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Black Hole (Cognac Edition) - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Black Hole (Cognac Edition)Black Hole (Cognac Edition)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

142 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 142
Reviews: 74
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.69%
Wants: 25
Gots: 52 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

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: BeerAdvocate on 11-05-2010)
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Ratings: 142 | Reviews: 74 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ATLbeerDog


4.45/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an incredibly beautiful pitch black that is thick. A huge frothy dark tan head graciously crowns the beer. The head is also thick and slowly and reluctantly recedes leaving a ton of heavy lacing clinging with love to the sides of the glass. Smells of rich chocolate and freshly baked cake dominate the nose. Some burnt malts and booze adds to the aroma. First sip is glorious with cognac taking charge and shaping the immense flavor. Bitter dark chocolate, vanilla, and some boozy notes follow in the finish. Mouthfeel of this puppy is superb – creamy as Wisconsin chocolate whole milk from a cow you raised from birth and exclusively grass fed. Mouthfeel is as good as beer gets with this one. Did I say CREAMY? I should say it again! ABV is super well hidden. World Class Beer!

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2011 02:03:32 | More by ATLbeerDog
Photo of ryanfolty


4.48/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Date: July 24, 2011 Mode: Bottle Source: Discount Liquor, Waukesha, WI Appearance: Opaque black and thick tan head. Aroma: Delicious mix of chocolate and alcohol. Flavor: Chocolate and high end alcohol, maybe some vanilla in there, very smooth and an oaky finish. Other: Amazing beer that is able to blend in a very high alcohol content.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2011 21:37:29 | More by ryanfolty
Photo of John_M


4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours the expected blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is attractive, showcasing considerable dark chocolate and brandy (OK, I guess it's really "cognac," not brandy), with some underlying coffee and vanilla as well. There's also something of chocolate malt ball aroma as well, that is impressive. The flavor profile replicates the nose, with the beer showing some bitterness and a bit of heat from alcohol as well. The brandy is a bit less noticeable on the palate, though I still get some of it in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is pretty full, with a long, chocolate and coffee infused finish.

A solid beer, no doubt, though a little bit of this goes a long way.

Serving type: on-tap

08-12-2011 20:58:23 | More by John_M
Photo of BEERMILER12


4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Silver foiled 12.7 oz (375 mL) bottle

A: Pours a pitch black color with about a fingers worth of mocha/brown head that lasts for a good while. Quite surprising given the 13.1% abv

S: A good bit of coffee dominates for the most part, along with some sweet vanilla, dark chocolate, and some type of wood

T: Very nice. Burnt coffee lasts throughout, with notes of everything else found in the nose. Vanilla, charred wood, and dark chocolate are the most easily picked out. Honey adds to the sweetness, but overall the sweetness isn't overpowering. A very nice dark grape-like presence as well from the cognac. Alcohol also adds a bit of complexity throughout. Bitterness lingers as well, from the coffee and dark chocolate no doubt

M: Heavy bodied with light carbonation. A touch under-carbonated for my tastes, even in a BA RIS

O: The cognac is definitely not overpowering here, and some barrel aging processes can do that. It adds some nice complexity, and that is all I could ask for/want out of any BA beer. The alcohol in this one is killer, so I would try to share this, even with the smaller size. Great job by Mikkeller on the BA'ing job for this one

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2011 00:17:46 | More by BEERMILER12
Photo of joshuaseresse


4.45/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up from the store, $13.99 a bottle. 375ml. Silver foil:

A - Solid black with a thick mocha head about 2 inches thick that dies into thick foam ring around the edges with murky, bubble colonies in the middle. Lacing is solid.

S - Smells of nice cocoa, light booze, a little wood and vanilla sweetness. The honey is only slight with the roast malts and coffee notes very subtle. A little bit of caramel. Pretty nice and smooth smelling.

T - The honey comes through nice and sweet, while the cocoa and vanilla follow. Little bit of pure chocolate in the middle. The taste is rounded out by wood, a bit of booze and roast from the malta and coffee. Little bit of caramel, brown sugar and candy sweetness. The ABV is well hidden.

M - Pretty well carbonated. The end is slightly toned down and a tad bit watery. The roast and coffee leaves the mouth a little dry and the charred feeling from said roasted coffee.

O - A really nice brew. The ABV is totally undetectable. I'm really pleased by the smell and flavor of this brew. It doesn't really lack anywhere. I'm going to buy more of this...just to have around the house for whenever. With that said, this is a whenever brew. Nicely done.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2011 04:18:45 | More by joshuaseresse
Photo of oline73


4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on-tap at Max's, poured into a 4oz. sample glass.

Appearance: Pours almost black with some red coming through when the light hits the edge of the glass. There is hardly any head at all.

Smell: Quite sweet with overly ripe dark fruit, molasses, caramel, and cocoa.

Taste: Sweet dark fruit, honey, and some roast. The cognac is very smooth, and some cocoa shows up as well. The finish is sweet and warm.

Mouthfeel: Thick and mildly syrupy. Mild carbonation with a dry finish.

Serving type: on-tap

08-08-2011 00:25:48 | More by oline73
Photo of Bung


4.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 Poured into Grand Marnier snifter. Dark murky black pour, tan layer that lasts a while.

Plenty of roast and chocolates in the aroma. Hints of booze, caramel, vanilla and a woodiness.

Taste is potent. Malty, caramel, chocolate, roast. Oaky booziness, but not overwhelming. Finishes with some cocoa. Actually don't get a ton of cognac barrel. Barrel is subtle, which is not bad.

Solid full body, though the carbonation is more than I though it would be. Still, about creamy, coats very well. A sipper.

I bet this will age nicely, though I'm not buying another one, unless I could get it for maybe $8.

Certainly a step up from the ones last year, a BIG step up from the Peat Whisky from last year.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2011 02:19:04 | More by Bung
Photo of AmericanGothic


4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12.7 oz bottle into a Unibroue tulip.

A: Pours an opaque, jet black color with two fingers of khaki head. Strong retention and lace.

S: Roasted malts, a little coffee, semi-sweet chocolate, a little wine. Very nice.

T: Starts with sweet chocolate, roasted malts and coffee behind that, finishes equally bitter and sweet. Not really picking up the cognac as an individual flavor, but a little wood is present on the finish. A bit mellow but very rich-- no complaints. Wait-- now that it's warming, I think I am getting the cognac at last.

M: Big mouthfeel, very creamy and smooth, very fine.

O: Wow, another win for Mikkeller. Don't know how they keep doing it, but they surely know how to make a strong stout. Delicious stuff. Find it and be happy.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2011 00:27:09 | More by AmericanGothic
Photo of TheStove


4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this last night at the Trappist in Oakland, CA, poured into a snifter.

Appearance is great. Opaque, inky black with light brown head that lingers for a bit. Initial whiff of the beer is a muted yet obvious warm aroma of cognac.

Lots going on here, initial taste is of rich vanilla giving way to pleasant honey sweetness. A flood of chocolate maltiness is followed by cognac flavor and some light vanilla seemingly from the barrel rather than the beer. Sip finishes with a slight throat burn, excellent effect of the cognac.

Tons of complexity in this one. The vanilla and honey flavors of the beer and vanilla overtones from the cognac sandwich a vast array of malt and chocolate profiles. This beer goes anywhere from tasting like a milk shake, to bittersweet cocoa nibs to a good strong coffee with a healthy amount of Bailey's. I find the cognac influence to be strongly present but not overpowering.

This is an excellent beer and why I've come to cherish the stout style. This is a big multi dimensional beer with tons of flavor and character. Despite the always impressive tap list at the Trappist I had to order a second serving; this one was too good to have just once.

Serving type: on-tap

08-04-2011 21:07:02 | More by TheStove
Photo of bradcochran1234


4.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Oh my! This is...liquid Christmas

A- BLACK as night with a big head

S- Lots of toasty coffee, a little vanilla and a slight toffee

T- WOW! At first the alcohol stands out, maybe a little too cold. As it warms up the coffee and bitter chocolate stand out. Then, as it warms up even more the Cognac comes in on the back of the palate with tastes of sweet vanilla and rich butter.

M- A little bit of alcohol, but over all just smooth and buttery

O- YES, YES, YES... The "Phantom Brewer" does it once again. So far I have tasted the Cognac, the Red Wine Barrel and the White Wine Barrel and this is the best one. Gonna be buying a few more of these.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2011 05:51:36 | More by bradcochran1234
Photo of LaneMeyer


4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tulip.

A- Black, two fingers of dark tan head, two/2.5 finger

S- Dark fruits, raisins, prunes, berries, cognac, very fragrant

T- Cognac, coffee, bitter, berries, slight cherry taste

M- Kinda thin, very carbonated

O- Interesting beer, bold, not overpowering

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2011 06:47:09 | More by LaneMeyer
Photo of Thorpe429


4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Churchkey. Served in a snifter.

Pours nearly black with a good mocha head and a few spots of lacing on the way down. Thin collar throughout. The nose brings the unmistakable stench of cognac plus some roasted malt, chocolate, and light coffee. Cognac pervades. As it warms, some light vanilla character. Flavor is mostly cognac and backed very well with some roasted malt and dark chocolate. Everything is well integrated and blends quite well. Medium body and slightly oily. Light carbonation. Solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

07-28-2011 01:41:49 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of marvin213

North Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pretty black with tan bubblies--what more do you want? The smell is like a dream: peaty black stout with honeyed vanilla and sweet, succulent cognac. If BCS is THE cigar beer, I'd like to know what this is...!

Taste is straight what it's supposed to be: all those flavors melted into one single malt beverage! That thick, syrupy cognac burn in the background makes quite the presence. This is truly a man's beer!

Despite the conglomeration of tough, manly ingredients, the mouthfeel is relatively thin--a surprise, really. Overall, it's tough to return to at $16.99 a pop. I offer, though, that this is a great one. A must for big-time, barrel-aged stout lovers, and a golden ticket to beer-drinkin cigar lovers!

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2011 19:17:36 | More by marvin213
Photo of Rizalini


4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought this 12.7oz bottle at Khoury's in Las Vegas, and poured into my Deschutes tulip...

A - Pours pitch black (as the name suggests), with a very foamy 1 1/2 finger brown head leaving some spotty lacing.

S - Very boozy in the nose. The cognac is very prodominant, but I can pick up hints of vanilla, brown sugar, and evem a little coffee. I keep sniffing it, getting different smells.

T/M - Cognac takes over the front of the taste, a bold coffee stout in the end, and a collaboration of flavors in between. A very big beer, a definate sipper that's for sure. But not as heavy on the pallete as I would have thought. Leaves a semi-sweet aftertaste

O - After trying quite a few bourbon stouts, this was my first cognac stout. It is definately different from bourbon stouts as it's a little more sharp and boozy, and less sweet. That being said it's still a really good beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2011 06:39:56 | More by Rizalini
Photo of DaveHS


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

A-Impenetrable shiny black with 1/4 inch of coffee colored head. Leaves sticky lacing.

S-Less aggressively bitter than the non barrel aged black hole. Still a bit roasty and dry on the nose. Light aromas of sweet cognac and musty earth. A hint of vanilla.

T/M-Retains much of the roasty bitterness of the original, but the body is significantly softened by the cognac barrel. The presence of the cognac is interesting. I wouldn't have known this was specifically a cognac aged beer had I not read the label. However, the nondescript oaky sweetness ultimately has a positive effect. Full bodied and roasty with a diminishing roastiness on the back end, rounded out with oak.

O-One of the better barrel aged Mikkeller beers I've had.


Serving type: bottle

07-18-2011 00:23:11 | More by DaveHS
Photo of seeswo


4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a pretty substantial brownish tan head. Kind of a surprise, as I tend to dump barrel aged beers assuming they will be lacking in the head department. Looks great. The nose is oak, malts and sweetened dark fruits. You can also pull a bit of booziness out if you really work at it. The cognac adds an interesting richness to the sweetness on the nose. Yum. The taste has an abundant, rich dark fruit sweetness. Reminds me actually a touch of the 100k+OT batch 2 in terms of that richness. Malts, coffee, chocolate, just a touch of balancing bitterness and this underlying, well blended cognac heat and flavor. This is really good and I'm kinda surprised. The body is medium with good carbonation that works well. Overall, this is a really good one. I think it is attributable to the cognac barrels, as this is about 500x better than the red wine one I had last release (in my memory). It's really big and in your face, but well integrated and surprisingly smooth for what it is. A real winner. Docked a touch for how unpleasant it was at first sip relative to the rest of it.

Protip - serve this at cellar temp and even then, it seems like it needs a bit to breathe. The first sip punched me in the face in a mostly unpleasant manner, and then grew up substantially to the beer I am reviewing above.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2011 03:50:37 | More by seeswo
Photo of gford217


4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle with silver foil.

Pours like the other Black Hole variants, pitch black with a surprisingly big head that recedes very quickly to a thin collar and leaves some spotty lacing.

Aroma is really good on this, surprisingly good actually. I really think the cognac mellows out the original nose, which is a good thing. There is some sweet fruit and lots of malts and oak, but the abrasive Black Hole aroma is tamed a bit.

The taste is, again, better than I remember any version of this beer being. There is lots of sweet booze from the cognac but it doesn't burn and is actually pleasant. Much more pleasant than the original Black Hole taste which is too over-the-top in just about every aspect. This has oak with smooth cognac booziness and just enough of the heavily roasted malts, chocolate and coffee from the stout.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with strong carbonation and the burn in the back is actually quite pleasing.

Color me surprised and impressed with this beer, which I really think is the best version of Black Hole I've ever had. Smooth and (shockingly) drinkable vs. the others. I need to try the original again as the barrel variants are better than I remember the original being.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2011 03:50:52 | More by gford217
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Black Hole (Cognac Edition) from Mikkeller ApS
93 out of 100 based on 142 ratings.