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The Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPA - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
The Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPAThe Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

644 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 644
Reviews: 256
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 11%
Wants: 64
Gots: 35 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  7.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: HopHead84 on 12-20-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 644 | Reviews: 256 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -2.2%

t0rin0, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque dark brown with a 1 inch foamy khaki head that settles to a film on the top of the beer. Random streaks and chunks of lace form on the glass on the drink down. There is some sediment floating around in the glass after the beer is poured. Smell is pretty much all hops: citrus zest, herbs, onions/vegetables. Taste has all of the hop flavors up front with a malt finish that is somewhat roasty in flavor. There is a medium amount of bitterness that lingers on the palate after each sip. This beer has a crisp level of carbonation and is very dry. Overall, this is a pretty good IPA but not all that impressive. This beer features hops that give off the vegetal aroma and flavor that I really don't like so I am not too sure I would go for this one again.

UCLABrewN84, Jan 05, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

zestar, Jul 19, 2014
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -2.2%

spycow, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of drabmuh. Served in a Stone taster glass.

Pours a somewhat-hazed medium brown color with a good off-white head and some nice lacing. The nose brings forward a nice malt presence and a light bit of roast. Nice pine and light resin. A touch of citrus. Flavor pulls back quite a bit from there, focusing more on the bitterness. Nice bitterness to the finish. Light-medium body. Boom.

Thorpe429, Jan 07, 2012
Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev -2.2%

nmann08, Feb 07, 2012
Photo of metter98
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy and dark mahogany in color and has lots of particulate matter floating in suspension and a slight amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high frothy beige head that died down but consistently left a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and lots of lacing running down the sides of the glass.
S: There are moderate aromas of citrus and pine resin hops in the nose. As the beer warms up, aromas of eucalyptus become more prominent.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of citrus and pine resin along with some notes of roasted malts and hints of chocolate. There is a moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and relatively crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a very hop-forward beer that is packed with flavors of citrus and pine resin but is quite easy to drink because it’s not that bitter. The smell is also very intriguing, especially after it warms up.

metter98, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of Texasfan549
4.5/5  rDev +10%

Texasfan549, Mar 01, 2012
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -2.2%

kjkinsey, Feb 27, 2012
Photo of GRG1313
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewing this one so that it can have reviews sufficent for a grade.

Pours a dark brown with a light khaki head that is fast fading but comes back with a nice swirl.

Typical fresh pineapple IPA nose and not any "brown" character if you smelled it blind.
Clean, bright and inviting nose. Light burnt toast/malt undertones in the nose.

Mouthfeel is medium bold with a nice cream charachter and very rich and inviting.

Flavors are rich, bold, assertive appealing and most "drinkably inviting." In two words, this one just "tastes good." This is a big bold bright hop bitter IPA that has roasted grain and toast in the back palate and that goes into a pine/grapefruit old bitter toast/malt finsih. Complex, layers and well made.

GRG1313, Dec 27, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A dark brown, perhaps chestnut, color with a soapy khaki colored head. A nice fresh hop aroma full of grapefruit and pine. Really quite resinous with lots of fresh citrus qualities. Really not much malt to be found. There is some toast and nuttiness to the flavor, however. Grapefruit hop notes follow quickly behind it and there is a solid bitterness on the finish with lots of pine flavor.

womencantsail, Feb 20, 2012
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

westcoastbeerlvr, Jun 04, 2013
Photo of oberon
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint a somewhat murky chesnut brown with a nicely formed one finger off white head that left a ful ring of lace as it settled into a frothy mass.Grapefuit-like hop aromas are the only thing I really pick up in the nose wich is a good thing but nothing else.Grapefuit is the main attraction on the palate with mild pine,a sturdy not so sweet malt base hold up pretty well to the hops,I gotta tell ya it's like drinking grapefruit juice with a prickly finish.This is a no holds bard for the hop lover and I like it.

oberon, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of largadeer
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

largadeer, Jun 13, 2012
Photo of TMoney2591
3.78/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Duvel tulip pint glass.

Been a whole, what, two months since the last Stone collab touched my lips? Too long, says I. Yar. Anyway, this one pours a dark brown (yeah, it really is more brown than black...) topped by a healthy tor of tan foam. The nose comprises grapefruit, lemon zest, light lime, light leek, pineapple, and a firm backbone of toffee. The taste holds notes of grapefruit zest, light leek, grass, light pine needles, mild toffee, and a touch of dusty biscuit. The hops seem to have lost their magical fruitiness and have opted instead for a more demure, more grass/herb/onion character. We are not amused. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and an almost silky feel. Overall, a pretty nice CDA, but one that suffers from hop transfer (meaning from smell to taste) for me. Still not bad, but not as good as it could have been.

TMoney2591, Jan 03, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

JAHMUR, Feb 06, 2012
Photo of emerge077
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Into a wilibecher glass, MBTB IPA pours a murky dark brown, with plenty of yeast sediment swirling around like a snow globe in the bottom of the glass. Compact cap of tan foam, it ebbs after a few minutes, leaving random bits of lace and a thin broken skim on the surface.

Dank hoppy aroma is the highlight, plenty of citrus peel and earthy green resinous qualities. Some toasted malt sweetness takes a backseat, and some woody traces emerge later on.

Moderately bitter with a light complimentary sweetness, some orange peel and resinous pine, greens and bitter orange peel marmalade. Dry finish, slightly toasty and astringently bitter with a bigger swig, that you feel in your gums. Smooth and bitter, medium bodied with light unobtrusive carbonation. Overall a great brown IPA and a successful collaboration.

emerge077, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

WOOOWWW!!! never had a citrusy BLACK ipa before, damn this is good. pours a not quite black with a serviceable white head leaving plenty of lace. smells rich and roasty and hoppy, but something more here, there is this intense citrus nectar here, like lemons and tangerines sqeeuzed fresh. flavor is way lighter than expected where the roasty thing just sort of compliments the fruity hops, tart crisp tannic hops. lemony and bright, tempered by the dark malts. this is so so so good. feel is great too, lighter than it looks with great carbonation and a delicate but assertive aftertaste. damn i should have got more than one. this is world class

StonedTrippin, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of Jason
3.78/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle, no freshness date.

LOOK: Hazed brown, good lacing

SMELL: Mint, citric zest, earthy, leafy, spicy, toasted biscuit

TASTE: Bitter, orange oil, tobacco, chicory, carob, toasted grain, dry finish

Warming story behind the beer, as for the beer is gets all up in my grill ... In a good way. Hops slap my palate around a bit and the malt is enough foundation to keep this beer somewhat balanced. Nice twist to on the versatile American IPA style.

Jason, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alright it's always to catch a collaboration beer this one just so happened to occur by chance, I wasn't seeking it just showed up at the local. Pours a pretty dark color, label says more brown than black IPA I'll give 'em the fact that it does let some deep ruby chestnut hues of brown but appears black when not held toward the light. Head is beautiful a rotund layer of creamed coffee froth, fine even lacing. Let me get into the aroma, citrus zest, herbal hops, pine with fresh minty leaves something so fresh and earthy about the whole aroma...limited roasted malt expression going on. Flavor is a rush to the green, heral mint notes blended nicely with the dark roasted malts flowing across the palate at the same time. Nice due to the fact that there isn't a rush of black patent malt that overbears the hops everything lives in harmony here and I can appreciate that. I'm actually enjoying the dry bitter mouthfeel left behind in each sip, it works with a light to medium bodied resinously hopped beer like this. Carbonation levels are smooth and mellow and flavors is HELLO, damn tasty. Overall a dark beer I can get with even though the whole black IPA this white IPA that IPA phase is getting to be burdensome on effortless/untouchable style known as IPA. Just start making up other names the only connection to IPA these beers have are hop levels. No true connection to the origins of beer being transported from England to India, WTF? I like Cascadian Dark Ale.

WVbeergeek, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of nickfl
4/5  rDev -2.2%

nickfl, May 02, 2012
Photo of Kegatron
4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a deep ruddy brown but not quite black (with a surprising amount of yeasty chunks floating in it), with a couple fingers of rich light mocha head. This retains with a creamy near finger that soaps the sides of the glass with thick coasting of sticky lace. The aroma smells fresh and floral, with notes of pine and spice being present and an underlying layer of bright feeling citric fruit and some almost tobacco like herbal accents. Malts are pushed way to the back, with light roast and a dark sweetness that could be what is pushing that tobacco flavor forward in the nose.

The taste is zesty grapefruit, astringent herbal tones, pine, and spice, with those resins in particular sticking in the finish with some strength. The malts profile here really works well with these hops, with a dry roasted character and sticky molasses sweetness. There is no doubt here though that while the hops are the main feature, the malts do act as a nice complimentary side act to them. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a touch fuller, with a creamy crispness that fills the mouth and is undercut by a herbal slickness that keeps this smooth. The alcohol is mostly well hid, with just some light warmth on the tail end of each sip that drags the finish of this out across the tongue.

This was pretty nice and quite a unique take on the Black Ale style. The malts in particular were more complex and flavorful than you would usually find and paired up rather nicely with a fresh and powerful hop profile in its own right. I wouldn’t expect anything less from these three breweries.

Kegatron, Apr 19, 2012
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yet another collaboration beer. I like the bottles. They seem to get nicer with each release.

As far as the beer goes, it's a nice black ale; at least it seemsStrong nose. Flavor is strong as well, though mildly muddled. A hearty drinker that I'm enjoying sipping. Another nice one from the collaboration series.

RblWthACoz, May 09, 2012
Photo of Slatetank
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to tenderbranson69 for sharing this. The bottle was split with me and JC.

The color is murkey brown with a subtle translucent effect with some bubbles visible in the pour. The head is beige with ultra fine bead and lace sticks very well. The smell is so fruity with lots of herbs and tropical hop notes too. The slight similarity to simcoe in the NZ hops is noted which is slightly piney and citrus. The feel is very good with oily resins and moderatley high carbonation and bitterness with mild sweetness and general body is good for the style with a pretty dry feel in general.

The taste is great with the Nelson sauvin hops and the others like Galaxy and citra giving a very tropical and juicy hop flavor the malt is toasty and slightly sweet but not really roasted in taste and doesn't obscure the wonderful citrus/tangy tropical hop essence at all. Overall I was impressed and this lived up to my high expectations based on the fact the alchemist was involved, highly recommended.

Slatetank, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of MasterSki
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at Binny's. Served in a Jester King tulip.

A - A finger of white foam settles to a collar and some wispy patches, leaving behind a few spots of lace. Lightly hazed brown-red body.

S - Dank earthy hops, a hefty dose of grapefruit and orange, touch of pine, and a bit of roasted malt character in the background but not much to indicate this is a "darker" beer.

T - Taste is again very hop-forward with nice citrus and pine flavors, a bit of tropical fruit, and only the most nebulous sugary malts and almost-imagined cocoa in the background.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and an extremely dry finish that leaves behind some resinous hop oils as well. There's a bit of alcohol warmth that seems out of place for the style and ABV.

D - Pretty enjoyable stuff - I enjoyed that low bitterness and minimal roast character that I'm guessing is John's influence on this beer. A tad overpriced for 12oz, but at least my money is going to a worthwhile cause.

MasterSki, Jan 02, 2012
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The Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPA from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 644 ratings.