Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Cambridge / Brewdog / Stone Juxtaposition Black Pilsner - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Cambridge / Brewdog / Stone Juxtaposition Black PilsnerCambridge / Brewdog / Stone Juxtaposition Black Pilsner

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

174 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 174
Hads: 208
Avg: 3.96
pDev: 12.12%
Wants: 22
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: alexd3891 on 07-24-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 174 | Hads: 208
Photo of Sammy
3.81/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle at Rattle 'N' Hum. One of a kind, like a shwartzbier, with dry Irish stout characteristics, and pilsner hops. Black with light lace, off a bubbly head.Looks great, no pilsner like it. Easy drinker, smooth mouthfeel. Hops are not aggressive, there is also chocolate and a tad of sourness.

 294 characters

Photo of GRG1313
4.42/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This new brew pours a dark brown/black with a thick white head.

The nose is very fragrant grapefruit with undertones of Belgian fruit and malt. Perfumy and pleasing.

Mouthfeel is creamy with medium to medium full body.

Flavors are huge and intense. Front palate gives an initial impression of Belgian fruit and malt and then some larger middle malt character. It then gives a huge hit of giant grapefruit and pine resin hops. Very complex, layered brew, grows more and more interesting in the glass.

There is actually a juxtaposition of fruit, malt and hops that is unique. Big citrus grapefruit skin and pine resin hop finish that goes on forever. Different and good and likely very food friendly.

 714 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Stone Bistro in August 2009.

Pours a near-black with a nice tan head and a decent amount of lacing. The aroma is of roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a nice hoppiness. The taste is very similar, although everything doesn't blend together as well with the taste as it did with the smell. The roasted malt and hops don't quite fit together like they do in a well-designed Black IPA. The mouthfeel is moderate with fairly-large amounts of carbonation. Definitely drinkable, but a little pricey for what it is.

 521 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glossy mahagony with precious few highlights. The upper half of the snifter is filled with a whipped creamy crown of brown sugar colored foam that has remarkable persistence. It looks like lace depostion won't be a problem... once it gets a chance.

Does it smell like an American black double pilsner should? Sure, why not? When you're the first, you get to make the rules. JBP is moderately dark malty and is still impressively aromatic on the hop side of things. Sorachi Ace and Motueka (and possibly Saphir) were odd choices, but they work beautifully.

It's amazing that Juxtaposition is still so hoppy and still so damned delicious more than six months after bottling. Why did I wait so long to crack the cap? It must have been a beast of epic proportions last summer and fall.

It's hard to think of Juxta as a pilsner, even though it uses pilsner malt and pilsner yeast. It tastes like either a black IPA or an aggressively hopped American double stout. There's an incredible amount of flavor boldness, thanks to the 10.0% ABV. Good thing it isn't as malt sugar sticky as most DIPAs and some barleywines.

Specifics include bittersweet chocolate, a small splash of black coffee, and a generous blast of 'green' hoppiness that is right up my alley. The beer also has an herbal and spicy vibe that is almost botanical in nature. Must be the exotic hops. Warming is allowing the juxtaposed flavors to become even more comfortable with one another.

Even though the body/mouthfeel is better for not being sticky-sappy, a little more heft wouldn't be a bad thing. Bubbles are on the low end, but don't disappear completely on the finish.

Stone/BrewDog/Cambridge Juxtaposition Black Pilsner is hugely successful craft beer of a collaborative nature. It would be a shame if it never sees the light of day again. If one of these breweries has the wisdom and foresight to revive it, I'll make sure to buy more as close to the release as possible. It's hard to believe, though, that that beer could be any better than the beer I just finished.

 2,043 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured a wonderful dark brown with lots of reddish touches around the edges of the glass and rich head of off white and nice well rounded color to clean up the look overall.

lots of hints of bright citrus and fresh lemon and grass, really a bright, aroma. The flavors was just outstanding. So light and yet complex at the same time. The bright citrus flavors were huge with alot of lemon and orange coming through. lots of really nice flavors and very well balanced, this was very finely crafted and bordered on many different leveks. nicely done!

 548 characters

Photo of nickfl
4.39/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - One finger of medium brown head on top of a dark brown body with some weak red highlights showing through. The foam settles quickly and leaves only slight lace.

S - An aroma of citrus hops greets the nose first, followed by caramel malt, toast and alcohol. Some minty, pine hops are lingering in the background with light coffee and chocolate notes.

T - Thick, carmel and toffee malt flavor up front with pungent hop notes of pine and orange as well as roast malt. Coffee flavors persist and strengthen through the middle with strong hop bitterness beginning to push back against the malt. The finish is full of chocolate with spicy notes of cinnamon, chicory, and chili peppers as well as citrus hops. Lingering flavors of grapefruit and mild tobacco stick to the tongue and refuse to let go until I go back for another sip.

M - Thick, chewy body, moderate carbonation, and a reasonably dry finish for a beer of this strength.

D - This is quite the interesting beer. Although Imperial Black Pilsner is as good a description as any for this brew, I don't know that it really prepares you for what you are getting into. The aroma is very hoppy with just a hint of complex dark malt and is reminiscent of a good american barleywine. The flavor was much fuller and thicker than I expected with a huge malt backbone of chocolate, toffee, and coffee that is more than balanced by the intense bitterness. There is an interesting spiciness that ties the malt and hops together in the end and it is really quite drinkable for such a strong, complex beer. Very good and unique, this is even better than the last Stone collaboration beer.

 1,636 characters

Photo of womencantsail
4.49/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black with about one finger of mocha colored foam.

S: They weren't lying when they said this is a hoppy beer. Enormous amounts of grapefruit aroma, a slight pineyness, perhaps a bit of tropical fruits, and hardly anything else.

T: A great tropical fruit sweetness, grapefruit, and a great bitterness. The roasted malt also makes an appearance here, but it is definitely overshadowed.

M: Lackluster, but hey, it's a pilsener. Light body, a slick feeling on the tongue.

D: The amazing citrus and fruit qualities along with a pleasant amount of bitterness make this a beer I'm glad to drink (if only it wasn't $7 a bottle).

 627 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.49/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle - $5.99 at Bullock's Wine & Spirits in Marietta, Georgia. Admittedly, I haven't been too terribly enamored with the latest string of black IPA's on the market, and was more than hesitant to purchase a self-labeled Black Pilsner. Seeing now that it's 10% ABV also goes me pause.

Appearance: Pours out a jet black body with a large, frothy, ecru head with some agreeable staying power.

Smell: Charry, creosote-soaked nose with some herbaceous, downright weedy hop and campfire charcoal tones. Minor alcohol hint if you're down sniffing around there. The nose is a bit rough around the edges, but, thankfully, the taste offers a bit more to round things out.

Taste: Roasty, charred, blackened malts with a minor hint of dark chocolate and powderized coffee crystals. What sweetness is on hand comes fast and leaves just as quickly. Fresh herbal, spicy flavor from the hops with a fair amount of bitterness that combines with the roasted grains. Quite a creosote taste in the latter half, so it'd pair well with roasted meats and coating fence posts. As it warms slightly, a caramelly, bready taste develops to soothe the burnt quality. Smooth, roasty, herbal-laden finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Very, very light creaminess to the mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Well, if nothing else, it goes down fairly easy for having 10% ABV emblazoned on the bottle. It presents a lot of burnt malts and a lot of herbal, bitter hops, but not quite too much of either to be overbearing, though, I am thankful it's not a drop above twelve ounces. It's interesting for sure.

 1,597 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Hmm, I've been a fan of the Stone collaborations in the past, and this is pretty expensive, so let's hope its awesome. Never had an imperial pilsner this crazy before, so this should be an experience.

A: Pours like a dark porter or stout, leaves a dark thick rich 1.5 finger head that slowly fades. The very dark brown color only lets a small amount of light through the bottom of the glass where it things (my Corsendonk tulip glass).

N: Has the nose of a hoppy imperial dark ale or even stout. I get some dark malts too, perhaps a bit of chocolate and some roasted aromas. Mostly a heavy alcohol aroma comes billowing out. Sweet malts and candi sugar tickle the nose. Actually I do get some hot chocolate creamy aromas, reminiscent of a good strong Russian Imperial Stout. Some nutty flavors sneak their way in, and its just so complex on the nose.

T: Finally, that seemed like an hour. Starts very rich and creamy, with lots of dark malts, roasted flavors, some chocolate, sweet candi sugar and molasses. Then some interesting lager like lighter flavors and crispness come in. Next a wave of hop and bitterness seem to hit. Some dark fruits wave their hands too. The the alcohol seems to build a little bit and hit with some warmth and tingly feelings.

M: Pretty rich, creamy, and thick, but smooth, and some alcohol tingly feelings and warmth, with a decent carbonation (I almost thought it would be low on carbonation).

F: Finishes pretty bitter, I think the bittering hops hit quite a bit towards the end. It starts to dry off a bit but is still semi sweet. Also pretty crisp flavors, but the thick creaminess and sweet syrupy feel sticks to the mouth quite a bit and kinda undo the whole pilsner crispness.

Final thoughts: A pretty interesting beer. Lots of complex flavors that hit in waves and seem to mingle pretty well, but in some instances its just too much done on one beer. Its like they tried to add every flavor they could think of in this one beer, and even have contrasting points. Its a nice beer to try, but I don't think I'll spend $7 on a 12oz again!

 2,080 characters

Photo of Kegatron
4.37/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours black in the glass, with 2 rigid fingers of light mocha colored head. This retains very nicely, with a rich and frothy flareup that leaves a sticky latticework of foamy lace all down the sides of the glass. The aroma is all aggressive hops up front, being full of pine resins, dank earth, and spice, as well as a fruity citric edge that keep this juicy in the nostrils. Honestly though, as good as the hop character is here, it's the rich roasty mix of chocolate malts and coffee which sits underneath that is the real winner here. Just a great balance between the hops and roast here in the nose. Not much alcohol to the aroma at all either maybe just adding some beefiness to the bouquet.

The taste pretty much mirrors the aroma, with a strong resinous nature to the hops that lays plenty of spice, pine, and bitter grapefruit on the tongue. All of that hop character is wonderfully balanced though by thick notes of chocolate and toffeed sweetness before sharp smokey roast and black coffee just absolutely blasts the back of the profile, leaving a deeply burnt and dry bitter feel in it's wake. The mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied, with a sharp crispness to it that sits on top of a more hefty and chewy feel underneath. Warmth spreads out in the mouth after each sip but this is still VERY smooth on the palate for such a big beer. This is probably where I pick up most of the Pils aspect of this. Most impressive.

Brash and bold with it's use of hops, dark roast, and big ABV, I have to admit that this beer might not be for everyone but I for one really liked how this turned out. Almost like a hearty Black IPA but with the smooth drinkibility of a crisp Pils. Really great stuff here that I'm hoping is revisited at some point.

 1,786 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Thanks to jodan for this LIF-ed bottle!

Been itching to re-try this one ever since it was relatively abundant back East. You just can't find too many black pilsners around, y'know? This one pours a very dark black-brown, lightly highlighted with deep ruby on the far edges, topped by a finger or so of light tan foam. The nose comprises oatmeal, light roasted malts, biscuits, light flowers, and maybe a pinch of toffee. The taste runs along the same path, along with some dark greens, orange rind, and some mild balsa. These new elements add a sharp bitter sting at the end of an otherwise sleekly malty flavor. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a relatively smooth feel. Overall, a pretty solid brew, definitely something different from most brews out there. If it weren't for the finish, though, this would be really great.

 904 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of grassy hops, lightly roasted malts, citrus and touches of chocolate and caramel.

T: The taste starts out with a grassy burst of hops bitterness that is quickly followed by a hearty but not too heavy malt character and some lager yeast breadiness. Then some mild sweetness comes in from flavors of chocolate, caramel and citrus to create a good balance. There's also a hint of an alcohol sting. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty and very complex, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, this is a very good beer to drink for as long as you're able to when you're looking for something different.

 918 characters

Photo of drabmuh
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer poured into a snifter. Beer is black and form a thick tan head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low.

There is an odd aroma, lots of hops but there is this almost coconut like aroma to this beer.

Bitter, strong coconut flavor. Very distracting. Sweet with a slight roast trying to ignore the coconut. Slight fruitiness overall. Its just OK.

 370 characters

Photo of stakem
4.23/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a standard 12oz brown bottle into a pint. It appears a dark brown color that has hues of a more reddish brown around the edges. It displays a head with more than 2 fingers of browned mocha fluff that retains pretty decent and sticks in small patches about the glassware. Sweet aroma has characteristics of both malty goodness and also citrus hops. The blend of citrus in the nose comes together with a fruity scent almost like grapes. Wow, I certainly wasn't expecting that from a beer this dark or a ahh... imperial pils? Rounding out the nose is some floral citrus notes along with an ever increasing amount of alcohol making itself know as the beer warms. The flavor of this beer is really something different, but in a good way. It is bitter chocolately malt upfront with a big alcohol presence and malty flavors like dark fruits a bit like prunes laden with alcohol. The finish is quite bitter with flavors of dark chocolate and some citrus hops. Lingering bitterness clings in the mouth along with a slight alcohol sting that warms the back of the throat. Medium bodied with a modest amount of carbonation, this beer was really good.

I hope I can get another to lay down for awhile to see what happens. I don't know what to make of this beer as far as placing it into a category. If you acquire this beer looking for a doulbe or imperial pils you might be a bit disapointed with the dark malt characteristics present. However, enjoying this beer for what it is regardless of the category really made it worth while and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

 1,563 characters

Photo of billab914
3.91/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally getting around to the 2nd of the two bottles I purchased of this. poured from a 12oz bottle into my Southern Tier tulip glass. Pours black with a thick creamy tan head. The foam settled to a thin covering but left excellent lacing on the glass.

Aroma is sweet with chocolate and molasses with some hop citrus coming through as well. Taste is also sweet with some chocolate, molasses and a bit of burnt flavor coming through. The citrus hops are there as well but more in the background now compared to the first bottle I had.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, I enjoyed this one both times I had it.

 661 characters

Photo of Billolick
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ouncer, w/o freshness info
Pours damn near black, mocha head, sticks around nicely, fluffy and mottled. Leaves plenty of moderatly thick lace. Nose is vibrant and full of doughy bread notes, burnt grains and herbal highlights. Tasty and bold brew... not sure where the 10 % is hidden, I dont taste it. Notes of dark grains, dark chocolate, leather, and smoke. I like it. Go get some as this is an interesting brew thats well worth a try.

 440 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces a four-finger thick, creamed, lightly brown colored head. The beer is a dark, deeply burnt, brown color that shows a clear, deep, concentrated ruby-black hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of ample hops that are accented by toasted grain, caramelized malt and a burnt grain character. There is a really interesting, resinous, almost oak like citrus character here that can, quite intensely remind me of grapefruit zest and meyer lemon peel; there also might be a touch of diacetyl left in this beer, which is likely what makes me think of the butterscotch like oak character (but this could actually just be the unique hops in this beer). The dark malt plays a much muted role behind the omnipresent, dominant hop character; it contributes a soft roasted grain note towards the finish as well as a touch of dark coffee notes and some toasted whole grain bread character. The aroma has got me really interested what the individual components of Sorachi Ace and Motueka hops are like.

A bit smoother tasting than I was expecting, based on the aroma, but this definitely has a sharp hop presence to it that dominates the flavor profile. The front and middle of the flavor profile is dominated by resinous, concentrated citrus oil notes, but the finish shows a strong showing of burnt, espresso like, charred bread crust malt character that lingers on the tongue along with a smooth hop bitterness. The hop character is definitely a bit raw and juicy here, but it is tempered pretty well by the ample malt and how big this beer is. Flavors of resinous tangerine, kumquat essential oils, pine infused lychee, lemon basil and a nice, resinous, herbaceous, green "hemp" character that comes out more as the beer warms up. This is sweet enough to accentuate the hop character, but both the biting hop notes and the roast grain character keep the sweetness well in check. There is a touch of butterscotch like oak character here in the flavor as well; I could easily be convinced this was aged in oak, but I can't find any reference to that; it must just be the particular mix of hop, malt and yeast that have created this flavor. Despite the ample strength, this beer manages to remain quite quaffable, even perhaps dangerously so.

This is actually pretty nice, I wasn't sure what to expect, but I am liking this beer whatever it might be. The big, resinous hop character will hook any hop head, though I will admit if you are not so inclined you should probably avoid this one.

 2,544 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
2.98/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Of the Stone collaborations so far, the backgrounds of the other two brewers may be the most interesting in this one. CBC, a brewpub in Cambridge, MA (and one I have visited) which was the first to brew in Belgian beer in the USA, and BrewDog, a two-year old Scottish brewery which is already experimenting with strawberry infused IPA's and other "extreme beers". Allowed to warm up out of the fridge before before serving. On to the beer:

Black as the name suggest, some ruby red hues can be found when shining the beer through a light. The head is thick and luscious on top after the pour, retains well. Massive sharp, metallic hops in the nose. Fresh cut pine and chocolate notes are evident.

Man, that's bitter! Sharp, bitter hops, just as I would expect in a classic beer from Stone. There's some "dark" maltiness, akin to semi-sweet chocolate, but in this beer, those hops obliterate everything else. Very resiny. The alcohol is next to nowhere in this beer, and the body is big, but within its britches. Despite the crazy high bitterenss, it's drinkable to an extent.

The bounderies of extreme beer have expanded with this high gravity, super hopped black lager. Some tweaking would make this beer more enjoyable, but for a first time experiment, it's a beer worth trying out. Just don't expect to taste anything afterwards.

 1,336 characters

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok, a double pilsner that's black. Soo, is it a pilsner? Oh, well, enough thinking...

pours black with reddish tints, dark brown. A nice head appears, rocky, off tan, 2 fingers. Looks darn good, but since it doesn't look like a pilsner, no 5 :)

Interesting aroma, too. Malty and sweet, but not too much so. It has a slight roasted coffee blended in, some soft chocolate and snappy hops. Citrus and pine mix.

I still would not call this a pilsner, and the label's story is pointless, albeit kind of cool. The hops are not light, but not powerful, and the soft biscuit and water found in pilsners is not here. To be sure, it is delicious. Roasted malt is nice, almost perfectly balanced with the hops. A bit minerally too.
It's a very good beer, but the category of style makes me wonder.

 791 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours black, with a finger of off-white head, good retention and lace.

S: Orange and coffee, baked bread, smells like breakfast.

T: Heavy roast bitterness, pine and citrus, very bitter, but clean flavours.

M: Smooth, medium-bodied, well hidden alcohol.

D: A real good drinkability for 10%, the ethanol can catch up with you.

 347 characters

Photo of HopHead84
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to snojerk321 for this.

The beer appears black (surprised?) with a very light brown head...I guess it's more beige than brown. Retention is pretty good and some lacing is left behind.

The aroma is of dark chocolate, cocoa, some coffee (just a little). The alcohol is aggressive in the nose. Maybe some brown sugar?

The flavor is immediately aggressive bitterness. I get some faint chocolate notes. I'm having a really hard time picking out flavors beneath the overbearing hop bitterness. Alcohol is quite apparent, and the finish tastes like Stone hop bitterness -the flavor.

The beer is full bodied with medium carbonation and a sticky mouthfeel. I don't have a strong opinion on this beer.

 703 characters

Photo of Wasatch
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to gford217 for this one.

Pours a black color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, with some very nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is a nice blend of hops/malts, spicy, with some chocolate/toffee. The taste is hoppy, malty, with some slight citrus, chocolate/toffee notes. Medium body. Drinkable, I would not call this a Double Pilsner, pretty close to a Barleywine, non-the-less it is a tasty brew.

 439 characters

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.44/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep and heavy black colour, with twinges of ruby when held to the light. Head is only languidly formed, a creamy single finger of beige foam. Body looks dense, and there's some carbonation that stays static in the glass when it's swirled. Little lacing, otherwise a very good looking brew.

Nose is incredibly hoppy, a huge burst of fragrantly pungent and spicy West Coast hops. It almost smells like an IPA - big passionfruit characters, stonefruit, resin. Under it though, there are big twinges of darker things - a little oak perhaps, a bit of roasted malt, and something very classically Stone that I can't quite put my finger on. Something sweet but spicy in it as well, almost like liquorice or juniper. What a nose. It's so unusual, and so beautiful. I know it doesn't really fit into any category stylistically - and as a result, it's hard to score, but damn it's delicious.

Taste just adds another layer of bizarre attraction to it. If I were served this completely blind, I'd be shellshocked by the taste, because after the subtly tweaked heavily hopped nose, I'd be expecting a rush of hop characters. But here the dark characters come to the fore, notes of chocolate malt, roasted grains, rye bread, stilled underpinned by a strong and everpresent hop bite.

What's perhaps more extraordinary is that despite its weight, the mouthfeel stays relatively clean. It doesn't cloyingly layer on the tongue, but clears out once the message has been delivered. Still, there's certainly slickness on the palate, which is only to be expected.

What a great beer. I love Stone's three-way collaborations, they always come up with something so unusual, but something that feels as though it should always have existed this way. This is a classic example - a black pilsener, loaded with hop character and brewed to 10%. In a world where novelty is valued, you can't argue with that.

 1,892 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz picked up at Lukas Liquors in Denver.. Poured into my Delirium goblet.

Huge and beautiful 3 finger tan head ... soap suds lace drape the glass.. the brew is black as expected.

Nose is "Stone" grapefruit hoppy.. the hops blow out most everything except some roasty/coffee maltiness that seem to somehow circle around the hops and play a 2nd or 3rd fiddle in my nostrils...

Flavor is not nearly as bitter as I was expecting... that's a good thing. Tons of stuff going on here.. and somehow, they seem to mesh fairly well.. tangerine zest and cocoa.. lite coffee and pine.. a good maltiness mid-palate that helps tie everything together.. finish has a great mash-up of lite acrid dark malts and still bunches of residual citric hoppiness.. the finish lingers for a very long time..

Body and mouthfeel are a bit thick.. but a surprisingly smooth carbonation just makes this like a velvet blanket.. very nice.. I did not expect that I would like this one as much as I am..

My only complaint.. is ... why even bring the word "pilsner" into play here... it's not a pilsner by any stretch of the Americanized imagination.. a "lager", sure... if you say so.. but the bruising from the hops and the dark malts will blow out any hint of a clean ale yeast... I honestly can't decipher what "lagering" this brew did except to add a buck or three to the bottle price... it wasn't needed... That said, I like it.. and would buy it for sure if it was available here in Boise.

Edit: after some time with the remainder of the glass... This brew pretty much reminds me of the 11th Anniversary when it was very fresh... Is this just a rebottling of the 11th? I think I couldn't tell.. and neither could most people.

 1,708 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from 12/2009 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a dark near black amber. Moderate head and light lacing. Hoppy aroma. Hops / IPA start with a light malt, black ale backbone. Hops, malt, fruit, alcohol middle and hoppy finish. Like a dark hoppy American barley wine. Not that well integrated. Interesting but not exceptional. Addendum: tried again in 2010, it did not improve with age. Still drinkable, but no mellowing or integration; hops astringent.

 470 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Cambridge / Brewdog / Stone Juxtaposition Black Pilsner from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 174 ratings.