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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

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642 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 642
Reviews: 256
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 11%
Wants: 63
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: 642 | Reviews: 256 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Nightrain87


4.5/5  rDev +10%

01-04-2012 02:58:17 | More by Nightrain87
Photo of davidthebruce


4.5/5  rDev +10%

01-04-2012 01:05:29 | More by davidthebruce
Photo of rudylaw


4.5/5  rDev +10%

01-04-2012 00:26:41 | More by rudylaw
Photo of Nugganooch


4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz to pint glass

A: It pours, well, more brown than black of course. It's a murky dark brown ale with a much lighter, even watery edge to it. Like the end result of a black and tan. Super Chunk at that. Just a bunch of flakey yeast and hop particles suspended in darkness. Tight khaki beige head with a great float to it and some crusty rings of lace. With all do respect, this is one fugly looking beer.

S: Smell is a great surprise with just a huge grapefruit and pine aroma blast. Sharp dank and catty fresh hop flowers. Thinking Simcoes but the write up states Citra, Galaxy, Delta, and Nelsons. Wowzers! You have my attention. Fruity and tropical. I detect some faint sweet carmelized malts in the background.

T: Taste opens up assertive with hops. Super danky hop nuggets. A grapefruit and pine bomb. Nice and resinous. Citrus zest, mangoes and tropicals. Gradual sweetness. Tails with some caramlized malts that have a slight char roasted grain character. Especially in a low acrid bitter aftertaste. Slight alcohol but it is inviting here. Decent balance amidst the lingering hop resins and smoky char roast malts. Perfect sweetness holds everything together.

M: Overall medium in body with a decent creamy texture. Lingering and resiny sweet mouthcoat. Good carbonation. Crisp and dryer in finish.

D: Juicy good. Think a dirty Heady Topper. Very similar in hop profile but with some CaraFa II or III thrown in there. In fact that is exactly what it tastes like. A darkened Heady. Not only clever...like the dirty rain water that wrecked havok on the East Coast but just a kick ass brew. Possibly the hoppiest brew I have had from Stone in terms of flavor and aroma.

This is one Stone Collab gone right. Will definitely be looking to make more contributions to the cause while I still can.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 22:54:30 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of Britton

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +10%

01-03-2012 20:41:26 | More by Britton
Photo of mechamifune

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a tan head. Carbonation evident with nice lacing. An overall inviting appearance.

Smell is fruity and hoppy, with what i would best describe as the "typical" stone hop profile. Not a strong sweetness or sense of roastiness to the smell, but still very pleasant.

Taste is very citrusy with a strong sense of orange zest in the finish. Not particularly bitter but not as many sweet/bready notes as i thought there would be. As i progress through thr glass i find myself tasting orange more than hops. For an ipa though this is a nice overall taste.

Mouthfeel is slightly creamy and easy to drink. Maybe slightly undercarbonated for the style but nothing to complain about.

Overall this is a solid beer.... if i could buy it on a regular basis as a reasonably priced sixer i would... but i can't, so i won't.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 18:12:24 | More by mechamifune
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 06:34:56 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of ely2000k


4.78/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer. At the title describes, this pours somewhere between brown and black, and looks like a stout with a little less head. Very think, soapy looking head that lingers in the glass. Strong smell of hops jump out of the snifter that I poured it into. Taste is great, hard to completely peg down. Great balance of sweet like roasted malt, balanced by very fresh and somewhat aggressive hops. It's an IPA, but doesn't really feel like one. Imagine a stout with aggressive hops and that is kind of what this is. Mouthfeel is think and a bit creamy. This beer is a winner, will try to get this again before it's gone!

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 05:10:07 | More by ely2000k
Photo of Gobstopper15


4.5/5  rDev +10%

01-03-2012 03:40:49 | More by Gobstopper15
Photo of BigB415


4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased at Ales Unlimited in San Francisco.

A: Pours dark brown with medium head into my Moylans pint glass. Medium retention but most of the head slides right back down the glass.

S: Fresh hops. I feel like I'm holding hops in my hands and taking a huge whiff. It reminds me of when I was in Golden, Colorado and the whole town smelled like hops.

T: The beer also tastes like hops but not as bitter as you'd find find in a regular IPA. It's probably because it's a black IPA but I'm no expert on this style. The hops seem more "creamier" kind of like a Guinness but better tasting and more pronounced.

MF: Some bitterness from the hops. Nothing else really.

O: It's an interesting take on the style. What number is this for Stone collaborations in 2011 alone? I'm glad to see Stone getting in touch with other great breweries and making some kick ass beer. This is a nice beer. It's very well balanced. I heard about the Alchemist flooding when it happened. I hope they get everything back together and if I'm ever in their neighborhood I will definitely stop by and hope their beer is as good as this.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 01:26:17 | More by BigB415
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2012 22:24:29 | More by MasterSki
Photo of Kopfschuss


4/5  rDev -2.2%

01-01-2012 15:30:39 | More by Kopfschuss
Photo of BenTherHppedThat

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

01-01-2012 05:36:30 | More by BenTherHppedThat
Photo of BeforeNoon


4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. poured into 16 oz. tumbler

A: Dark brown, 2 finger fine head

S: Cascade hops, pine, lemon rind

T: Lemons, grapefruit, mild chocolate and cocoa

M: Medium body, medium-high carbonation

O: I don't think I have ever tasted hops this fresh. The darkness of this beer really threw me off. This is a hop forward beer, but it gives way just for a bit at the end to the roasted malt. Very hop heavy beer, but well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2012 03:01:21 | More by BeforeNoon
Photo of mightyquinn


4/5  rDev -2.2%

01-01-2012 02:58:51 | More by mightyquinn
Photo of WrongEmBoyo


4.5/5  rDev +10%

12-31-2011 19:44:45 | More by WrongEmBoyo
Photo of Philousa


3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed from the bottle at Bottlecraft in San Diego.

Dark roasted cocoa bean in color with a thin but bubbly head. Very sticky, but not enough head to leave whole rings on the glass. Floral, sweet, grassy hop aroma with sweet chocolate/dark caramel lying in the background. Dark coffee, bitter grassy hops, and thin caramel flavors. Hops lighten and thin out the dark brown malt, but don't take over completely. Malt is still the most prevalent taste. Balanced feel, this is very drinkable for a dark ale.

This has a distinct aroma of Stone IPA with a dark malt bill set as a backdrop. This is a very good beer, but a story set in another city is still the same story, so I'm glad the malt is so distinct. This is the first beer I've had that distinctly tasted like coffee without this fact plastered all over the bottle. Its malt is subtly complex, which I like.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 06:02:33 | More by Philousa
Photo of FosterJM


4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1017th Review on BA
Bottle to Pint
12 oz


App- A cola brown pour with a good one finger slightly khaki colored head. Good sticky cling and lace.

Smell- A huge mix on this one. A little bit more tropical fruits in this nose mixed with some good piney resin and a little bit of malt.

Taste- I like this profile. It's not quite a Black IPA, not a brown ale. I like the way this blends some citrus with some roast and some malty peanut notes.

Mouth- A little bit more on the medium side of lighter bodied with a medium low carbonation and a little bit of a good peanut/malt/pineapple residual flavor

Drink- Another well done collaboration from Stone and some great brewers The Alchemist and Ninkasi. This was flavorful, boundry pushing and layered withouth being overdone. I'd have this one again.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 05:56:42 | More by FosterJM
Photo of johnnyboy76


3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

12-31-2011 04:00:39 | More by johnnyboy76
Photo of SageO


4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No official date on this bottle, but I know the release date was 10 days ago, so super fresh. Nose is out of this world – I’m used to Stone’s hop profile, but the smell of hops in this beer is unbelievable. Both pine and tropical fruit notes. Bright IPA taste… I’m not sure where the “brown” comes in, because I barely taste it. Maybe a bit of nuttiness, but definitely very little malt. I can’t possibly rave enough about the IPA profile on this – it’s 100x more than I expected, even from Stone.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2011 05:46:17 | More by SageO
Photo of MEsoJD


4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

[Poured into an La Fin Du Monde glass]

I: I've already have been slighted acquainted with this beer and immediately knew that this was going to be one of the better stone collaborations. This beer also helps Vermont victims of Hurricane Irene, so I defiantly couldn't turn it down.

B: [7.4% ABV, 12 FL. OZ.] Like the other collabs, it's a small bottle, but stone others packs their bottles with information, and print is more apart of the bottle. Completely satisfied bottle wise.

A: Dark brown body with ruby tint, nice fluffy mocha head(moderate dissipation with scattered remains), and little lacing.

S: Upfront I get spicy(earthy presence), but gentle hops, sweet roasted malt and citrus(will be crazy to say pineapple, unlike the usual grapefruit).

T: Roasted malt(not very significant and complemented by the hops), then spicy hops, and ending with very apparent oily citrus grapefruit(changed from pineapple on nose).

M: Oily and dry finish, light/medium bodied, medium carbonation, and medium alcohol presence.

O: Very tasty beer, and most satisfying collaboration I've had from stone. Taste mostly follows the nose, but I don't believe it's diverse enough to make it stand out above other ipas, though I got hints of an amber beer. Stone, Ninkasi, and The Alchemist have done a damn fine job with this beer. For the price, value, and charity, it's a no brain-er of a recommendation and pickup. Snag one, before it's too late.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2011 05:21:15 | More by MEsoJD
Photo of MrVonzipper


4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with brown around the edges of the glass. Amazing fluffy tan head with excellent retention and lacing.

Lovely light fruity and hoppy nose which is much lighter and fresher than the look might lead you to believe. Nice notes of sweet pineapple citrus and candy-like hops.

Flavor is nice as well with great balance. Bright Citra hops seems present which is very nice and well blended with the other hops and light (but dark colored) malt profile.

Light bodied with med-high carbonation.

Overall it's a real nice beer. Nice nose, flavor and great balance with high drinkability. A must try.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2011 02:16:50 | More by MrVonzipper
Photo of cjacobsen


4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

(A) Pours an almost opaque dark nut brown color. Almost black, but not quite. Quarter inch stone colored head that diminishes to a light coating atop the beer. Some lacing.

(S) An interesting mix of a rich brown ale with a bunch of hops dumped in. Pine mixed with roasted malts and grains, nut, biscuit, and hop bitters.

(T) The taste is really different. Something that you can't really categorize as an IPA or a Brown Ale. It's weird, but good. Decent bouquet of hops, pine, and grapefruit. Really hits home like an IPA upfront, but then gives way to a roasted malt flavor that is mixed with nuts, biscuit, some leather, and some caramel.

(M) Solid medium body. Thicker but not overly full. Has some grain to it but only at the end. Start is smooth and rich.

(O) Solid beer for what I feel is a mix of two styles. It's got the best of both worlds and sits well with a decent blend. It's different on a good level.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2011 21:44:33 | More by cjacobsen
Photo of mikeczech


4.5/5  rDev +10%

12-29-2011 05:58:21 | More by mikeczech
Photo of DonDirkA


4.88/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Beautiful pour. Deep brown (yes it is more brown than black). The head is thick and leaves a lot of attractive lacing behind. I know some people think the lacing thing isn't a big deal but it does look nice and tends to mean deliciousness is about to ensue.

The smell, unlike many black IPAs, is very very hoppy. It smells piney and slightly fruity like pineapples and oranges.

Very little blackness to this black IPA. It is very bright and hoppy. Super grapefruitty. Orange and slight pine. There is some of the roasted character of the malts in the background. Really it is just a deliciously citrusy IPA.

Overall, I think this is an awesome black IPA. It is the least black of the black IPAs I have had. This is an awesome IPA. Fantastic. If this were available in my area (Tucson, Arizona) I would drink it on a regular basis. Unfortunately, I found this on a visit to Riverside, CA. This is one of the best of the Stone Collabs that I have had. Maybe the best.

UPDATE: It is now available in AZ. I have at least found it @ Magee Road Liquors in Tucson.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2011 09:27:19 | More by DonDirkA
The Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPA from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 642 ratings.