Iniquity (Imperial Black Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

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Iniquity (Imperial Black Ale)Iniquity (Imperial Black Ale)

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1,492 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,492
Reviews: 618
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 148
Gots: 139 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-12-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,492 | Reviews: 618 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gator0877
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours very dark brown with about a 1 inch head. Head thins out a bit but still had about 1/2 inch after a while.

S-Yup, it is a DIPA. Huge hit of pine and that is about it.

T-I get a little citrus but man the booze cuts right through. I get a little malt but not too much. This is a DIPA and the hops come out and say hello. The more it warms up the more the booze is apparent.

M-This is damn near syrup, very chewy.

D-I like it but I will only be having 1or 2 a night. This is not an everyday beer.

Photo of Ryan011235
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap in a pint glass at Bodega on 7/22/10

Reviewed as a Cascadian Dark Ale

Dark brown, though light is able to pass through. At times seems like tobacco, crimson & ruby highlights. 1/8th inch head quickly skims out. Hardly any retention. Lacing picks up about halfway through but dries out quickly.

Smells of American hop goodness; definitely CDA worthy. Pine & juicy citrus aromas - grapefruit & orange. Dark malt notes that don't seem sweet. Faintest hint of dry roast. No booze.

The dark malts come across as more assertive to taste. Roastiness is more pronounced & full-flavored. Notes of cocoa, dark chocolate, caramel & maybe a spot of molasses. Definitely a dry malt profile. Still, the hops aren't overwhelmed, though they are kind of muddled. Pine tar offers a modest bitterness. There's a citric element that seems largely concealed.

Full bodied, sticky & resinous - a dense brew for sure. Some appreciable alcohol slickness, but not hot. Moderate carbonation has its work cut out. Roasted, piney & juicy residuals linger.

Rather impressive. Tasty, with a nice aroma & well-hidden abv. Overall, a solid representation of the CDA style, as opposed to a hoppy porter (though at times it wants to lean toward the latter).

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap in a pint glass at Ballantine's in Willoughby. Will file a Beer Spy report later.

Pours a deep brown, almost black color with very little head. It's served ever so slightly colder than it should be.

Smell is subdued, with very slight malt notes rising from it. No doubt the smell is hampered by the colder temp it is served at.

Has a nice nutty, hoppy taste to it, topped with caramel malt. Though I see this is classified as an imperial IPA, I would have pegged it a porter in mouthfeel and taste.

Smooth mouthfeel, but not too thick.

Highly drinkable; but for the other offerings on tap that night, I absolutely would have had another.

Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.63/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Southern Tier Iniquity is balanced, slightly earthy, and tame.

It poured black with a thick three-finger tan head. The head quickly dissipated, and with the exception of a lone thin ring, nothing was left on the glass. The aroma and flavor were subtle and rustic, with hints of pine and moldy cellar. There was a roasty sweet finish that provided balance. The feel was insubstantial and fleeting, too tame for an Imperial IPA. It was smooth and refreshing, especially considering the high ABV.

Iniquity has an imposing look and a musty flavor, but its sweet and smooth finish make sure its bark is worse than its bite.

Photo of Spider889
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Bodega in Columbus.

The beer comes out looking very dark and malty - exactly what I'd expect (and want to see) in a Black IPA. It is black but opaque when held to the light.

Smelled of some roasted malt and loads of hops.

The taste had a very nice malt character, mild coffee, which was very well balanced with the hops. I like it when my Black IPA uses malt for more than just coloring! Nonetheless this is definitely a beer with a Double IPA base.

You can't ignore the alcohol but it's decently masked for being a 9%er. I'd gladly drink this again, but most likely single doses if I plan on drinking anything else with noticeable hops in it.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Rob (Robtobfest) for this!

Pours very dark brown, looks pretty much black in the glass. Light, contrasting head sits on top, 2 fingers, sticks around for a decent amount of time.

The smell is very hoppy, with pine, resins and hints of citrus. Not much in the way of malts, but there is an apparent sweetness.

There is a definite malty dark sweetness up front that melds into a piny hop finish.

The feel is medium, slightly creamy and smooth.

Above average drinkability.

All in all, this reminds me of a more sweeter, maltier SSRA, and it's definitely good.

Photo of JackieTH
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Color was very dark brown, but not at all opaque. A thin, light brown head forms.

Complex and inviting nose of caramel roast malts, figs, citrus, and other dark fruits possibly cherries.

The palate leads off with with immediate citrus and piney hop, then becomes more complex with dried dark fruit, again figs/cherries and finally there is some sweetness that tends to overwhelm preceeding flavors.

Medium body with mild carbonation.

I enjoyed this one, another good one from Southern Tier.

Photo of kwjd
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark reddish-brown with thick off-white head and lots of lacing, with good retention. Smells of citrus and pine hops, with some roasted malt. One of the better smelling Cascadian Dark Ales (I like this name the best), as it seems to be really well balanced between the hops and the roasted malt. However, the flavour I'm not as impressed with. It just seems a bit too much like a sweet syrup then the bitter roasted flavour the smell would suggest. If you have a sweet tooth, I can see finding that appealing though. Mouthfeel is quite creamy.

Photo of thetomG
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark reddish brown pour. Very little head with no lacing left behind on the glass. Taste is a nice blend of sweet malts and bittering hops. Syrupy mouthfeel, but could definitely use a bit more carbonation IMO. Glad I tried this one, but not likely to seek it out again.

Photo of jampics2
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The glass is full of Iniquity. The beer that sits in the goblet infront of me is black, it's almost opaque but just lets a little light through. Fluffy head makes this a great looking beer.

Smells of pine, hops, chocolate roasted malt. Nice, I've had a few that do it better, but this is good.

Taste is wonderful IMO. A great mixture of roasty chocolate and coffee and piney citrus hops. Not too bitter but packs a punch. An excellent Cascadian Dark from upstate New York.

Lighter mouthfeel than I expected. But still good. I liked the beer, thought it tasted good and finished cleanly. Overall, I'd have this again with pleasure.

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A- pours a dark, dark brown/black with a one finger...very light brown head. Lacing is gorgeous...not one break in it at all.

S- very strong citrus hops with a piney backbone. Getting some dark fruits in there as well...maybe some cherries or figs. Pretty complex.

T- starts off with a nice burst of citrus, then you get smacked with the piney bitterness before finishing with a cross between the sweet and bitter. Sweetness might be a little much, though...I'd prefer a little more bitterness actually

M- a little thick...syrupy. Not a huge fan of the feel.

D- the sweetness is a little much...its decent for the style. The big selling point is the BLACKNESS I guess...but whatever. Its an average DIPA

Photo of mfunk9786
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinking this for the very first time. Purchased at Whole Foods, which is not the first place I've seen this heavily discounted. I think something about the unusual nature of the style is causing it to not sell as well as other Southern Tier imperials and as a necessity, go down in price. This is my first black IPA.

A: The flow from the bottle is a golden brown, but by the time it lands in my Unibroue tulip, it's, well, black. There's an anemic off-white head that's about the color of a malnourished vampire's complexion.

S: Smells roastier than I expected. Strong malt scent with some definite hop bitterness. The standout of the nose is a sweet dark fruit aroma.

T: Dark fruits, roasted malt, and some hops. Considering that this is classified on this site as a double IPA, I was quite surprised by the taste. It tastes more like a strange Baltic porter than it does a DIPA. There's a chocolate scent on each sip that reminds me of Troegs' Flying Mouflan.

M: The tanginess of this beer makes itself known on the tongue, but the alcohol is completely masked.

D: I can't imagine drinking more than one bomber in a row, it's certainly not a beer that encourages the drinker to polish it off, but it's very nice.

This beer is an absolute steal if you can find it, like I did, for less than $6 per bottle. Seek it out, don't ignore it, on that gorgeous shelf of Southern Tier imperials.

Photo of scottbrew4u
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black in color with some light coming through but not much. Above is a pillowy tan head that leaves great lace.

S: Roasted and burnt malt, coffee, chocolate, chicory, char and molasses. Hops are earthy and spicy.

T: Char, roasted and burnt malt, raisins, molasses, weak coffee, licorice and chocolate make up the malt profile. Hops add some more bitterness and some spice. Finish is slightly bitter and dry.

M: medium body and small crisp carbonation. Some alcohol warmth noticeable.

D: Refreshing and still complex with some good flavors and good strength. Not hard to drink at all. Very good now but could age well too.

Photo of rfgetz
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with only the faintest bit of bubbles around the glass. Scent is a mild and subdued combinaton of dark roasted grain, faintest hints of roasted coffee and cocoa beans. A slight herbal, earthy and piney hop quality is there. Taste again brings a relatively mild and subdued quality - the roasted grains are present, backed by a noticibly unbitter presence of earhty, floral and piney hops. Tastes of dark fruit, coffee and chocolate barely touch the palate. Medium bodied, mildly carbonated. A decent beer that has some very mild flavors and lacks a bitter bite... nout much of a dIPA in my opinion.

Photo of elgiacomo
3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle, probably mid-April 2010 bottling date.

Pours medium brown with a one and a half finger beige head, leaves some lacing and recedes to a light foamy cap.

Aroma is a bit quiet, but features roasted malt, coffee, a little chocolate, some citrus and earthy hops, bread, yeast, toasted dark bread and yeast character increases as it warms.

Flavor is quite nice, good juicy citrus hops, caramel, toffee, light roast and chocolate, coffee, fairly sweet, a bit of bitterness, but less than I was hoping for. Some alcohol on the finish.

Mouthfeel is fairly thin, slick, low to medium carbonation.

Solid Black IPA, but weak aroma and thin body don't help...

Photo of juju7
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love a beer that evolves in the glass. Pours a dark red, cola colour with not much head. Initial bouquet of citrus hops gives way to some interesting cocoa and yeast aromas. On the palate as well, what starts out tasting like an IPA with driving bitterness starts to morph into a smooth almost dark Belgian kind of vibe. Finishes dry but with a hint of yeast sweetness. I've only had a couple of beers in this style but this is the one that has really sold it for me.

Photo of levifunk
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bomber poured into a pint glass

a - very dark, low carbonation. I had to agitate the pour to get a decent head.

s - caramel, malts, some roasted cocoa.

t - same as nose, but not as sweet as the nose lets on. more of the smoked malt flavor. tobacco. does a good job hiding the 9%.

m - medium body. lower side of carbonation.

o - pretty decent. flavor is fairly mellow, but makes it very drinkable.

Photo of RomaniIteDomum
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with a nice fluffy light tan heat.

Smells like straight up hops with a little dangling sweetness.

Big citrusy blast in the front with a light pine and coffee finish. Interesting stuff going on here.

Creamy and well-carbonated. Good feel.

Drinkability is high. Lots of stuff going on that is reminiscent of an American Barleywine Lite. Nice.

Photo of FickleBeast
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at rfd in washington, dc. Reviewed on my droid.

Arrives in a goblet with one finger of foam that takes a few minutes to settle. Color is near black, and the aroma is a wonderful floral hoppiness. Very unusual to get a hoppy aroma from a dark beer.

Wow. This is a very nice, hoppy beer. Lace coats the goblet as I drink. The flavor is good, but I detect a strange maltiness that sticks out a bit, perhaps from the daRker roast malts? Nevertheless this is a very tasty beer with just a minor twinge of a sweet flavor that I don't care for. The hops do shine through to make this beer well balanced, and the alcohol is nicely masked.

I'd buy a bomber of this for sure and would get it again on tap.

Photo of mintjellie
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Iniquity isn't quite black in colour, being more of a brown so dark it appears black in the center. The thick & creamy latte hued foam that tops it takes its time thinning out and clings tenaciously to the glass. The aroma smells plummy, raisiny, and caramelized with citric, tropical hops. Rich caramel malt flavour with some molasses. Fruity and estery, in the dark and dried kind of way. Raisins, dried cherrys, the sort of fruit you would find in a fruit & nut chocolate bar, without the chocolate. The debittered black malt doesn't seem to contribute much to the beer outside of its appearance. Juicy tropical and grapefruit hop flavour. Firm, not extreme, bitterness. It's maltier than it is hoppy, but tastes good to me. I'll give it strong marks for the flavour with the caveat that this is really like a hoppy barleywine.

Thick bodied, sticky, sweet but not cloying with low carbonation. Smooth and syrupy. Southern Tier seem to brew their big beers for those with a sweet tooth, and I have one*. If you're looking for a real hop bomb of a DIPA this probably wont work for you. This certainly wasn't what I thought it would be when I bought it. I still enjoyed it for what it is though. It seems like they've brewed a delicious barleywine by accident, and a happy accident it is.

* Creme Brulee was still way too much of a good thing.

Photo of pootz
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber: My 3rd big ST from trade.

This one looks like a double porter with some bite. Black-brown, tan cap that stays. Cocoa-floral-pine aroma. Flavour is caramel, toasty, nutty, cocoa, earthy underneath floral, pine resin and botanicals. Long finish with a toasty bitter tang.

Big friggin' dark ale... I like it!

Photo of Kaiser81
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to BlueMoonCanyon for sending this to me

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my snifter glass

A - Pours a super dark mahogany, if that's possible, with slightly less than a finger width of head thae settles quickly, leaving spotty lacing on my glass.

S - Smells of some light hops, maybe some citrus, mixed with roast, coffeeish, and other dark fruit smells. I'm getting some plums, figs, and raisins in there. Maybe a touch of cocoa too.

T - Slight bit of hops up front with that dark fruit taste on the back end. Definitely a bit boozy on the aftertaste.

M - Creamy heavy body with low carbonation. Not sure how a dark IPA supposed to be, but a tad bit more bubbly would be nice.

D - I'm drinking this easy, and I could have some more.

Photo of ZimZamZoom
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just a nice pretty chestnut brown colored ale, with a not-too-thick tan head floating sheepishly on top. The deep colored beer is very clear when held to some light. I can read the logo on my pint glass from the other side.

Crazy piney hop aroma. Some Dark caramel malt notes back this up, but it's all about the hops. Taste is also all about the hops, piney and earthy, even spicy. Alcohol warmth twisted around some dark fruity notes round it out. It does not finish too far on the bitter side, but there is a lingering bitter bite that lasts a bit on a tongue dried out by alcohol.

Big bodied, with a nice smooth feel. A good sipper even on a hot spring day.

Photo of ugaterrapin
3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: It pours a black color that when held up to the light reveals a deep amber hue. A finger and half of head resides on top for a prolonged time. A little bit of lacing remains on the edge of the glass with much more remaining on the surface of the beer.

S: As I poured the beer I thought I detected a bourbon smell, but I can't pick it up anymore. A roasted coffee character is the main thing detected in the aroma. There are some hints of hops with a faint alcohol presence as well.

T: The malt character is a subdued. There is a little bit of coffee, but less than expected. An earthy component lends itself to the beer. There are some bitter hops in the finish with a almond like flavor. The body is a little thinner than was expected.

Overall an okay beer. After having the Unearthly IPA, I had high expectations which were let down. It is still a good beer, but after having Sublimely Self-Righteous a couple of weeks ago, it is apparent this one is in a different league.

4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Allow the darkness to consume you"

Deep blackened and opaque. Deep amber highlights. small tan head that recedes into a pool of oils surrounded by a collar. Sticky patches of tiny bubbles of lace.

Roasty Smokey coffee/choc. Vanilla/oak/booze. Pine, herbal, resins, small citrus.

Robust roasty dark malts. bittersweet malty goodness. vanilla/booze/oak. Some spicy pine and bitter citrus. Great biting bitterness coupled with alcohol bite. Leaves a roasty bittersweet herbal resin aftertaste.

Sweet sticky black syrup. full bodied, smooth and silky, moderately low carbonation.

Delish black IPA, complex and tasty. This one had about 6 months of age on it. great roasty flavor and hoppy bitterness.

consumed jan 2010.

Iniquity (Imperial Black Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,492 ratings.