1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Black Phoenix (Chipotle Coffee Ale) - Bootlegger's Brewery

Not Rated.
Black Phoenix (Chipotle Coffee Ale)Black Phoenix (Chipotle Coffee Ale)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

244 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 244
Reviews: 112
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 12%
Wants: 18
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bootlegger's Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Stout brewed with coffee and chipotle peppers.

(Beer added by: DoubleJ on 04-12-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 244 | Reviews: 112 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of zac16125
zac16125

South Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Black Pheonix Chipotle Coffee Stout
22oz bottle poured into a mug
no born on date

Thanks to Redbeeron for sending this one over as an extra.

A: Pours a very dark brown, almost black, with a massive 3 plus fingers of light mocha colored head, which is light and bubbly and takes a long time to dissipate down.  1/2 a finger remains throughout most of the drink, but leaves no appreciable lacing.  

S: Heavy spicy pepper notes, mild coffee and roasted malt characters.  Nice aroma here, but rather mild and pretty one dimensional.

T: Coffee, roasted malts.  heavy cream. Initially I dont taste much spice on the palate, but it burns my lips so I know its there.  But as I continue to  drink, the peppery heat builds significantly.  I like that component but the base flavors, I guess you can call it that, are just significantly lacking.  Not enough strength of stout flavors to go along with the chipotle heat.  

M/D:  Really thin mouthfeel, and a carbonation that seems both too high, and too low at the same time (if that makes sense, which Im sure it doesn't).  It comes off like soda from a soda gun.   That with the peppery spice make this indigestion in a bottle.  Drinkability is low and mouthfeel is poor.  

O:  Overall, this is one I would pass on in the future.  I like how big the chipotle heat is, but the stout flavors and characteristics just arent there.  I appreciate what they were trying to do, but its sure as hell no Mexican Cake.  

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2012 03:09:45 | More by zac16125
Photo of acurtis
acurtis

New Jersey

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

10-23-2013 15:03:35 | More by acurtis
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

07-23-2013 19:48:27 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Beerbuddy21
Beerbuddy21

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

06-28-2013 16:05:16 | More by Beerbuddy21
Photo of DruRho
DruRho

Maryland

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

03-19-2013 00:45:22 | More by DruRho
Photo of bh123
bh123

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

08-18-2013 05:44:46 | More by bh123
Photo of Rollzroyce21
Rollzroyce21

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

03-15-2013 05:53:48 | More by Rollzroyce21
Photo of e30todamax
e30todamax

Virginia

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

02-06-2013 21:36:03 | More by e30todamax
Photo of fox227
fox227

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

05-10-2013 13:48:33 | More by fox227
Photo of LoveStout
LoveStout

New York

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

10-26-2013 19:36:18 | More by LoveStout
Photo of Brez07
Brez07

Maine

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle courtesy of callmemickey. Poured into a MBC glass

A: As I pour, it seems as this beer is a bit thin. Brown with lots of amber. Sits in the glass a dark brown, topped by a 1/2 finger sand colored head. Did not get much lacing or retention

S: Mostly milk chocolate. Some coffee and roasted malt. Lacking in this category. Zero trace of pepper

T: Definitely has a lot of coffee flavor, but thin overall. Very small touch of spice/heat from the chipotle. Brief caramel sweetness in the middle, followed closely by a slight bitterness. Somewhat of a letdown. Where is the heat?

M: Thin for the style. Too much carbonation for the style. Light roast/coffee aftertaste

D: Overall, not what I was expecting after reading the description. Fails to deliver on the promise of chipotle. Coffee was decent but couldn't carry this beer on it's own

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2011 23:59:43 | More by Brez07
Photo of ObeMaltKinobee
ObeMaltKinobee

Illinois

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

08-28-2012 10:26:01 | More by ObeMaltKinobee
Photo of sweetbrew82
sweetbrew82

California

3.25/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

22 oz. into a pint glass

P: Midnight black with only glimmers of rosy brown light streaming in through the edges of the glass. On top is a 2 fingered crown of wet sand-colored foam that's a little more on the soapy side of the spectrum rather than on the thick and creamy one. Showed decent retention, then sank to form a thick collar with little strings of lace left behind in its wake.

A: This is one of the most unique aromas I've come across in an American Stout. It's really roasted from the malts, obviously, but there's a moderate amount of smokiness here that I wasn't expecting. Meanwhile, the boldly roasted coffee beans outshine the chocolate by a good distance, while the spiciness from the chipotle peppers adds a new dimension that forces my nasal passages open with each and every whiff. I was expecting the peppers to be a little more subtle, but I really like it nonetheless.

T: As much as I enjoyed the aroma of this beer, I'm afraid the flavor just isn't my cup of tea. I love how the dark malts are perfectly-roasted and never even hint at being burnt or charred, while once again, the locally-roasted coffee beans are dominant over the creamy chocolate flavors at the halfway point in the mouthful. However, as much as I appreciate the heat that the chipotle spice brings to the table, it feels a bit intrusive and really grainy at the back of my throat. It almost reminds me of the unforgettable "drip" sensation I experienced in my throat after a friend dared me to sniff some cayenne pepper, that when teamed with the moderate amount of smokiness present, imparts a spicy, grainy, almost ashy kind of burn to the back of my throat that becomes distracting and unenjoyable after awhile.

M: Black Phoenix feels a touch fuller than medium-bodied, and even though there's not much to chew on, there is some rich creaminess accentuating the nice C02 levels. However, that grainy spice is kinda killing any sense of smoothness for me. Still, it feels good enough to earn the "good" score.

Notes: I could definitely see how some people would love this beer. If what you're looking for is some smoky spiciness in your American Stout, then this is probably your holy grail. Personally, as much as I liked the aroma, it just didn't float my boat when it hit my palate. Still, excited to see a Bootlegger's brew in a local shop. Gotta support the locals!

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2009 12:29:05 | More by sweetbrew82
Photo of broken22
broken22

California

3.28/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bootleggers Black Phoenix is being released in limited quantities and I'm glad I picked up a few bottles. This beer has a very bold label that jumped out at me. I love dark beers and when you put coffee and chipotle peppers on the label I'm buying it.

I popped the beer open poured a glass and watch the darkness flow out. This is a really dark beer. A nice thick tan head formed at the top of the glass and hung out for a bit until finally dissipating down to just a little bubble ring. I was really expecting to have a fragrant smell to this beer considering the coffee and chipotle but there wasn't really any strong smell to be had. Taking my first sip I notice that for being such a dark beer it is rather light on the palate. This beer drinks more like a brown. When I noticed that there wasn't much smell I figured the taste would be similar. Unfortunately for me that was true. There is flavor and its good its just not very prevalent.

To wrap this up I would have to say that I like this beer. I think it could just be the bottle that gave this beer the lacking smell and taste. I would love to get a nice big glass of this right from the tap. My local beer stores here in San Diego are selling a 22oz bottle of this for $5.99. I think this is very reasonable price considering the expensive ingredients that went into making this darkness. I would say if you like dark beers with coffee and have never tried one with chipotle peppers than pick up a bottle of this and enjoy.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2011 06:22:30 | More by broken22
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.3/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

6.7% ABV confirmed. Acquired locally. I don't recall the price. 650ml brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a New Belgium stem-goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are fairly high; the idea of a chipotle coffee stout sounds rather good. I've never been huge on Bootlegger's, but I'm hoping this changes my mind.

Served straight from the fridge and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Not paired with food.

A: Pours a one finger khaki-light tan head of fair cream, decent thickness, and good retention for the relatively high ABV. No lacing. Body colour is a solid nontransparent opaque black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Typical for the style but nevertheless appealing.

Sm: Chili powder, dark malts, light cream, chocolate malt, and caramel. A rather mild strength aroma. No yeast character is detectable. No alcohol is detectable.

T: Light chilis - not very spicy, dark malts, light chocolate malt, and a bit of cold pressed coffee. Lacks roast, to its detriment. The chili presence is ideal for the balance; there's not too much spiciness and it really works here. Not mind blowingly complex, but it's solid. Little subtlety, though the chili is nicely restrained (as abovementioned). I do quite like it. Needs more roast and coffee.

Mf: Smooth and wet in classic porter fashion. Good carbonation and palate presence. Perhaps a bit too thick for its simple flavour profile. Suits the flavours well. Some nice cream.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable - especially considering the relatively high ABV. I'd try this on draught, but otherwise it's not worth trifling with again. A nice little porter from Bootlegger's, but it's far from amazing. I wouldn't recommend it to friends, but it's worth trying.

B-

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 05:29:12 | More by kojevergas
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.33/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours 1/2 finger of khaki tan head. Color is a dark mahogany brown.

Aroma: Mainly porter flavors with a dark coffee roast. No chipotles here. Dark chocolate. Creamy.

Taste: The chipotles come through more here, having a hot burn in the end. Big roasted malts, coffee, chocolate, and caramel.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, roasted, spiced, and dry. Medium bodied with a medium to high amount of carbonation. Ends dry.

Overall, decent beer. It could be awesome if it wasn't so roasted. Somewhat drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

01-16-2011 22:44:19 | More by mothman
Photo of sleuthdog
sleuthdog

Illinois

3.35/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into GI pint

Pour: Almost black with an enormous 4 finger tan head. Head receded quickly to a slight film on surface.

Smell: Coffee, chocolate, and some pine. Also picking up some roast and char. Aroma is very tame and pretty uneventful.

Taste: Mild coffee meets some bittersweet chocolate. Again like the nose, roasted and char and not much heat from the peppers. This one seems to be lacking the typical stout flavors that I desire. I see where this one is going but just misses the mark on the flavors of a big stout. Well as I continue to sip this I sense the build up of the pepper heat. Did not get it initially but getting through the glass the heat is definitely there and enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: Must say this is thin for a stout with a higher than average carbonation for this style. The thinness of this makes it easy to drink.

Overall: Lacked on most aspects to me and ends up just being ok to me.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2013 00:51:29 | More by sleuthdog
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Mostly dark brown color, a little lighter than usual for craft stouts these days, but not ugly in any sense. Not much head, a thin brown (lighter) ring of head about 3/8" thick, doesn't retain well, not much for lacing. I guess that's the chipotle working.

Aroma of chocolate and coffee, I didn't pick up on the chipotle in the aroma, but the aroma was still inviting for what it was. Fractional smoke element to it.

Taste, alright, there's a little bit of chipotle. Bitter astringency, but not in a bad way. Mouthfeel was a little thin. Starting to have the phrase 'run of the mill' run through my head.

Ashy at times. Didn't really perceive any heat of flavor for the most part of my drinking experience related to the peppers. Yes, it does grow as the beer warms, but I think Stone has a cheaper alternative (smoked porter w/ chipotle) that is easier to find and better quality. Good enough, but won't be stocking up on these.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2013 23:45:36 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of srandycarter
srandycarter

California

3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Extremely dark brown, not much head, just a tan ring around the edges.

S - Sweet malt, roasty malt and slight smokiness. Coffee is more like mocha choc milk smell.

T - Thin on the malt, bitter and some coffee at finish, slight taste of chili WAY after, but not much.

M - Light bodied, good carb, not much to balance.

D - Fun to try.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2011 04:20:50 | More by srandycarter
Photo of ColdPoncho
ColdPoncho

Ohio

3.4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Brandon for this bottle

A - a gentle pour yields a whole bunch of foam. A strong fizz when the the cap came open indicated strong carbonation, but I did not expect this much. In any case, this is a very normal-looking stout. Dark body, large brown head.

S - Some nice roast, touch of peppery heat, some chocolate, not picking up too much coffee. It's a nice balance, fairly light.

T - Chocolate, roast, Pepper. Some earthy or woody notes, and some medicinal plastic-y stuff. I think some of this is highlighted by the over-carbonation, but this is a little iffy anyway.

M - thin, carbonation city. smooth.

O - This beer is not too bad. Some good stuff, but there is all sorts of bubbles goin on, and it's not helping.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2011 02:08:59 | More by ColdPoncho
Photo of tlazaroff
tlazaroff

Virginia

3.4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Coffee is prevalent on the nose, more than whatever chipotle is in here. Chocolate is subtle, but brings a nice sweetness to the nose to balance the roast of the coffee.

Pitch black in color with a light mocha head which is humungous! It looks over-carbonated just by the head. I poured so slow and it still generated a 4-finger head. Unfortunately, lacing is non-existent.

First thing I noticed wasn't the taste, but how this bear foamed up right when it hit my tongue.. it's HIGHLY carbonated. The medium-full body brings a bunch of roasted coffee beans right upfront and through the mid-palate. The beer finishes with the slightest heat and then more coffee, only to be followed by by a bit of an itch in my throat form the peppers again. The flavor of this beer is coffee-forward and comes in waves. Quite interesting, but the burps come in waves afterward too.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2012 01:46:04 | More by tlazaroff
Photo of ElSid
ElSid

California

3.41/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

The Beers of California

#53

Bottle Date: None

A: That pitch black stout look is going on with a faint head of khaki foam which fades to a bed of bubbles.

S: The coffee and roasted, toasted malt is there. No pepper bite is detectable. Overall the nose is smooth with some cocoa and espresso but was hoping for some spice also.

T: The coffee is there but somewhat muted. Good roasted malt presence along with caramel and brown sugar sweetness. Minimal chipotle burn. There is a nice bitterness which contrasts the dark sweetness.

M: Smooth and ample with good carbonation. Trace lacing on the glass.

O: As someone who loves spice and coffee this beer ultimately let me down with only moderate coffee notes and non-existent spice presence.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2013 04:32:56 | More by ElSid
Photo of eclipse54
eclipse54

Minnesota

3.43/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A 22 ounce bottle from barfdiggs; thanks Ward! Poured into a Deschutes tulip glass.

Dark brown with about a centimeter of light brown head that quickly fades away to a ring around the edge of the glass. Certainly not bad looking as it rests in the tulip glass, but not exceptional either. Smells of fresh coffee, very subtle chili, a touch of chocolate, faint caramel, and some grassy hops. Taste is a little bigger than the nose, with some roasted coffee notes up front, roasted chocolate malt, caramel, lighter hops in the middle, and a mild chili flavor in the very end. For some reason, it makes me think of poblano peppers instead of chipotle, which seems a bit odd even to me, but it works alright. Mouth is a bit watery in between bursts of flavor, feels a bit under-carbonated, and finishes quite dry and sticky. Overall, a rather average coffee stout. The addition of the pepper mixes it up a bit, but really doesn't add much value to the beer for me. I'm certainly glad to have tried it, but I wouldn't actively seek it again.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2011 01:24:25 | More by eclipse54
Photo of domtronzero
domtronzero

California

3.45/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Slightly hazy very dark brown colored with a big, dense, thick mocha head, quickly collapsing into a thin ring around the glass. Little lacing.

S - Light aromas of dark roasted malts and a little coffee. Not much else going on here.

F/M - Dark roasted malts. Burnt coffee, with a very low, almost indiscernible pepper flavor. A little bit of pepper-like warmth. Medium bitterness, accentuated by dark roasted malts. Moderate carbonation. Dry finish with a lingering roasty coffee aftertaste.

D - Okay. This is an okay coffee stout, but with the light, almost unnoticeable pepper flavor and heat, its just a little bit weird.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2010 04:57:28 | More by domtronzero
Photo of ste5venla
ste5venla

California

3.5/5  rDev -6.7%

06-11-2013 07:46:59 | More by ste5venla
Black Phoenix (Chipotle Coffee Ale) from Bootlegger's Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 244 ratings.