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Smoke & Dagger - Jack's Abby Brewing

Not Rated.
Smoke & DaggerSmoke & Dagger

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

818 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 818
Reviews: 144
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 10.49%
Wants: 44
Gots: 84 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Jack's Abby Brewing visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Rauchbier |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mduncan on 07-29-2011

Cloaked in mystery, this dark black beer skirts the line between a schwarzbier and smoked porter. The use of a small percentage of traditional Beechwood smoked malt adds complexity and balances the liberal use of chocolate malt. Notes of roasted grains, beechwood smoke,and coffee accompany a full bodied-and sweet chocolately malt character. Smoke & Dagger uses locally grown unmalted barley from MA.

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 818 | Reviews: 144
Photo of justintcoons
4.22/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip pint.

Appearance
Deep chestnut brown with 1+ fingers of fluffy khaki head. Great retention with lively carbonation.

Nose
Semi-sweet chocolate, caramel, roasted barley, and hints of smoke.

Taste
Roasted barley, semi-sweet bakers chocolate, and caramel. Light roasty char with hints of smoked beechwood.

Mouthfeel
Medium bodied, smooth, and semi-silky with a slight roast bitterness.

Overall
Easily one of the best Schwarzbiers or whatever it is that I've had. Well balanced and incredibly smooth.

Photo of CoffeePorter
3.96/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color, kind of resembles the color of root beer.
Smells like toasted bread, some caramel like sweetness and a bit nutty.
Tastes a bit burnt, some mild bitterness and hints of bread along with a nice sweet tasting finish.
Some mild carbonation, smooth mouthfeel, light like a lager.
Definitely the best lager i've had up to this point!

Photo of PatrickCT
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

a: Dark brown with hints of Burgundy when he's up to the light. Light tan, bubbly, rocky, one finger and a half of head that dissipates into a whispy rim. Very light lacing.

s: Cocoa, iced coffee, molasses.

t: Coffee, cocoa, pumpernickel. Slightly bitter, coppery finish.

mf: Light carbonation. Slight crispness. Refreshing like a lager. But beefy like a stout. Slick finish.

o: I am surprise how much I like this beer. Especially considering how little I like beechwood. I will definitely keep more of an eye out for this style.

Photo of Duhast500
3.96/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Dogfish pint glass.

The color is a dark brown and almost black with some maroon highlights. There is a finger of foamy tan head and some nice webbed lacing left on the glass.

The smell is malty with a dark toasted bread aroma. There is some nutty aroma here in the nose that is slightly hazelnut with just a slight touch of bourbon or oak or both. There is some hints of caramel and toffee that is not surprising and pretty welcoming.

The taste is more of that dark malty goodness. There is some burnt toast here in the flavor as was in the nose. There is a silky toffee flavor that has a milky flavor in the far back. There is a slight bitterness that is just a tiny bit hoppy here and there before making a quick presence at the end. There is some slight dark fruit here with a slight fig flavor that hangs behind some of the touches of bread dough that go out a bit.

The feel of this beer is light but boarders a medium bodied beer. There just is a smoothness that helps this beer be very drinkable it is easy to drink it pretty fast.

Photo of brpendergast85
3/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very nice, but doesn't blow you away.

Photo of bluehende
4.04/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one of the best rauchbiers I have ever had. The smoke is very subtle and blends in nicely to the lager. Highly recommend this one.

Photo of Jeff_G
4.35/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Wonderfully drinkable brew with almost enough smoke quality and medium body. Taste improves as it warms.

Photo of SmellTheGluv
2.75/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Yes what new four yesterday

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a BIF from ZebraCakez. 12 ounce bottle into lager glass, bottled on 11/24/2014. Pours crystal clear deep reddish brown color with a 1 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big chocolate, cocoa, coffee, wood smoke, toast, dark bread, herbal, and roast/smokey earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of roast/bready malt and smoke notes; with great strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, wood smoke, toast, dark bread, herbal, and roast/smokey earthiness. Fair amount of roast/herbal bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, wood smoke, toast, dark bread, herbal, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance and robustness of roast/bready malt and smoke flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Very clean on lager flavors with no yeast ester notes present. Medium carbonation and light-medium bodied; with a very smooth, fairly crisp, and lightly bready/chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent smoked schwarzbier style. All around great balance and robustness of roast/bready malt and smoke flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of Stellartaste
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Nice brew in the winter. Smokey and rich flavor.

Photo of Tbone2131
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Love the smokey flavor, nice Smooth finish.

Photo of BradMatton13
4.4/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

LOVE this beer, one of my favorites from this brewery

Photo of argock
2.45/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served on-tap in a 13oz tulip at Sunset Bar and Grill (Boston, MA). Reviewed from notes.

A: Dark brown to black with short cap of dark beige head with a thin line of lacing.

S: Smells like burned dirt

T: Tastes like burned dirt and rubber tires. Herbal hops are too earthy and there is some problem with the blending of the dark malts, the smoked malts, and the hops as this beer just tastes like dirt, ash, and rubber.

M: Medium-full body with low carbonation makes this hard to drink beer even tougher to drink.

O: Maybe not my cup of tea, definitely made me wish I had a sample before ordering this. Live and learn...

Photo of biegaman
3.96/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It shouldn't be surprising that Smoke & Dagger look blackened - not entirely black, mind you, because colour can readily be made out against the light and along the trim - but its charred complexion certainly mirrors the barbecue notes. Its head, anyway, looks like a ring of smoke itself.

Let us not forget the other malts - along with the wisp of smoke, this aroma also features the more conventional notes of roasted grain and all the chocolatey, coffee-ish nuances that often accompany it. This level of balance ensures the beer is not too intimidating for initiates; notions of campfire smoke or burnt meat would be gross exaggerations.

I'm not sure how proud of this I should be, but I've tried chocolate covered bacon on a couple occasions. It is a curiously irresistible (and kind of gross and shameful) combination because it stimulates all parts of the palate: bittersweet, salty, roasty. Smoke & Dagger does the just the same; it tastes something like cocoa- or coffee cured-pork.

Neither sweet nor smoke conquers the other; they go back and forth like evenly matched tennis pros, neither becoming too dominant in the mix. I'm not sure whether the smattering of caramel was intended or not, but it's a nice way to end that roller coaster of chocolate, coffee, and cured meat. There's no knot in this rope - just smooth all the way along.

Smoke & Dagger should prove once and for all that smoked beers can be perfectly palatable and easily enjoyed by all. It is a soft, well-rounded offering that aught to have barbecue lovers, especially, trampling over one another to buy by the case full. This self-proclaimed Schwarzbier/Rauchbier hybrid may not be German-born, but it's Bundesliga caliber talent for sure.

Photo of curasowa
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark ruby color with one finger of tan head that fades quickly.

Aroma: Roasted malt, cocoa and smoky

Taste: Crisp, roasted malt up front, then prickly carbonation and a mild, spicy hop bitterness and finishing with some lingering nutty and smoky flavors.

The Rest: A solid lager with a nice twist of some smokiness, while still being quite balanced.

Photo of Beric
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Serving: Bottle into pint
Served: 30 October 2014

Appearance: Pours a deep dark color with hints of deep crimson red around the edges. Dirty brown head that quickly dissipates. Looks decent for a Schwarzbier.

Smell: Deep and roasty. Little to no smoke.

Taste: I honestly don't know why BA labels this a Rauchbier- there is next to no smoke flavor present in the beer. The beer is primarily dominated by very roasty stout-like flavors: coffee, chocolate, etc. that, while maybe a little edgier than other black beers, doesn't seem to have much smokey quality to it at all.

Feel: Somewhat thin in the mouth, but carried by its carbonation.

Overall: A good beer, but one that I think BA mislabels. In the Rauchbier category, this beer fails on many accounts, but as a Schwarzbier, this one is pretty tasty. I'd buy this again, but it isn't my favorite from Jack's Abby.

Photo of oberon
3.95/5  rDev +1%

Pours into a becker a roasted chestnut brown with a half finger light beige head atop.Smoke,caramel,brown sugar,and German malts in the nose with that light tinge of iron.Smoke up front on the palate but not in your face a little earth and some brown sugar-like sweetness to round it out.A pretty solid rauchbier good smoke without being overbearing.

Photo of far333
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Chestnut colored with ruby highlights, a low wispy beige head settles out quickly. Aroma of darkly toasted malt, semi sweet, hint of smoke.

Flavor matches the nose, dark malt, hint of smoke, some cocoa, mild bitterness, no hop flavor, note of coffee and cola. Creamy mouthfeel. Really good beer.

Photo of predikit
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

This beer caught my eye, and since I'm a sucker for renaissance fare, I picked it up.

Definitely a lot of smoke in the scent, pours dark brown, sits in the glass nearly black. Spawns a small tan head that settles quickly. Leaves a fair amount of lacing behind as I drink.

Smokey flavor at the forefront, I could even go so far to say that it's similar to hickory. Hints of coffee, and caramel in the back.

Rather thin feeling, leaves a bit of sparkle on the back of the tongue before dissipating. Very smooth and drinkable.

This brew fits my tongue very well, very pleased. Would buy this again.

Photo of yarnbomb
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

The best non-Schlenkerla rauch I've had. I'm a big fan!

Photo of HamdenHector
3.69/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: deep brown with garnet accents; 1 finger tan head that receded quickly to a thin collar; nice lacing;

S: deeply roasted grains, but quickly overtaken by smoke;

T: an initial hit of sweetness followed by coffee and smoke; the finish is lightly bitter and long with the smoke sticking around;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation;

O: the smoke is nicely done, not overwhelming; I would have like a little more hop flavor, but it's still really nice;

Photo of hail_seitan
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Enjoyed this on nitro tap in a 20 oz. glass.

A - Rich chestnut color with a thick, frothy of white head.

S - Smoke, smoke, and more smoke. A mild nuttiness sneaks in there, too.

T - Smoked almonds (unsalted, of course), graham cracker, and toast. A little spiciness from the hops.

M - Impeccably smooth, frothy, and rich.

O - The carbonated version of this beer is pretty good, but nitro makes this brew great. I find that carbon dioxide can make smokiness taste slightly acrid, much like getting campfire smoke in your eyes. But the nitrogen lets the roasty and toasty notes give the beer extra depth and warmth.

Photo of titvs
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Review based on the BJCP2008 guidelines (style 22B). AROMA: background sweet and roasted malts from the base beer with coffe and chocolate notes. faint smoke notes with balance towards the base beer. some DMS is present. APPEARANCE: dark with a ruby color tint. average tanned head with good retention. TASTE: roasted coffe-like notes with a touch of pleasant and balanced smokiness. some sweet chocolate notes also present. low bitterness with a dry finish. PALATE: medium-low with medium-low carbonation. OVERALL: a good marriage between a dark lager and smoked malts, that would benefit with a bit more smokiness.

Photo of fscottkey
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%

A: [4.00] Appears black - but with backlighting shows red hues. Gets a 1/2 head that is made of uniform khaki bubbles. The head has real staying power (Right after I poured I had a 10 minute converstation - before the first sip - the head had not gone down at all). 25 IBUs and 5.8% ABV. No visible date.

S: [3.50] Chocolate and smokey malts.

T: [4.00] Smokey malts and some sweetness. Their is a nice smokey chocolate after-taste.

M: [4.00] Smooth and creamy. Some slight tingle of carbonation.

O: [4.00] I like the smokey flavor and the sweetness of the malts. The mouthfeel is smooth and enjoyable. I haven't had a beer from Jack's Abby that wasn't above average. This is not an exception. It is not my favorite beer from Jack's Abby - but it is still worth repeating.

Photo of nebula1999
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Outstanding. Closest thing to an authentic German smoked lager yet.

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Smoke & Dagger from Jack's Abby Brewing
88 out of 100 based on 818 ratings.