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Black Hole (Red Wine Edition) - Mikkeller ApS

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

176 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 176
Reviews: 99
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 17.72%
Wants: 9
Gots: 33 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website
Denmark

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  13.10% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.

(Beer added by: ShogoKawada on 05-26-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 176 | Reviews: 99 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RES
4/5  rDev +5.8%

RES, Oct 05, 2012
Photo of Lucho
4.26/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I thought I would open this beer on its three year anniversary. I have had it twice before 6 months ago and a year ago. Lets see whats new.

A: Pours almost a pitch black with an incredible mocha brown/tan head that has some staying power, awesome lacing! The head slowly fades in around 2-3 mins to a ring around the edges with some clouds in the middle.

S: Wow as always! some oak up front with a musty red wine scent. The coffee has come out a little more as I feel the honey/vanilla has subsided. There is a very nice sweet scent from the honey and vanilla, mostly honey. There is a slight booze scent but not overwhelming

T: F-ing perfect! upfront with honey oak sweetness with an almost tannin bitterness on the finish, from the coffee. It does not leave your mouth dry though. The coffee is not so strong on the palate as on the nose, which I like. The vanilla and honey really shine in your mouth. I cant get enough of this beer as it is very easy drinking for 13.1%. Age has done this one well. I have one more, do I dare wait another year?

M: thick to medium body which makes it easy to drink but coats your mouth well. The carbonation is spot on and not overwhelming.

O: I love this beer as much now as the two times before and it has held up so well especially with the carbonation and flavors. I wish I could have had it fresh to really tell how far it has come. overall, I have never been sure why people dont rave about this beer. An 86? like come on. It cant just be me?

Lucho, May 05, 2013
Photo of Kshock
3.63/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Jet black, thick, tan head resides to a ring soon after pour. Leaves a little bit of lacing.

S- Earthy tones; wood, booze, vanilla, spice. Dont get a lot of wine presence.

T- Starts out with coffee; goes to the red wine sweetness, roasty bitterness, booze with a bone dry finish.

M- Heavy

O- Not bad, but is a bit rough around the edges.

Kshock, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of wsnich
5/5  rDev +32.3%

wsnich, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of allouez86
3.5/5  rDev -7.4%

allouez86, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of LadyOfMuchBeer
4/5  rDev +5.8%

LadyOfMuchBeer, Nov 30, 2011
Photo of N8DAGR8
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

N8DAGR8, Jan 09, 2012
Photo of sk8man121
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle ($12.99 at RSVP in Portland, ME) poured into Delerium Tremens snulip.

A: Pours jet-black with rust highlights. Nice mocha head settles fairly quickly and leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Not as ugly as others have said.

S: Honey and vanilla are strong up front, with slight roasted malts evident as well. Smells cloyingly sweet...

T: Sweet, boozy and slightly floral at first. Honey persists, and moves into a chocolate/espresso-laden center. Red wine is difficul to pick up on, although it comes through towards the end. Lots of oak in the finish. Sweet, for sure, but quite nice.

M: Somewhat low in carbonation, although there's enough to get the point across. Thick and coating as it goes down. Hot, warming sensation in the back of the throat; very pleasant and almost numbing.

O: This is my first experience with the barrel-aged black hole beers. Sure, it's somewhat of a hot, sweet mess. At the same token, though, it's quite complex in the same way that Brooklyn's Black Ops is when fresh, and the numbing sensation from the alcohol is actually pretty enjoyable. I'd like to try one or two of the others, but at $12.99/bottle, it's not easy to take the plunge.

An enjoyable experience, for sure.

sk8man121, Aug 14, 2011
Photo of Manoftyr
4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into snifter

Appearance-Pours a very dark, nearly black, brown with an almost-motor oil slick consistency; a little thin looking for an RIS, maybe the wine barrel aging? In any event some head rises, dark mocha brown, some chunky lacing. Doesn't have that RIS viciousness I like to see, but aside from that it's not bad.

Aroma-Sweet and gently tart vinous red grape upfront mingling with mocha and coffee, the wine barrel aging is really coming through on this; quite the aroma really.

Taste-Tart grape upfront, much like the aroma, the coffee comes through next with undercurrents of cocoa-like dark malts with a touch of oak and vanilla. Finishes semi-dry and tart with final touches of the wine barrel aging. It's definitely tasty but perhaps a tad less complex and more straight forward than I would have liked

Mouthfeel-Very low carbonation though a tad prickly with alcohol heat, rather thin body for an RIS, could definitely stand to be plusher and more viscous.

Drinkability-A slow sipper, but no more or less than I would expect given the barrel aging and ABV.

Manoftyr, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of 7ways
3.43/5  rDev -9.3%
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.

7ways, Jun 04, 2010
Photo of TK5150
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Pours very dark brown/black with a small light to medium brown head. Nice tight bubbles on the head, but it recedes quickly. Brown highlights can be seen in the body of the beer when held up to the light. Alcohol legs run down the glass when swirled.

S- Red wine oak barrel is the most prominent smell. Red wine, caramel, vanilla also jump out. Roasted malt.

T- Oak, dry red wine, vanilla and cherry. The red wine barrel character really comes through here. Very high cocoa count dark bitter chocolate and black coffee on the finish. Finishes dry and very burnt with alcohol present. Very complex.

M- Full bodied with low carbonation. Smooth for the most part. Coats the mouth nicely.

D- Low drinkability. A friend shared about 40% of the 11 or 12 oz bottle, and that was plenty for me. The burnt character in the finish made me like the beer less and less, especially the warmer it got.

Overall, there is a lot to like about this beer, but it has a couple of flaws, most notably the burnt finish. I would like to have again, but aged even longer.

TK5150, Nov 19, 2010
Photo of WOTO97
4.13/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split a bottle my friend picked up from Beer Revolution in Oakland (also picked up the rum and whiskey version). Pours a very deep black with a thin mousse-colored head; very little lacing. The alcohol is pretty pungent on the nose, but tons of other profiles are lurking beneath. Big roasted character and some pepper come through on the nose as well along with vanilla and earth characters. Some bold fruit playing in the background. The taste profiles are relatively similar, but the booze is much more in the background. Lots of the fruit comes out immediately but quickly fades to clover and pepper, very sweet residual honey flavors linger on the palate along with some very nice roasted malt notes on the back of the palate. The vanilla plays out very faintly and gets overshadowed by the very distinct honey qualities. The body was a little sticky but by no means big and round; wish the carbonation was toned down a bit for a bit mellower finish. Really enjoyed this fella but couldn't possibly have more than half a bottle--a bit too sweet on the finish for my taste--but a half glass is perfect.

WOTO97, Jun 19, 2010
Photo of shoky01
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Meddlesome Moth. Served in a snifter.

A: Pours deep black with a tiny light tan head. Good carbonation with good sticky lacing.

S: A little malt but the red wine aging comes out right away, almost smells bourbony.

T: wow, one of the best stouts I've had! The slight bitter fruitiness of the red wine followed by stouty goodness. Little bitter on the backside.

MF: tingly with alcohol. Smooth but a little sticky. Little burn on the way down.

OA: awesome, want more. Need more.

shoky01, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of mconz
4/5  rDev +5.8%

mconz, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of Elendinn
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an 8 oz. snifter and split with my wife.

Pours the usual "pitch black" with a miniscule amount of caramel-colored head and a surprising amount of splotchy, evenly-distributed lace. To be honest, I was expecting more from this beer aesthetically, given the ingredients, but it looks, more or less, like a typical coffee stout. Not bad, but I like to be intrigued, and this isn't doing it for me.

Coffee dominates the nose -- smokey and quite woody. There's an undercurrent of slightly-tannic, vinous grapes and dark fruits, but, again, I was expecting more. As a wine lover, I'd really hoped for those characteristics to be featured more, but they take a backseat to the usual suspects ubiquitously-present in imperial stouts.

Coffee dominates the tongue, as well, but gives way to something slightly more akin to what I was looking for. It's a lighter red wine flavor, reminiscent of a Bordeaux table wine -- tannic, fruity grapes, wood, alcohol, and a little spice. The dark fruits are there, too, but the wine begins to overshadow them as the beer warms. Vanilla becomes more discernable, as well. The flavors blend fairly well together, finishing dry and a little smokey. I've been appeased! Though I've had better, significantly-more-complex wine-barrel-aged beers, this one's still pretty good.

There's not a whole lot of carbonation, as evidenced by the pour, and the body's fairly full, like a fruity wine -- a well-suited mouthfeel.

Based upon the reviews I'd read, I was expecting some kind of monstrosity, but this Black Hole was actually pretty solid. Its look and aroma were rather unimpressive and I'd almost given up hope that the beer's most attractive feature, the wine, would remain buried beneath the roasted coffee and wood. Fortunately, with a little aeration and warmth, it ultimately came through. Those ambivalent about wine may not appreciate it as much as I, but this seemed like a good, though flawed, effort; it's something I wish more brewers would attempt. It's not extremely drinkable, as the alcohol is a bit too apparent, but I'd certainly buy it again. My recommendation: though there are a plethora of better barrel-aged stouts out there, it's interesting enough to justify purchasing once, primarily if you like wine -- just don't expect anything stellar. Oh, and let it warm up!

Elendinn, Feb 11, 2011
Photo of madpentzer
4.5/5  rDev +19%

madpentzer, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of sampx
5/5  rDev +32.3%

sampx, Dec 07, 2011
Photo of Nashvillain
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No bubbles, no head, just darkness. A few bubbles, but really just a lake of blackness, reminds me of Charlie Murphy.

Smell is a light tartness with some oaky scents, a dark red wine, and some roasty malts.

Taste is wine, all wine. I guess there's a little of stout, but this is the most wine-like beer I've ever had. I love the flavor, like a great Pinot Noir, the tannins and oak are huge! Only bad quality about this beer is everything but the taste, but I think it makes up for it in the taste.

Nashvillain, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of sarch
1/5  rDev -73.5%

sarch, Apr 27, 2014
Photo of EfilsGod
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

EfilsGod, Apr 16, 2012
Photo of Tim460
4.55/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Mikasa stout glass.

Pretty much black in appearance. I've read of some problems with the regular black hole lacking any trace of carbonation so I used an aggressive pour that resulted in large head that lasted for a while.

The smell of this beer was amazing. Chocolate coffee mixed with the red wine scent made this beer smell like a real treat. The taste was similar to the smell. Massive chocolate up front followed by coffee, vanilla, and the tart red wine.

The fruitiness of the red wine in the back end really made this seem like a dessert beer for me. Definitely not sessionable due to the high alcohol content which creates a strong warming sensation.

I really enjoyed this beer. It's not your normal Imperial Stout but for me was a real treat. It's not cheap but I plan on picking up a few more to save for a while. I also have the Bourbon aged version which I can't wait to try.

Tim460, Aug 06, 2011
Photo of silentnoiz
2.3/5  rDev -39.2%
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

silentnoiz, Jan 03, 2012
Photo of ashleylake
5/5  rDev +32.3%

ashleylake, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of GOMECK
3/5  rDev -20.6%

GOMECK, Aug 09, 2012
Photo of tbart428
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Split this beer with TK5150 last night since the mo fo has split so many good beers with me. I have to say both TK5150 and I tasted very different flavors on this beer.

A: The appearance is black with tan head with some carbonation with some really nice alcohol legs.In a wider snifter the appearance is more dark brown.

S: The smell of this beer is oak, chocolate and alcohol with more chocolate smell as it opens up.

T: The taste is a wave of vanilla chocolate oak roasted malt wine that fades to a dry alcohol flavor that leaves a cigar smoke taste on the palate . The vanilla fades away from the beer as it warms and coffee, oak, vinous flavors (cheery possibly) take over with the alcohol cigar flavor remaining at the back.

M: The mothfeel of this beer is thin to medium bodied with some carbonation.

D: The drinkability of this beer is extremely low due to the burnt malt taste at the end and the high alcohol content.

I want to have this beer again but with some more age on it to mellow the intense flavors out. This beer is complex and has a lot of potential with some time in the cellar.
Cheers TK5150

tbart428, Nov 19, 2010
Black Hole (Red Wine Edition) from Mikkeller ApS
85 out of 100 based on 176 ratings.