Sticky Fat - Half Acre Beer Company

Not Rated.
Sticky FatSticky Fat

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

38 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 38
Hads: 129
Avg: 3.97
pDev: 20.15%
Wants: 10
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Half Acre Beer Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mcallister on 08-11-2010

Early fall had farmers picking whole cone hops and shipping them to us overnight to brew a wet hop beer. We kicked up a black beer with a very sticky hop character. Beware of the StickyFat Bear.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 38 | Hads: 129
Photo of route66pubs
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to GbVDave for the growler! Great surprise this one!

A - pours an extremely dark black. No light through this. Root beer-like head is thick and heavy from a hard pour, and it sticks to the "pint" glass like a spider web, leaving its fingerprints all over the glass for a long, long time.

S - the aroma changes over the course of the growler. What was originally pretty darn citrusy with the first pour has - as I'm into my second glass - become more mellow and, as Dave said, piney. This is an incredible aromatic beer with each and every layer having its own enjoyment for sure.

T - some definite hops in there but what are they? I first thought Amarillo as citrus (grapefruit and maybe a hint of lemon) abounded. Now, I'm not so sure. The hop forward nature of this one has diminished over an hour or so, and has become MUCH more balanced. Still some citrus but smokey, charcoal flavors are now coming forward more.

M - Initially, the carbonation on this was almost too much. Now, carbonation, smokey goodness, and smooth milk chocolate sensations coat the tongue and mouth in equal numbers, making this a very refined BIPA indeed.

D - While I would love to try this on tap, I almost think that letting a growler of this open up and warm up may be the way to go. The changes that have happened on this over its time being open have been incredible, and it makes me want more. Of course, the dryness from the smoke and the perfect balance in the aromas and tastes don't hurt, either.

Again, THANKS GbVDave for this wonderful experience.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.07/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

64 oz growler into a pint glass. Props to my Half Acre hook-up Sean9689 for helping me out with this.

Pours a deep brown/near black, with clear ruby highlights coming out along the bottom, and topped with several thick and foamy fingers of dark mocha colored head. Once things settle down, this retains with a stiff ½ finger that doesn't budge much, leaving behind some robust and creamy swathes of lacing, which stick to the sides of the glass with some thickness. The aroma is VERY sticky smelling in the nose, with a combo of malts and hops. Hops dominate up front with some strong pine, spice, earth, and dankness, while the back end is all toffee, cocoa, and roast, which lends this an almost smoky molasses character in the nose. This is all wrapped up in a vibrant feeling fresh floral feel.

The taste is similar but even more biting, with a fresh bitter splash of resins, spice, bright citrus flavors, and dank herbal undertones. The malts are sweet at first, with some toffee and chocolate character, before a deep roasty flush of burnt character ends things. This finishes with notes of bitter fruit, rind, and wet earth all lingering on the tongue for a while. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, prickling the tongue with sharpness before filling the rest of the mouth up with flavor. The body does seem a little thin in the back (where it also feels like there should be more of a malt presence) but this has an oily slickness to it that keeps it moving in the mouth and alcohol content is very well hid.

It's good to see this one get included in the new "Black IPA / Cascadian Dark Ale" category, as a "Fresh Hop Black IPA" is exactly how this one came off to me. At first I thought that the herbal and danky nature of the wet hops was going to clash with the burnt roastiness of the malts (this does seem a little thin in the malt department towards the back) but more balancing sweetness emerged as this warmed and I was won over about ½ ways through the growler. A tasty and unique offering here from Half Acre.

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Photo of haveaduff2
4.64/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Dark, aromatic, delicious. Poured smoothly from the growler and produced a thick, lovely head with a pleasing, intense hop scent. Mouthfeel was silky and rich, inviting more sips. Almost felt like this was poured from a nitro tap, that's how silky. Big hop flavor all over this big bear, with a malty beginning and a drier finish. This was a winner. The weather had turned a bit cool that evening, just right for this one.

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Photo of thetomG
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Dark brown pour with a nice sized brown foamy head that leaves some sticky spotty lacing around the glass. Aroma is mostly a sweet sticky malty blend. Taste is more bold and complex - so much so that I'm really struggling to pick out specific flavors. There's definitely some sweet malty notes, along with a slight hint of espresso and some mildly piney hoppy aspects, but the flavor really is more of a sum of its parts than it is about any one element shining through. Is it a black IPA or a hoppy dark american ale or a hoppy brown ale? I'm not sure, but it is VERY interesting and not like any beer I've had before. On the lighter & smoother side of things and very drinkable.

Will be definitely be enjoying more of this tasty and unique brew.

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

growler from the brewery

reviews all over the place on this one - almost as if we were not drinking the same product.

split and paired with some pork belly and saturday laziness

appearance: poured from a growler into a standard pint - dark mahogany body, foamy tan cap with decent retention

smell: hoppy - mostly pine and grapefruit aromas come through, dry roasted malt

taste: We definitely liked this one - smooth chocolate, coffee, piney hops, citrus peel, dry roasted malt. Very fresh and very drinkable

mouthfeel: great - creamy and smooth

drinkability: high

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Photo of paco1029384756
2.76/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown, nearly black with one and a half fingers of creamy tan head.

Scent of lightly charred malts, sugar, dry, earthy hops, and pine. I really like the hop character, but there's something about the malt I find off.

Taste of strong pine, grass, chalk,and light nondescript malt. Similarly with the scent, I am just not picking much up from this, but maybe that is a good thing. I was really looking forward to this one, but now I will have to trudge through a growler of this and be miserable.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation, underwhelming.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.38/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked this up on Friday - as fresh as can be. Served in a Rodenbach tulip glass.

A - Pours with two fingers of tan foam that show good retention, and eventually settle to a thick cap, leaving behind splotchy glass-coating lace. The body is a very, very, dark brown color - almost black.

S - Huge dry-hop aroma here, with big floral, pine, and citrus notes, as well as some caramel and cocoa flavors. This is pretty good, and there's nary a trace of the 6.5%.

T - Here's where things go off the rails. Earthy, grassy, some chalk, and a fair bit of residual bitterness. It's almost as if Half Acre got so excited about the huge dry hop aroma, that they forgot about the "Dark Ale" part of the beer. There isn't much sweetness or roast to balance out the astringent and medicinal hop bitterness.

M - Medium-light body, overly chalky and gritty, with fairly harsh carbonation, and an odd papery residual feel. No alcohol warmth thankfully.

D - This was a big disappointment - things just went totally south after the pleasing nose. I managed to finish my first glass, but I had no interest in having another. Comes off like a ridiculously overhopped Irish Dry Stout, which is not a particularly compelling combination for me.

Probably not as bad as I'm making it out to be, but a big letdown. I think Freedom of '78 was the best of the recent batch of special releases, but I'd rather have more Shewolf or Double Daisy Cutter.

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Photo of Sean9689
3.08/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Growler from Alex. Thanks dude.

A - Pours black, tan head, thin ring and thin cap on top with some spotty lacing.

S - Very hoppy, some slighty sweet malts, rye notes.

T - Meh. Too hoppy, slight malts, rye, plastic. Not enough sweetness to balance it out. Way one-dimensional with a plastic/medicinal finish.

M - Light to medium, good carbonation, dry finish.

D - No more, please. Just not a fan. Too much hops and not enough sweetness to balance it out. I'd rather be drinking an APA or IPA if I want something this hoppy.

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Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.17/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance -- Pours nearly black with the slimmest of dark brown highlights and two fingers of sudsy khaki head.

Smell -- Bursting with fresh pine and bright citrus hop aroma, along with dark chocolate. The roast malt takes a backseat to the wet hops.

Taste -- Grapefruit and pine sap up front. Hop bitterness is moderate, with more emphasis on flavor and aromatics. Malts are dry and roasty, not unlike a dry Irish stout.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body, a bit viscous, with mild carbonation. Works well.

Drinkability -- Phenomenal. Exceeded my high expectations. Great flavors, but still very easy-drinking. I was planning on sharing this growler with some other BA's, but maybe I'll just drink it by myself...

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Photo of jrallen34
3.47/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Growler from the brewery provided by Alex.

Pours a dark brown, coca cola on the edges, light tan head, good carbonation...Aroma is super hop, can tell it was wet hopped, lots of grass...The taste is really boring, not much going on, light brown sugar, a little hops, but really pretty boring. Light chalk finish that just seals the deal as not being a good one.

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Photo of emerge077
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Epitome of a Black IPA, Cascadian dark ale, American Black Ale, whatyamacallit.

Black with a mahoghany glint in the meniscus. Arcs of sticky lacing all around, an ample cap of tan foam settles slowly.

Roasty with an almost tropical hop aroma, super citrusy and fruity. Resiny pine sap and orange rind.

Flavor has an even balance between piney, grapefruity hops and a roasty malt character. Citrus is dominant, and it's roasty in the middle... almost stout-like, with a dry finish. Very savory and balanced. Easy carbonation, allowing the flavors to come through well. Very flavorful and easy to drink... abv isn't noticeable. The wet hop character pops with freshness and is the main draw. Loved this stuff...

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Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 64oz growler into a 20oz imperial pint.

A: Pours a dark cola brown with a huge five fingers of dark khaki meringue filling the glass. Retention was excellent and the lace was plentiful and sticky.

S: Fresh squeezed pine and brown bread. Grapefruit makes an appearance as does a bit of carmelized brown sugar. Roasted malt lends some richness to the aroma.

T: Freshly clipped pine bough drizzled with grapefruit and roasty malt. Interesting mixture of flavors that brings to mind rye bread, mexican chocolate, mint, and a hint of coffee. The burps are I was chewing on a pine cone!

M: Almost perfect mouthfeel. Not thin and watery, not thick and syrupy...just right. Fantastic peppery prickle (hop oil? rye malt?) that sticks to every mouth surface. Actually tingles on the lips and tongue long after the swallow.

D: Perfect weather for this beer to drop. After a long, hot, and humid Chicago summer we were treated to a cool, dry, and breezy early autumn day...perfect for this stick to your ribs beer. Get it while you can...this is awesome!

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Photo of sidetracked
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Growler purchased today at Half Acre--a great kickoff to Labor Day weekend.

Pours a clear, very dark brown with lots of light brown head that lingers well. Some lacing.

Aroma is citrus and piney bitter hops mixed with sweet roasted malts.

Taste upfront is bitter grapefruit, citrus and pine. Middle introduces a light roasted malt flavor of roasted coffee and caramel--somewhat bready too. Finish is a combination of citrus hops and roasted malts. Lingering flavor of roasted malts and dark chocolate.

Medium body with medium carbonation. Really clean finish--not oily or syrupy.

Really nice mix of fresh hops and roasted malts. Great balance with no one flavor dominating. One of Half Acre's best so far.


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Sticky Fat from Half Acre Beer Company
88 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.