Hell's Black Intelligencer - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Hell's Black IntelligencerHell's Black Intelligencer

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BA SCORE
97
world-class

203 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 203
Reviews: 66
rAvg: 4.4
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 205
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: AleWatcher on 10-25-2010

An oatmeal stout brewed with Intelligentsia coffee. "Richard yet lives, Hell's Black Intelligencer" - Queen Margaret, Richard III

28 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 203 | Reviews: 66
Reviews by beersis81:
More User Reviews:
Photo of ehammond1
4.42/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On Tap

Pizza Port
Carlsbad, CA

Very dark brown, bordering on black, with ruby edges and a thin light brown head. Spots of lacing down the glass.

An incredibly rich and authentic aroma of freshly brewed coffee and a touch of bittersweet chocolate. This is one of the finest smelling coffee stouts I've had--terrific!

Rich, bittersweet coffee flavor is dominant, along with other roasted malts, a bit of a nutty character, and chocolate throughout.

Medium bodied with ample carbonation.

A near-perfect coffee stout. So far, this is my favorite beer from Three Floyds. This stuff is fantastic.

Photo of jeonseh
3.75/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at FFF

A - Dark brown with a nice one finger frothy milk chocolate head. Looks rather thick

S - smells of toffee, dark chocolate, roasted malts, oatmeal and a hint of roasted espresso. A nice, complex nose.

T - Espresso is the main flavor I note at first. There is a roasted oatmeal smoothness to it with hints of dark chocolate. He finish is bitter espresso with a nice roasted malt finish. Overall, I found the flavor to be a bit lacking compared to the note.

MF - light body with light carbonation. I wish this was a bit thicker as I think it feels light for the rest of the beer and prevents the flavor from really shining

O - Another good offering from FFF. This has a great nose and looks great but the mouthfeel and lighter flavors really let's this one down and prevents it from being a great beer.

Photo of Brenden
4.47/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many, many thanks to Steve (a74gent) for bringing around a growler of this one that I don't know when I could ever have gotten.

This is a black-as-night brew, starting off the strong iced coffee experience right off the bat. A small, creamy tan head forms and sits around for a while, sticking some nice lacing around as it drains.
This smells like I brewed some coffee in a french press then refriderated it. It has a strong fresh coffee aroma that isn't watered down. This is one of those belends that very nicely mingles having beer character (stout elements of, along with coffee, bittersweet chocolate, roasted barley, a touch of smoke, and just a touch of sweetness) with the element they're going for being front and center and by no means distracted from; in this case, fresh coffee.
The tflavor follows suit. It tastes like just a dash of creamer was added, interestingly. The light underlying sweetness pulls through first, then the malts, bittersweet cocoa,and oats deep within, allowing this one to be all about coffee and yet now allow me to forget I'm drinking a beer.
This is full of big stout thickness in a big, full, robust body, with the velvety, mouth-filling smoothness I'd expect from an oatmeal stout (which, just having the growler, I didn't know until I started drinking). This one's dry without any hrash bitterness or astringency many coffee beer efforts suffer from. This is a delight to drink.
There's not much wrong with this one. Not having any opportunity to get out to FFF, I'm very glad to have gotten a shot at this beer.

Photo of nkersten
4.17/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Chris at Halloween tasting, thanks! Pours a opaque hazy coffee brown/black with a small mocha head that disappears fast. Smell is pure espresso with a slightly sweet milk and chocolate malt in the background. Big coffee flavors up front, slightly sweet with lots of coffee grounds following and some bitterness. Somehow it is not overpowering for a coffee stout. Mouthfeel is heavy with mild carbonation, coating and creamy. This is one tasty coffee stout, hopefully they will decide to make it again.

Photo of Skull40
3.68/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at FFF. Served in a glass mug. No more plastic cups during the brewpub renovations.

Nice blackness to it with a thick, creamy, oatmealy head.

It smells and tastes of mostly coffee and dark chocolate. The taste includes a nice malty backbone and a very slight toffee flavor.

The mouth feel was thinner than I expected.

Overall, this is a pretty tasty beer. I wouldn't say that it was great, but certainly worthy of a try. The low abv makes for a more sessionable stout. It would have been more enjoyable if the flavors that already exist were just more powerful.

Photo of hooliganlife
4.23/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to Dan8181

pours a deep cola black with a creamy head. light retention.

lots of coffee, lots... lights sweet roasted malt.

coffee, lots of it. tastes like a cold espresso. light sweet roasted body backs up what is a coffee bomb. light citrus hops towards and through the finish.

moderate body with a light carbonation.

as a fan boy of intelligentsia coffee, i was eager to try this. did not let down. awesome coffee bomb.

Photo of beerhan
4.77/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I drink lots and lots of black coffee. This beer is more or less just coffee. It smells like coffee and tastes like it but goes down even smoother. No need to get into the details except that it is jet black, lightly carbonated and incredibly drinkable. Really wish they would bottle this and send it to ohio.

Photo of thagr81us
4.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Massive thanks goes out to mikesgroove for sharing this one with myself, Zack, Cameron, Scott and Rich at GBX. Served from growler into a North Coast Old Rasputin nonic. Poured pitch black with a one finger tan head. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of roasted malt, dark chocolate, and coffee. The flavor was of roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, and cream. It had a heavy feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this brew was just plain excellent. Very nice flavor and aroma going on in this one. Flavor came on in waves which made my palate very happy. Glad to have gotten the chance to try this one without doubt. Thanks again for sharing this gem Mike!

Photo of EORS
4.87/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

3 Floyds event at my local pub, had no clue what this beer was (or even what it was really called as the name was scrawled on a chalkboard) when I tried it. Poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Opaque with a half inch head the color of mocha. Head dissipates fairly quickly but leaves lacing down the glass. Not a ton of carbonation visible.

Smell: Hints of the great stuff to come. Coffee and chocolate hit the nose first, followed up by a generous amount of roasty malt. Finally, there's a vanillalike sweetness to this beer that comes through in the aroma.

Taste: All of the above, plus more. Lovely rich malt body with more of that lactose-like sweetness from the oats. Leaves hints of coffee and roast malt in the mouth. Barely a hint of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: a real treat - smooth, full-bodied and creamy when the carbonation is up, retained the smoothness as the beer sat, but the moderate carbonation really adds an extra feeling of thickness that makes the beer really enjoyable.

Overall: A very very pleasant surprise, and one to be savored if you can find it. I'd wanted to try a dark beer (not Robert the Bruce) from 3 Floyds for some time, since most of what we get here is gumballhead and pride and joy. Lived up to anything I could have expected from it.

Photo of alleykatking
4.18/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap yo!

A- Pours a deep black color. One and a half finger mocha colored head showed medium retention. This just leaves whisps of light foam on the top of the beer. Nice this streaks of lace on the sides of the glass.

S- Iced coffee is all I can think of! This has a deep roasted malt base to begin with. Some hints of darker chocolate really goes well with the malt. There is a fresh roasted coffee flavor that just jumps out from this point on. It really overtakes everything but to be honest I don't mind.

T- Upon first sip I get the roasted malts right out front. This quickly goes from a roasted malt to a darker chocolate and then just keeps the dark chocolate in the front. Coffee roast does come in next with more of a espresso style of taste. The chocolate and coffee mingle and blend fantasticly together. Nothing really else gets ahold of my taste buds. I really don't mind though.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Coffee and dark chocolate dominate everything from the palate to the aftertaste. Even in the aftertaste there is really not much in hints of alcohol at all. This was a one sided beer with the focus being on the coffee and malts. No off flavors could be detected at all in this coffee bomb. Medium drying on the palate from the alcohol.

D- Wow oh wow. If you like coffee..you will like this beer. The ABV is very low and adds to the drinkability to this beer. I could have sat down and had many many pints of this beer. FFF just proves once again that they are not just another brewery. Their flavorful beers are worthy of most of the hype they get.

Photo of spark3148857
4.35/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Three Floyds:

AP: Deep brown with a creamy tan head.

AR: Balanced roasted malts with slightly sweet and robust coffee.

TS: The coffee is executed perfectly in this stout. Present but not overwhelming and not overly acidic. Oats add a nice sweetness and balance.

MF: Creamy mouthfeel, really superb.

OV: One of the better coffee offerings i've had. A toned down Southern Tier Jahva. The oats are really a great addition. Very enjoyable.

Photo of TapeDeck
4.92/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer can not be stopped!

Even in a disposable solo cup, it's perfect. This is the standard by which all breakfast stouts should be judged. Oatie, bitter, massive coffee kick in the face... It's not sweet at all.

The beer has a tan foamy head with continued lacing as long as you allow it to exist in your delivery vessel.

Totally black and opaque. If this were bottled, it would be the every day beer during Bears season.

Pairs really well with loud music and a desire to be left alone for some pensive beer snob moments!

Photo of mikesgroove
4.6/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thrilled to be able to drink the one with calton and the guys from gbx yesterday. such a damn fine beer, i was extremely impressed. served in multiple pint glass.

pour could not have been any better with a dark inky color that no light could penetrate which gave rise to a huge tan head that was nearly three inches in height. really an amazing looking beer i have to admit. full on mocha covers the room with its smell, this was a monster right out of the gate. immense coffee and chocolate aroma does not dissapoint as the flavor comes through with a wonderful balance of coffee, vanilla, roasted malts and cocoa, simply sublime. each sip melted away the palate with its smoothness. sweet coffee and vanilla wash away the palate in the end,

overall a superb offering here one one the best i have ever had in the style by far. simply an amazing beer.

Photo of WeisGuy
4.7/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at the FFF brewpub on New Year's Day and was so impressed, got a growler to go.

Pours nearly pitch black with a one-finger tan head. Head retention is really good, as is lacing. The smell is unsurprisingly dominated by cold brewed, dark roast coffee and lighter notes of toasty malt and dark chocolate. Flavor is much the same with the delicious Intellegensia coffee taking center stage. The bitterness from the coffee is noticeably absent with only a beautifully smooth roasted bean flavor remaining. The toasty malt and dark chocolate notes provide nice depth along with some light dark fruit flavors that creep in on the finish. This is a whole lot more complex than many coffee stouts. The full-body is presumably assisted by the oatmeal. The finish is fairly dry, but not overly so, and the alcohol is almost non-existant. The drinkability is quite high due to the complex flavors and absence of intrusive bitterness and alcohol. Pretty much unquestionably the best oatmeal stout I've ever tried, and right there with the best coffee stouts I've had. As this was my first beer of 2011, I think it bodes well for the year.

Photo of lloyd83
4.3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Blacker than black...Literally not a bit of light coming through when held up to the light. Not very much head on my pour, but what's there is a nice, inviting brown. Can't wait to dig in!

S- Straight coffee. Has some hints of something else hiding in there, but the coffee is clearly dominant here. Sorry, I'm new :)

T- Yum. To clarify, I love the smell of coffee, just not the taste. That said, to me this tastes like what a good coffee bean smells like, not what a 'good coffee' tastes like. Make sense? I remember going to the mall and walking past Gloria Jean's back in the day, and always noting how absolutely fantastic it smelled, and how I always wished that's what coffee tasted like; that's what HBI reminds me of--what coffee should taste like. Finishes with a hint of bitterness.

M- Would have expected this to be a bit thicker given it's looks, but it nonetheless, it all works.

D- Alas, I've got a Sunday to myself full of playoff football and a kickass Stout. Please, contain your tears, I know it's a sob story. Totally going to kill this growler on my own!

Photo of airohead2001
3.42/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to glazeman for heading out to FFF for this one. This is a brew I've wanted to try for quite some time now.

As far as looks go, this beer doesn't look much different than any other coffee stout - dark brown/black with a tiny head that quickly fades to nothing. No lacing and no head retention. In terms of smell, it is pure coffee with a tiny hint of fig and burnt roasts. The taste is similar to the smell, but clearly dominated by by the coffee. Overall, this is a drinkable beer, but there isn't a whole lot going on other than the coffee.

Photo of StormKing47
4.5/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by Jwiss22 with petesuphi. Went a little something like this...

A- A menacing, hellaciously black appearance. I mean god damn it's black as tar, allows no light to pass through and has a nice amount of carb leading up to a thin brown head that is darker than some nut brown ales I have seen. A frightening appearance that is intriguing in the same sense.

S- A right hook of roastiness followed by a few straight jabs of bitterness and chocoaltes. As it warms a creeping over hand right of dark, bitter chocolates and the intoxicating and seductive aroma of freshly brewed gourmet coffee. This one will have you on the ropes drooling on yourself and waiting to skip all properness and get down to business. An amazing aroma.

T- Holy shit! This is like drinking iced coffee. It's a great bitter opening accompanied by sweet and bitter chocolates. The finish is a shit ton of coffee, roastiness and sweet chocolates. The maltiness is there, but not a real front runner to the overpowering coffee wallop.

M- Utterly blissful. It's coating and syrupy not at all chalky, coats everything. I swear I had to pick coffee grains out of my teeth. There's no abv heat to speak just coffee, coffe and more coffee. Did I mention coffee? Not to mention it's smooth as glass.

D- If you love coffee why haven't you tried this already? It's simply an experience and an enjoyable one to boot. Love it. It's not overwhelming and a smooth and velvety masterpiece. I would love this with breakfast.

For the love of God Three Floyds can you please bottle some of your masterpieces so they can be traded for by us out of towners?

Photo of curly31989
4.57/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my friend Adam for dropping this by while in town. What can I say, intelligencia coffee and FFF are a match made in heaven.

This poured dark black, with a small brown head. As the beer warmed up, the coffee aroma became very prevalent mixed with oatmeal and chocolate notes. The smell reminded me of a mocha.

This beer has wonderful flavor. The coffee is very strong but smooth, full bodied, with very low bitterness and acidity. There's a good amount of chocolate to back up the coffee flavor.

The mouth feel was slightly lacking for me. It came off a little too dry for my liking, but smoothed out as the beer warmed up.

If you can stop by FFF, you must try this one before its gone!

Photo of Betmore
4.79/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

*poured from a growler into a pint glass*

Hell's Black Intelligencer poured jet black with a one finger tan head that dissipated within a minute or two. There was fair to moderate lacing.

The aroma of this beer is pure roasted coffee with just a hint of chocolate. If I didn't know better, I'd swear I had a glass of cool coffee. And while this beer is lumped into the Oatmeal Stout catagory, I can't help but grade it as a sub catagory of Coffee Stout. Is it basically one dimensional? Yes. But that dimension is AMAZING. I want this stuff for breakfast.

The taste? Well, it goes right along with the aroma. It tastes like really good coffee, but better. Thats really the only way I know to describe it. If you like coffee, you'll love this beer. I want this stuff in my thermos at work.

Mouthfeel is just about right for this style, in my opinion. The carbonation doesn't linger. Its got the body of creamy hot chocolate but with the taste of A+ coffee. I want this stuff for dessert after dinner.

Drinkability? I could sip this stuff all day. The ABV isn't out of control like a lot of the other stouts. It was a pleasure to experience.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge, huge thanks to Masterski for getting this growler out to me quickly. Shared at a recent tasting and served in a tulip.

Pours black with a slight tan head and a bit of lacing as it goes down plus a fairly-wide collar as the head falls down. The nose is really strong black coffee plus a bit of roast. Really, really strong coffee. Not too much else there but the coffee is really nice and doesn't need anything else to back it up. The taste is quite similar--roasted malt is certainly there as well as some strong, black, high-quality coffee. Really enjoying this. The mouthfeel is a bit thinner than I would like it, though the coffee comes through with a nice bitter, roasted feel. Good carbonation levels and goes down quite easily--had quite a bit of this without thinking about it. Huge fan of this though it doesn't quite compare to the Bullfrog Double Coffee, which is the brew I hold every coffee-infused beer up against. Still, one of the better coffee beers that I've had in a long time. Thanks again, Alex.

Photo of klikger
4.24/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Growler pours courtesy of CaseyK - thanks again!

A - Black, not much head, good lacing

S - Pungent fresh roasted coffee - smells fantastic; a touch of oat

T - Rush of coffee to the dome --> roasted malts and oats --> bitter chocolate and espresso beans on the finish

M - Thin, even for an oatmeal stout, but decently carbonated

D - If you like coffee, this is very drinkable.

This is a fantastic beer. It's not complex (in terms of # of flavors), but the coffee notes are second to none. I am jealous of you who live close to 3Fs right about now...

Photo of AgentZero
4.55/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Supplied by spycow at our recent tasting.

A - Nice late foam rose on this one after a fairly normal pour out of the growler. Nice one finger brown head, surprising as the growler was a couple days old. Good black color, with some brown on the edges.

S - A very bitter coffee smell, really reminds me of a dark espresso served warm. Quite the coffee beer, not a ton of stout characteristics about it.

T - This was quite the shock, a great tasting beer, somehow managed to capture the essence of warm coffee in it while being cold. The stout characteristics are tasted mostly in the depth of the beer, as it doesn't taste like overcarbonated and watered down coffee, as the oatmeal stout base is strong enough to support the rich coffee flavor.

M - It was a little flat, although I'm not sure more carbonation would have been better on this fresh.

D - Highly drinkable for something with such strong coffee. I drank several glasses of this and loved it, phenomenal beer.

Photo of AleWatcher
4.43/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

An Oatmeal Stout brewed with Intelligensia Coffee-- 28 IBU, 6% ABV.

Served in a coffee mug.

This beer is dark. Very dark... Amber hues come out and shine brightly. A decent cap of tam bubbles sit, reluctant to go quietly into the mid-day.

Smell is huuuge coffee-- almost espresso. Bitter chocolate and some sweet careless malts.

Taste falls in line with nose-- a sweet malt base leads into notes of bitter cocoa and espresso-like fresh ground coffee. Very tasty, very big coffee-- easily the strongest coffee flavor I've ever found in a coffee stout. Just delicious. I hope this is being treated as a research and development idea and this beer gets received well-enough to warrant future batches.

Body is medium-full with plenty of carbonation. This comes across just the slightest bit slick, like iced coffee.

This thing is incredible. I could sip this all day. Fantastic.

Photo of funkyaudio
5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice black color with a small ring of tiny bubbles. Its pretty thin, but does leave some slightly syrupy traces around the glass as you swirl. Aroma is a massive wave of dark roast coffee, with the flavor following almost identically, except there are a few slight notes of chocolate with the coffee flavors. As I mentioned it is on the lighter bodied side of things, but also very very smooth and easy to drink. Really is remarkable how much it tastes like pure iced coffee. TRULY a fantastic beer if you’re into these sorts of flavors... cannot wait until I get to try it again! And here I thought coffee bender was going to be the closest beer to an iced coffee I’d ever try

Photo of WillCarrera
4.45/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at DLD 2012, poured into a plastic cup, reviewed from notes.

A- Pours a super dark brown, verging on black, has a thin layer of creamy tan head.

S- Unbelievable coffee aroma, really delicious coffee beans and roasted grain, some chocolate, smells awesome.

T- Big blast of coffee beans, bitter and heavily roasted, a bit of char and then some bittersweet dark chocolate.

M- Medium-bodied, medium to low carbonation, feel is maybe slightly thin but I think it's fine.

O- An awesome coffee beer, FFF + Intelligentsia is definitely a winning combination.

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Hell's Black Intelligencer from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 203 ratings.