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Smoke & Dagger - Jack's Abby Brewing

Not Rated.
Smoke & DaggerSmoke & Dagger

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

152 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 152
Hads: 910
Avg: 4.01
pDev: 24.94%
Wants: 51
Gots: 120 | FT: 3
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 152 | Hads: 910
Reviews by Andrew041180:
Photo of Andrew041180
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep brown mahogany, with the reddish highlights visible under certain lighting conditions. Normal pour produces about two fingers worth of bubbly head that recedes slowly into a creamy film. Lacing is present, but does not stay on the sides of the glass.

S - Very nice volume. Not overpowering, but easy to pick up. Dominant smell is roasty coffee, subdued sweetness, and a hint of the smoke that the beer is named after.

T - I'm not a huge fan of stout-like beers, but this one was quite pleasant! Follows the nose, and that smokey sensation that was barely present in the nose provides a really nice backdrop for the dominant coffee flavor. The roastiness isn't overpowering, and the flavors are all very complimentary.

M - So good. I can't say enough about how well Jack's Abby nails the feel of its beers. Medium-full bodied with a rich, creamy sensation. A little bit of cushiness from carbonation that isn't really visible. Clean, refreshing finish.

O - I picked this up because it is from Jack's Abby, not because it is a Rauchbier, which is a new style to me. This is the sort of beer that makes me want to further explore a style. Recommend, also goes great with food!

 1,194 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
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.

 1,467 characters

Photo of utopiajane
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful dark brown. Burnt walnut with some ruby hues and a dark caramel. The colors are soft and pleasing. The beer has excellent clarity and if you look deeply you can see light lager bubbles rising. Fat finger and a half of tan creamy foam that fell slowly and leaves a sheet of wet lace to slid back down into the glass on each sip. The nose is light smoke and roasted grain. A bit of coffee and smooth chocolate. It has a malt sweetness underneath but it stays true to a lager scent. Smells a lot like a schwarzbier. The taste is perfect lightness. The smoke doesn't overpower the roasted grains which are sturdy but not burned. The coffee and chocolate stay smooth and well blended. The body is thin but the taste is full. The malt does not get sweet nor does the chocolate and the taste of the almost blackened grain is truly spectacular.

This is a fantastic beer that is lighter than you might expect and yet still has all the beechwood smoke flavor you want. It is a roasted malt paradise for the eyes and for the palate. The full bodied taste is not heavy and the mouthfeel is silky and smooth. There is a touch of hop floral on it that livens the dark flavors but doesn't compete with them. It has the faintest touch of fruit. Another great beer from Jack's Abby.

 1,285 characters

Photo of oberon
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%

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.

 350 characters

Photo of khoff5
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nitro on tap. Great look and feel, I was worried about smoke in the name as I don't typically like smokey tastes, but this smoke was very subtle, all around complex and very likeable.

 184 characters

Photo of braugon
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of MadScientist
4.63/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark brown beer with a deep ruby hue and excellent clarity. The head is persistent and pours with two fingers of fine tan bubbles that leave a light lacing on the glass.

S: A moderately-light Munich malt aroma with a lesser amount of smoke, light notes of dark roast malt and clean malt sweetness along with a hint of chocolate.

T: The German malt dominates with a light malt sweetness and smoke flavors. There is a light chocolate flavor along with some dark malt character. There is a moderate hops bitterness and the clean malt sweetness fades mid palate making for a balance the is slight towards the bitter. The finish is off-dry with an aftertaste of smoke and dark malt.

M: A lightly creamy, medium-light bodied beer with a medium level of carbonation.

O: A very well crafter beer with an excellent balance of flavors; the smoke flavor builds as you enjoy the beer but the other elements come through as well. The brew combined the best elements of Smoked Porter and Schwarzerbier.

 997 characters

Photo of Tiernan
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of woodchipper
3/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of SmellTheGluv
2.75/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Yes what new four yesterday

27 characters

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of MJLatimer
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of Jcorn
3.67/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Doomcifer
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of mctizzz
3/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of tigg924
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

Appearance: 1/2 inch head, high carbonation, dark brown in color, hazy

Smell: smoke and dark chocolate

Taste: smoky malt dominates with a nice mixture of dark chocolate and some milk chocolate

Mouthfeel:sweet and smoky with light earthy bitterness, medium-high carbonation, medium-heavy bodied

Overall: Nice and chocolaty rauch. Ranks right up there with the best I have had being produced in the states. The chocolate element distinguishes this beer from others in the category. Probably my second favorite from the brewery only behind Leisure Time lager.

 604 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
3/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of JC333
3.24/5  rDev -19.2%

Photo of standardcherry
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of jondeelee
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Smoke & Dagger opens to a rich, smoky, malty nose that bears instant resemblance to freshly-ground coffee, smoky peat, and campfire made of pitchy pine branches. Touches of ash and tobacco add more earthiness. A good layer of caramel, brown sugar, and coffee cream helps temper the dark, smoky notes, joined by light touches of chocolate, and lighter touches of cherry, fig, and berry fruit esters, these latter notes fading deep into the background the way good spices complement a meal without being immediately noticeable. Good layers of brown bread, floury baguette, yeasty wheat dough, and toast crust add further dimension and complexity. As a whole, the nose is very nice, featuring a well-balanced mix of sugars, breads, and piney resins, with a superb smoky peat overtone that plays well off of the darker notes.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a nice, immediate shot of campfire smoke, ash, tobacco, smoky peat, and coffee, quickly joined by strong caramel, cream, and brown sugar threads, and instantly recalls creamed coffee sipped in a smoke-filled bar. The piney notes from the hops blend nicely with the smoke and ash to further amplify the campfire/smoky peat notes, balanced nicely enough that they play well with the cream and sugar, and don’t overwhelm the palate. Brown breads and yeasty dough add further texture. In subsequent sips the finer nuanced of this initial flavor fade slightly, but a good coffee, cream, caramel, and tobacco flavor still remains. The latter part of the mouthful in all cases becomes more heavily ashy as the sugars die off, and the aftertaste is largely ash and tobacco, with some lingering sugars and creams. Mouthfeel is a slick medium-light to medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is very nice fare, boasting a well-rounded, nicely balanced, and flavorful body that is everything a schwarzbier should be, with a tantalizing touch of smoky peat added that pushes the flavors to wonderful heights. It’s not necessarily a beer that brings anything new to the style, but instead prefers to set itself aside by being simply a finely-crafted example, and a model of understated perfection in craft.

 2,166 characters

Photo of Janeinma
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of bpfrush
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of dogfishandi
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of juicebox
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of sourdog
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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Smoke & Dagger from Jack's Abby Brewing
89 out of 100 based on 152 ratings.