Sierra Nevada Blindfold Black IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Blindfold Black IPASierra Nevada Blindfold Black IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,358 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,358
Reviews: 244
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 10.21%
Wants: 12
Gots: 219 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DaltonC on 02-23-2014

Blindfold blankets us in darkness yet maintains a surprisingly light body and bold, hoppy character. This black IPA emerged from our Beer Camp program and builds on Sierra Nevada’s legendary love of hops with roasted malts for depth and complexity. Like its namesake, Blindfold is a bit disorienting—the color of a stout and the intense, hop-forward flavors of a classic American IPA.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 1,358 | Reviews: 244
Photo of delta490
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep brown, verging to black without light on it. The head is a light tan, with good retention and leaving nice big sticky lacing. The aroma is a little light, more roast malt than floral hops. The taste has a little more balance but still leans to the rich roasted malt than the hops. The body is lighter, as advertised, easy drinking and smooth. This is a tasty beer, but is really closer to a lighter, hopped porter than a Black IPA.
The bottle says packaged on 3/4/15, so I wonder if that is the problem.

Photo of Zaktcc
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Given the style of beer, the color didn't come as much of a surprise. Pours a solid black color with a good two finger head. Great head retention.

S - A mix of aromas appeasing to the nose. Most dominate aroma is that of roasted malt. Hints of coffee grounds present as well.

T - On par with the scent. Fairly straightforward flavorings of roasted malt, vague hints of coffee

M - Medium bodied with mild carbonation. Very dry finish as to be expected. Great feel, though I am personally biased towards dryer beers.

O - Great beer from SN and a fan of the style. Taste was good but I feel as though something was missing which could've enhanced it more. Very enjoyable, dry beer,

Photo of PatrickCT
3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle into a tulip.

a: Brownish black body. Opaque. Slight ruby color around the bottom when held to the light. Deep beige two finger head, very light with nice sticky lacing.

s: Roasted malt. Hints of coffee and molasses and pumpernickel followed by floral and citrusy hops.

t: Thin roasted malt. Hints of chocolate and weak coffee. A citrus then dry, peppery hop finish.

mf: Surprisingly light and juicy once the beer warms yet with a slight caramel stickiness. Nice even finish with no after taste.

o: If Founder's Dark Penance is a weightlifter then Blindfold is a cross trainer. Malty and hoppy yet ballanced and drinkable. The style in general is a bit confusing for me. My eyes tell me one thing and my taste buds tell me something else as far as identifying it as a style. However I like the exercise of picking it apart and my enthusiasm for galaxy hops makes this go down easy.

Photo of Franziskaner
3.72/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Black in color with no penetration to light. A massive inch thick frothy beige head rests on top. Light Brussels lacing. Aroma of faint piney hops and dark malt. The flavor is a nice pairing of piney hops and dark malt. The mouth is a bit thick and slightly sticky.

Photo of 1ale_man
4.29/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really love it. I need to taste others of the style to compare. It'll be bad if I like them too. I'm beer poor now!

Photo of 4now
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Solid stout masquerading as an IPA. A nice little feat.

Photo of ARoman
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a wide flute. The aroma is initially licorice and bakers chocolate, with undertones of sweet citrus Later in the drink, coffee gets added to the mix with a chalkiness, some caramel, and just a touch of wet cardboard. The beer is a rich, oily mahogany with a light brown, frothy dense head that leaves good lace, and has an abundant, but uneven retention. The taste is a medium high, balanced chocolate bittersweet. The texture is smooth with a creamy, foamy head. The medium-full body consists of chocolate brownie, background notes of sweet citrus, and chalk up front, and finishes with a swell of sweet citrus and caramel (in turns), that's quickly replaced by a clean chalk and spice character flavored with coffee and peanut butter. These notes mellow quickly leaving an aftertaste that's chalky, piney, and clean with hints of peanut butter. After a long time, the peanut butter disappears and is replaced by a light, pleasant grapefruit.

Photo of LarryV
3.12/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Full disclosure, I'm not a big fan of the black beer trend, I think it' gimmicky at best. This is no exception.

Photo of josvemden
3/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Meer smaak van de Golden maar weer te veel of te scherpe hop die alle andere smaken wegneemt

Photo of dasenebler
3.74/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz, packaged 2.24.15

Light tan head is very thick. Nice black body. Excellent lacing.

Slight citrus hop profile on the nose. Leans more towards the spice and pine. Dark malts.

Roasty, chalky malts. Bitter but not overwhelming. Hops have a bit of overripe fruit, but mainly carrying pine and spice. Woody. Very clean.

Very nice body, thick but dry. Medium carbonation.

Starts well but ends a bit lackluster. A good dark ale. IPA character somewhat intact. Very drinkable. Good stuff.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

-Spiegelau ipa glass.

A: Beautiful chocolate-coffee pour sits a deep midnight black in the vessel with an equally impressive bronze-tan foam capping of good holding length. Thick stratified foam rings lace the vessel on the way down while a lasting coverage sits atop.

S: Sweet caramel coffee at first, some pine and toasted apple skin upfront of moderate awareness. A trail of soft soot and ash on the finish. Aroma duration was rather short, tampering off after a promising dark start but did leave some earthy, bittering intentions.

T: Burnt chocolate and roasted bitterness, bittering earthy soot and dry hop flowers. Wet, spent coffee roast afer swallow, some burnt pine lingering about, with some flashes of burnt caramel and bakers chocolate. Nice earthy and roasty malt backing, lingering bitterness and heavy on the strength.

M: Warming bittering mouthful and roasted glow on the inner cheeks with a mineral feel of ash on the tongue. Chewy, oats body, softly carbonatted but shows some prickly presence around the tongues edges with a good weight and bittering afterfeel.

O: Overall shows a huge roasted and burnt bitterness for flavor, the hops seem to play a secondary role, some burnt pine in response, but really didn't strike me as an ipa showing. This would be a hard one to put down in multiples, very dark and roasty depth in nature and could be interpreted differently upon drinking style. Slow methodical sips reveals its heavy dark bittering and burnt nature, while more quicker sips off then tongue has a sweeter more chocolate like experience.

Photo of Myotus
3.63/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a fingers worth of off-white foam that reduces to a single line within a minute. Beer is black with a brown tint. A massive amount of bubbles began to rise after beer was poured then subsided to a few that still rose. Has mild aromas of roasted malts that are evenly matched in intensity by fruity hop aromas. Pine aromas can be found hiding around. Initial taste is a combination of pine and fruit flavors from hops resulting in a near-rye flavor. Roasted malts slowly enter the taste palate as the fruity and piney hops become distiguishable from each other abondoning the almost-rye flavor. Like most beers high in hops, it leaves the mouth very dry. Carbonation is mild. Overall, an above average American Black Ale. NOTE: The bitterness in this beer increases drastically as it warms up. Drink relatively quick to avoid unbearable levels of bitterness.

Photo of Prestonmg
4.53/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Perfect mix of an IPA and a stout, wonderful beer.

Photo of cyoung35
2.82/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

An over hopped, dry, dark beer with a bitterness that lingers. Very roasty on the palate and nose with a light body. Drink it with your mouth hole

Photo of sporklift87
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle to snifter. Somewhat aggressive pour shows a finger of brownish foam with some large sudsy bubbles. Fair retention, decent lacing walls, and fades into a medium film. Opaque black, with some tiny bits of garnet shining through. Roasted malt and dark chocolate on nose, with hints of citrus. Tastes of dark cocoa and fairly bitter hops. Fairly straightforward. Feels frothy on tongue, and has a light/medium body, with medium carbonation. A nice cocoa finish lingers on back of tongue. A good beer, perhaps more closely related to a porter than an IPA, but the bitter hops are definitely there. Though enjoyable, I must say it seems lacking in complexity for an IPA. Well balanced and the lighter body makes it quite sessionable. Would buy again.

Photo of Jeffrey-Pulver
4.71/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a very dark almost black color. Smells of hops, coffee, and hints of chocolate. Taste is fantastic, malts, coffee, dark chocolate, and hops. Overall fantastic. Like a stronger Guinness with hops.

Photo of Tavverin
3.67/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ill be honest, its more my wife's kinda beer than mine, but I like all beers anyway. And shell help me with this one so it'll be ok.

Look. retains head, though not more than is fine. leaves pretty trace bubbles. lightens the imagination. color is dark dark brown to black

Smell. smells nice. like beer I guess. Nutty .

Taste. There were strong tones of nuts, and hops. maybe citrus?

feel. feels soft. fuzzy. microsudsy? very full bodied. Lovely.


Photo of Chickenhawk9932
3.84/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with a coffee colored head that leaves a nice trail of lace.

Smells of pine, citrus, roasted malt, and lemon.

Up front it has a nice roasted malt character pulled back towards bitter pine and citrus - largely lemon- before it can be sweet. It is lively and moving with a nice depth to it.

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.99/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Blindfold Black IPA. Alc 6.8% by Vol.

Dark brown, nearly black, shining crimson highlights at the edges, large, lightly tanned head, slowly slipping.

Aroma: Caramel and cocoa tones start it off, with citric hop notes bursting through. A deft blend of malt and hops.

Taste: Starts off, again, creamy, malty and chocolatey, then a sharp turn on the palate into hop country. The two sides keep up with each other, a tasty tango in the mouth. Hop bitterness hangs on just a bit in the finish, and it's stay is a happy one. Medium bodied, and moderate in every way. Here's one of the "black IPAs" (is safe to not call them Cascadian Darks, right? No Portlandites around me?) that I don't mind, and in fact, can enjoy. The clash between the two elements is not as large and loud as in the others that turned me off, and possibly away from the style entirely.

What do they tell us on the bottleneck label? "Blinfold blankets us in darkness yet maintains a surprisingly light body, and bold, hoppy character. This black IPA emerged from our Beer Camp program and builds on Sierra Nevada's legendary love of hops with roasted malt for depth and complexity, Like it's namesake, Blindfold is a bit disorienting--the color of a stout and the intense, hop-forward flavors of a classic American IPA."

Photo of jadpsu
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black pour with a full tan bubbly head that has very good retention
and clinging side glass lace.
Except for the color this reminds me of the Sierra Nevada Golden IPA I
had from the same variety pack.
Aroma is tart citrus with some pine and a little burnt malts.
Taste picks up some coffee bean notes that make the exceptional citrus, grapefruit
Everything Sierra Nevada brews is done well as in this I.P.A.

Photo of NCMatt
1.94/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

I didn't really know what to expect from a "Black IPA". I've had a few different black beers before, and i've had many different IPA's. Never together, and now I know why. Best way I can describe this is burnt citrus. Unappetizing for me. Literally one of the only beers I've not been able to finish and found it's way down the drain. I'm glad it was just part of the 4-way IPA variety pack I bought and not a 6 pack of just this!

Photo of Acforster2
2.56/5  rDev -33%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

I did not like this beer. It looks good and smells alright. But tasted mildly bitter, malty and ashy. I am a big fan of Sierra Nevada. Maybe black ales are not for me.

Photo of Lard_City
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sort of an IPA/Porter hybrid. Very mild hop and malt aroma. Dark red cola color. Hoppy, fruity and bitter. Malt is way overshadowed by the hops. Aftertaste fades quickly for the IBU level. Not bad but would probably only drink this when I am also eating something to contrast the hops.

Photo of Gear54
3.81/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle into a snifter. Got this in a SN variety pack

Jet black pour with 2 fingers of kaki head and thick lace on the glass.

Smell is malts and hops. Very subdued and not overly aromatic. Smell didn't improve as the warmed over several min.

Taste is quite different than smell. Lots of carbonation and pine. I get roasted malty flavors and some coffee/dark chocolate in the background.

Mouth feel is ok but it's not as bitter as I would have thought for a BIPA. Closer to a porter in fell even with the high carbonation.

Photo of kaseydad
4.11/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a black/dark brown ale with a nice beige whip cream looking head. Big lacing.

The aroma is dark fruits, banana, roasted malt, tobacco, leather, shoe polish and coffee grounds.

The taste is black coffee, roasted malt, fruity, bitter chocolate yet hops definitely shine through to let you know this is still not the beer your grandpa grew up on. Nicely done SN.

Overall I feel some of the reviews for this are not fit the style. I think SN did a great job for the style. Let it warm and see the difference. I could even see the name changing to strictly Blindfold Black Ale. Let the consumer decide what this is. Complex and tasty nonetheless. Good stuff.

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Sierra Nevada Blindfold Black IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 1,358 ratings.