are much earthier and funkier than in the aroma; they're almost a very intense floral flavor. Malt is basic and caramelly, so overall it's imbalanced toward the hop side of the spectrum, but that's OK in the style. Bitterness is getting the job done as well.

Mouthfeel: medium body with an OK level of carbonation. It's good enough for government work.

Drinkability: unsubtle, but flavorful; this beer has some gotcha and it plays its cards well. I would have this again.

Photo of matjack85
2.85/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this 22oz brown bottle at Sal's in Addison, IL. Never had a black IPA before, so was looking foreword to seeing what it was all about.

The beer poured a cherry cola color with 2½ fingers of frothy light brown head that seemed to last forever. Plenty of lacing clung to the glass with each sip. It was a really nice looking beer.

The smell - what smell? For such a good looking dark beer it sure didn't emit much of an aroma. There was a faint malt roastiness and an even fainter piny/citrus hop mix. It had nowhere near the level of hop aroma one would expect from an IPA.

This doesn't taste much like an IPA either. Roasted coffee flavored malt dominates the flavor. At 69 IBU's there certainly are some hops in here, but they take a back seat to the malts. The hops give it a piny and citrusy flavor, but there just aren't enough of them. The beer also leaves a slightly sour and bitter aftertaste in my mouth.

This is a medium bodied brew with medium carbonation.

I wasn't all that impressed with this one. I'll be interested in trying a different brewery's black IPA to see if it tastes any better or if I'm just not a fan of the style.

Photo of velmalikevelvet
3.88/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle to chilled pint glass.

Enters the glass as a dark, cherry-cola colored with a tan, bubbly, generous head that drops pretty quickly.

Light floral and citrus notes, not overtly scented.

Hoppy up front with substantial burnt-caremely goodness backing it up. Bitter bite of an aftertaste.

Chewy, halfway between substantial like a porter and crisp like an IPA.

Paired with something meaty this would be a repeat on my lineup.

Photo of Sammy
2.83/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Black-grapefruit melange coloured body.
Big white soapy head. Mollasses and hops - simcoe. Some roasted malt. Infected? Buttery mouthfeel,some malts, hops did not work, weak carbonation. Frehly purchased bottle by RK, certainly not his fault. Not finishable.

Photo of thagr81us
4.08/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to hopflop for this one! Served from bottle into a Stone nonic. Pours a dark amber with a three finger off white head that is very frothy but subsided to one finger very slowly. Maintained decent lacing throughout. The aroma was comprised of sweet hops and malt. The flavor was of dark malt and hops. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a very nice IPA. The head retention was epic on this one. Just glad I was able to try this one. The flavors and aromas were definitely on par for this style and it was one of the top black IPA's I've tried to date.

Photo of TheSarge
3.94/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dogzilla produces massive amounts of long retaining khaki colored head, and has a blackish ruby red colored body.

In the aroma fruity fragrances are most noteable, but the brew also has a slight coffee or cocoa character to it.

An interesting twist to the typical IPA. Citrusy flavors are upfront, but almost immediately smokey charred coffee flavors come through.

Pretty carbonated but complex, this is also not that thick. Medium in body but highly drinkable.

Photo of canucklehead
3.05/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours Dark Brown with a huge tan head. Nose is hoppy but the burnt malts also show up as the beer warms up. Not a huge beer in flavour but rather a slightly mellow Cascadian IPA. The beer actually has a bitterness in the finish that grows tiresome as the bottle progreses. I poured out the last half glass becuase of this note. I have had better versions of this style and will not purchase this again

Photo of bfeucht
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Tall tan head that lingers for about a minute. Clear dark beer with slight caramel color when held up to light.

Resiny hop smell with hints of floral, citrus, and grass. Very faint aroma of brown sugar or caramel.

Starts off with a nutty flavor which quickly changes to a malt and finishes with a sharp bitter and a floral after taste. Overall a little heavy for an IPA, but what I would expect from a darker style (Black IPA). Flavors are well balanced.

The beer seems a little over carbonated and leaves the mouth feeling a little dry, but it does not distract too much from the taste of the beer.

Photo of froghop
3.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a clear brown with a medium size egg-shell head, and good lacing.

smell is of sweet malt, some citrus, caramel, and a little brown sugar in the back.

taste is creamy, bitter, malt, some pine, and a little mocha, ends nicely smooth.

good for an IPA, but darker than normal.

Photo of plinythethirsty
2.84/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Decent head and appearance. But the taste is not likely to please most American IPA fans. Smell and taste evoke a Christmas beer -- cloves and minty pine. Next Yuletide I'll buy some Schlafly's, but for summertime hops, I'll look elsewhere. Not recommended for IPA lovers.

Photo of beerwolf77
3.05/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into my pint glass the beer is brownish red. The beige head literally explodes to at least five fingers high. There's about and inch of beer in the glass. The rest is all head. Talk about over carbonated. Lots of thick lace is left around the glass so thats a plus on appearance.

The aroma is light piney hops along with a moderate dose of smoked malt. Not much else going on.

The flavor has a piney hop blast that gives way loads of smoked malt. Very dry and bitter in the finish.

Medium average body. Tons of carbonation.

Overall this was my first of this style. I hope it gets beeter after this. So far Black IPA's are 0 for one in my book.

Photo of scruffwhor
3.41/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cola and burnt sienna color with copper hightlights at the bottom of my glass. Two fingers of head atop said color that recedes to a constant thick film of fom throughout all 22 ounces. Loks lik an IPA with black malts added to the wort at some point and time.

The aroma is a litle tame. Just the normal bitter orange peel,uta litte under he radar fr my taste was the malt aromas. Maybe just a hint of roasted barelt, but thats it.

The taste starts with a dry, almost astringent sweetness from the toasted biscuit and noticeable roasted malt flavors. The middle bitters up quite abit with a chewy palate to boot. The finish is a long lingering black blood orange and tamarind bitterness just ever so accentuated by the roasted malt character.

Interesting black IPA, but lacking in a few standard IPA qualities. Still a good beer and worth picking up for any IPA fan.

Photo of tigg924
3.6/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, cloudy, amber- dark brown in color, moderate carbonation

Smell: citrus hops and some malt

Taste: citrus hops, some chocolate, and earth

Mouthfeel: light bodied, medium carbonation, sweet start with a very bitter body and end

Drinkability: I could have this again. This is an interesting beer with the chocolate and hops..Almost like a hopped up schwarzbier. Good above average IPA.

Photo of horshack7
4.41/5  rDev +31.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: From a 22 ounce bomber poured into a mug is a dark brown borderline black with a dark garnet hues. On top of all this is a two fingered tall head that is thick and frothy almost as thick as a marshmellow.

Aroma: Nice citrusy hopiness right up front. Bits of caramelized sugar and burnt hops. A little bit of malts that were roasted so wonderfully dark. Piney and grapefruitiness round it all out.

Taste: A wave of citrus and dark roasted malts all rolled into one. A crisp yet still full bodied beast. A little bit of a breadiness. Malts produce a burnt sugar texture and flavor. As for the hops well they are having a field day what a delicious beer.

Notes: This is quite a beast it might appear to be cute and cuddly but that is only an illusion inot the dark heart of this beer. I am glad I got my hands on this one and will get more. Cheers.

Photo of jslot38
3.24/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big fan of black IPA's, had to grab this one.

App: Big pillowy off white head over a very dark brown borderline black with ruby hints body. Great lacing, looks phenomenal.

Smell: Interesting note of caramel in the nose. Hops and sourdough bread, some cereal grains as well.

Taste: Decent mix of hops and roasted malts. Sweetness level is just too high in this though. Hop bitterness is there, but the hop flavour is on the light side. Just a hint of grapefruit and grass.

Mouthfeel: Good IPA mouthfeel, carbonation is upfront and the hop bitterness transfers over to the hop slickness on the tongue.

Drinkability: Won't be too hard to get through this bomber.

Something is odd about this brew. I like it, but between the caramel in the nose and the vanilla sweetness in the taste you can easily forget this is an IPA.

Photo of UncleJimbo
3.91/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a clear, deep red-brown color with tall, creamy, light brown foam that persisted. The smell was NW hops, though not very prominent. The taste was hoppy but also malty like a very hoppy Dunkel or Schwarzbier. Not overly sweet, but a tad more sweet than an IPA. The mouthfeel was crisp and hoppy with medium body and good carbonation. Good dark malt throughout, and a hoppy finish. This was a nice beer.

Photo of rwdkosak
4/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour lightly chilled out of the cellar, a nice rocky, fluffy head with a mild pour that sticks to the glass and retains a few millimeters for the entire drink. A dark, dark amber in color. Smell is of citrus, a hint of toastiness and almost a Brett-like hint as well. Taste is similar; a malt backbone, a good amount of hop up front, then toasted malt with a quite dry finish and a funk of (as I stated before) Brett-like quality. Mouthfeel was good...fairly smooth but you'd want to be in the mood for a very dry finish. Drinkability isn't too bad at 6.9%ABV..it's higher (obviously) than your session beers but I'm having no problem with this bomber.

Good overall...across the board actually...not exceptional but not bad, really.

Photo of blackc5
2.19/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass at 48F. Purchased at Belmont Station in PDX.

A - Excellent frothy head on an aggressive pour - at least 3 fingers of mocha colored foam. Great lacing as well. Overall color is a quite dark ruby-tinted brown. Looks good.

S - Very hop forward nose. Lots of earth and pine, some burnt sugar and roasted malts. Something else odd in the aroma that I can't quite identify as well... hmm.

T - Not sure if this is a good bottle. Taste is dominated by astringent bitterness. Hard to label the hop flavors individually, surprising given the nose. Some odd buttery quality as well - infected? Hmm. Might be a drain pour. Reading some other reviews, perhaps this is an intentional characteristic of the beer(?) - if so, it does not work for me...

M - Relatively smooth, all things considered. Medium-bodied, slightly above moderate carbonation.

D - Given the lacking flavor profile, I will grade this low. May edit this review if I try again and it turns out better...

As I try to drink some more, I realize I've only had a few ounces and can't fathom even pouring the rest from the bottle.Yeah, this is a drain pour.

Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

*Cascadian Black Ale* lol.
inkjet: 278 01 ¡1337!

Pours with a large fluffy head that formed craters and peaks, with a bunch of sticky lace. Dark mahogany with a ruby glint when held to the light. With nice retention also, it looks very good.

Some light citrus and toasty notes, seems mildly buttery but not in a bad way. Roasty malts and a citric bitterness, long and dry bitter aftertaste. Clean green hop aftertaste lasts forever, even after I left the room and forgot what I was drinking. Grapefruit rind and spicy pine bitterness, maybe a hint of diacetyl.

Light carbonation, full bodied, a nice IPA to take your time drinking. Overall it was good, probably enjoy Alpha Dog more though.

Photo of ghebel
4.22/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours clear copper/ brown with red hue in the light. The head is massive and turns to a creamy topping that leaves lots of lacing on dissipation.

S - Grains are toasty, dark fruit with a roasted component. Hops are floral and spicy.

T - Taste follows aroma with a noticeable bitterness. Hop flavor and roasted grains are well balanced.

M - Moderate body with carbonation bite and lingering bitterness. Warming on the swallow. Finishes medium, between dry and sweet. Hides ABV well.

D - Drinkable. Different.

Overall - Mix a Porter with an IPA - you get this beer. I'm not sure what to call it, but I know I like it.

Photo of Daniellobo
4.03/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A rather strange brew working well as a dark IPA but with interesting memories of a Belgium IPA

Presentation: 22 Oz. Bottle. Dark label around the illustration of an oversized dog monster taking over the urban skyline. Rambling side narrative about the monstrous behavior of Dogzilla, with a small description of the brew. Does not show bottling or freshness date. Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Deep brown pour with an extraordinary frothy head. Great retention and rich lumps of lacing as it progresses.

S - A funky malty nose, a bit of a fruity hoppiness and a fresh floral hint.

T - Hmmm, malty and hoppy, done well, with a sour and even a tad funky touch, Brett? Probably not but there is a big memory of something like it. The funkiness progresses around a subtle hoppy feel with a nice and gentle malty backbone.

M - Medium body with generous carbonation. Dry and crisp finish.

D - It is rather drinkable, not sure if it appropriate for a dark IPA but it feels good.

Notes: Maybe this is an off bottle, although I doubt it, and even if it were it was a rather pleasing drink. Thing is that it has great funky sense, not a skunked one mind you, but something more in line with the way that brettanomyces feels in a subtle way. The nose and look support that feel, and make for a nice dark IPA with a fresh hoppy funk that does the trick very well. Did they bottle something else on this one?

Photo of troutmask96
3.12/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Laughing Dog's "Dogzilla" is one of those beers that tries to be different while ending up the same. Pours an opaque black with a thick head that quickly dissipates into a tan lace. Smell is of sweet bread and bubblegum. Nothing unique about the taste except for a lingering bitterness that is almost unpleasant. Drinkability is scored as average because of this. One and done...

DogZilla Black IPA from Laughing Dog Brewing
77 out of 100 based on 499 ratings.