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Raven - Thornbridge Brewery


Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

90 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 90
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.61%

Brewed by:
Thornbridge Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: TMoney2591 on 02-24-2010)
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Ratings: 90 | Reviews: 29 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of craftbeersweden


4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A black IPA in a 500ml bottle from Systembolaget, Sweden.

Clear, black beer with a one finger high withe foam.

Smell of chocolate, orange, pine, grass, tropical fruit and rosted malt.

Taste: Rosted malt, a little bit of coffee, chocolate, grapefruit, peach and hops.

Medium body and small but right carbonation. Great bitterness. A really good beer!

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2014 23:48:30 | More by craftbeersweden
Photo of MarkoNm


2.15/5  rDev -47%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

Thornbridge Wild Raven.

Pours with a nice dark brown, almost black color, and a decent beige head.
The strong aroma my nose picked up were roasted malts with some coffee as well.
The taste was likewise roasted plus some coffee. The bitterness was very strong, much too strong for my liking.
Overall, this beer was too heavy, too strong and too bitter. Not really good IMO.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2013 18:45:21 | More by MarkoNm
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-cask 11/20/2013 at Track 84, in Warwick, RI served in an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a large dense off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, chocolate, citrus and hops.

T: The taste starts out very creamy with bitter sweet flavors of chocolate, coffee and citrus followed by a roasted malt character. The hops presence is a bit subdued but still brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: A little crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a very solid beer to drink for a long time if you’re in the mood for the style.

Serving type: cask

11-21-2013 16:46:41 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of heygeebee


4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

From Beer Cartel. BB 05 2014

A - black with whitish one finger head. Spotty clingy lace.

S and T - similar being a more earthy IPA style than the floral US style backed with the coffe and choc dark roasts. Grape fruits yes but not to the fore. Hint lychee, from a hop I cannot name but I recognise.

M - lightly carbonated and very smooth

O - what you might expect from Thornbridge, as in a more restrained attempt at style and really slap in their style bracket. Drinkability up with zestiness and sharpness down making it all the more drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2013 09:46:14 | More by heygeebee
Photo of danieelol


4.24/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with good head and lacing.

Smell is glorious pine, jasmine (think that's the Sorachi Ace). Spicy and seductive, the pine is really potent. A slightly rice-y note. A little bit of tangello/blood orange.

Taste has more blood orange and tangello. Nice candied quality.

Mouthfeel is slightly sweet in a good way, piney and mildly bitter and ashen in the finish.

This beer is excellent, fresh and way too easy to drink, like most Thornbridge (I)PAs that I've tried.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2013 07:03:50 | More by danieelol
Photo of dangeru

United Kingdom (England)

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really nice. Good hop and roast, with an additional layer of interest coming from an oakiness to the flavor.

The best black IPA that I can regularly get my hands on in the UK.

Not as good as Boneyard Armored fist, but definitely a solid black IPA for those of us across the pond.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2013 21:58:18 | More by dangeru
Photo of MrKennedy


4.09/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

310ml glass at the Local Taphouse, Darlinghurst.

Black appearance with a lightish off-white collar of foam on top that laces really well. Good head retention.

Smell has pine & grapefruit and touches with chocolate & coffee. More of the first two and the last two just add complexity.

Tastes of the grapefruit with some pine. Again chocolate & espresso coffee are there, but the chocolate is less pronounced and the coffee is very secondary.

Mild bitterness throughout with it coming from hops first and a little late kicker too. Dry finish. Solid body for the size.

Really impressed. Complexity & subtlety done very well. One of the better black ipa's I've come across. Becoming a bit of a Thornbridge fanboy after this and Halcyon.

Serving type: on-tap

06-18-2013 08:11:36 | More by MrKennedy
Photo of flyingpig

United Kingdom (Scotland)

4.01/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle from Good Spirits Co, Glasgow (£4.00):
Deep mahogany that, almost black & a thumb sized, thick looking, foamy head on top that holds pretty well before eventually settling as a thick looking, light brown lacing.

Hoppy with some pine and citrus notes along with a touch of grapefruit. This is followed up but some toasted, darker style malts and a hint of coffee. I could detect some sweetness, a little bit of bitter and a few background fruits competing for notice along with some faint chocolate and light tropical fruits.

Citrus and pine hops along with bitterness and a sweet malt taste. There is some darker malts from the nose, some grapefruit as well and a well balanced, bitter finish with hints of light chocolate and toasted malts.

Medium body and a smooth, creamy feel with plenty of bitterness in the dry, citrus infused finish with lively carbonation.

Nice pine and bitter hops backed up with some toasted malts and the background chocolate and coffee that is subtle but definitely noticeable. A really nice beer and one that goes down far too easily.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2013 15:30:05 | More by flyingpig
Photo of CrazyDavros


3.94/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark brown with a large off-white head.
Nose shows chocolate, nutty malt, sorachi ace custard notes and soft spicy resinous hops. Lovely.
Flavours include more of the sorachi dill and custard, resinous piny hops and some roasted malt.
A bit too much carbonation.

Serving type: on-tap

05-24-2013 03:45:20 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of John_Henry


4.19/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a lovely dark colour with a solid light brown head that is retained well leaving good lacing. The hops come threw on the nose, but not half as much as on the pallet. I'd guess NZ hops which have a great tang to them without being too bitter.

Listed as a black IPA, which is a great style, this could however equally be listed as a hoppy porter. Either way a great bear well worth hunting out.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2013 16:13:14 | More by John_Henry
Photo of Tone


3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, brown color. 1/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of hops, slight sweet malt, hint of citrus (grapefruit?), and hint of caramel malt. Fits the style of an American Black Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, hops, pine, citrus, floral hops, hint of grass, and hint of roasted malt. Overall, good appearance, blend, body, and complexity.

Serving type: on-tap

01-13-2013 20:52:20 | More by Tone
Photo of eriktoyra


3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown liquid with thick and creamy off-white head. The head lasts long.

S: The smell is dominated by an intense citrus tone, almost like it is fabricated. Citrus detergents in fact. I can also find leather, flowery hops, Earl Grey tea and dark roasted malts.

T: It tastes Earl Grey tea, flowery hops and lots of citrus. There is also some leather and coffee towards the middle and bitter grapefruit peel at the end.

M: Medium body with medium carbonation.

O: The citrus tones in this one is very, very dominant. Worth a try!

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2012 19:15:59 | More by eriktoyra
Photo of crnipeter


4.36/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

With an UK-brewed black IPA history seems to be reverting itself except that Americans are colonizing England this time.

Decants dark brown with garnet hue topped by stable light-tan head with lots of
sticky lacing on the sides.

Pungent citrusy and resinous hop-aroma is backed by dark malt character i.e. biscuity, caramel and chocolate qualities. Besides citrus-yielding Sorachi and Centennial hops a distinctive black gooseberry aroma of Nelson Sauvin can be picked up, with all three hop-varieties being advertised on the label.

Mouthfeel is smooth like that of a porter while grapefruity-resinous hop flavor mingles with roast till the dry finish featuring both hop bitterness and tanninic notes of roasted malt.

Light-medium bodied with moderate yet fine carbonation.

Overall, a very good fruity-roasted-resinous Cascadian Ale that tends to remain closer to an IPA rather than to a Porter or Stout and that's precisely as it should be. (500 ml bottle into tulip, BB 2013-04-10)

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2012 20:30:33 | More by crnipeter
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.58/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this thanks to an offering from Ty at Craft in Reno. Jet black, tan head, .8" in depth. Aroma was mild hops, miniscule roast, tobacco, ash.

Taste was a more bitter than usual English black ale, biscuity, high carbonation, probably leaned more grapefruit than pine in the flavor. Was actually pretty complex. High amount of toffee flavors. Nice tang smack to it. Seems to have a meld of old and new school hops. A relatively dry mouthfeel, something I don't normally associate with all the different and sometimes competing flavors to this beer. Any fruit flavors associated with this beyond grapefruit, seem to be overstated. I'm just not finding them.

Definitely a better than average black ale, this one really puts all the usual suspects from an ipa and a porter together. I think it works well, even if not really something I could drink a few of during a game on the telie.

Serving type: on-tap

09-27-2012 15:58:56 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of bark


4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The clear liquid is black with a brown edge (100 EBC). The two finger head is pale brown. It sinks slowly leaving lots of lacing.

The smell is hoppy and quite bitter with some roasted notes and dry coffee. Alcohol is present, as is citric hints and a touch of resin.

The taste is both bitter and roasted. Hints of orange peels, grapefruit, plums and a touch of coconut. Roasted nuts, mild notes of coffee and dark chocolate. Medium to full body. The aftertaste got a lingering smooth bitterness, green fruits/berries, cream and a mild clean sweetness. The finish got notes of hops and coffee plus some warming alcohol.

The carbonation is mild to medium, the many bubbles smooth and small. The liquid is a bit dry.

I have had a few black IPAs the last years, but I felt that I just didn’t “get” the style as they basically were either were over-hopped stouts or IPAs with a pinch of black malt. The results were never balanced nor very interesting. But with this one, I begin to understand the concept. And a damn tasty beer, too.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2012 17:23:01 | More by bark
Photo of SLeffler27

New York

3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Builds an average, rocky, dark beige head that leaves patchy lace over a black beer with dark brown highlights. Some carbonation clings to the Fisheye Pint glass.

Sweet with cedar resin and modest hop aromas followed by light orange. The malt profile is rather weak. There are some floral notes.

Modest bitterness with a modest bitter finish and less depth than desired.

A medium to light body with velvety texture and fizzy carbonation. Alcohol is as expected and this beer is dry.

A fine accompaniment to lunch. While I may well try this one again, it needs to be consumed with food.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2012 21:14:18 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of Sunnanek


4.55/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours so dark; black with hints of red. A healthy large pale brown compact head takes some time to set, leaving nice lacings.

S: Chocolate and coffee up front, perhaps with a vanilla twist. Roasted malt and American hops, mostly bitter but also floral gives it a mild, but still piney/citric smell. Balanced.

S: Roasted malt; chocolate and only a little sweet. Rich grapefruit and orange sezt overpowers the pineapple. Bitter hops are strong. Some coffee lingers in the back.

M: Long bitter aftertaste - great. Body is full while carbonation held back. Smooth and rich, a bit oily (but in a fantastic way).

O: Fantastic, well balanced and smooth, but still rich and full. Man, I'll try to buy a bunch of this one (if I can find 'em) - I'd love to see how this evolves, if properly cellared...

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2012 17:55:43 | More by Sunnanek
Photo of beerdrifter


4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at my favorite beer store in Belgium, Dranken Geers. Deep dark brown-black pour with just a touch of red. Huge three finger caramel-colored head with good retention and decent lacing. The nose is hugely aromatic and one of the best smelling Black IPA's I've had. Tons of roasty malt and piney hops with hints of grapefruit, tobacco, espresso, and chocolate. The taste is over the top and spot on to what a Black IPA should be. Perfect balance between the piney, citrusy, juicy hops and the chocolaty roasted malts. The Nelson Sauvin hops really shine and make this big, bold beer even bigger. Hints of grapefruit, pine, mocha, and espresso with just a touch of vinous notes. The mouthfeel is slightly thick and chewy with a bit of creaminess and a great tangy, bitter hop finish. And with a 6.6 ABV, I could drink this all night long! Black IPA's are currently my favorite style, and this is either one or two on my list. Never thought Sublimely could be challenged, but Thornbridge has done it once again!

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2012 17:06:57 | More by beerdrifter
Photo of jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 500ml bottle with a BB of Dec 2011. Label mentions that notes of dark chocolate, pineapple and orange will present themselves....

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Very dark; appears black but deep ruby highlights are revealed when held to the light. Yields a huge head of light-brown foam with good retention; this slowly subsides to a surface layer. Aroma of fruity hops with notes of tropical fruit, citrus and pine, underpinned by sweetish malt, subtle coffee and yeast.

Tastes of aromatic hops with a dark malt backbone and powerful bitter finish. Notes of pine, citrus, tropical fruit, bitter chocolate, hints of coffee and roasted malt. Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly with considerable astringency. Full-bodied, but doesn't come across as heavy. A pleasant lingering aftertaste of aromatic hops.

Superb - a must try for any hop lover. Plenty going on, with stacks of aromatic notes and bitterness. I could drink this for hours... I've also tried this on cask, which is even better, but a fantastic beer in any format.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 00:50:31 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of StJamesGate

New York

4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purple brown that shows garnet in light with a solid steady creamy tan head that puckers and leaves thick rings. Incredible fresh resin-skunk hop nose with pine needles and lemon peel plus slight ashy cocoa underneath.
Charcoal, earth, sultana and cocoa beans up front with seriously bitter lemon hop bite with a bit of evergreen and leaf. Nelson Sauvin gooseberry and Centennial tangelo come out as it warms.
Kiwi finish and heavy IBU linger. Medium, sticky, soft, creamy and chewy.

Never thought I'd say this about an English beer, but this is almost too bitter for me. It really needs to warm up and let the tropical fruit notes open out - even then they're buried, and I get no pineapple like the label says. Or is this actually the acidity of the dark malts enhancing the bitterness? Either way, this is a Sorachi Ace-fest, and a monstrous IPA no matter what the color.

Top flight CDA.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2011 13:32:54 | More by StJamesGate
Photo of TMoney2591


3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a tulip glass at Sheffield's.

The 2011 Bachelor Party Extravaganza continues in the Sheffield's beer garden. This bit pours a garnet-highlighted tawn topped by a finger of khaki foam. The nose comprises toasted biscuits, toffee, dry pine needles, light tobacco, flowers, and dark greens. The taste sits closer to the hoppy end of the spectrum than the smell, with the pine, mint, and spicy greens taking center stage, forcing the toffee, light cocoa, and very light roasted malts to the wings. The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly dry finish. Overall, a pretty nice English CDA, perhaps a bit on the hoppy side for my tastes (I like just a touch more balance), but generally enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

09-02-2011 03:48:18 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of KickInTheChalice


4.55/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap in a tulip at Bad Apple.

Appearance: My tulip arrives filled with a mahogany liquid with brown edges and a burgundy tint. A cherry tan foam sits on top, fading to a ring and an island after a few moments. A little bit of nice lace sticks to the glass.

Smell: Full, robust chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt pair well with grassy, some pine, and a bit of grapefruit hop aroma.

Taste: The flavor starts with some chocolate, full roasted malt, and a bit of coffee. The bitterness turns hoppy with some strong grassy notes, bits of tingly spruce, and a touch of grapefruit. The finish has a moderate lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth and creamy carbonation really set this off. It has smooth stouts jealous with envy. Medium / full body, slightly sticky, and a bit tingly about midway through each sip.

Overall: This is the best American Black Ale I have had. The creamy mouthfeel really pushes this over the top for me, and the flavors blend so well together. No idea if or when I will see this beer again, but I would definitely go for it.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2011 06:26:49 | More by KickInTheChalice
Photo of TheHoppiest


4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Lizardville ina tulip glass. Pours an inky black, with a 2 finger ecru frothy head that slowly reduces, looking like foam on a specialty coffee.

Has a malty aroma, like ovaltine with mild coffee and hints of toffee. Very mild floral hops in the aroma, and only then upon agitation.

Smooth, with coffee, astringent bitter, peppermint, and thin malt. Amazingly, this smells maltier than it tastes. Ends quite dry and bitter, with hints of solvent.

Medium bodied, with a dry finish that leaves the tongue tacky.

A nice, dry IPA with hints of coffee that melds the English IPA style with dark roasted malt seen in many American IPA's. Better than their Jaidpur, I'd recommend it.

Serving type: on-tap

08-14-2011 02:14:56 | More by TheHoppiest
Photo of thepeter

United Kingdom (England)

4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at GBBF, poured light Black with a frothy foam head, bit of lacing. Aroma of bitter hops, cocoa, coffe, dark malt, dark bread. Taste is malty and rich up front, bitterness hits in the middle and continues until it balances out with a bit of sweetness at the end and leaves the palate pretty clean with a little hoppy after taste but very pleasant. MF was great as always when coming off the cask, perfect natural carbonation and medium body. Overall a very nice balanced Black IPA

Serving type: cask

08-06-2011 09:52:10 | More by thepeter
Photo of Dreadnaught33

District of Columbia

4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this at Pizzaria Paradiso in Old Town Alexandria VA. The style of this is a black IPA, not an English IPA....

A: Very nice look thats jet black with a nice tan head and good lacing to boot.

S: Very subtle aroma with some greasy somewhat citrus like hops and some porter like malt, very faint this needs some work in the dry hopped department perhaps.

T: The taste is great though. Lots of woodsy maple and smoky oak flavors, what I would think is white oak as it reminds me of the some of the cigar city white oak stuff like the white oak Jai Alai. Some roastier chocolate and charred malt takes a supporting role. Some nice grassy hops with a creamy coffee note as well. Very interesting take on a black IPA, I wonder if they aged this in oak because it sure seems like they did.

M: Nice creamy feel and very nice carbonation level, the oak seems to shine here.

Overall a nice beer I hope to see again.

Serving type: on-tap

07-07-2011 18:30:40 | More by Dreadnaught33
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Raven from Thornbridge Brewery
90 out of 100 based on 90 ratings.