3 Floyds / Surly / Real Ale Blakkr - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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3 Floyds / Surly / Real Ale Blakkr3 Floyds / Surly / Real Ale Blakkr

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485 Ratings
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Ratings: 485
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 9.4%
Wants: 27
Gots: 48 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  9.99% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: AMG55 on 03-24-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

This double black as night IPA is too massive for just one brewery’s efforts. BLAKKR took the trinity of Real Ale Brewing Co., Surly Brewing Co. & Three Floyds Brewing Co. to actualize this crushing ale. Cheers.

This is the 22oz bottled 3 Floyds version, brewed in collaboration with Three Floyds / Surly / Real Ale.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 485 | Reviews: 41
Reviews by jvillefan:
More User Reviews:
Photo of beatenbyjacks
3.71/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Doing a side by side with Blakkr made @ Surly

Appearance - very bland compared to the Surly version. dark black, but not much head or lacing at all.

Smell - I get a lot more malts out of this compared to the surly, but nothing over the top

Taste - A lot more sweet and malt on this one

Mouth - ends quite dry.

Overall - I really liked the Surly one better

Photo of Brenden
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nice, big, creamy solid brown head settles and holds at one finger's height without moving. It rests there on top of a brew that's black as the darkest night. Little to no highlights show when held up directly to the light. The lacing clings strongly, the tattered sheet breaking after reaching the glass's halfway point, from which it continues with pretty strong patching and thick spotting down to the bottom.
Give the aroma some time to develop its complexities or it'll be a pretty one-dimensional balance of roast and pine, but instantly it hits the nostrils hard; the strength of this beer could be intimidating. There's citrus there as well, maybe some smoky cocoa in with the malts.
It really develops on the tongue, and the flavor just about explodes. It has the same combination of huge roast and massive hops but with a sweetness just getting in and easing the onslaught of hops bitterness. Cocoa, maybe a bit of tropical fruits, and something just a little creamy offer superb balance for such a hoppy beast. The roast gives up notes of charcoal briquettes on the finish.
Crispness nips on the tongue, but softly. The medium body finds the right median for the style. A drying aspect to the roast comes into the middle and finishes out. Overall, it's pretty smooth as well.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Review from March 22, 2014, just moving it to the correct place as I previously had the review posted under the Surly brewed version listing.

22 ounce bottle, bottled on date of 02/14/14. Served in a Great Lakes goblet, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch and a half tan head. The head stays around a long time, and there's also a lot of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like pine and citrusy hops, roasted malt, and some bittersweet chocolate. It tastes like pine and citrusy (grapefruit, mango, light tropical fruit) hops, roasted malt, bittersweet chocolate, burnt/charred malt and some coffee. Great mix of hops and bitter roastiness! Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's creamy and a bit coating with moderate carbonation. I'd say this is one of the best Black Ales I've had, I'd like to buy another bottle or 2 of this. $11.99 a bomber.

Photo of screamking
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into snifter.

Pours black with a thick mocha head. already the roasted notes are coming out. digging a little deeper the citrus starts coming out, slight orange and lemon. the taste is jacked full of roasted coffee, chocolate and a hint of orange. 3floyds really nailed this one, it is well above their average fair and a bit different then the things they normally put out.

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle purchased at Kenny Road Market in Columbus, OH and shared at the Ithaca Luminous release.

Opaque dark black pour, ominous and threatening. One inch of tan foam, and lots of lacing down the glass.

Smells like burnt pine needles, roasted malt, huge citrus fruits, and other dank herbal aromas (hint, hint, marijuana)

Very charred and smoky taste to this Black IPA. Huge hoppy front end on this one, lots of citrus and pine, but finishes with a creamy roasty flavor, punctuated by by a crazy astringent bitterness.

Medium bodied, creamy but dry mouthfeel. Drinkable for the ABV, despite the bitterness.

They scorched the crap out of me with this one, it tasted quite good nonetheless.

Photo of RaulMondesi
3.59/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Usually if Raul saw a thee headed dragon coming at him he would run the other way. But Blakkr? Nah, he'd chill with it.

Thang has that roast game on like an outdoor BBQ, and it's mixed ok enough with those IPA elements.

As a whole, it's not bad, but it's also not exactly good. Like that Kardashian/Jenner experiment, Kylette (or whatever her name is) Raul wouldn't turn it down, but he's not exactly stoked.

Photo of rlee1390
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A-Blakk in the glass. But a clear amber around the edges and while pouring. One finger head that leaves nice lacing.

S-Roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, earthy hops as well.

T-Starts with nice roasted malt with chocolate and slight coffee. Ends with nice bitterness with the hops coming through.

M-Medium bodied, rather creamy, nice carbonation as well.

O-A good beer, one of the better Black IPAs out there.

Photo of ThickNStout
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle from IPAFan521 (thanks Justin!). Bottle date is a little smeared but appears to be 2/11/14. Served in a Three Floyds teku.

Pours near black, cola brown with a two and a half finger pillow of sandy tan head. Lingers. Nice lace.

The aroma balances the hops and malts well with pine, roast malt, citrus and burnt sugar.

A roasty, bitter bomb. Pine sap, charred wood, grapefruit peel, roasted malt, bitter cocoa, burnt sugar, smoked black pepper, caramel, floral hops and a little tickle of alcohol. Hoppy and roasty in the ways a black ale should be.

Body is on the heavy side of medium and the carbonation is quite peppy. A little oily and a hont of cooling alcohol on the palate. Finish lingers with bitter citrus rind dancing amongst charred malt.

One of the better black ales I've had and also a top notch collaboration. Worth tracking down if you're a fan of the style.

Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This one pours a very nice and clear black that is nearly impenetrable to light. the head is a nice thick and lively tan color that settles leaving consistent and great lacing down the glass slowly, but not too slow.

The nose is complex with with smoky malt notes, a tinge f bourbon and alcohol with subtle, subdued fruity notes. I also detect hints of basil, nutmeg, camphor, coffee and bread.

The taste is nice bitter experience and is definitely a real ale. The hops are nice and bitter with a pleasant smokey malt bed with strong notes of alcohol, coffee, chocolate, vanilla all under a nice blanket of hoppy bitterness.

The mouthfeel is just right for this one and is not to watery nor too heavy. this delivers the taste experience over the whole palate.

Overall this is a great beer and is in the exceptional category. I highly recommend it and will be buying more.

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed from notes. Twenty-two ounce bottle shared by Sasha - thanks.

A: Pours deep black with a relatively thin (1/4") mocha head which fades to the rim and leaves a few spots of lace.

N: Roast, citrusy, dark chocolate, sweetish malts.

T: Plenty of roasted and toasted grains/malts, hoppy citrus and piney notes, bitter coffee.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Finishes roasty and dry.

O: An interesting blend and well balanced.

Photo of OrestesMethuon
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

For this purposes of this review, I'm including my side-by-side notes for both the Three Floyds and Surly Blakkr iterations: half a twenty-two-ounce bomber in a Junkyard sixteen-ounce tulip, and half a sixteen-ounce can in a twelve-ounce Florida Beer IPA tulip.

Immediately, the Three Floyds smells a lot maltier, more chocolatey and burnt-toffee, and pours with a much more robust, bubbling, khaki-colored head. The Surly, meanwhile, boasts some authentically-detectable hop elements on the nose—a pleasant olfactory pulse for a beer as black as this (or, these two, more appropriately). Indeed, the more you snuff, the more the Surly measures: pine notes, some pretty intense citrus, surrounded with merely a hint of dark sugars and earthy petrichor.

The Surly is surprisingly dry, too, with light hop-candy notes and a pleasant hop-fused tartness that floats along the mellow, rich, smoldering-malt smoothness. In a lot of ways, the Surly is what I might have expected from the Three Floyds.

The Three Floyds, on the other hand, is much stouter: where the Surly is sort of a Black IPA suprême, the iteration from Munster, IN, leans much more heavily towards the “hoppy stout” spectrum. It's thicker; it expresses its abv much more strongly in the nose, especially, as well the flavor-profile; it billows with much more head, and lingers with much more substantial lacing; and its more deeply rich in its malt assertion. Cacao-forward, toffee'd, slightly smokey (almost ashy, in fact), and more bitter-hoppy than anything else, this is still a very good beer—clean for its heft, well-bodied and -balanced, and hoppy, if more narrowly so than the Surly—it nevertheless just feels less successful than the version of this collaboration brewed up in Minnesota.

Even though I do like Surly a lot, the results of this comparison were a definite shock to me—and it really forces one to consider more than just local elements (equipment; water), but the very substantial effect the bottling-vessel has on a beer, particularly as it ages. Indeed, I had Surley's effort on draught in Rochester, MN, but I think it's honestly better from its sixteen-ounce can. Moreover, the particular importance of pairings also further crystallize for me through this direct comparison, since I remember feeling more more positively about the Three Floyds version when I was drinking it off the tap at Owen & Engine, expertly poured alongside elk loin seared in brioche-ash and grains-of-paradise to bring out the strengths of 3F's offering.

So, it's certainly a good reminder: when a brew is delicate, and full of very deliberate effort, the smallest perturbations can truly create very different end-products.

Photo of BB1313
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 2/14/14. 22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours black with a fluffy khaki head that sticks around and leaves great lacing and retention. Smells great. The aromas have a nice blend of citrus and tropical goodness. Lots of grapefruit and pineapple. Some orange zest in the mix. Slightly roasty. There's some subtle chocolate aromas, but the chocolate notes are much more present in the flavors. It has that typical Three Floyds aroma that you find in alot of their hoppy beers. Tastes very good. The hops really shine. Lots of citrus. More orange and grapefruit. Some fresh pine needles. Some black pepper. There's a very subtle spiciness to it. Cocoa malts are there. There's a nice roastiness going on. Alcohol is well hidden and it's dangerously drinkable. Mouthfeel is great. It's full-bodied and simply smooth. There's moderate carbonation and it's slightly velvety. Good stuff.

This is a great collaboration. It's up there with some of the best Black IPAs out there. They really nailed it. It ultimately feels like an amped up/imperial version of Alpha Klaus. Well crafted.

Photo of drdiesel9483
4.66/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Imperial black ipa. I drank this originally on tap at 3 Floyd's and loved it so much that I got a bomber. This beer is brewed by real ale, surly, and 3 Floyd's brewing co. I'm reviewing it now out of a bomber poured into a sniffer.
Look - dark as night just like they say.
Smell - very hoppy and malty smell. Smells like a ipa and stout mixed together.
Taste - just like it smells it taste like a stout mixed with a double ipa, very hoppy and malty.
Feel - good carbonation and slight thick.
Overall - fantastic beer. This one is a perfect mixture of malts and hops. Best black imperial ipa I've had!

Photo of BrewThru_29
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Jet black. Nice dark brown head with good lace.

Smell: OK, I tried like hell to pick up a stout type aroma, but all I can smell is hops. Actually, this smells like Alpha King.

Taste: Big hops up front, looks nothing like it tastes. I am getting some of the stout malty backbone on the tail end. Interesting.

Moithfeel: Quite bitter. Actually a bit harsh. Mild alcohol presence is felt.

Overall: Nothing bad going on here. Just a bit of a weird flavor combo. Basically tastes like someone mixed a stout with Alpha King.

Photo of Atlas1
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First of all, it's incredible that we even get this beer here in Texas, where Three Floyds and Surly are rare sightings. Thank you Real Ale, for collaborating on this.

Pours a dark black color. Not Dark Lord black, mind, you, but black enough. Tan head with decent lace. The nose is strong, bitter coffee, faint chocolate. Nutty and earthy. The taste is delicious. Deep and layered, there are notes of coffee, chocolate, faint vanilla, tree bark, oats and nuts. Maybe a hint of dark cherry. Nice hoppy bitter finish. Mouthfeel is firm.

I really like this beer. Not just because it's a great collaborative effort by some of my favorite breweries (although that is part of it), but because it's a damn fine beer. Kind of a silly can design and name, like most of Three Floyds stuff, but who cares 'cause it's mighty fine. More of this, please.

Photo of chanokokoro
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Three Floyds Brewing Company branded teku glass

Pours darn near opaque black capped by a light tan two finger fluffy head. Great retention with plenty of lacing. Big citrus notes, grapefruit, passionfruit, and light cocoa powder on the nose. Bitter citrus notes again including grapefruit, passionfruit, light roasted malt midpalate. Bakers chocolate transitioning to medium roastiness combined with a dry hop-induced bitterness. Medium-bodied, hints of velvet on the palate, moderate carbonation. A very solid brew, especially for the style. I certainly wouldn't turn down another.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Definitely black, tan-brown head that had plenty of staying power and left good lacing.

Aroma and taste are excellent. Roasty and hoppy flavors blend nicely, somewhat reminiscent of a CDA but certainly believable as a black ale too.

It's bold and flavor-forward, and won't disappoint. I recall seeing it in an email from a buddy of mine who works at a big liquor store, and thinking I need to try this.

Definitely. Awesome. Beer.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.64/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 3.19.14
Bottled 02/14/14

A - Pours a very dark brown with a creamy dark tan head with good retention.

S - Lots of hoppy pine and citrus.

T - Hoppy up front, then roasted chocolate malt, thena beef jerky - smoke finish.

D - Good carbonation with a medium body.

O - Nice hops. I didn't love the fake smoke finish.

Photo of BEERchitect
4.39/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The hallmark of "black IPA" is that of hop-dominance that allows the bitterness of perhaps cocoa, toast and coffee to accelerate the overall perception of the beer. But then when we have "imperial IPA" we have a sweeter balance to hops that brewers attempt to overcome with hop aroma and flavor. So, can the collaborative efforts of Three Floyds, Surly and Real Ale brewing companies pull off an Imperial Black IPA?

Its rich and mocha-stained appearance is nothing like IPA. It's not pale at all- its murky, dark and despite. As the ale's light cascade settles, a creamy off-white froth amounts on top. Long in its blanketed retention, the ale laces with broken rings, defining each sip.

The bouquet of citrus and tropical fruit caress the nose with blood orange, passion fruit, red grapefruit, nectarine and pineapple. Its amazing scent in in strict juxtaposition to the beer's ominously dark appearance. A deeper dive in reveals coffee, chocolate and dry toast.

Its flavor acts somewhat in reverse as the beer's short and over-cooked caramel sweetness eases in- leading to nutty coffee, bitter cocoa, charred toast; yet little of the sweetness that's expected from accompanying malt. Instead, the middle opens with the pithy and pulpy taste from vibrant red grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, mango, apricot, lemon and passion fruit. As the hops turn from plump to dry, its leafy, chivy and cannabis taste links up with the char of grain for an elevated bitterness that neither hops nor roast can achieve on their own.

Creamy to start, its malty-dry start slowly sheds its sweetness and trends drier, toastier and deeply resinous as sticky hops cling to the tongue like pine sap- leading to a toasty-dry finish with lingering cocoa bittering. The effect of 10% alcohol is seldom felt or tasted- a deceptive little brew.

Its really hard to create an IPA to outlast the flavor of dark grain in the same way that standard American IPA does with their more tame malt profiles. But the resilient nature of Three Floyds, Surly and Real Ale has done just that- creating a dark flavored beer that still dominates with hop brilliance!

Photo of superspak
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into signature teku glass, bottled on 2/14/2014. Pours pitch black color with a 2 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, mango, papaya, lemon zest, orange peel, floral, grass, light pine, cocoa, roasted malt, light char, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great complexity of bright citrus/tropical hops and moderate roasted malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, mango, papaya, lemon zest, orange peel, floral, grass, pine, cocoa, roasted malt, light char, and floral/roasted earthiness. Good amount of pine/roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, mango, papaya, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, cocoa, roast, light char, and floral/roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity and balance of big citrus/tropical hops and moderate roasted malt flavors; with a nice malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, moderately sticky, and fairly chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a small warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome imperial black IPA. All around great balance and complexity of bright citrus/tropical hops and moderate roasted malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

Photo of kennyk3232
4.84/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Very smooth, great mouthfeel. Nice late hop taste. Overall, excellent beer. Love Surly and Three Floyds. Would love to see future collaborations from this group. Would like to try side by side with Chicago version. Good head, great color and aroma. Awesome can too!!!

Photo of cdiddy5
3.77/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

So thick for a bipa almost like blot out the sun with more flavor

Photo of cpetrone84
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour is dark cola brown with a fairly tight caramel head and a good bit of lacing. Nose is light dark malt taken over by resin and citrus hop. Taste has a bit more malt, fairly rich roasted malts and hints of dark chocolate. Strong citrus and resinous hops in back with virtually no unwanted bitterness. Body is smooth and well carbonated. Extremely well balanced and well put together. This black IPA is the easiest to drink I've had.

Photo of Kraj30
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

very good. but not close to worth the money they want for it.

Photo of mabermud
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The body is a deep brown and the head is mocha colored. The head appears creamy and is extremely persistent. Aroma = sweet-hoppy-malt. I don't know if my taste buds are weireded out, or if this bottle has been sitting in my reefer too long. I'm in different to the taste. I had high hopes, but I may have sabotaged the tasting by drinking an outstanding fresh hop and an Old Raspy on tap at the bar before having this. The feel of this beer in my mouth is fairly nice. Overall, I'm a little bit disappointed, but understand everything is askew because I didn't come into the game with a fresh palate or a fresh bottle. This is a strong beer!

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3 Floyds / Surly / Real Ale Blakkr from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 485 ratings.