S1nist0r Black Ale - 10 Barrel Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
S1nist0r Black AleS1nist0r Black Ale

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BA SCORE
81
good

64 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 64
Hads: 189
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 12.29%
Wants: 6
Gots: 26 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
10 Barrel Brewing Co. visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedDiamond on 10-21-2008

We craft our S1NIST0R Black Ale using a special German dehusked black malt that is free of astringency, giving the beer a rich black color without the traditional dark beer characteristics. You will notice subtle hints of chocolate with an easy drinking balance on the back end. In the glass the dark color may look intimidating to some, but don't let this beer fool you. Our unique combination of malts creates a very light body and smooth finish.

28 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 64 | Hads: 189
Photo of Murrhey
2.22/5  rDev -38%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Reviewed live.

A- One finger mocha head, thick and creamy with a long retention. Peaks on the head, quite nice looking. Body color is a very dark-brown, almost black. Some fluffy lacing.

S- Toffee, mocha and toasty malts. Smells like a candy bar with a coffee or roast malt twinge to it.

T- Strange flavor. Dark, roasted malt backbone with a surprising kick in the front. It hit me hard with alcohol, which is really strange for a 5.7 brew. Not sure what it is, but it tastes almost bacterial it fits the beer so poorly. Like an extremely acidic, tart punch when at the back of the flavors. Not a good fit.

M- Creamy feel, middling body.

O- I think I very well might have got an infected bottle. The taste is making me sick. Ugh. (776 characters)

Photo of madtappers
2.62/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Had this on draft at 3 Monkeys Pub in Vancouver, WA.

First apperance this is black as night with a 1 inch brownish head.

The carmalized malts dominate the taste here. Not sure what style this really is not truely a porter or stout, yet not an amber or brown ale.

Either way the beer is smooth, but not impressive. (316 characters)

Photo of IPAguy2009
2.85/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- dark Pepsi color

S-smokey dark chocolate, meh

T- dark malt lightly hopped

M- pretty light and light carbonation

O- just a sub par black ale, nothing too special here. Just taste like a dark ale that is pretty light a good for drinking casually. Get something else (270 characters)

Photo of Bookseeb
2.95/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance is a very dark brown color supporting a healthy dissipating head leaving nil lace. Smell of the roasted malt with slight dark chocolate and coffee. Taste of the roasted malt giving it a slight bitter astringency with a light sour note. Moutfeel is medium light with good carbonation. (294 characters)

Photo of taconight2night
2.97/5  rDev -17%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The appearence of this beer is more like coke or pepsi, not black. Almost a ricey like smell along with light oak and smoke aroma. Very little alcohol smell. Smooth and easy to drink with a little malt and even less hop. Also a bit of a yeast taste. Will most likely pass on this beer in the future, but its not terrible. (321 characters)

Photo of zeledonia
2.98/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Camping out in the Fremont-Winema National Forest, and I picked this up at a little gas station convenience store. My first beer from this brewery. Tasted 19 July 2012, reviewed from notes.

Pours dark chocolatey brown, with an abundant thick pillowy medium-tan head. Excellent retention and lacing. Very nice.

Smell is nice as well, an interesting blend of light-bodied but deep-flavored chocolate malts with a touch of floral hops, and a tiny bit of orange. The kind of black ale aroma that I like, with a lovely dark-light balance and contrast. Feels light but smells dark.

Taste is bland and dull. I'm struggling to pull any flavors out of it. Even accounting for the effects of altitude, there's not much to it. It's especially weird, given how pleasant and varied the smell is. It's not bad, but it's nearly flavorless.

Mouthfeel is fine. Light-bodied, plenty of carbonation.

Where's the flavor? The smell is really nice, but the taste doesn't follow it at all. An odd experience. (990 characters)

Photo of katybee
2.98/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I gave this beer highest points for its dark coloration...deepest cola brown, almost opaque, with light tan short-lived head.

Smelled mostly malty, toasted, with a little dry sourness.

Tasted somewhat one-dimensional to me, mostly the slightly bitter toasted malt, very little noticeable sweetness, smokey with flowery greenish hopping.

Seemed a little thin to me, light-bodied with none of the stickiness-on-the-tongue that makes spaten and doppelbocks sippable...Dry and thirst-quenching, but not really memorable. (521 characters)

Photo of artoolemomo
3.02/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance- Pours up a fair amount of head which has some retention that seems to increase as time passes. Lacing is spotty at the moment. The head is beige color while the body is a dark chestnut brown which shows patches of maroon when held up to the light. Almost a black ale but not quite.

Nose- Fairly subdued. Caramel has some presence from the bottle but is much weaker from the glass. There are some roasted malts, weak coffee, and a touch of smoke. After some swirling, the glass displays a bubblegum note that is quickly replaced by the roasted scents.

Taste- Roasted malts and weak coffee are the first aspects I note and honestly, that's about it. There's some light citrus but not much else. This has a very dull flavor profile. The 10 Barrel website says this has 38 IBUs but I get nothing close to that “much” bitterness. Every aspect of the palate is weak and the best thing I can say about this beer is that there are no off flavors. It certainly has nothing in common with beers I've had in the style and would be better regarded as a Euro Dark Lager. Some of the bubblegum I detected on the nose is showing itself. At best, this is an average beer. After a few minutes, some more coffee and bitterness is showing itself but not enough to become more than mediocre.

Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied. Maybe a little too much carbonation. Hints of smoothness and creaminess.

Drinkability- Very easygoing. No off flavors and no dominant aspects and no heat make it very sessionable. Not too bad of a price- around $3.50 a bomber.

Overall- Mediocre beer. If you like black lagers, this is worth a try. If you want a real black ale (a black IPA or a CDA), then you should ignore this. (1,721 characters)

Photo of Wetpaperbag
3.02/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- The bottle says Black Ale, and I was hoping for something along the lines of a dark thick beer, especially when you have a name like Sinistor Black. But the beer is more the color of Orval bottle glass, perhaps a shade darker. There is a decent amount of head, but it fades fairly quickly.

S- This has some nice chocolate and coffee notes to it. It reminds me of the Quilter Irish Death by Iron Horse. There is something meaty about the chocolate smell.

T- Well this tastes more like an American Porter. There is a mild amount of coffee, and chocolate flavors. But nothing about this beer, other then perhaps its color would even make me think Brown Ale. Perhaps that is just a mistake by the person who added the beer to the site. I'm saying this is more of a porter then anything else. It isn't too bad, it is a bit weak, but it grows on you.

M- This is where I find the biggest let down with the beer. I mean cool label, great name, I'm looking for something thick black potent. But not the case, this beer is thin, and I mean thin. I was expecting to have to chew a bit, just based off the name, instead I ended up with carbonated water. I've actually had water thicker then this. If I were to look at this as an American Porter I can see how a thin mouthfeel would fit, but I wasn't expecting this, and it bugged me the whole time I was drinking this.

D- If I were to use the Bud Light scale of drinkability (as in thin and completely chugable) then this would be spot on. This does have nice flavors, and is easy to drink quickly.

Pic Added (1,554 characters)

Photo of N3rdM3t4l
3.03/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber into standard pint served at fridge temp. review from notes taken 6/14/12

A:pours cola colored with a small milk chocolate colored head that fell into a thin cap and ring. Not much light getting through.

S: slightly sweet with a big dark malt smell. No hops on the nose and slightly medicinal.

T: malty malty malty, just enough hops to balance but not taste. Dark malts all the way through with sweeter malt along side at first. Although not as sweet as it smells.

M: light side of medium and didn't get thicker feeling as it warmed. a little carbonation makes it pretty smooth. Balanced flavor.

O: My first beer from 10 barrel brewing and it was good, I hope the rest of their offerings are just as good. Well balanced brew and doesn't have that bitter bite from the black malt like some beers do. And at a price of <$3 I would buy it again for sure. (866 characters)

Photo of ThaCrax
3.17/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was expecting an aggressive Black Ale... so that didn't work out for me lol. This was like a sheep in wolves clothing to me. Intimidating exterior, but tame and mild in reality. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't what I was looking for either. (242 characters)

Photo of srhoadsy
3.17/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Served chilled into a tulip.

Pours an extremely dark brown to black with red highlights. Half an inch of light brown head that quickly recedes leaving minimal surface layer and lacing.

Mild aromas of malt and a hint of smoke.

Flavors are very mild. Roasted grain, dried fruits and a hint of smoke.

Light bodied with moderate carbonation.

An average beer at best. Everything was just a little on the light side for my tastes. (429 characters)

Photo of blackc5
3.23/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass at 47F.

A - Quite dark and black, this had a high carbonation head that wasn't going anywhere fast, and minimal lacing.

S - Malts and molasses, some hints of smoke, and just a touch of chocolate.

T - Although generally, this tastes ok, this comes off as a beer that doesn't quite know what it wants to be. It is a VERY dark brown ale, or a weak American porter. I would say it is closer to the latter, but it feels a bit under-flavored and wimply in that regards. The overall flavor is slightly sweet roasted malts with a touch of nuttiness and chocolate.

M - Highly carbonated, medium bodied. Fairly smooth but a bit thin, and not a real standout.

D - ABV is pretty low, and it goes down easy enough. But, I would pass on buying it again. Was expecting a lot more with a name like Sinister (no matter the silly spelling). (871 characters)

Photo of hreb
3.26/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

S1nist0r Black Ale. A schwarz bier fermented with ale yeast -- or, as previously stated, a black ale. Perhaps a black Kölsch would be a better description. 22oz bottle served in a curved stout glass. Beer pours on the brown side of black, with a thin tan head, and yields a mild, malty aroma. Flavor is mild and fizzy. Like, a lot mild, though what flavors there are (nutty, hazelnut) are pleasant enough, except for the high carbonation this could be a legitimate session ale. (484 characters)

Photo of quetzal013
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into pint glass. First, not much on the head, fizzled out pretty quick. Color is a very dark amber, almost black with back-lighting. This beer is by no means elite but it is easy drinking and not bad on the tastebuds. If I was playing a few rounds of Mike Tyson's Punch Out on my NES I could run through a bomber pretty quick. I feel like I want to like this brewer so much... small OR brewer, Fonzie type names, small distribution. I'm not sure how long they have been around but would be curious.

So it goes like this, there are slight coffee/chocolate notes, nice, subtle. There is almost a dry tartness to it, like sour but not quite. Something wants to make me taste fruit at the end, but there is a fleeting sense to it, like an 80's pop song, but an average 80's pop song, not terrific like Take on Me.

Overall, nice beer, easy drinker, low ABV for sessioning with the pals. I like that they are a small brewer and they have great potential!! I would retry their brews if I had the chance but they seem a bit immature still. (1,047 characters)

Photo of cswhitehorse
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The sinister black ale pours a dark black with a small foam head and not much in the way of retention. It is characterized as a brown but I thought it said black ale on the bottle.

The aroma is malty with no much hop aroma. The taste is smooth with a faint raisin in it. The mouthfeel is a little silky and overall not a bad black ale. Overall not my favorite style but a easy going drinker. (392 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

"People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest."

--Hermann Hesse

Burnt walnut brown with rust orange edges and a massive number of uprushing bubbles. The ecru colored crown filled the vast majority of the glass on the pour and isn't shrinking very quickly. As the foam melts and becomes rocky, the beer takes on the appearance of a black cow (Coke and ice cream) or a root beer float. More sudsy ribbons of lace stick than were expected.

The aroma is darker than a brown ale and lighter than a stout (but closer to the latter). That often happens when black malt is used. It's also somewhat spicy, in a phenolic way, which doesn't necessarily bode well for the flavor profile.

It's highly likely that the mouthfeel is at least partly to blame, but 10 BB S1nist0r Black Ale is not a wonderful example of.... whatever style it is. Again, the use of black malt means that it tastes nothing like a brown ale. Although time is helping to calm the carbonation storm, there isn't much depth when the beer is judged on its own merits.

Black licorice and dark caramel dominate the flavor profile. There's a little black tea leaf bitterness that is easily countered by a modest amount of sweetness. The result is a leveling balance, rather than the contrasting balance that most well-brewed beer delivers. A dark fruit tanginess sneaks in with continued warming.

The mouthfeel is too light, regardless of the ABV. In addition, it suffers the fate of most overbubbled beer. That is, it's way too fizzy early and is borderline flat by the midway point of the bottle. With even an above average mouthfeel, the scores on either side might have been one notch higher.

When properly carbonated, S1nist0r (note the buried '10') Black Ale is probably about as good as this brewery's Apocalypse IPA. If it was more easily available, I'd give it another go round to see if my suspicions are correct. (1,907 characters)

Photo of Jsteez
3.41/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I bought this beer on a whim in Boise, ID.
Beer size: 22 oz. brown bottle.
Glassware:Seidel mug

The pour was delicate and slightly foamy. The color was black with dark red hues. Not really that translucent. It left a light brown-tan head which dissipated quickly. It had an attractive lace down and around the sides. I nursed this beer for 1 1/2 hours. A thoughtful drink.

The smell was slightly sweet with hints of caramel, dark bread, and yeast. A little hint of hop and malt.

Going in, the taste had a sweet, caramel sensation. The aftertaste was dry, slightly bitter, a little metallic (not enough to ruin the overall taste and roasted dark chocolate/coffee flavor).

The mouthfeel was medium bodied, not too complex.The overall taste combination lingered on my palate for a while.

This beer is above average. It is not a beer I would go searching for. It still needs work. I have had better dark beers. It was like drinking a medium porter with a pale ale quality. A little confusing. However, it will quench your thirst while enjoying a marble rye reubon with brown mustard. Trust me, you won't be dissapointed with that combo. (1,143 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
3.41/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Jason - I was under the impression this was a schwarzbier when I reviewed it. Served in a Darkness glass.

A - Quick-dissolving light tan foam that settles to a thin wisp bubbles on top and spotty lace. Dark brown body with some transparent reddish highlights.

S - Roasted malts, some bread, biscuit, and yeast, light cocoa, minimal hop character - guess I shouldn't be surprised as this uses Perle hops.

T - Taste is similar, with a bit more sweetness from the caramel and the cocoa. Light roast character, no hop flavor or hop/roast bitterness.

M - Medium-light body, zesty higher carbonation, dry roasty finish, clean aftertaste.

D - Decent beer - lots of flavor for the lower ABV, but otherwise nothing exciting or special. If this is cheap, you could do a lot worse as this manages to avoid the harsh bitterness and astringency of other black ales. (874 characters)

Photo of GreenCard
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: brown, good clarity, thick layer of tan fine-beaded foam, good head retention

Aroma: malty and chocolatey; hints of dust, grain, and molasses

Flavor: medium malt sweetness balanced by a smooth roast; touch of brown sugar and some acidity; finishes semisweet with a lingering maltiness and not much hops

Mouthfeel: medium body, gentle carbonation, somewhat slick

Other comments: Tastes a lot different than I expected. It's basically a porter. (458 characters)

Photo of beertunes
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This 22oz bottle has been sitting in my big boxes o beer for at least 2 years, and possibly 3. Just keep that in mind, and don't use this review as guide to whether or not you should try this beer. IIRC, this one came courtesy of Chumba526 when he did a trip to PDX while living here in Beeringham.

Poured into straight pint glass. Whooosh! The first slight pour produced about 1/10 inch of beer and the rest of the glass full of foam. It took a goodly while (minutes) to settle to the point where I could pour more beer. And the same results occurred throughout the life of the bottle. Eventually I ended up with a beer that was a lightly translucent black with a thick tan head that (obviously) had good retention and moderate lacing.

The aroma still had some nice floral hops, some grain, a light touch of roast and enough hoppiness to provide a clue that this may have been a hop-bomb when fresh. The roast was much more noticeable on the tongue, there was a decent amount of base grains and still a touch of citrus hops in back.

The body was typical for a CDA, which is what I think this beer is. Drinkability was very good, especially considering that CDA's really aren't my favorite style and the age of this brew. It appears that the brewery is still making this brew, it's worth a shot if you see it. (1,312 characters)

Photo of THECPJ
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes: thanks goes out to Nate for sending this one my way.

appearance: dark brown with a 1 finger head

smell: roast, caramel, malts, hops,

taste: roasty, caramel, malts

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: it's an alright beer nothing I would go out of my way to track down.

cheers,
The CPJ (325 characters)

Photo of jdense
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at EOU Faculty Lounge, $12 pitcher split with a buddy, 4.14.11. I don't believe the Brown Ale designation is correct, this is certainly an attempt at a CDA, and the recipe has certainly changed since last review.

One finger light tan head, medium dissipation with minimal lacing over dark brown/almost black opaque body. Nose features good dose of roasted malt balanced by floral hops. Taste is predominantly roasted malts, picked up some faint chocolate notes once it warmed significantly, citrus hops, no bitterness to speak of on backend. Medium mouthfeel, decent effervescence, a wee bit sticky. This is what they are talking about when they call CDAs hoppy Porters. I know I'm spoiled by my proximity to Barley Brown's Turmoil, the benchmark for the style evidenced by first Gold medal at GABF in the category, I just didn't find this that interesting and certainly not hoppy enough for my liking. (910 characters)

Photo of olmatty
3.51/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance-Pours a brownish black beer with sticky lacing and a high pillowy head.

Smell-Light roast and brown bread.

Taste-Medium roast, dark sour German bread. Middling herbal
hop presence.

Mouthfeel-Moderately full bodied and somewhat sticky.

Drinkability-Smooth and drinkable, but frankly a bit boring. Billed as as black ale, this beer is a darker brown ale with a bit more roast. (391 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
3.52/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pour is black with red edges and lots of tan head and a few larger bubbles. Nose is dark malt, lightly smoked, light hop presence behind with a bit of herbal green hop behind. Taste is not super expressive, dark black malt that is lightly smoked, the hop isn't as prevalent, still a touch green, bitter coffee towards the finish and lingering. Well carbonated smooth medium body. Not bad. (388 characters)

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S1nist0r Black Ale from 10 Barrel Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.