Black Hole - Mikkeller ApS
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Ratings: 621 | Reviews: 351 | Display Reviews Only:
1.1/5 rDev -71.1%
Had this a little less than a month ago. Into a snifter, pours virtually no head. The body is as thin as prune juice, and I knew from the first pour that this was not going to be pleasant.
Ugh, aromas of prunes-gone-bad and stale graham crackers. Mr. alexd3891 says it smells decent, but all I smell are prunes-gone-bad and stale graham crackers. And maybe, MAYBE some coffee.
Flavors include the aforementioned prunes-gone-bad and stale graham crackers, with some coffee and a whole lot of booziness. Perhaps if I hold my nose there might be some semblance of balance here, but, God's honest truth, it tastes awful.
Don't even get me started on the mouthfeel. Would anyone like some prune-juice gone bad with what is supposedly a Russian Imperial Stout?
Overall, I have barely ever to be this disappointed with a beer, but this is crap as a really crappy thing. All this talk of prunes and crap is probably the best kind of pairing I can think of for Black Hole, and shame on Mikkeller for allowing such a devious fall from the pinnacle of grace that is Beer Geek Breakfast to be unleashed on all of us. It was such hell I poured it out halfway through.
09-02-2010 22:57:30 | More by jminsc76
1.35/5 rDev -64.5%
Chilled bottle into a glass.
A: Pitch black with almost no head; pours nearly still.
S: I was curious to try this one because all of the barrel-aged versions I've tried have been hilariously awful. Obviously, the common link is the base beer, and so I set upon the quest of finding the flagship imperial stout of the most mystifyingly successful brewery I've ever known. The aroma explains much of the failure of the barrel-aged versions: its prunes, cinnamon, booze, and overroasted coffee note indeed form the aromatic backbone of the derivative beers.
T: This is not quite as bad as the other beers were; something truly unspeakable happened with last year's peat whiskey version, and this doesn't sink quite to those depths. At the same time, it's not palatable or enjoyable. Underattenuated prune juice, bitter coffee, charred malt, a touch of smoke, plenty of booze. I hate it. I just ate others more.
M: Boozy, sweet, clashing, yuck.
O: Well, that was a successful experiment. I have enjoyed exactly 0 Black Holes so far. At least I'm padding my low scores to bring my overall reviewing average down. And it only costs $14 at a time.
11-11-2011 04:42:37 | More by Arbitrator
1.38/5 rDev -63.7%
Poured from a foil wrapped 12oz. green bottle into a snifter
Appearance - On the pour the beer seemed to be slick as it built up in the glass. Took quite some time for the head to form, but in the end it came through as a brown 1/2 finger tight head.
Smell - A very bitter coffee smell, sweet cherries, and an over the top warm alcohol.
Taste & Mouthfeel - WTF? An extremely bitter coffee taste right off the bat. Smooth on the first taste, but then turns a gross ass sour tangy on the tongue. Absolutely putrid! On the swallow an alcohol taste takes over that is way to strong in my opinion. It had the consistency of a smooth oil in the mouth with a lite carbonation. No real flavor to speak of. Just a sour, tangy, warming coffee horrible taste is left in your mouth. Doesn't that sound delicious!
Drinkability - Use this brew to start up your lawnmower. This beer has no need to be passed through the human body.
03-10-2008 08:02:42 | More by ryrust5301
1.4/5 rDev -63.2%
Green bottle, with a champaign cork covered by a silver foil in a 12.7oz bottle, into a delirium tremens glass. Odd
Pours either the darkest brown or lightest black, your call. Pours without much of any carbonation and virtually no carbonation. Looks really really thin in body. Nothing special left on the glass when swirled. I'm going in thinking pretty poorly of this beer.
Watered down coffee, burnt malt, alcohol, some hazel type sweet smelling notes. Think of a cold hazel coffee that's not overly good. You're about there. With some air (this was 50-60 degrees when served so the temp isn't a factor) on it there's a lot of fruity smells coming out. Hard to place so I won't bother trying.
Opens really sweet like a brown sugar and well sweet coffee sweetness to start. Finishes with a bitter coffee flavor but it's really far back there, and then it almost leaves that coffee breath feel in your mouth. Wow it just hit me. This is like a flat Coke with some coffee burnt flavors in the back ground.
This beer is thicker to drink than to look at. Still not much going on. No carbonation.
I see why they sell this in roughly a 13 oz bottle. There's no way you can choke down more than that.
OK, I get what they're going for I think. A sweet and wet example of a stout with some coffee flavors to balance things a hair. The problem is this is awful. Yeah it's a fruity (and more complex than I described) aroma. The beer is way to freaking sweet and unlike so a great English barely wine that does this in a way that makes you savor it. This beer doesn't even get close. The "sale" price I got this beer at of 8.49 makes it all the more awful . At nearly 50 bucks for a 6 pack (and I understand the high cost of distribution and taxes) it's just unacceptable for this to be a bad beer. It is.
10-02-2010 15:39:43 | More by bobhits
British Columbia (Canada)
1.7/5 rDev -55.3%
I struggled with the cork for a while and found that there wasn't a great deal of pressure in the bottle; it soon came out without even a nun's-fart worth of expulsion.
Jet black and no head formation to speak of. Smelled of coffee (coffee grounds, even), vanilla, dried fruit, red licorice and alcohol. Slight smokiness.
Tasted pretty much as it smelled, and I found Black Hole far too sweet to be drinkable. In an attempt to trick myself into enjoying it I tried to put it into context with similarly sweet drinks like port or dessert wines but without the acidity it didn't hold up. The lactic, dairy-creamer attributes were off-putting as well. Mouthfeel was thick and oily with very little carbonation.
It's rare that I don't finish a beer unless I spill it on myself or pass out without drinking it (in which case I'll finish it the next morning). But the two of us were grimacing with every sip. I'm still looking forward to trying their other stuff, and I know they are sought-after for their challenging and experimental beers. I'll just have to concede this particular challenge.
07-14-2010 00:04:43 | More by wolfsleepy
1.78/5 rDev -53.2%
First off, I hate fake cork. They're always a pain to get open and this is no different.
Having said that, this pours a strange black. It's a deep black with some reddish notes on the edges if held up to a light. No head and no carbonation at all. Good color, but disappointing with no head.
The smell is weird too, but I can't quite put my finger on why. It smells like a brownie that's been soaked in tequila. You can smell the sweet.
Way too sweet, barely tastes like a beer, though there are some chocolate and coffee hints in the swallow. Cloyingly sweet.
For an RIS with loads of color and alcohol, it's a very light bodied beer. Has an almost loose feel to it. Amazingly gentle for such high ABV.
I'm really disappointed with this. In fact, it gets worse with each sip. I toyed with the idea of just pouring the rest down the drain but decided to stick with it to see if it got any better...it never did. Really, a poor choice.
10-30-2011 04:22:34 | More by RickS95
1.98/5 rDev -47.9%
A: Pours an inky, opaque black with no head whatsoever. Streams of carbonation aren't even noticeable-the beer looks completely still in the glass.
S: Strong aromas of burnt toast, roasted grain, dark chocolate, coffee, vanilla bean, and prickly alcohol fill the nose. As the beer warms, the alcohol gradually becomes overpowering.
T: Notes of coffee, roasted grain, burnt toast, cassonade, vanilla bean, dark chocolate, and fiery alcohol assault the palate. I'm not picking up on the honey at all, and any of the dark fruit notes that one would expect to find in a stout are strangely absent as well. The finish starts off slick and oily with a not entirely unpleasant mixture of coffee, roasted grain, and chocolate flavors, but that alcohol kicks in all too quickly, causing the beer to fade out on a decidedly punchy, peppery, astringent note.
M: Full-bodied, but very slick and almost syrupy. Carbonation is present, but is very weak. Alcohol presence is entirely overpowering.
O: After reading the other reviews of this beer and reviewing my notes, I'm convinced that this bottle had to be extremely old and/or botched. It seems that all of the beer's complexities have disappeared. I'll have to try this one again in the future, and when I get around to it, I hope that I have a better experience because this one was plain awful.
08-07-2012 18:37:31 | More by mrfrancis
2.17/5 rDev -42.9%
12.7 oz. bottle poured into a chalice.
Appearance: Pours a motor oil black color with some brown at the edges. Head (or, rather, film) looks like a dark tan oil-slick with a bit of bubbles on the edges.
Smell: Slightly sweet roasted malt aroma with a bit of alcohol, and another, slightly odd, aroma that I couldn't quite place.
Taste: Has a sweet, alcohol flavor, some sugars, and then it finishes off with a big burnt malt flavor. More alcohol sweetness in the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Unpleasantly thin, with mild carbonation.
Drinkability: Drain pour.
Not good... seriously like an alcohol-infused oil-slick. The flavor is quite bad, it doesn't go down well, and it doesn't look appetizing.
11-16-2010 00:51:23 | More by mithrascruor
2.2/5 rDev -42.1%
A: The pour is black, as I had expected from the name, and there is no head or carbonation to speak of.
S: The nose is incredibly roasty with some acidity and coffee. Those are the "good" traits. The other aromas include: ethanol, burnt plastic, and rubber cement.
T: The solvent and alcohol party continues on the palate. A bit of chocolate to go along with the roast and coffee attack. Soy sauce, plastic, alcohol, and more alcohol round things out.
M: The body is medium with a alcohol heat and just about no carbonation.
D: Blech, no thanks, Mikkeller. Not very much in terms of redeeming qualities about this beer.
07-22-2010 19:33:04 | More by womencantsail
2.2/5 rDev -42.1%
A: Pours a pitch black color. A very thin, bubbly, beige head forms and is gone in a second. No lace.
S: Sweet, burnt brown sugar. Ash, rubber, and smoke. Moldy wood. Blah.
T: Sickly sweet. Burnt toast and brown sugar. A bit of alcohol. Moldy wood. Ash and smoke.
M/D: Very thin and watery. Almost no carbonation, and no body. A bit of hot alcohol. Though it is not nearly as bad of a burn as I thought it was going to be.
Mikkeller is one of the most hit and miss breweries I have ever come across. This is a big miss for me. I would not recommend this at all.
04-17-2010 03:52:29 | More by champ103
2.2/5 rDev -42.1%
I got this in a trade with RustyDiamond. Thanks Rusty!
This pours from foil wrapped, caged and corked 12.7oz bottle a pitch black with a 1 finger head of tannish foam. Good lacing.
The smell has notes of roasted malt, fruit, alcohol, and something else in the background.
The taste is very strong! Roasted malt, berry flavours, and a huge alcohol presence. I can't taste any coffee or at least, it's not strong enough in flavour for my palate to be noticeable. Damn that alcohol. Burning in the throat and very warming after the swallow. There goes the drinkability for me.
Further tiny sips in and I think I'm getting some molasses and some candy sugar and a weird flavour that's putting me off even more(?) than the alcohol? There's also a somewhat citric sour taste that's just starting to show up.
Ok, I just can't finish my glass...the flavours here are a real mess, imho, and the alc is just *too* much. Other notes: The body is on the thin side, the carbonation is light and it finishes on the sour(not in a good way) side. This will definitely be a one of for me.
03-09-2008 15:54:17 | More by Bitterbill
2.25/5 rDev -40.8%
Pours a deep black with a 1/4 inch of tannish colored head. There is a good amount of sticky lacing around the glass.
The first noticable trait in this beers aroma is alcohol. There are some decent esspresso like aromas, faint dark unsweetened chocolate and more alcohol with a touch of elmers glue.
The taste is not all that flavorful. Bits of black coffee with hints of bakers chocolate all linger around a large warming prominent alcohol presence.
Knowing this beer was a high abv stout I was hoping for a fairly full mouthfeel. This beer is fairly thin with light carbonation.
Not all that drinkable. The nice flavors the beer offers are over ridden by the big alcohol hottness. I'll skip this beer for something with better flavor and a more reasonable price tag.
01-04-2008 01:34:15 | More by Matthew
2.28/5 rDev -40%
Blech Hole. I hope this was just a bad bottle. It was below average on all counts.
from a 375 ml bottle it poured black and murky like dirty motor oil. Chunks of tan sediment slid to the bottom of the glass. There was no head.
The nose gave no promise of coffee. There was a yeasty smell that mingled with dark roasted malt aromas and alcohol fumes.
The only saving grace was a hint of bitter chocolate on the palate. I could detect a faint trace of where coffee may have once been, but wtf? This was one of the weakest attempts at a coffee stout that I have ever tasted. It tasted more like a highly-alcoholic Porter.
It was barely carbonated and finished dry and bitter in contrast to the soft mouthfeel.
It left me wanting a coffee stout.
11-15-2010 01:04:26 | More by johncampbell
2.28/5 rDev -40%
12.7 oz bottle in pint glass
pours smooth. head lifts up to abot one finger or so and leaves quickly. black in color.
there was on overwhelming bitterness to it, almost sour like. the 13.1% shows big time. all this made for a pretty nasty combination. i like to think some aging could help it out
06-04-2008 17:02:41 | More by ph2001
2.3/5 rDev -39.5%
My first review (after lurking here for the past several months)!
Date on cork: Aug 1st, 2012 (best by)
Appearance: Poured into Duvel tulip, very slight mocha head developed right at end of pour... color is black, hence the name "black hole" I'm guessing...
Smell: BAM. Sweet and alcohol onslaught... very subtle hints of coffee/chocolate roasty-ness, but defintely overpowered by the alcohol and sugar... not a great balance
Taste: Heavy molasses and other honey/sugar notes, alcohol is slap-you-'cross-the-face prevalent, coffee/chocolate roast comes out near the finish.
Mouthfeel: Ack. The mouthfeel is not as viscous as I like stouts. This feels more like a scotch or old ale. This was the deal-breaker for me.
Drinkability: Nope. I think I had 3 or 4 sips and called it quits. I couldn't do it. Maybe this is better fresh (I'm guessing this was 3 years old, not sure though).
Overall, I was quite disappointed. I've had phenomenal coffee stouts, and I don't even know if I would have called this a stout brewed with coffee! I have a few more offerings from Mikkeller waiting downstairs, so hopefully they turn my frown upside-down!
08-12-2010 03:12:31 | More by psychotia
2.33/5 rDev -38.7%
Drank this on Valentine's Day, thought it was fitting. Never even noticed this was a green bottle til I took the foil off. Cork comes off with a very weak fizzle. Pours the blackest of blacks, a thick tan ring of head turns into nothing after a few sips, understandable because of the alcohol I suppose. Smell is coffee, honey/sweetness, plenty of booze. Taste..ugh. Major disappointment here. Kind of just tastes like cold black coffee, dark malts, a bit of sweetness, tons of booze. The malts + alcohol are EXTREME, to the point where I had to stick it in the fridge for about an hour to continue drinking it. Once it was chilled it was much easier to drink and I enjoyed it a little, but it was hard. Mouthfeel is very smooth and malty but I prefer more chewy thickness, and a little bit of carbonation wouldn't hurt. High price on top of this doesn't help the drinkability either. By far the harshest beer I have drank. Drinking it chilled definitely helps. I'm sure some age would've done this beer some good.
02-17-2010 20:29:46 | More by Chico1985
Black Hole from Mikkeller ApS
86 out of 100 based on 621 ratings.