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The Great Dismal Black IPA - O'Connor Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
The Great Dismal Black IPAThe Great Dismal Black IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

133 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 133
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 11.68%
Wants: 7
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
O'Connor Brewing Co. visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
The Great Dismal Black IPA, named after the wildlife refuge.
The Great Dismal Swamp, in Southeastern Virginia and Northeastern North Carolina, once used as a part of the Intracoastal Waterway, is a dark, full bodied ale, extensively hopped both in bittering and aroma.
"Great with bold hop flavor, Dismal in color, Delicious all around" ~ 7.5% ABV 65 IBUs

(Beer added by: blackie on 11-20-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 133 | Reviews: 43 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Surprisingly good drinkability and taste though overcarbonated. Pours fast disipitating off-whte head on black body. Roasted malt aroma. More IPA than roast in taste and that worked. Citrus hops are there and most drinkable. Worth seeking out.Thanks Radek.

Sammy, Jul 15, 2012
Photo of acurtis
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%

acurtis, Oct 07, 2014
Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a fudge brown color with a very nice head that leaves a few shards behind

Smell: Roasty dark malt and charcoal, with hints of caramel and earthy hops

Taste: The roasty char flavors appear first, along with some chocolate and dark fruit; in the middle, the earthy hops add some bitterness but they are overwhelmed by the char; in the finish, it is the roasted malt and char flavors that again leave the dominant impression

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: I prefer a bit more hop character in my ABAs; this one is interesting, but is primarily about roast and char

brentk56, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of atrocity
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

atrocity, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of Rhettroactive
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Rhettroactive, Jul 23, 2013
Photo of LoveStout
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%

LoveStout, Oct 08, 2014
Photo of clayrock81
3.63/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a blackish body w/ one-finger head that died slowly that left some lace. A hoppy aroma with strong, roasted (maybe even burnt) malts in there as well but not really much in the sweet malt for the nose. I enjoyed this beer and on tap may have added carbonation (which is large and gives a sharp, cutting edge to beer), but the roasted/burnt malts overpower the citric hops and the sweet malts for me. Still, even though I'd say this is a dry beer that needs sipped on, it has a touch of hoppy goodness for IPA fans and there are some minor sugary sweet malts (burnt chocolate, java, toffee...I am getting these sweet-like taste sensations). A hard to do style and this one comes out good.

clayrock81, Nov 29, 2010
Photo of AlexFields
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a dark near-black mahogany, decent head but not super impressive.

Smells like a barleywine--some malty raisins, grassy hops, pretty sweet.

Tastes like slightly bitter coffee, mild grassy hop character, touch of dry cocoa. Decent but not terribly hoppy really.

Decent mouthfeel--carbonation is really good but the body is a tad thin.

Reasonably good but nothing special, a bit disappointing.

6.4/10

AlexFields, Mar 23, 2013
Photo of blackie
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: shaker pint, deep chestnut in color with some garnet hues, served with a light layer of carbonation that still manages to retain well

s: big dark pine needle hops, nutty deep roasts with a balance of pale malt and light toffee sweetness as it warms, burnt sugar, pine bark, the roasts and hops work fairly well together where in other examples they have clashed, good start

m: moderately carbonated, body just around medium with a nice drying effect in the finish

t: loaded with big pine hops and sappy bitter bark flavors that power over the base beer of roasted malts balanced with pale and toffee malt, burnt sugars, dried nuts, brief sweetness in the middle as it warms, clean and mostly dry, toffee and bark, big bitterness lingering, warming

d: the few examples of the style I've had were over-roasted, but this one does fine by me, easily drinkable, don't see much of their stuff around nova but keep an eye out if you're in the hampton roads area

pint at the Taphouse, Hampton, VA

blackie, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of jmdrpi
3.79/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Drank 3 pints from the tap.

appears almost black, frothy white head that fades. nice hoppy aroma, a bit earthy. Very mild roasted aroma and flavor to balance out the hoppiness. No too bitter or sweet either way. Medium body and carbonation. Overall a nice beer, easy to drink a few of them.

jmdrpi, Nov 15, 2014
Photo of lupercmda
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

lupercmda, Feb 28, 2013
Photo of Immortale25
4.26/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Dogfish Spiegelau glass. No freshness date.

A- Pours a mostly opaque black color with a 3/4 inch tan head that bears great retention time before slowly falling to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a solid sheet of surface foam. Frothy, resilient lacing clings to the glass.

S- Very sweet aroma with some brown sugar, heavy caramel and mild anise notes. Very enjoyable actually but has little hop character which is surprising.

T- The sweetness continues but now the dark roast of the malt steps in and shows itself. There's a considerable amount of bitterness but the forceful roast and sugar flavors win in the end. Quite drinkable for a 7.5 percenter.

M- Slightly thick with a small afterbite from the hops. Medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- My first beer by this brewery and I have to say I'm quite impressed by the sweetness it exhibits. Also nods for the ABV-to-drinkability ratio. American Black Ale is definitely a better label for this one than Black IPA. Either way, thumbs up.

Immortale25, Jun 23, 2013
Photo of ncaudle
4.2/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from tap into pint glass.

pours very dark, not quite black, with a sizable head off-white that quickly dissipated leaving a nice lacing around the glass.

very hoppy aroma. not sure of the hop varietal but it was much more citrus than pine. not that much bitterness which was kind of surprising considering its a "IPA" but I'm not complaining. there's a little sweetness but I dont think it's coming from the malts...

light bodied and nice carbonation levels. easy drinker.

ncaudle, Dec 22, 2010
Photo of Hanzo
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Hanzo, Apr 18, 2012
Photo of VeganUndead
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

VeganUndead, Mar 25, 2014
Photo of Jayli
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on draft at Buffalo Wind Wings in Harborview, VA 10/9
Served in a pilsner glass

A: This beer pours an opaque, deep brown with light brown hues around the edges when held to the light. Two fingers of khaki colored, foamy head that retains for some time. Big sheets of sticky lacing are left on the glass.

S: Nose is burnt malts, bitter chocolate, and orange zesty hops.

T: Taste is roasted malts at t he forefront, bitter baker's chocolate and coffee. Burnt notes come through mingled with lingering coffee notes and orange, citrus hops.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation, crisp at first and then creamy.

O: Goes down easy, very tasty, somewhat filling, nice kick, excellent representation of style. If we hadn't gotten the last pints of this, I would have drank it all afternoon. By and far, this would be a go to beer for me!

Jayli, Oct 10, 2011
Photo of AndrewMichael
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%

AndrewMichael, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of n2185
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very dark brown with a finger of off-white head that fades into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: Roasted malts with creamy chocolate up front with dry pine and grapefruit aromas from the hops.

T: Roasted malts here as well with bitter chocolate, some char, and an earthy, piney, hoppy finish that is lightly bitter.

M: Medium body and carbonation, this beer is nicely carbonated and avoids being too thick or watery.

O: A good black ale overall with a nice balance between the hops and the roasted malts.

n2185, Oct 07, 2012
Photo of Mantooth
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Mantooth, Apr 07, 2014
Photo of AleWatcher
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into dimpled mug.

This was an extra from lambicking-- thanks man!

Very dark-- virtually black. Kinda cloudy... Some chunks floating around inside... Toffee colored head. Weak lacing, but decent retention.

Pretty full-bodied beer. Firm feel with plenty of carbonation. Oily residue with a coffee-like bitterness.

Lots of roasted malt with some sweetness up front as well. The beer has a strong bitterness that lingers for a good bit. Citrus hops poke through, but herbal/floral notes lead the way.

Overall-- not a bad black ipa. This is a style I would put low on my "list of favorite styles," but I try to be fair in reviewing styles such as this... This is a decent beer, but I don't find it refreshing. It isn't one I would drink or buy again, but it isn't a bad attempt at the style.

AleWatcher, Aug 27, 2012
Photo of avisong
4/5  rDev +1.5%

avisong, Apr 18, 2012
Photo of jvillefan
2.83/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.75

A: It is a very dark brown with a ivory white laced head that disappears very quickly.

S: Not very good. There is old dark fruit (not in a pleasant way) with some stale chocolate malts.

T: There is some indistinguishable dark malt. It doesn't have a specific coffee, chocolate, or toffee flavor available. There is some hop bite but not nearly enough to call it a black IPA.

M: There is some thickness to the body with an excellent carbonation bite.

O: It is an average black IPA, there are many way better ones that are easily available (Sublimely Self-Righteous). Not worth getting.

jvillefan, Feb 18, 2013
Photo of Sludgeman
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Sludgeman, Jun 16, 2013
Photo of DoctorB2B
4/5  rDev +1.5%

DoctorB2B, Nov 20, 2011
Photo of lillitnn92
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

lillitnn92, Oct 29, 2014
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The Great Dismal Black IPA from O'Connor Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 133 ratings.