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Smoke & Dagger - Jack's Abby Brewing

Not Rated.
Smoke & DaggerSmoke & Dagger

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

676 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 676
Reviews: 127
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 10.2%
Wants: 41
Gots: 44 | 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:
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 added by: mduncan on 07-29-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 676 | Reviews: 127 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev +2%

Sammy, Oct 24, 2013
Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

t0rin0, Oct 17, 2012
Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

djrn2, Jun 29, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

zestar, Aug 22, 2014
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +2%

spycow, Aug 19, 2014
Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

acurtis, Aug 03, 2013
Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

nmann08, May 18, 2012
Photo of metter98
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear but very dark garnet red in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high tan head that took a long time to die down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface, a large collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderately strong aromas of dark chocolate malts are present in the smell along with some hints of smoke.
T: The taste more resembles that of a rauchbier and has moderate flavors of smoked malts along with notes of chocolate.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: As a hybrid between a schwartzbier and a smoked porter, this beer is very easy to drink, especially if you aren't looking for something that is dominated by smoky aromas and flavors.

Note: Manufactured on April 15, 2013

metter98, Sep 14, 2013
Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Texasfan549, Nov 10, 2012
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Who says that traditional lager makers lack imagination or are passe in taste. Jack's Abby puts on a full-out display of charisma and quality in this smoky dark ale that borrows influences from German Black Beers, Rauchbiers, Dunkels and Baltic Porters for a refined taste that's highly complex for its drinkability.

The stealth-like "Smoke & Dagger" pours with the mystery-shrouded dark brown hue that's only pierced with crystal clear highlights of mahogany and chestnut. Ats it quietly releases a light khaki foam, the beer captures the eye with a frothy whipped topping that retains firmly and laces the glass with intermittent and artistic patterns.

A ton of malt and phenol complexes converge in aromas for blend that keeps speaking, "smoky chocolate". With the air of lightly scorched barley, the scent hinges on toffee, caramel and brown sugar. Grounded notes of toast, coffee, heavy whipping cream form the underpinnings of a classic dark lager.

It's smooth taste relaxes the taste buds with medium malt sweetness of the same caramel and toffee that the nose promises. More earthy and rustic notes of coffee, woodish hops, and a light alcohol & peppercorn spice ushers in a balancing bitterness to close. All this flavor is wrapped in a cocoon of heavy whipping cream and beechwood campfire.

It's creamy. It's dry, It slices; it dices- it Juliennes! The beer is a Swiss Army knife in that it starts creamy and rich, but turns roasty and powdery midway through before diving into a drinkable sensibility to close. Creamy like milkshake and bitter like coffee- the beer spans the gamut of mouthfeel descriptor en route to a grainy-sweet alcohol warmth to finish.

With a touch of confusion, I can see why the beer doesn't settle on a set style when a blend of well-tested recipes will obviously work better. Jack's Abby proves that there's a ton of imagination that if not bound by the "rules" of beer making.

BEERchitect, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +2%

kjkinsey, Nov 03, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap: Poured a dark black color ale with a dark brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of light roasted malt with light smoke notes and some dry black chocolate. Taste is an interesting mix between black chocolate and smoke with light lactose notes. Body is slightly fuller then average with medium carbonation which suits the style. Well brewed and somewhat unique. I would love to have a more regular access to this beer.

Phyl21ca, May 09, 2012
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

ygtbsm94, Feb 03, 2013
Photo of womencantsail
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pour is a dark amber color with an off-white head. Strong smoke aroma to this, but still plenty of malt sweetness. Good caramel, toffee, and toasted bread aromas. A light woodiness to it. The flavor is sweet and malty with a nice smokiness. Light wood and salt notes, plenty of toast and caramel malts. A light chocolate flavor to it as well.

womencantsail, Aug 07, 2012
Photo of Knapp85
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Knapp85, Dec 05, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

westcoastbeerlvr, Sep 18, 2014
Photo of oberon
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%

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.

oberon, Today at 12:30 AM
Photo of StonedTrippin
3.76/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

fun beer from jacks abby, sort of a cross between a schwarz and a rauchbier, being a darker smoked lager type. medium brown color to this with great carbonation, a one inch off white head, and picture perfect ring lacing as it drinks. the nose is not as smoked as I anticipated, more spiced than smoked really, with some chocolate malt and a range of other well toasted grains. lager yeast abounds. the flavor is still only lightly smoked, subtle, especially in a rauchbier context. darker malt gives some earthy character without a ton of sweetness, and there is an astonishing lack of body for the color, a really nice feature lending to drinkability. well carbonated and the finish is light smoke and wintery spice, a nice combination. not much hops though, but they aren't really missed. I like that complexity of this, especially for a lager. jacks abby has really redefined what it means to be a lager, and beers like this are a perfect example of their crusade against convention.

StonedTrippin, Dec 20, 2013
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 2/17/2012 at British Beer Company, in Walpole, MA served in a stange glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color with a short light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains smoked malts, some chocolate and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a quite tame smokiness followed by a mild chocolate flavor. The malt character is hearty and there’s a mild but complementary hops presence that creates a good balance. The after-taste is slightly smoky and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this beer was an excellent complement to pastrami sandwich and overall is a very good smoked beer.

TheManiacalOne, Feb 21, 2012
Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Kegatron, Nov 08, 2013
Photo of MasterSki
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler courtesy of Reagan1984 - the crazy generous guy who sends two growlers as extras. Served in a Hill Farmstead glass.

A - Quick-dissolving tan foam settles to a thin collar, wispy patches, and spotty lace. Dark brown body with some ruby highlights to it.

S - Smoked ham, dark chocolate, roasted malts, and hickory. As it warms more the honey-glazed meat character intensifies.

T - The taste is more balanced, with chocolate, dry roast nuts, roasted malts, and a hint of caramel on one side and smoke, hickory, and campfire on the other.

M - Medium body, pleasant carbonation, lightly dry and smoky texture, and a fairly clean finish.

D - A very good and authentic Rauchbier. This isn't the most sexy style of beer, and I was a bit apprehensive about having 2L of Rauchbier. I needn't have worried about it, as I returned to this for numerous refills during the course of the Super Bowl.

MasterSki, Feb 06, 2012
Photo of jlindros
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light fizzy head that fades semi quickly over pitch black lightless beer.

Nose brings a nice smoke to it, like a light hickory smoke but not really the typical smoked meat aroma, a bit of campfire as well, then some light roasted malt and hint of chocolate, caramel, and even some vanilla.

Taste starts rich, quite malty actually, the smoke comes first again with some light wood smoked malts, hint of hickory but lighter overall on the smoke, not overpowering. Again with a touch of campfire, and maybe a hint of smoked cheese. The malts bring a rich luscious mouth, with some caramel, slight roast, some vanilla, and asome black patent malt that seems to turn slightly to chocolate but barely (or my mind playing tricks on me). A nice creamy malt that almost feels like oats are there. Finishes fairly crisp with a nice lager flavor late on the finish, and quite a bit of bitterness that starts to finally come through, more from the roasted malts and smoke than any hops. A bit drier but slightly sticky.

Mouth is med to a bit heavier bodied, creamy, decent carb for growler.

Overall nice, smoke is done well without the heavy smoke flavor, not too bitter or tannic either, and nice soft malt and lager flavors, nice oats and even a hint of chocolate coming late. Much different than anything I've had before I think, and done fairly well. They easily could have gone overboard on anything, but didn't. Perhaps a touch more of the lager flavors and crispness would have been nicer.

jlindros, Oct 25, 2011
Photo of oline73
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours a dark brown color with some red light coming through at the edges. There is a half finger of off white head that fades rather quickly.

Smell: Not as roasty as I would have expected, but the roast compliments everything else nicely. I'm getting bready malt sweetness along with some dark fruit. Just a bit nutty with mild smoke.

Taste: Not quite as nice as the smell, but still quite good. Some bready malt with dark chocolate and smokey notes. I'm getting mild caramel and dark fruit. The finish is slightly bitter with a nice smoke to it.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with very full carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: I really enjoyed this beer. I was super easy to drink and quite interesting. I would definitely have more in the future.

oline73, Jan 05, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

mendvicdog, Sep 22, 2013
Photo of mdfb79
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From 08/17/12 notes. Had this on nitro-tap at a bar right outside Boston, MA. Served in a pint glass.

a - Pours an almost black brown color with one finger of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks like a great stout.

s - Smells of roasted malts, dark chocolate, light milk chocolate, smoke, cream, and some light caramel malts. Smoke is light which I enjoy.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, toasted malts, dark chocolate, cream, smoke, ham, milk chocolate, and toffee. A little more smoke here than the nose, but still not overbearing.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Body is super smooth and creamy, and insanely easy to drink. Nitro-pour does wonders for this one and the body. Very drinkable.

o - Overall a pretty good beer; kind of reminds me of Guinness Light with a hint of smoke. Tons of roasted malts and chocolate along with light smoke, and easy to drink. Would like to have again, and would jump to have it again on nitro-tap.

mdfb79, Aug 22, 2012
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Smoke & Dagger from Jack's Abby Brewing
88 out of 100 based on 676 ratings.