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Black Hole (Red Wine Edition) - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Black Hole (Red Wine Edition)Black Hole (Red Wine Edition)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

100 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 100
Hads: 182
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 23.4%
Wants: 7
Gots: 33 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  13.10% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ShogoKawada on 05-26-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.
View: Beers (294) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 100 | Hads: 182
Photo of mothman
1.49/5  rDev -60.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured into snifter.

Pours a light tan head. Color is a dark caramel brown that settles black.

Aroma: Caramel, vanilla, oak, chocolate, black sharpie marker, ash, and burnt rubber.

Taste: Peat, ash, smoke, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, oak, burnt malt, burnt rubber, sharpie, No wine flavors here.

Mouthfeel: Roasted and burnt. Medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends bitter and roasted and the flavors last forever.

Overall, this one was better than the other 2 ba black holes I have had, but not by much. Very similar to the others. Awful. I cannot believe how much money I wasted on this series.

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Photo of largadeer
1.82/5  rDev -51.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Shared by chswimmer. Thanks!

Dark brown in the glass, not quite opaque. A thin cap forms and retains nicely, leaving some scattered lacing. The smell is rather wretched, like burnt berries, tar, ash, rubber and booze. The barrel seems to have overwhelmed the coffee and vanilla character that I get in the rum version, leaving nothing but a burnt fruity mess. The taste, surprisingly, is a step up. A small step. It's vinous and fruity, ashy and burnt, with a touch of coffee and vanilla. Very tannic and drying in the finish, burnt licorice flavors linger. This isn't quite as bad as the rum version, but it's far from good.

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Photo of Arbitrator
1.95/5  rDev -48.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Chilled bottle into a glass. Shared by Nanoslug. From notes. I'm just uploading the barest comments because I don't care much for the beer and don't feel a need to go in-depth.

A: Pours a pitch black body with huge mocha head.

S: Spice, pepper, roast, red grape, chocolate, some oak.

T: Roast, burnt / char flavors, some grape (tart with a subtle sweetness). It's not the worst of the Black Hole series, but to be fair, the other three iterations I tried set the bar pretty low.

M: Lingering roast into the aftertaste, along with grape tartness. It's full-bodied, with somewhat high carbonation.

D: This beer infamously made Roger say, "I regret taking the Roger [a huge, shameless pour of this beer]." 'Nuff said. Most of it went into my BBQ sauce the next day. Terrible stuff, especially at the equivalent of $18 / bomber. I'd be embarrassed to have my name attached to something like this.

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Photo of silentnoiz
2.33/5  rDev -38%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Drank A/B with the Black (sampled all but the Rum same night).

A - dark pour with small amount of head and slight lacing

S - very roasty and a small amount of grapes

T - roasty with a slight tangy flavor, not a lot of red wine but sense more of a port

M - carbonated

O - interesting to try, and not a bad beer for being aged in red wine barrels

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Photo of corby112
2.43/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Drat at Capones in Norristown, PA.

Pours pitch balck and completely opaque with very faint mahogany edges ad a half finger light beige head that slowly fades into a thin ring.  Minimal spots of lace left behind.

vinous, boozy aroma with a storng wine barrel presence as well as some roasted dark malt underneath. Hints of grape, currant  and other dark fruit as well as some earthy oak and burnt malts.

Medium bodied with a strong raosted malt presnce that overpowers the barrel character lingering into a boozy, hot finish. Lots of acrid, smokey malt with hints of burnt toast, bitter dark chocolate and fuel. The barrel character provides some dry toasted oak that exaggerates the smoked malt character without adding much balance. Some faint vinous sweetness with hints of grape and dark cherry but this beer is all toasted oak and overly roasted dark malts.

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Photo of cosmicevan
2.68/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Bottle picked up a while back when released and was turned off from the series after trying the scotch edition and forgot I had this. So why not? Consumed from a mikkeller wine glass.

a - opened with nary a pop and poured a watery black. Looks like no carb.

s - black licorice, super sweetness, red wine.

t/m/o - overwhelming red wine. No carbonation. Kind of like red wine with chocolate in it. Extremely dry and thin. The front of the palate is red wine and the finish is cooling cocoa. I am not a huge fan of dry red wines so this is a waste on me and not my bag. Pretty crazy and complex but more of a science project than anything else.

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Photo of tbeckett
2.79/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle from Beer Planet in Brussels. Not cheap that's for sure. Split with a friend. From notes.

A - Completely black pour with carbonation coming up the sides. No head and a very small amount of lacing.

S - Vinous as hell. Chocolate and roast malt with lot's of coffee, licorice, and some vanilla.

T - More vinous. Chocolate and a little roasty malt. Woddy as well. Not as good as aroma and slightly harsh.

M - Good carbonation with a light body which is weird. Maybe it's just my palate though. Sweet finish. Seemed like a weak body.

O/D - Not a great beer. A chore to finish my half and I didn't really enjoy it. The price tag was about 14 Euros so I was not too happy with this.

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Photo of jwinship83
2.81/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

a small 375ml (plastic) corked and caged bottle with no freshness information poured into my stone IRS snifter.

A- the plastic cork was difficult to pop out. when it did come out, it did without a sound. the beer pours out an opaque black body with a larger than expected coffee colored head on top. the head doesnt take too long to fall, and leaves behind small spots of lacing.

S- the first thing that i pick up in the nose are dark roasted malts that are almost burnt smelling. after that im impressed with just how strong the red wine comes through. a lesser amount of vanilla from the barrel is noticed. some dark chocolate and molasses towards the end. coffee and alcohol as well.

T- the taste starts out with the roasted malts that i could smell and it tastes just as burnt. the red wine is still larger than expected and brings an interesting twist. vinous stout? odd. the vanilla from the oak doesnt really bring the flavors together either. some chocolate and coffee. lots of noticeable alcohol also.

M- the body is significantly lighter than i was expecting or would have liked. almost watery. strong warming from the alcohol. the carbonation is almost nonexistent.

D- im not sure what i was expecting when i dropped close to $14 for this. not really a great combination of flavors. im glad this comes in a small bottle. i really wouldnt like to try to get through a whole 750. dont think ill be buying this one ever again.

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Photo of JAXSON
2.86/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottle, pours black with a creamy mocha head. Nose is big on red berries and wine barrel. Not much in the way of malt, fruit is so prominent here. Roasty, charred in the mouth, dark chocolate dust, some coffee beans. Becomes fruity and bitter in the finish, a bit clashing. Thinner body than I expected. Decent, and a fun idea, but the finish on the is pretty ugly and I'm just not digging this one.

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Photo of claspada
2.9/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a jet black body with a bubbly dark tan head that pops away into a thin film. There are a few tiny bubbles gliding up the glass. (It was a b*tch just to get the cork out of the bottle.)

Aromas begin with dark roasted malts, molasses, chocolate syrup, wood, dark pit fruits, and dark vinious grapes.

The tastes are immediately dominated by dark bitter charred roasted malts. Dark chocolate and dark fruits emerge as it warms, but the acrid dark roasted malts are quite overwhelming for my palate. Most Imp Stouts from Mikkeller fall into this category for me.
As it continues to warm I get some wine-soaked oak, followed up by more larger amounts of char.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish.

Overall, this did not work for me at all. I was hoping for a stout with nice vinous notes but instead I got a crazy overly roasted charred oaky, thin something. I could not finish my glass and I do not plan to sample any more beers in this series anytime soon.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.97/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a glass mug.

It was kinda entertaining watching VDubb86 and TheStretch attempt to figure out which wine this beer's barrels were shared with. Regardless, it pours a nice obsidian topped by a half-finger of tan foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, molasses, chocolate syrup, generic wood, figs, pecans, and black grapes. The taste, though, forsakes the stoutiness of the smell and opts instead for a woody red wine. Seriously, all I got from my 'buds was a blast of tart-ish wine-soaked oak, followed up by a small hint of char. Wow. Not my cup o' tea, honey. The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Overall, this did not work for me at all. I was hoping for a wine-tinged stout, but instead got wood-tinged wine. I could not finish my glass, so I tried pawning it off on anyone else at the party. Boo.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
2.98/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

JustinA1 (my rooommate) decided to share this with me last night. Thank you sir. Following review based on notes.

Poured into a 7oz. snifter.

Appearance: Looked downright sinister following the pour; pitch black (opaque) body with a brown, bubbly crown that retained well and drug tons of web-like lace. Looked pretty hearty too! Right on the money style-wise.

Smell: Chocolate, honey, and coffee with milder contributions from the vanilla. The red wine barrel added a very interesting and enjoyable twist. ABV wasn't shy, but I didn't mind. Nicely put together.

Taste: Roasted barley, char/ash, French roast coffee, dark currants, and red wine crowded my palate from start to finish, and lingered too. Honey and vanilla were impossible to find amongst their loud counterparts. Finished with burnt and peppery, with a somewhat pleasant (at least interesting) merlot twang.

Mouthfeel: Hot, dry, peppery, and intense. Full and viscous, but not creamy in the least. Very, very flavorful, but not necessarily in a good way.

Drinkability: Started out interesting and enjoyable, but after awhile the aftertaste grew really acrid and ashy, which paired HORRIBLY with the increasingly intense heat and dryness. I had to thoroughly rinse my mouth out at the end. Still, I liked this version better than the original.

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Photo of thagr81us
3/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from tap into a New Jersey Devils shaker. Poured pitch black with a very minimal tan head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, dark chocolate, wood, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, wood, dark fruit, earth, and sweet alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with no carbonation. Overall this was an average brew. With having this one directly after the Scotch version I can honestly say that this one is much more drinkable than it was. There was a decent amount of things going on in this one that weren't invasive to the palate. While it wasn't the most balanced brew that I've ever had (especially for the style) it wasn't the worst either. Glad I got to try it, but doubt I would do so again given the chance.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.08/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Almost black beer that looked brown in the light and on the edges. Small tan head, not much else.

S - Coffee, Mikkeller char, vinous sweetness, wood, little chocolate, some booze.

T - Oak, wine, roasted malts, char, little sweet fruit, some vinous taste. It's not bad, but it's not great and not worth what I had to pay for the bottle.

M - Medium bodied, lower carbonation.

O - Pretty average, flavors are strong and not so easy to get down. Something I'd pass on in the future due to the price.

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Photo of Urbancaver
3.08/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

7 barrel varieties with the base beer.

Pours a dark dark brown, almost black.

Minimal head.

Smells sweet, and chocolate heavy. smells a touch oaky.
Very cloying on the nose and tongue. Lots of tannins as well. Wow harsh!
Tastes sweet and cloying. Overall way way to sweet and way too tannin heavy.
Mouthfeel is thick and boozy. Overall pretty bad

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Photo of DaveHS
3.18/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Pours deep black with almost 2 inches of foamy mocha head. Deflates over the course of a minute,leaving behind almost no head.

S-Loads of vanilla,flaked dried coconut and oak. If I didn't know better I'd swear this was the bourbon version. There's a hint of vinous sharpness.

T/M-Sharp tannic bitterness right up front. Whereas some of the other barrel aged versions take the edge off Black Hole's intensely bitter roastiness, but this iteration actually enhances it. The finish is marked by unpleasant, tannic bitterness and strong warming booze. Gets less bitter as it sits, but only to a point. There is an interesting note of musty old red wine playing into this, but I wouldn't call it pleasant, or a flavor that is well integrated.

O-Not a fan. The cognac version is still the best one I've tried to date.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a really dark brown color with zero head, surprised at that. Coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, dark fruit, and minimal grape wine type notes. Swirling coats the glass with a dark film. Slightly sweet up front with notes of dark chocolate, coffee, and red wine. Roasted bitterness in the end that lingers on a bit. I wish they didn't roast the grains as much as they did. Medium mouthfeel. Booze shows a little.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Found a bottle at Vine St. Pub and ordered it. Black pour, what else would I expect? Soapy off white, brown lacing. Thin lacing.

Aroma of vanilla, oak, red plum, leather and cocoa. Nothing spectacular, nothing bad.

Flavors are mingled well with nothing taking command. Red plum back bone. Vanilla and leather dance around. This beer has a nice mix of flavors, but nothing stands out. It's a bit thin or subdued for an RIS. The abv is well hidden and is not difficult to drink. The cocoa/coffee that we come to expect from this category just don't pass mustard.

Slight tannin on the end. While good, not a re-order for the price

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.3/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours the same unapologetically cheerless, black body with a medium-small, mocha-toned head. Let's see where the red wine barrel takes it from here.

Smell: Burnt malted barley, ashen and charry, with a hint of bittersweet chocolate and a boosted fruitiness, assumably from the red wine barrel.

Taste: Moderate sweetness over the roasted malts, still ostensibly harsh, and the bittersweet chocolate taste, still a bit crude. Small hints of vanilla, caramel. A singe of tart, salty red wine. Those malts just remain harsh, chalky, and acrid throughout. Boozy, harsh, sugary finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: I'm not too terribly keen on this one either, no.

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Photo of nickd717
3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

375ml bottle thanks to chswimmer. Sorry you had to buy this whole mediocre series, Ted. I feel for you.

Pours black in color with a small tan head leaving swirls on the beer.

Aroma is really nice: roast, sharp coffee/espresso, dark fruits, earth, and vinous notes.

Flavor has a lot of alcohol, but a decent imperial stout behind it. Sharp bitter roasty espresso, red wine, sweet chocolate, and a tart earthy finish.

Full and boozy on the palate with some serious heft to it and low carbonation.

Not a great barrel aged imperial stout, but could be a lot worse - stay tuned for my reviews of the other Mikkeller -bal aged Black Holes.

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Photo of marvin213
3.41/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Black like the crayon color, it's definitive blackness. Aptly named, no light's getting thru this beast. The thin layer of froth is dark brown, as you'd probably expect. It's just super black with a dark brown head. Like a black man with pantyhose on his face, it's a little scary.

I smelled a cabernet sauvignon from the bottle, but my pour offers more stouty options: malt, a touch of that vanilla perhaps, and a tad of smoky charred oak, I'm guessing from the barrel. Though cold, I don't sense any honeyish sweetness. The red wine element is still present, but it's more of a table wine now. With everything going on with this beer, its aroma is underwhelming.

I feel thinness before I really taste anything. I like the red wine influence, but the wine seems cheaper and cheaper the more I discover it. Whatever makes a stout "chewy" isn't in here. It's SO thin! The vino might be overbearing, as I detect very little vanilla and coffee's an afterthought. Better than an average beer certainly, but short of its apparent potential.

What's the correct, objective way to measure that thick chewiness--density? I wonder how the density here compares with other big stouts--regular Black Hole even. The thinness makes it easy-to-drink, particularly for a 13+%er, but a $15 handle seems more shipping than sensing.

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Photo of 7ways
3.49/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours like the original Black Hole, nice but nothing spectacular. Coffee colored head, less than 1 cm after about 15 seconds, with above average retention after that. Sludgy but lasting lace. Smells like unidentifiable semi-sweet red wine, though a wine I would like to drink. Light ashy smoke and charred malt are the biggest aromas for me. I had a mini flashback to the first time I had a Mikkeller Black, only 10 times less pungent. If there's a real coffee presence, I have to use my imagination to say it's really there... the wine and raw alcohol overpower it. But overall, very inviting.

The taste is seriously lacking complexity. There's just not a lot going on besides oak, old coffee, booze, and an intense and slightly overbearing vinous twang. It wants to be fruity, but something overpowers that quality. Drys out my tongue exactly the same way red wine does, which is not totally unpleasant, but overall the combination of tannins from the coffee/wine/wood are a little too much. Hops may be adding to that, but I have a hard time distinguishing hop bitterness from tannic acid in this beer.
Describing the mouthfeel as medium would be generous. It's just barely substantial enough to carry the massive presence this beer brings. OTOH, carbonation is very pleasing.

Drinkability really doesn't mean shit for a 13% beer, does it? I was easily able to drink it in an above average period of time for an above average abv imperial stout.

This is not a bad beer, however... maybe it's just this guy's palate, but why the hell would you want to marry wine and coffee? Not exactly a winning combination. The fact that Mikkeller kind of pulled it off really makes me curious about the whiskey versions.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep brown, black with no head.

S - Roasted malt, oak, red wine, vanilla, coffee. Becomes vinous and almost burnt malt/coffee as it warms.

T - Black coffee, bittersweet chocolate, ashy and roasty, almost burnt malt. Red wine in the finish with some red wine acidity. Some vanilla lingers in the aftertaste.

M - On the thin side of medium body with little carbonation. Lingering red wine acidity.

D - A little bit of a mess of flavors. The burnt taste doesn't play well with the red wine acidity but I like the red wine stout combo.

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Photo of wyattshotmaker
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip, looks great. nice lacing. bought as dark as you can get. vanilla, soft honey, faint coffee, bit of oak. pretty good.

to me this beer really leaves something to be desired. it really lacks that big roasted character from an imperial stout that i come to expect. the flavor is fairly one dimensional. slightly roasted, mostly sweet, touch of vanilla with a slightly tannic finish. flavor comes out a little bit more when i suck some air into my mouth after taking a sip.

mouthfeel is pretty good, thick and viscous without being disgustingly sweet. overall i thought this was a good beer. barrel character didn't come out too much. i dunno, worth a shot i suppose.

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Photo of billab914
3.57/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 375ml bottle into my Dogfish snifter. It poured black in color with a very thin tan lacing for a head.

The aroma has a good dose of sweetness to it, with honey and vanilla leading the way. I get some of the roasty, coffee flavors to it as well. The wine barrel character is light, but adds a bit of a red wine flavor to it.

The taste starts off with the sweeter flavors of the honey and vanilla. Midway I start to get more of the roasty coffee and dark roasted malts. The honey sweetness and coffee roastedness really seem to compete with each other. In the finish I get a good amount of tannins coming through in the wine barrel character.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with carbonation being low. Drinkability is decent, it had a lot of flavor to it but I don't think everything integrated all that well. The wine barrel flavors were interesting, and probably one of the better barrel treatments of black hole I've had. Not a bad beer overall, but not one of my favorite barrel aged beers.

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Black Hole (Red Wine Edition) from Mikkeller ApS
85 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.