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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.
very good

113 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 7
Gots: 9 | 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: 113 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Professor_X


4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

04-24-2013 18:42:50 | More by Professor_X
Photo of rev3rb


4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

04-16-2013 20:48:43 | More by rev3rb
Photo of Ysgard


4.15/5  rDev +4.5%

They are bottling now. I got this at the local grocery in 12oz 6-pack.

A: Ruby in the afternoon sun, with a head that appears in its own time after pouring.

S: A touch of chocolate, backed by some earthy-hop aromas.

T: Citrus, touch of toasty malts, piney bitter backend, then a porter-esque aftertaste.

M: Balanced, lively carbonation, but the body is slightly heavier than I expect for an IPA, which checks the carbonation nicely. Still, just a bit more body than I want. A bit of alcohol bite on introduction.

I like this more than I expected. I'd heard rumor of a batch that lost that hop character early on in their bottling program, but this is as good as I recall direct from the brewery.

04-14-2013 18:16:15 | More by Ysgard
Photo of ThomasAWilson2


4/5  rDev +0.8%

04-10-2013 02:23:35 | More by ThomasAWilson2
Photo of AlexFields


3.25/5  rDev -18.1%

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.


03-23-2013 04:29:50 | More by AlexFields
Photo of sairvin


4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

03-16-2013 04:13:47 | More by sairvin
Photo of SonOfKyuss


4/5  rDev +0.8%

03-03-2013 16:23:42 | More by SonOfKyuss
Photo of lupercmda

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

02-28-2013 04:09:53 | More by lupercmda
Photo of speedvagen


3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

02-28-2013 03:12:16 | More by speedvagen
Photo of jvillefan


2.83/5  rDev -28.7%

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.

02-18-2013 00:07:41 | More by jvillefan
Photo of ThomWade


4/5  rDev +0.8%

02-13-2013 02:33:45 | More by ThomWade
Photo of KomodoDragon


4.28/5  rDev +7.8%

A - Black but not a black out - light will make it thru. Small cream head, with the hops doing their thing and providing wonderful lacing.

S - I pick up so very little in the smell - perhaps some subtle coffee, but all very faint

T - A nice subtle transfer from roasted malts to bitterness. Presence of burnt grains, and milk chocolate feel.

M- Creamy and light

Ideal representation of the style. Properly balanced, yet full. Wonderful job allowing the ingredients to shine thru.

02-11-2013 03:49:45 | More by KomodoDragon
Photo of VTWicked


4/5  rDev +0.8%

02-10-2013 16:06:45 | More by VTWicked
Photo of fishrunner


4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

02-06-2013 13:23:40 | More by fishrunner
Photo of Mattyb79


4/5  rDev +0.8%

01-30-2013 19:29:05 | More by Mattyb79
Photo of AndrewMichael


4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

01-26-2013 20:09:21 | More by AndrewMichael
Photo of mrterdferguson

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

12-17-2012 03:03:07 | More by mrterdferguson
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -9.8%

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

11-17-2012 13:36:43 | More by brentk56
Photo of hyoung41


4/5  rDev +0.8%

11-05-2012 15:24:09 | More by hyoung41
Photo of Gehrig13

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +0.8%

10-26-2012 11:38:17 | More by Gehrig13
Photo of drt72


4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

10-11-2012 00:50:20 | More by drt72
Photo of jaminjohnson

Yukon (Canada)

3/5  rDev -24.4%

10-10-2012 03:17:21 | More by jaminjohnson
Photo of Dirrk

4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

10-10-2012 00:56:48 | More by Dirrk
Photo of n2185

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev +0.3%

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.

10-07-2012 22:35:04 | More by n2185
Photo of teromous


2.93/5  rDev -26.2%

A: The beer is extremely dark. It is completely black, and shows very dark shades of brown when exposed directly to the light. The head stays at about half a thumb. It is colored off-white and nearly tan. The head is very nice looking. There is decent lacing.

S: It has a very interesting smell. There is a light floral hop characteristic, but then there is this distinct oak aged porter scent to it. If I didn't know it was a black IPA I would think it was a barrel aged porter from the smell. There is also a sweet smell to it...kind of like chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven. There isn't quite as much of a breadth of hop character as I'd like to smell, but the scent is good.

T: I am a bit disappointed in the flavor. It is barely hoppy at all, and it is greatly overshadowed by the roasted malt flavor. The roasted flavor is very nice, and there is a nice bitterness to the beer. Much of the hop flavor is not present. Some of it comes back after the sip, but not while drinking.

M: The mouthfeel is nice and bitter, fairly dry, with a nice backbone of carbonation.

O: Overall I think this is pretty close to a good black IPA (as the label states) ABA/CDA whatever you wish to call it. I wish it had a more hop-forward presence to the flavor. If you are a stout or porter lover, you will undoubtedly enjoy this. If you are a standard IPA or IIPA drinker, you will most likely find it to be substandard. I feel that I can not give this an average score, because it does not live up to the expectations of an average black IPA where it counts the most...the flavor.

10-05-2012 01:55:00 | More by teromous
The Great Dismal Black IPA from O'Connor Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.