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Black Hops Beer - Blue Hills Brewery

Not Rated.
Black Hops BeerBlack Hops Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
79
okay

138 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 138
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 3.46
pDev: 17.34%
Wants: 6
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Blue Hills Brewery visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: david18 on 07-05-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (14) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 138 | Reviews: 52 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of acurtis
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of nmann08
3.1/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12oz bottle.

Pours a milk chocolate brown with amber hues. Looks really low on carbonation. Almost zero head on the pour.

Sweet bready malts dominate the smell. Hints of roasted barley and faint chocolate. As it warms, more chocolate comes through.

This beer is very absent on the hop content. Flashes of citrus, finishes sweet and creamy.

Mouthfeel is thin, watery, creamy finish.

This is ok, but I wouldn't try it again.

Photo of brentk56
3.73/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a coffee brown color capped by a mammoth beige head; plenty of lacing squiggles around the side of the pint glass

Smell: Smells rather Germanic, with a grassy hop, biscuity malt character but there is a fruity element from the ale yeast

Taste: Just a trace of the biscuity malt in the foreground and then the hops take over, with a lemony/grassy/piney bitterness that grows astringent by mid-palate; underneath, there is a hint of coffee and fruit; after the swallow, the astringent hops overwhelm and linger into the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: An interesting melange but ultimately I don't really care for the astringency in the hop profile

Thanks, shaggy9356, for the opportunity

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a thin but dense off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, milk chocolate, some hops and some dark fruit.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of milk chocolate, some citrus and some dark fruit. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is a bit weak for the style and makes this beer seem more stout-like than IPA-like but it’s enough to provide a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style even if it isn’t as hoppy as most others in the style, this is a solid beer worth drinking for a long time.

Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: A nice thick frothy head rises up about 2 fingers before the large bubbles pop it back down to earth somewhat slowly, as it leaves a slightly messy lacing too. THe beer is a very dark molasses brown with some haze.

N: Semi weird... I initially get fresh roasted coffee beans, like the pure coffee bean smell right after you roast it and grind it. An earthy roasty aroma goes right with that. Then some earthy hops behind that, with a slight bitter aroma, and light grassy hop pellets. I also get a little chocolate. There's also a strange dark fruit aroma, like a fig or date.

T: Starts with lots of malts, mostly roast, with some black patent malt. Again lots of fresh roasted and ground coffee beans. Some earthy bitterness, some from the roasty coffee beans, and some from an earthy and semi grassy hop pellet taste. A spicy bitterness also starts to rise up. A slight creamy flavor, almost oatmeal. There is a slight caramel and sweetness flavor, with touch of molasses. Despite those dark malt flavors and coffee, it has a lighter ale feel to it overall, with some earthy, chewy, spicy hops.

M: Medium body with lower but tolerable carbonation.

F: Some lingering dark malt flavors, more roast and black patent, and lots of coffee. Mostly dry, but some light caramel and molasses flavors lingering. The bitterness comes on stronger on the finish, with roasty dark malt bitterness, and more hops. The hops bring more of the earthy and spicy qualities on the finish, with a slight herbal smashed hop flavor.

A strange beer, very unusual. It has those black IPA qualities that others have, with lots of dark malts, but not quite the stout thickness and richness, but more of a dark ale or almost porter. Then the nice earthy spicy and herbal hops that a black IPA would have. A nice blend of various flavors. It could have used a little more carbonation.

Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of smcolw
3.98/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Frothy foam of a head, leaves plenty of streaky lace. The color is dark brown but apparently clear.

Dark malt aromas; I can detect some black patent. Lightly earthy.

Dry and dark flavor with a strong fresh hop finish that lasts long into the aftertaste. Rich bodied with a lower level of carbonation. It comes across oily and spritzy at the same time. There's a touch of alcohol in the swallow. The general flavor reminds me of a very well made homebrew.

Overall, this is an unusual beer. It has elements of a mild stout, but with lots of hop bitterness.

Photo of rab53
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of jdhilt
3.41/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two finger light khaki head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Deep brown color. Nose is hops and tart fruit and flavor is dry, tart fruit. $4.55 for a 22oz bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

Photo of ppoitras
3.6/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased at Ryan & Casey Liquors, Greenfield, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/4" tan head over the clear burgundy brew. Head dwindles promptly down to a skim of small bubbles, with prevalent lasting lace. Aroma is roasty dark malts, stanky piney hops, with a peek of fruitiness.

Taste follows along, dark sweetness to start, fruitiness for a moment, followed by ample pine bitterness to the close. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, and drinkability is good. Could do with a little more depth of grain for balancing, but a beer with hops in its name is probably going to edge that direction.

Photo of GarthDanielson
2.78/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bomber into a tumbler pint, the beer is a very dark, vibrant, blood-ruby red coloring that looks black in the depths. There was a trace of head for a split second after a rough pour, but it goes quickly. Aromas are roasty hops, resiny and fresh, with a molasses and coffee blend, as well. Flavors are really wierd. A syrupy, darkly sweet malt and molasses tang on a watery, thin body. The hops go flying by in a flash, and don't do much to help the brew. A slight citrus undertone, but again, it's not entirely helping. The aftertaste is minimal, with a slightly sour tone to it. The finish is next to nothing. Much more watered down than it looks, and disappointing overall. The pour and the nose gave some high hopes, but the beer falls short for me.

Photo of Dicers
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of DrJay
3/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very dark, but not quite black, with clear reddish highlights. Not much of a cap developed during the pour, but a thin collar of tan bubbles did stick around for a while. Malty aroma, lots of caramel and dark malts. The hop aroma was prominent, but not dominating, mostly pine with a little citrus. There was some dried fruit and alcohol present as well. Heavy malt in the flavour, caramel and toffee sweetness, nutty, chocolate, a bit of burnt character in the finish. More of the dried fruit and alcohol. Hop bitterness was stronger in the finish, as was the piney hop flavour. Medium to full bodied with low carbonation that made it feel a little dead, but also a bit creamy. Not at all dry, but there was still some astringency from the dark malts. Overall, this just didn't come completely together for me. I would have liked the hop flavour to have been more pronounced to balance some of the sweet malts.

Photo of puboflyons
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

From the 650 ml. bottle. Sampled on October 12, 2014.

It has a handsome looking reddish-amber pour with a modest off-white creamy head. Not black as one might expect but still attractive looking.

The aroma has a pleasant sweet roasted maltiness but little in the way of hops.

The body is medium to full. Smooth.

The taste is a bit of surprise given the aroma. There is a lingering bitterness that kicks in at the end. I think they did a decent job with it.

Photo of Jwale73
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bottle served a standard pint glass. Pours a dark, translucent, reddish-brown with a half inch, loose, cream-colored head. Head quickly disperses into a skim with a band around the edges; some lacing but no legs. Nose is fairly muted and difficult to describe - citrus, malt and a feint coffee/cocoa character. Taste consistent with nose - hops character is difficult to define. Definitely some citrus acidity in the mix; however, a dominant hops characteristic is hard to pin down as a result of the dark malt presence. There also seems to be a lactose sweetness in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light-medium with an assertive carbonation and an acidity the lightly stimulates the salivary glands. Interesting and fairly complex - I'm not really sure how I feel about the style; however, well worth a try.

Photo of VelvetExtract
3.6/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Would not call this beer quite black. More of a darkish, yet semi-transparent brown. If you're gonna call the beer "Black Hops" it should at least be a bit blacker than this. The beer sports a foamy head that recedes to almost nothing. A bit of lacing.

S-I get the fruity/citrusy hops at first. I am not getting much of the aromas that come with most Black Ales I have tried. Smells to me more like a normal IPA. Not much dark coffee and chocolate here.

T-The roasted notes are more present here than in the nose. Surprisingly, the hops are a bit more muted than expected. The taste is more akin to the style than the nose. Still getting some bitterness along with hoppy flavors. Just fails to wow my taste buds. Not bad, but I have had a few Black IPAs that beat this one tastewise.

M-Somewhat similar to a light porter. Mildly watery. Good amount of bubbly carbonation.

D-One bomber will be good enough for me. Booze masked decently.

I like the idea of buying local but this beer simply isn't gonna compete with others of the same style. It is not bad, but it does not make me want to grab another one at the store.

Photo of tigg924
3.66/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, dark brown in color, hazy

Smell: burnt malt and sugar

Taste: burnt malt, sugar, chocolate, nut, and hints of charred pine

Mouthfeel: medium/low carbonation, light body--borderline watery, sweet with a small bitter backbone.

Drinkability: I like this one and could have several. This is one of the better beers from Blue Hills that I have had so far. I love the depth of flavor here. The pine/nut combo is really good. I wish this had a bit more body, but is still a quality offering.

Photo of bpfrush
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of Davepoolesque
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of jaxon53
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Kmlund
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of david18
3.73/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on draft at a bar called The Other Side while on a recent trip to Boston. The "Black" by the way modifies "ale" not "hops". Interestingly this was the second black IPA I had that day and this one wasn't bad either. Very dark in color with a suprisingly light head. Great hop aroma and flavor that are present enough to stand up to the additional malt. I have no idea of the ABV. Overall, a good beer.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.7/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #46 (Nov 2010):

A lagered ale with a German malt bill, and more than the usual amount of hops. Dark brown with amber edges; creamy, dense head. Yeasty, fruity, hoppy, roasty nose, though the yeast seems to come through the most. Super smooth with a hefty body, the clean maltiness ranges from toasted bread to chicory to cocoa powder. Mildly fruity with a yeast tone that stays. Twang of hops drops more flavor than bitterness. Expect more of a hop pres- ence (it's the name's fault). Still, the balance works here to produce a solid ale.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.65/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black Hops pours a dark brown/near black into the glass with a small, creamy light tan head. The foam dissolves quickly to a ring around the surface leaving behind a netted pattern of lace on the glass.

The aroma is malty with subtly hoppy notes. Chocolate malt, a little bit of roast with a touch of pine and citrus.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer has a firm carbonated fizz, slightly syrupy with a dry finish. The flavor is malty with chocolate and bread dominating. It also has nutty notes and a touch of ripe fruit mixed in. It finishes with some hop bitterness and a taste of pine. Once gone the chocolate and nutty notes linger on the palate.

This is a tasty, malty beer with a good body. I was looking for more hop notes and IPA characteristics. This reminded me more of a porter.

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Black Hops Beer from Blue Hills Brewery
79 out of 100 based on 138 ratings.