Black House - Modern Times Beer

Not Rated.
Black HouseBlack House

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

645 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 645
Reviews: 75
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 9.73%
Wants: 62
Gots: 103 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Modern Times Beer visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mactrail on 06-30-2013

Black House is an oatmeal coffee stout bursting with coffee aroma and flavor.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 645 | Reviews: 75
Reviews by lsummers:
More User Reviews:
Photo of gibgink
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%

Poured slightly chilled on 11/25/14.

A: Very dark brown, with slight head
S: A dark roasty-ness with some coffee in the background
T: Perfect blend of a roasted malt with coffee
M: Silky smooth
O: Perfection in a can! This beer is EXACTLY what the label says it is. I would drink this all the time if I could.

Photo of Franziskaner
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Light black in color,yet still penetrable to light. A minuscule bit of khaki colored head covers the top. Brussels lacing. Aroma of dark roasted coffee greets my nose. The mouth is silky,smooth,and dry. The taste is bitterly dark roasted coffee and roasted barley. The finish is pretty smooth and sweet along the lines of plums.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.21/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is excellent stuff, so easy drinking and full on ice brewed coffee notes once you crack the can the coffee bean expressiveness explodes toward my senses. I'm pouring into a 20 ounce nonic pint glass with this one in order to leaves some room for head space, pounder cans from Modern Times San Diego's new sensation. It looks great almost pitch black with a bit of cola brown highlights around the edges, big tan head fills the bulging nonic pint curves wonderfully. Fine light speckled lacing left unevenly but whimsically around the sides of the glass with each sip.

Aromatics contain expressive coffee notes, roasted almond and a generic earthy nutty character, dark chocolate notes, ice brewed coffee with a touch of cream and light sugar perceived sweetness and slightly lactic edge comes out as well. I'm happy just leaving my nose in the glass, it smells great but I want to try the flavor.

Roasted coffee notes, it's like drinking a beer ice brewed coffee hybrid, this is one of the most coffee forward coffee beers I've ever had. What set's it apart from other bigger stouts like Founders Breakfast Stout, is that the base beer being lighter almost gives it that smooth slightly oily iced coffee texture. A hint of lactose giving it a slightly tart milk sugar creaminess finishes great on the palate.

Mouthfeel smooth creamy textures competent carbonation levels, silky textures very reminiscent of drinking ice brewed coffee. Slightly oily texture makes the beer just go down so easy, evidently they are selling this stuff in number and these big pounder cans are the perfect vessel for such a flavorful and easy drinking coffee stout.

Overall, I pay to have access to some type of stout like this locally. The version of East End's coffee beer they recently brewed was amazing on cask at Piper's Pub it's called Joe Melt instead of their winter seasonal Snow Melt. All comparisons aside this stands out as a great coffee beer that this newer brewery should stand behind and let it cruise into position as their flagship offering that will put them on the map for the rest of the country. I bet those 16 ounce cans will ship great across the country once Modern Times grows enough to expand!

Photo of 01001111
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black coffee with a small but crisp ring of head.

S: Sweet roasted malts, a subtle hint of coffee, and faint dark fruit.

T: Burnt grains, medium roast coffee, a splash of sweetness mixed with a hint of booze. The finish is roast bitterness more than hop bitterness.

M: Creamy and thick without being syrupy.

O: The more it warms up the better the coffee comes through. A good, straightforward coffee stout.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 16 ounce can into a mini-snifter.

Beautiful looking from the pour: pitch-black body and a dark-khaki tanned head. It's a nice contrast and the fact that the head remains two fingers thick for a suspended amount of time adds to the attractiveness. Sticky lacing scatters about the snifter. 4.5

Dark roast coffee with a bit of a fruity edge burst from the nose. The coffee is strong with this one. Creamy notes of vanilla and toffee give this that coffee with cream feel (or smell really). This aroma is outstanding. 4.5

Bitter how you like your coffee? You'll like this one. It's got the stiff dark roast flavor but with a bitter quality, which is only enhanced by the huge resinous, dank hops thrown into the mix. Vanilla lingers on the finish to offer a sweet counter. I like this flavor but something about the hop addition seems to disrupt the pleasant tastiness of the coffee and sweeter flavors. 3.75

While the body is light and easy-drinking, there's a burst of effervescence that you'd find more in a Belgian beer. It makes the beer a bit less sippable than the beer's body has already allowed for, but I'm still throwing this back like nothing. 4

Huge coffee flavors and still low in ABV, I like what they did here. I could throw back a number of these no problem.

Photo of SomethingClever
3.85/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

16 oz can poured into can glass

A: softer pour but even doing that there was almost no head this beer isn't pitch black either it's close but not quite some light punches through the edges.

S: nice roasted coffee smell some light notes of licorice and chocolate

T: nice burst of coffee sweetness and some barely lingering of licorice

M: medium to full a touch thin but not crazy so

O: this is a solid beer I think i would gave been more impressed if it was called a porter instead of stout. Stout conjures thoughts of deep abyss blackness and insane viscosity. This beer has a nice taste but it's not world class at best this is worth trying and then passing on.

Photo of augustgarage
4.04/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a pint can into my Samuel Smith nonik.

Seal brown liquid, clear with rufous highlights and a smattering of beige foam that recedes to a delicate collar most rapidly. Weak lacing, fast running legs, below average retention.

Chocolate, coffee, and a subtle variety of roast malts are presented to the nose. Earthy, faintly fruity (low esters though, more likely coming from the coffee?), with a hint of caramel.

Subdued yet moderately complex flavor profile goes back and forth between sweeter flavors (toffee, cocoa nibs, vanilla, bread) and dry elements (toast, ash-tray, grain husks, over-steeped black tea). The dryness eventually wins out in the long gradual finish. Moderate hop flavor (herbal, almost vegetal) and medium-low bitterness throughout. Coffee adds some berry notes, a hint of lemon, and some floral notes as well. Perhaps the vaguest element of diacetyl, but it's not unpleasant.

Light-bodied, a little thin even, though the carbonation helps build up the mouth-feel a bit.

I seem to detect an English influence throughout, though the lack of yeast character and the purity of the coffee bring the beer back to this side of the pond. While not perfectly "to style" it is a tasty brew. Bonus points for their copywriting, packaging, and label design.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. can poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black, but not inky. Transparent edges. Small khaki head. Very thin collar.

Smell - Lots of coffee. Dark roasted malts.

Taste - And it's all coffee here too. Some deep roasted chocolate, even a little burnt malt in the back. Some vanilla.

Mouthfeel - Bitter finish. Medium low carbonation. Medium body.

Overall - Dominated by coffee, but it's very drinkable.

Photo of Treyliff
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- pours pitch black with a small fizzy dark tan head that reduces quickly, leaving nothing behind

S- lots of fresh coffee aroma, woodsy and herbal, flaked oats, freshly ground coffee beans. Dark chocolate mixes with a nice roasty chocolate malt base

T- fresh coffee continues with fruity, woodsy and herbal coffee flavors, bitter dark chocolate and carob kicks in mid-palate with more herbal notes mixed in notes. Bone dry finish with a chocolate covered raisin flavor on the linger that adds a nice touch

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a creamy mouthfeel and a silky smooth finish. The bone dry finish makes this quite drinkable for a coffee stout

O- A nice coffee stout, I'm a fan of sumatra coffee and could distinguish it in the beer. Highly drinkable for a coffee stout. Good intro to Modern Times for me.

Photo of xboxhueg
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Roasty, chocolately and coffe, whats not to like

Photo of smakawhat
4.14/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a nonic pint glass.

Pours black as night, like walnut black with a hint of red. Fluffy creamed tan top, with a light milky cocoa color to it. Two fingers tall and perfect ring lacing as it slowly settles. Very nice looking beer.

Great smelling stout. Light sweetness. Charring roast. Mellow coffee and cream rich qualities. Senses large, but not overpowering. Liking this aroma a lot.

On first sip, the cream and sweetness hit first, with a good coating and milky texture. Good mild grain roast like finish, that lingers with a bit of crackling quality. Soft. Slightly lush but with a nice sharp bitterness of coffee and oils that hits the mid palate to break up nicely.

Overall wonderfully balanced and I love it's simplicity more than anything. THis would be a great go to stout to have all the time, sort of reminds me of Cadillac Mountain a bit minus the coffee angle.

Photo of Geoffq
4.92/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

a nice surprise this beer is full bodied
not too strong great coffee stout taste

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an Elysian snifter. Pours a very dark, opaque brown with at thin tan head that maintains a thin film and ring around the glass with light lacing. Mild sweet toasted malt aroma with fresh coffee and light chocolate. Flavor is a very nicely integrated sweet toasted and caramel malt, coffee, finishing with sweet coffee and a hint of grassy hop bitterness. Nice medium body with some light creaminess. A nicely made and balanced coffee stout, with no real wow components, but nicely put together and quite flavorful for a non-imperial stout. I liked this quite a bit with my lunch. I hope to taste more from this brewery when I visit southern California.

Photo of RaulMondesi
3.85/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

It's good. But like Natalie Portman in "Black Swan," it's a little thin. The aroma is great; it's like walking past Portola Coffee hungover, 20 minutes before work: yes please! Taste is like the Supremes before they hit it big.

As a whole, I'm feeling it, but like your little sister who is trying to be the next Jennifer Lawrence, there is still more work to be done.

Photo of ThickNStout
3.45/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

16oz can from j47paco (appreciated, as always). Canned 9/10/13. Served in a goblet.

Pours cola brown with two and a half fingers of tan head. The foam dissipates rather quickly without leaving much to speak of in the way of lace.

Smells of medium roast coffee, cocoa, slight caramel and toasted grains.

Robust black coffee is far and away the most prominent flavor but it is backed by cocoa powder, burnt caramel, charred grains, vague rolled oats and brown sugar. This certainly hits the right notes for the style in a big, bitter, roasty way.

Light yet notably creamy feel with soft carbonation. Coffee, cocoa and roasted malt finish.

I tend to prefer my coffee stouts thicker, heartier and slightly sweeter but this is a quite flavorful and easy drinking brew. Solid, enjoyable work but other than being packaged in a tallboy can (which is indeed awesome) it doesn't quite pull ahead of the rather crowded pack of coffee oatmeal stouts.

Photo of MisSigsFan
4.17/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a can into a tulip glass. Pours dark brown/black with a thick tan head. A lot of coffee in the nose. Some chocolate and maybe just a hint of dark fruits. Taste follows pretty closely. A good amount of coffee bitterness. I don't drink many "single" stouts, mostly imperials, so obviously the lighter mouthfeel was a bit different for me, although expected from a <6% beer. Overall, a great, drinkable stout. I love how much the coffee stands out in this one. It's so smooth too, it feels like I'm drinking a milk stout.

Photo of dutesanch
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Poured from a pint can into my Stone snifter. Pours jet black with a delayed light tan head that begins to form from the middle of the glass. Smells of coffee and cigar tobacco. Taste is very similar to the aroma. Smooth and slightly oily mouthfeel. Pint can was the perfect amount for a good relaxing buzz. I drank this beer over two highly regarded imperial stouts because I didn't want an entire bomber at the time. Delicious late night or cold weather brew. Will be buying some more.

Photo of Brew-Knows
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Coffee smell and taste cold. As it warms up the chocolate comes through and taste sweeter.

Photo of cbutova
3.81/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed at the Modern Times Tasting Room, San Diego, CA last week. Reviewed from notes.

A- Black bodied brew poured from the tap into a tulip. Two-finger frothy light brown cap forms with decent retention. Falls to a small ring leaving nice webs of lace coating the glass.

S- Deep roasted malts and a nice toasted oat feel for me. Above this, the coffee is certainly the focus with some chocolate and black roasted malt feel.

T- Coffee really opens up here reminding me of that morning French Press beans, not quite espresso but dark roast. Base beer of roast malts, cocoa, toasted oat, caramel and some earthy hop hints. The coffee has some fruity hints with warmth.

MF- Creamy moderately thick body with silky, medium carbonation. Roasty coffee bitters linger on the palate, just a hint of it.

Nice dark roast coffee ground feel and some good black malts to support it. Rich aroma is especially nice.

Photo of ilikebeer03
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

an excellent beer.

nose and taste are freshly ground roasted coffee. roasted malt, chocolate. all balanced nicely. nothing dominates.

Had Nitro on draft and traditionally carbed from a can. I prefer the canned better.

Photo of hopsputin
4/5  rDev -0.2%

a: its a pretty solid black color with a some hints of dark ruby red coming from the bottom. nice 2 finger tan solid head

s: some lactose, toasted malts, dark caramel, milk chocolate. the coffee seems faint in the aroma

t: a rich smooth chocolatey first sip for sure. there a large roasted malt presence, as well as a fairly large amount of bitterness coming from the raw coffee beans. the coffee hits you gradually, but its a nice smooth blended flavor that really helps to round out the beer. finishes with sweet milk chocolate powder

m: on the heavier side of medium, but has a nice silky mouthfeel. leave your mouth feeling a bit syrupy. carbonation is on the lower side of the spectrum

o: its pretty enjoyable. as i've found with a few of the coffee beers i've had lately, i wish the coffee would be just a bit more pronounced on the front of the tongue. its really smooth, and has a real nice toasted chocolate flavor that is definitely enjoyable on its own. for sure worth a pick up

Photo of Gr8ful4Beer
4.36/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The can says chocolate-covered espresso bean, and that is a good description. A nice surprise in a can. Worth a try.

Photo of PicoPapa
3.89/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Orthodoxkardia for this brew.

16oz Tall Boy pours a black color with dark brown hues and a 1/2 inch of head. Some lacing. The aroma is chocolate, earth, roasted malts, coffee, and a bit of marshmallow. The taste is coffee and dark chocolate followed by some smokey malts. Peat and earth. Finishes with some more coffee and bitter dark chocolate. Mouthfeel is a bit on the lighter side, but its a Coffee Stout so it fits the style. Very drinkable with very little alcohol presence. Roasty with lots of coffee and dark chocolate. Overall, pretty solid beer I'd grab again.

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

Thanks to rudzud for leaving this one with me to try. First beer from this brewery.

Pours a nice darker colored fluffy fizzy head that hits a finger and fades semi slowly, nice lacing, just about pitch black beer.

Nose nice roast and dark chocolate, cocoa dust, coffee, freshly brewed coffee as well that plays nicely off the roasted malt, and a little earthy bitter roast, nice fudgey dark choc and cocoa, with a little caramel and fluffy nougat, faint earthy like hop note.

Taste brings fresh coffee again, very mild coffee with nice roasty malt but no acrid or burnt flavors, nice dark malts, into cocoa, dark chocolate and a little fudgey cocoa, mild fluffy nougat, with some caramel and wafer cookie like, almost raw chocolate chip cookie dough like note. Then mild earthy grassy hop note, mild bitterness, and a little creamy milk chocolate. Finish is drier but a little creamy feeling, nice lingering cocoa and milk chocolate, mild bitterness and more roast.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, creamy and rich, decent carb.

Overall pretty nice, a big creamy rich stout with nice cocoa, milk chocolate, roast, coffee, and hint of bitter hops. Very nice, rich and big while still drinkable and quite enjoyable.

Photo of Nugganooch
4.26/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

From the 16oz can to my FW Imperial Nonic glass
Notes form 04/25/2014

A: Dark black body with a slight russet edge as you near the sides of the glass. My pour produced a massive sponge of dark tan head with ample hang time. Only a few minor dots and squiggles of stick remain after each sip.

S: Loads of fresh roast coffee goodness from the can. Underneath lies some darkly kilned grains and a molasses like sweetness. Not much else going on amidst all the java. Some chocolate covered dark berries emerge as the beer warms in the glass. Very roasty but also very clean with a great coffee freshness.

T: Flavors bring a ton of coffeehouse grade roast with some dark fruits, sweet brown sugar/molasses, darkened caramels, oats, and a faded smokiness. Like French pressed coffee into beer. This is very roasty with a touch of dark chocolate hidden in the middle and a mild earthy bitterness that perks on the backend. Not terribly complex but everything really comes together nicely. It is just so smooth and never burnt or acrid in any way. Creamy, roasty, and delicious.

M: Creamy smooth feel for this moderately fuller body. Does not come across as thick as it really is. Silky on the palate with a touch of drying at the finish. Fairly clean retreat with some light slickness on the palate.

D: This is a brew served two ways. Could easily pass as an iced mocha in the can. Even though the coffee steals the show what you get is an incredible fusion of all the flavors and the mouth feel is a true delight. Probably my favorite from Modern Times next to the Fortunate Islands.

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Black House from Modern Times Beer
90 out of 100 based on 645 ratings.