Wisdom Seeker - Black Raven Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Wisdom SeekerWisdom Seeker

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

151 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 151
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.24%
Wants: 48
Gots: 13 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Black Raven Brewing Co. visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: boogyman on 11-25-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 151 | Reviews: 40
Reviews by lochef81:
Photo of lochef81
3.99/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up as a wild card in a recent west coast buy. It pours a golden amber color with a decent white head that leaves little lacing. The aroma is a nice west coast hop aroma. Notes of pineapple, red grapefruit, and pine are prevalent. There's also a very generous amount of malt present in the nose. The mouthfeel is medium to full and sticky. I feel like it could actually use just a touch more carbonation. Flavor is a nicely balanced blend of bitter hops and sweet malt. Its good, just a little sweeter than I like my dipas. Glad I tried it but not one I'd go out of my way to get.

More User Reviews:
Photo of NWer
4.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black Raven's limited release Double IPA doesn't disappoint.
Darker in tone than other great DIPA's - Pliny E&Y for example.
Good well behaved foamy head results from my pour into my 21st Amendment chalice.
Very pleasant but not overpowering citrus taste lingers well.
A wonderful way to spend an afternoon. Tending to business and seeking a little wisdom.
Delish.

Photo of standardcherry
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle produced on March 21st 2013. Drank on April 8th.

A: Almost transparent gold color. A nice white head with very nice lacing. Good looking beer!
S: Blast of hop resin and pine! Also has a big candy-like aroma. Strange but good. Followed by a slight citrusy character and some toasted malts.
T: Just like the nose. Big piney/grassy bitterness with a bit of orange zest. I usually prefer my IIPAs to be more fruit-forward but this one is great. Lots of caramel malty backbone in there supporting the super piney hops. A bit of spiciness in there. Strange candy flavor just like the smell. Very interesting and tasty, just not something I would expect in a IIPA.
M: Medium bodied with soft, creamy carbonation. A bit of an alcohol bite.
O: This is a great beer, glad I got to try it!

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.17/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Hopfest! Seemed to be very popular that day. A dark yellow pour, approaching light orange, the slightest amount of foam. Killer dry hopped citrus aroma.

Taste, more grapefruit and tangerine hop feel, the key component of this beer. Not super bitter, just hops. Would love to see this at next year's dipa festival, it would do well. Doesn't at all give off that its a dipa, you would think single given the lack of detectable alcohol and bitterness, the lightness of its body.

Photo of jpbebeau
4.42/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The second and final bottle of my recent allotment; to tulip.

A: Pours a beautiful translucent golden orange, with a finger's worth of fluffy soap-bubble head, which dissipates rather rapidly. Moderate lacing reveals itself, like it's left behind as the tide goes out.

S: Ruby red grapefruit—citrus hoppiness with a really enjoyable hint of a mixed fruit cocktail's syrupy sweetness. A bouquet of flowers I can't quite place. Lilacs?

T: Tastes how it smells, sans sweetness (at first). Hops initially dominate, but don't intimidate...they're artfully restrained. Balances with warmth.

M: Gives the impression that it tips the scales on the heavier side of middle-weight, but goes down easily with a carbonation that percolates throughout the mouth and clings to the palate well afterward.

This is an excellent DIPA.

Photo of hreb
3.72/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle served in pint glass. This year's bottle claims 8.9% ABV. Immediate, massive pine-hop aroma emanates as soon as the bottle is opened. I think there might be some dry hopping here. Peer pours pale golden in color, not quite clear, with a healthy white head. In addition to the resinous pine there's also a tropical fruit thing going on. Flavor is BIG West coast IPA, aggressively bitter. My mouth is filled with sticky, resiny flavors of pine and citrus, with hops seeking out every corner of my palate. This is not an IPA for anyone with reservations about West coast IPA. Nor a session DIPA (ha!).

Photo of dirtylou
4.07/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, split

Served in oversized Karmeleit glass - fairly light bodied with a huge sticky white head. The alcohol is omnipresent as is a permeating sweet citrus flavor. Moderately bitter, big grapefruit hop bite, pine, sugared ruby red. Quite good, but a bit rough around the edges.

Photo of FalconOne
4.52/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am very grateful to my lovely wife for bringing back four bottles of this excellent DIPA from Black Raven Brewing Company, from her was on a business trip to Seattle last week. The aroma is truly outstanding and the taste is what one would expect from a remarkable West Coast DIPA.

Photo of boogyman
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Came in for the release of Wisdom Seeker and I am pretty excited given Double IPAs are by far my favorite style. Pretty busy for a Tuesday night at the Black Raven Brewery.

A- Pours a fairly clear golden color. There is a good 2 fingers of head. The lacing is nice and sticky. Solid ring of bubbles around the edge of the beer.

S- Strong hop aroma right off the bat which is perfect. Strong citrus grapefruit as well. This brew has exactly the smell that i would expect from any good DIPA. The first whiff just begs you to taste the wonderful hoppy bitterness that is sure to come.

T- Awesome!!! Man oh man the explosion of strong hops is right in your face followed by the tart grapefruit and lemon and finishes bitter and just a bit warming. Almost no boozyness at all which is just fantastic.

M- The carbonation is just right. It has a nice bubbly feel to it but at the same time it goes down smooth.

D- Other then the fact that this is a DIPA and will probably floor me faster then some, i would enjoy the ride there as this brew is fantastic and i definitely recommend anyone within the greater Seattle area or anyone that is visiting the area to stop by and try this.

Photo of jmarsh123
2.69/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours clear orange-ish color with a good cap of creamy white head. Good retention and a touch of lacing.

Very pine and resin forward. A bit of candied grapefruit as well with some floral notes. Good sticky and dank aroma.

And now the let down. Definitely leans west coast style although there is a bit more malt than in most in that classification. Starts out with a touch of citrus before it's enveloped by bready malts and pine. A weird sweet bread flavor clashes with the hops. Very astringent finish and every bit of the 9.0% ABV shines through then some. Booziness is overwhelming by the end.

Sticky medium body with medium to low carbonation. As mentioned, does nothing at all to hide alcohol.

Not sure why this beer is getting glowing reviews. In my opinion, it's a decidedly below average DIPA. The aroma is very intriguing, but the taste is an absolute mess. 9.0% feels like 12.0%. I've never had a DIPA that seems to add ABV before. There's also a weird sweetness that clashes with the alcohol. Decent hop profile, but is lost behind the booze. Ended up pouring some down the drain as it got to be too much. Very let down by this one.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a light to medium golden amber with a fine two finger white head with great carbonation and chunky lacing. Aroma dominated by piney and citrus hops with grapefruit and light caramel malt. Flavor is a great balance between caramel malt and herbal, piney hops and mild mixed citrus. Medium body with some creaminess and nice active carbonation. It was a long wait to try this, but it was worth the wait. A very well balanced IPA that starts out nicely malty with light citrus fruit and then slowly develops a great herbal hop presence that lingers. Lives up to its hype and I look forward to greater availability. This is one of the great PNW breweries.

Photo of visualweasel
4.81/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Just got to try this for the first time. On tap at the brewery in Redmond.

A: Beautiful, clear bright gold color, about a finger of white head, leaving behind lovely and abundant lacing.

S: Mouth-watering hop resin, pine, and citrus (in that order). Makes you want to stick your nose right into it!

T: Follows the nose and delivers more. Wonderful west coast hop essence. Not profoundly bitter, but the hops contribute to the nose and the flavor in big, big ways. Very balanced. Reminds me of a cellared Dogfish Head 120 in flavor, but more like a Dogfish 90 in other ways, and easily its match. This is a DIPA to spoil you for others.

M: Medium-bodied, appropriate carbonation for the style. Very satisfying on a beautiful day.

O: Up there with the best imperial IPAs I've had. Hard to find for anyone outside of Western Washington. If you see it, don't miss it.

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes taken during GABF 2011.

Photo of ScreamForMe
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From a growler ('10 summer and '11 winter releases):

Big thick head on each pour from the growler. A whole lot of lacing as well. Citrus all over the place in the nose - like I had fresh hops on the side or something.

Super smooth taste and the abv is masked almost completely. A dangerous beer to drink but oh so good.

For someone like me that isn't really into hops, this beer will make a believer out of anyone!

Next review!

Photo of Justin_Neff
4.52/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 4/16/2013.

A: This one is a beauty. Completely translucent light golden body with a silky, thick, bright white head that leaves nearly a full layer of lacing on the glass.

S: Tons of pine and citrus. Smells like strong fruit and hops.

T: Dank. The bitterness lingers. Tons of hops and sprucey pinecone overpower what normally sticks as a citrus strength. The taste and bitterness of lemon and grapefruit peel finishes the mouth wonderfully. The balance is really nice.

M: Full body, but surprisingly drinkable for a DIPA. Oily. Sticky. Medium Carbonation.

O: Wow, was I pleased with this one. Great west coast DIPA. The balance is incredible for being so hop forward but also pretty sweet and resinous. So happy I got to try this one.

Photo of bstave
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into my New Belgium tulip snifter

A- Translucent copper with a finger of white head. Lacing is nice. Very nice looking.

S- Smell is gorgeous with BIG fruity and pine hops. Smell is spot on! WOW!!! I think I will sit and smell this for a while.

T- Taste follows the nose. This is VERY fresh! One of the best tasting IIPAs I have had. I had this last year on tap and this is significantly better even though it is out of the bottle. Big oily hops up front and solid caramel malt backbone. Cannot taste the alcohol. Well done!

M- Carbonation is perfect contributing to a spot-on creamy medium mouth feel. Rolls down very nicely.

O- My favorite beer of the year. Too bad they don't bottle this more often. Well done!

Photo of Thorpe429
3.21/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of psiweaver in the Good People/No Rules BIF. Served in a Mikasa tulip.

Pours a slightly-hazed peach color with a good white head and loads and loads of lacing on the sides of the glass. The nose brings a bit of alcohol and malt plus some citrus hops and a light bit of pine. Flavor takes a further turn toward the malt, though there's quite a bit of hop bitterness in the background. Medium body with a bit too much alcohol. Slight chewiness. Decent DIPA.

Photo of jlindros
3.22/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to rudzud for giving me this bottle to try.

Pours a nice creamy 1 finger head that fades at a med to slower pace, nice soapy lacing, long rings of lacing, semi hazy but mostly clear honey golden color.

Nose is a mix, some nice hops and some not so nice, starts with a little citrus and tropical notes, little juicy tangerine and papaya like, but that quickly gives way to the bad, some rancid hop oils, lots of hop oils and resin, some piney earthy and a little musty cat piss, lots of forest floor pine and herbal tea like hops. Under that is a little candy malt note, little sweetness.

Taste is also sweet, candy malts come right out, little syrupy and some candy sugar, even a touch of a maple syrupy like note but not really a mapley flavor. With that is a touch of booze warmth, and some phenolic notes. But the real player is the hops again, big earthy herbal hops, again that cooked vegetable like note and rancid hop oils, quite an unpleasant hop chracter I think, with some chewy spicy like hops, forest floor pine and earthiness, like chewing on the moss and pine needles, mushrooms, etc, on the floor. Quite bitter overall, that even brings a little briny taste, and booze with some esters. Finish is sticky sweet, more booze warming through with a little ester, lots more hops with chewy herbal forest floor flavors and cooked hop oils.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, decent but lighter carb, mild warming booze, little sticky sweetness.

Overall not good, malts are OK, booze is OK, but the hops are just bad I think, it's like you take the worst profiles of most hops and throw them together in this beer. The initial quick attempt at citrus was so quickly smashed I almost forgot I even got it in the first place.

Photo of Davepoolesque
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinks light. Bitterness on the back end. Hops don't jump out at you.

Photo of John_M
4.49/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled (repeatedly) the other day at the Washington cask festival. Described in the program as "extra wise and firkenized."

The beer pours a somewhat hazy peachy amber color with suprising good head retention and consdirable sticky, creamy lacing all around. The nose is quite lovely in this beer, with a considerable amount of tropical fruit (smells like there's a lot of mosaic hops in this bad boy), but with noticeable citrus and pine as well. This smells like a serious DIPA, something that I was able to quickly verify on the palate. The flavor profile deliverys a lof of apricot and peach in this beer, but with a considerable back bone of orange citrus and pine as well. The finish is quite long and bitter in this excellent DIPA, and the alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile.

Excellent beer, and one I'm very glad I finally had the opportunity to sample.

Photo of CascadeConan
4.64/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 20oz imperial pint glass at their taproom Wisdom Seeker appears harmless, a deep yellow falling toward amber with great head retention and clarity I've never seen from a double IPA before (I was later told they had some trouble with the fining agents and this batch was filtered).

The smell is a hop barrage from seven varieties, Nugget, Chinook, Centennial, Simcoe, Amarillo, Summit, Citra, blended to perfection.

The taste, as you would expect, tails towards the bitter side but it's done with a well guided hand, each hop variety plays it's part beautifully and it's fun to tick off each in your head as you sip. The malt is present and delivers the hops smoothly with a nice ESB presence and little evidence of it's 9% ABV. About half way through my uberpint I got a little droopy eyed, engaged in an argument about food with the other buzzing bar flies and was one with the universe by the end.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle sent to me from Hopburster.

A - Pours a slightly hazy, medium-oragne with a one finger light tan head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Super strong pine hits you hard, then some orange, and then a unique candy smell, almost like cotton candy.

T - Pine, grass, very earthy - then sweet citrus and candy follow.

D - Perfect balance here. Good carbonation and body.

O - I really love this one. Try it if you can.

Photo of draheim
4.46/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz (bottled 4/16/2013) into a tulip. Pours a crystal-clear copper color with a big frothy white head. Lazy carbonation rises from the bottom.

Aroma is a big burst of clean citrus and pine. Smells like Pliny.

Taste is dank, sticky, and resinous. Tons of hop oils, held together by a solid backbone of clean pale malt. More pine and citrus. Alcohol is well-hidden. Great balance.

Mouthfeel is oily and sticky, about right for a big DIPA. Nice bitterness on the finish, but this one is also pretty sweet.

Overall this is about exactly what I hoped for and expected. Wisdom Seeker is world-class, about as good as any other DIPA out there. The real deal.

Photo of MADhombrewer
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to ramnuts for this. 22oz bottle poured into a white wine glass. No bottle date.

Appearance- Light orange color with a small amount of haziness to it. Strong white head, and good lacing. 4.5/5

Smell- Very good. Fruity and piney all at once. I didn't think that was possible since I would figure one would cancel out the other. Not sure here. I took the time to keep smelling before a sip. 4.5/5

Taste- The taste is a lot more balanced than the smell. The malt comes out a bit more here. There is some heavy orange and tropical flavors. 4/5

Mouthfeel- It's a bit heavy here. I expected that due to the style, but thought differently when I saw the color. 4/5

Overall- I am very happy to have had a taste of this. Good beer that I would seek out again if given the chance. 4/5

Photo of flagmantho
3.94/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: golden hue with a haze-free body and a moderate effervescence. Head is a thick finger of frothy ivory foam with decent retention. Quite good!

Smell: citrusy hop character with a grainy malt underneath. Enticing and well-balanced, but not mind-blowing.

Taste: sweet malt with a dank, citrusy hop character. A little bit of graininess and astringency comes in at the end. The finish is a little more syrupy than bitingly bitter. It's a tasty brew, but doesn't have the crazy-good character of a great DIPA.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a big, well-integrated carbonation and a very good creaminess for the style. Kudos.

Overall: a very tasty and drinkable DIPA. Sweet with a nice fruity hoppiness, and not overwhelmingly bitter. I'd definitely have this again.

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Wisdom Seeker from Black Raven Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 151 ratings.