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"Shabadoo" Black & Tan Ale - Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

"Shabadoo" Black & Tan Ale"Shabadoo" Black & Tan Ale

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

213 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 213
Reviews: 123
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 10.44%

Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc. visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Black & Tan |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-03-2002)
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Ratings: 213 | Reviews: 123 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jcdiflorio

West Virginia

4.97/5  rDev +29.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle served in a nonic.Big thanks for the send from Sudsdog,my Berkshire connection.

Deep mahogany color,almost black with ruby red highlights in the light,looks opaque normally.
Very generous thick/dense light tand head with good retention.
Very appealing aroma as it nears my nose.like this one already. Nice firm complex malt nose with a smokey earthyness,roasty with lot a carmell that has a good burnt quality to it,with dark fruity notes also.
Dark fruitiness at the start with a tart berry-like note. Very balanced and complex maltiness,well blended together.Perfect malt taste with nothing really standing out.Wonderfull crisp dry finish woody with some dusty chocolate to it.
Amazingly smooth and creamy. Liquid velvet had to shake the bottle and check for the widget when i was finished.Wasn't in there. Just an extremely drinkable beer to me anytime of the year. Not and extreme beer in anyway,just sooo smooth it has to be admired.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2008 02:39:47 | More by jcdiflorio
Photo of mcarroll10177


4.7/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

served on tap from Driscalls in Wilbraham MA

A- black as night with a small off white head and tons of lacing on the glass with every sip

S- nice roasted malts with some vanilla undertones

T- excellent, creamy and smooth with a malted flavor and a nice refreashing finish. what a taste

M- perfectly balanced not to thick or thin

D- an easy drinker, great taste with a boldness that still is quaffable and refreshing.

notes- another great achivement from my favorite american brewery

Serving type: on-tap

08-20-2006 03:30:08 | More by mcarroll10177
Photo of guinness33

New Jersey

4.58/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice looking deep deep brown colour with a big chunky tan head that marks the glass all over.

The aroma is a great blend of chocolate, coffee, earthy malt, some caramel sweetness and hints of fruit. Very nice.

The flavour is more of the same: chocolate, caramel and coffee blend nicely and compliment each other as each sip is extremely well balanced. The earthy malt notes are still here but a bit of roasted malt comes through here as well and adds a nice kick to each sip. Mouthfeel is medium bodied wit ha good amount of creaminess to it.

I really dig this brew. Something about it just reminds me of the autumns and winters I spent living in New England (go figure since its brewed in MA) and while there's that bit of nostalgia there with this one, the overall flavour and presentation of it makes it just as enjoyable without said nostalgia. This is one of my favourite Berkshire's. A treat for sure and well worth sampling.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2007 01:07:17 | More by guinness33
Photo of iceball585

New York

4.58/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark brown/black color, non-transparent, one finger thick fluffy head that lowered quickly to a thin cover

S- Chocolate, smokey, roasted malts, coffee, molasses, hint of hops

T- Dark roasted malts, chocolate milk, vanilla, coffee, smokey, fairly sweet, light spice finish

M- Medium/heavy body, low/medium carbonation, smooth, chewy, full feeling

D- Very good

This beer is the first one to impress me in a while. Smells mostly chocolate but the taste is very heavy on the malts. All around great full bodied beer for relaxing in the winter time.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2008 01:31:03 | More by iceball585
Photo of irishevans


4.58/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

pours dark brown and gets a bit lighter at the bottom of the glass almost as though it was blended off the tap. smells like both a porter and a lager, as crisp as a nose gets. the taste is consistent all the way through, some coffee, or perhaps chocolate flavor, and some lagerish "paleness" if you will. the mouth-feel starts off smooth and becomes very crisp as it goes on to the finish. goes down so so smooth and easy, in my humble opinion the best Black&Tan out there.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2008 02:56:34 | More by irishevans
Photo of Gatch


4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice ruby red-brown with a big, foamy, off-white head. Good lace and retention.

S: Malty, smoky, fruity, with a hint of hops.

T: Everything I expected from reading the description on the bottle. The best of their Pale Ale and Porter. Great hop presence up front with a slightly sweet, malty finish.

M: Highly delicious and drinkable.

O: My first of the style but I imagine it's at the top of the list. Well done beer that's fresh, fun and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2012 21:49:16 | More by Gatch
Photo of msolar


4.47/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

“Shabadoo” is right - Awesome beer.

Poured dark but could see through it.

Smelled delicious and tasted great. It wasn’t as bitter as I expected. My wife, who generally doesn’t like darker/heavier beers like this one quite a bit, too.

Very drinkable. I’d certainly suggest picking it up next time you find one.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2006 00:26:36 | More by msolar
Photo of JimmieFrisbee

Rhode Island

4.47/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into pint glass from 22 oz. bomber, refrigerated.

Beautiful brown/orange body with generous chocolate-milk head.

Smells sweet and roasty. Not exactly complex, but nice.

Tastes roasty, creamy, with some sweetness. There's a little bit of bitterness that reminds me of whatever hops Bass uses.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Easily drinkable -- very easy.

Simple beer. One to really enjoy without thinking about very much.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2009 21:14:28 | More by JimmieFrisbee
Photo of donniecuffs

New Jersey

4.45/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It is very difficult to find a good specimen of this style pre-mixed (and in bottles, which I subsequently sampled as well), so I am always a little skeptical. This one, however, knocked my socks off. It poured dark, but settled out lighter towards the bottom, with a decent head...all pretty surprising. The smell included cocoa, roasted malt, coffee, caramel, toffee, and vanilla, and the taste was an excellent balance of all of these flavors. I was super impressed. The feel was creamy, yet not overpowering, so as to allow sessioning. A very pleasant surprise overall.

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2009 04:47:42 | More by donniecuffs
Photo of thespaceman


4.43/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber in a 20oz nonic.

Appearance: This black & tan pours a beautiful deep mahogany in color, lots of red highlights, huge billowing head softly rests atop a deep, acentric body. Lacing down the glass is excellent.

Smell: Earth like elements and some hops are first detected through the nose, a bready like maltiness is here in the backdrop, a true black and tan in the nose. Crystal malt & a nice dose of fruit pairings in here make this one very authentic for a bottled black and tan.

Taste: Caramel malt, cereal grains, wheat, some ginger, small bits of coriander and malt spice blend perfectly with a well balanced amount of hoppy florals. Fruits here range from a dark plum, a bit of prune and some small doses of citrus. Ever expanding all around and really flows beautifully from malt to hops. I've had black & tans plenty of times, and traditionally the ones at the bar are bland but this is what it should be! Excellent use of ingredients blends without swaying to one side and making you think this isn't two beers blended into one.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, not as heavy as your traditional Guinness/Harp mix, even carbonation is fair to the tongue, bitterness is slightly here from the hops but makes for a "bittersweet ending" for such a wonderful beer.

Drinkability: In a bottle or on the tap, probably the best representation of a black and tan I've had the pleasure of having. Berkshire blends two beers correctly into one without throwing you to one side. Malt lovers and even hop lovers can rejoice at last! The picture perfect blend of what a black and tan should be. And at $3.50 a bomber, you can save a trip to the bar and having a nasty B&T made by some moron who probably drinks Coors anyway! Recommended!

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2009 04:23:58 | More by thespaceman
Photo of billybob


4.4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 22oz. bottle with a dark brown color and nice two finger head that held well and a nice lace to the finish. smell is coffee and caramel. taste is same but the coffee comes through without any bitterness. mouthfeel all malt smoothness with a clean light body and no after taste. i don't think you will find to many people who would not like this beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2007 04:11:22 | More by billybob
Photo of DNICE555


4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Flatbread Pizza in Canton.

A - A think black body with an off white head.

S - Roasted malts.

T - Soo hard to describe. A balanced malty goodness with that deep rich stout flavour mixed in. Love the taste of this beer. I've been having this on tap along with the cabin fever religously at flatbread. I love this style and I wish there were more of them available on tap in my area.

M - A nice middle ground for the style. Couldn't be more balanced.

D - Soo easy to drink. Would have guessed a much lower abv. Love this on tap. Only had it in a bottle once a couple years ago.

Serving type: on-tap

12-18-2009 17:12:03 | More by DNICE555
Photo of angelogarcia3

New York

4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An excellant beer with strong chocolate aroma that hits you even before you drink it. The color of the beer is a very dense blackness that seems like a black hole where no light will penetrate. Once you take a swallow you definitely know why black holes are dense. This very thick beer tastes like a very thick Belgian chocolate shake. Had this beer at The Scuffer Steak & Ale House, in Burlington, VT.

Serving type: on-tap

05-12-2011 23:38:03 | More by angelogarcia3
Photo of smcolw


4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Excellent three-finger, beige head that provides superior lace. Very dark brown (unable to shine light through) liquor.

Aromas of semi-sweet chocolate and hops. A small amount of coffee is also present.

Nice powerful flavors. Excellent blend of crystal/chocolate malts and hops. This is a full-bodied beer with an appropriate amount of carbonation.

Typically, I'm not a fan of bottled Black & Tans because they do not have the same effect of the light lager and dark stout layering that is present from a tap pour. However, this should not detract from this flavorful brew, as this is simply an excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2005 20:07:20 | More by smcolw
Photo of jonziefle

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Apperance: Poured a reddish brown color, clear. Two finger frothy khaki head with an aggressive pour. Good retention. Some nice lacing.

Smell: Smells of sweet fruity hops. Some hints of darker malts, but not much. Possibly even chocolate/coffee in the malts.

Taste: Definitely tastes like a black and tan. The strong hop fragrance in the nose is much milder in the taste; not biting or intense really, in a good way. Mild malts (coffee and caramel) blend well. Overall, very well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and very smooth. Some carbonation, but more like a stout in feel than an ale or lager. Creamy even.

Drinkability: Excellent beer. Balanced from start to finish with a taste that lingers for the right amount of time. Not a strong beer in flavor, but it excels over a wide spectrum. Easy to drink and very smooth.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2009 01:51:06 | More by jonziefle
Photo of erosier


4.33/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a red tint to it with a tall and medium bodied tan colored head that sticks around for a long time before settling. It laces the glass very nicely on the way down. The aroma is of deep roasted malts and sweeter toasted ones underneath some hints of coffee, chocolate, and caramel. The taste is the same as well. Nice mix of malts that give it a bittersweet base underneath subtle hints of chocolate and coffee rounded off by a nice but slight hoppy bitterness. Really nice black and tan. The mouthfeel was very crisp and warming which makes for a very drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2008 15:31:35 | More by erosier
Photo of twiggamortis420


4.33/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber courtesy of Cuzco in a recent local BIF, muchas gracias. Pours a medium brown color with a large, tight-bubbled tan head. Retention is pretty nice and leaves some well constructed lace patterns on the glass.

Nose is more on the porter side of things and leaves the lighter pale ale behind for the most part. Quenticentail dark fruits with some hot chocolate sweet malts, maybe even a marshmallow or two thrown in for good measure. Somewhat grainy with a bit of husk as it warms.

This could be dealt as a porter, but the thin body and easy-drinking manner would give it away pretty easily. Dry, roasted husk malts blend with a sweet grainyness from the pale ale to give this one an uncommonly smooth mouthfeel. There is more than enough hops to dry out the finish and they even provide a nice bit of floral/herbaceous flavor. Slight astringency is the only issue I have with this beer, and that is very minor. Pretty nice brew here, and easily the best Black & Tan I have had. Recommended, for sure.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2010 04:53:46 | More by twiggamortis420
Photo of MusicaleMike


4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber Bottle purchased on my trip up to Mass. Label reads that this is a blend of Berkshire Ale and Drayman's Porter. I also brought home a growler of the Porter...very nice!

This beer has a wonderful appearance, with a voluminous head that indicates some darker malts are present. Deep, deep amber color, verging on brown, with some gorgeous ruby highlights. Nice amount of lacing on the tulip glass I am using.

Fairly fruity nose, with many opportunities to pick out aromas. I am getting vanilla, brandied cherries, melon...as you can see, it is quite sweet in the nose.

The taste echos the smell with some sweet flavors of caramel and chocolate. There is a little bitterness right in the middle, and the acridness of the roasted malts is subdued by the lighter ale cutting through. I think this is a great example of the style and I am really enjoying this beer! It finishes with a touch of wood-tinged maltiness.

The texture of this beer is quite smooth. Oily mouthfeel, with quite fine carbonation. The beer is full-bodied and has definitely retained some sugars.

Overall, we have a winner here! A fine Black and Tan that does a good job of showcasing the better qualities of each contributing beer. On top of being an excellent beer, we can all feel good about picking up this bottle for 10% of all gross sales of this beer will be donated to the Food Bank of Western Mass. Hunger is a true issue in our world, and I am proud to be drinking a beer from a company that recognizes our local issues with hunger.

Cheers Chris and Gary!

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2011 01:51:48 | More by MusicaleMike
Photo of Kookiekwan


4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer was a very dark amber bordering on brown with no seperation of colors. The aroma was floral and hoppy. The first taste was sharp with hops but quickly balanced out with a very roasty malt sweetness. Mouthfeel was creamy and smooth.

Reflection: I've never been a big fan of Black and Tans in a bottle but this beer might be the one that changes my mind. Great on a Fall afternoon!

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2004 18:51:44 | More by Kookiekwan
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into a pint glass.

Dark brown with a picture-perfect white creamy foam. Where's my camera? This looks perfect enough to take a picture and seems a shame to drink, but I must.

Very sticky foam remains.

Strong roasted smell, hints off chocolately malt - similar to the Drayman porter.

Taste begins dark roasted and concludes surprisingly clean. BBC strikes a perfect balance.

Smooth finish, light bitter at the conclusion.

Encore! Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2010 16:25:16 | More by KTCamm
Photo of Jason


4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz brown bomber with a purchase before freshness date on the label.

Appearance: Deep hazy brown, tiny bubble creamy lace clings to the glass like a champ. Rings all the way down.

Smell: Sweet malty aroma, splash of vanilla … creamed coffee?

Taste & Mouthfeel: So creamy smooth, malty on the palate. The sprinkle of hop bitterness leaves a faded hop flavour. A ghost like steely malt flavour middle to end, the line between roasted and toasted malt is blurred in this brew. Ends up sweet in the end with an underlying toasted maltiness to hold thing together.

Notes: This has to be the best bottled black and tan I have had to date. So drinkable and the 6.3% abv is not noticeable at all. Very versatile, have it around for game time as a session brew or pair it with a chocolate dessert. Either way this one is a winner in my book.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2004 01:19:53 | More by Jason
Photo of ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber aquired at some hole-in-the-wall bottle shop @ the MA/NH border.

A- A wonderful cascade, a nice creamy head, and instant lacing. A bit lighter in color than I was expecting, a chestnut brown, a few shades darker than Newcastle.

S- Creamy sugary malty... smells good. Not too strong, but still inviting.

T- Follows the nose... rich, sweet, creamy malts. Very tasty and entirely quaffable. A supremely tasty (pre-mixed) black + tan. Not too much depth but more than enough good flavor to stay on the positive side.

M- Medium-bodied, creamy, smooth, like velvet. Enough carbonation to keep things moving.

D- High. Been a while since I enjoyed a good black and tan... and this is def. one of them! Glad I got a 2nd bomber, I will be going back for more of this. A supremely tasty, easy drinkin', and all around good brew.


Serving type: bottle

10-20-2009 00:50:06 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of littlebibs

New Hampshire

4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice "fall" tasting beer. The malts are so outspoken and (delicious!!) although its sweet it has such a nice fruity, toffee/coffee/chocolate
edge and its nicely balanced. I understand about the way its
poured at a bar, I've only had a black and tan in another glass
bottle and it was ok as I remember. This reminds me of a great
tasting Fall/October style beer, which is my favorite, well during
this time of the year. I've been drinking the Magic Hat Jinx, Heart
of Darkenss and Ravell and I love the porter/stout coffee/chocolate
side of these beers so the Bershire offering, even with its higher
alcohol its a winner and I would drink these again and again. I
thought the Okotoberfest they put out was ok- alittle to much
alcohol and fizz for me but different. I would buy this again, no
problem. I hope they have some at the EXTREME BEER FEST
in BOSTON in early 2005, can't wait!!

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2004 21:51:55 | More by littlebibs
Photo of Citadel82

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a great beer.

Pours a chestnut brown with a creamy white head. Lots of sticky lacework.

Smell of malt with little hop notes.

Taste dry stout with a malty pale ale bite. Exceptional.

Mouthfeel is gentle carbonation and full bodied,

Very drinakable, warming and refreshing, I will seek this one out.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2004 04:33:21 | More by Citadel82
Photo of marlinsfan4


4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just had this on tap at cambridge house brew pub earlier tonight. I was disappointed they still aren't brewing yet but it gave me a change to try this great beer. I've only had a couple black and tans before (saranac and Mississipi mud) and this one is far better. I can't believe its IPA level ABV wise.. taste was so damn smooth. Lots of flavors for your palette to wander around and just good overall.

Serving type: on-tap

01-10-2009 01:12:05 | More by marlinsfan4
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"Shabadoo" Black & Tan Ale from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 213 ratings.