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Allagash Black - Allagash Brewing Company

Allagash BlackAllagash Black

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

1,759 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1759
Reviews: 629
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.14%


Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Allagash Black is a Belgian style stout brewed with 2 Row barley, torrified wheat, oats, both roasted and chocolate malt and a generous portion of dark caramelized candi sugar. The silky mouth feel is a great balance to the roasted character, coffee and dark chocolate notes expressed throughout this beer.

(Beer added by: Bassetdawg on 12-14-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,759 | Reviews: 629 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of bball208
bball208

New Jersey

1.73/5  rDev -57.2%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 1

Yuck. This beer smelled like canned tuna. I'm dead serious.

I just don't believe that Belgians and stouts should be tried unless you're going to blow my mind away. This fell EXTREMELY short on all levels. The aroma was very off putting. I literally got roasted tuna.

The taste was the aroma magnified. I just didn't get it. It was a wrong marriage of two styles and flavors. I still have the aftertaste of tuna in my mouth. My significant other feels exactly the same.

Needless to say, I will never drink this beer again. Allagash is one of the most overrated breweries.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2014 17:57:24 | More by bball208
Photo of MbpBugeye
MbpBugeye

Ohio

2.33/5  rDev -42.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to InebriatedJoker for this. Spidder889 had his bottle around numerous times but it ended up being passed over each time. Seems I nearly dodged a bullet.

Appearance
There isn't a whole lot to this appearance, which I soon found out is some pretty strong foreshadowing of the beer to come. Its thinner than I expected; a burnt red, barely achieving black.

Aroma
Not much going on here either. Where's the decadent imperial stout goodness? I'm getting dry yeasty nonsense in the form of your typical "Belgian" phenols. There is some nondescript spice and roasted malts, but not enough deep fruitiness.

Taste
I noticed some metallic flavors, whoopee! The rest of the beer is very generic, mostly made up of steeped grains. A little bit of light roast and chocolate try to break up the monotony.

Mouthfeel
The body is thin, much thinner than it should be. But the worst issue here is that horrible, horrible carbonation. No wonder I can barely taste the stuff. The carbonation is far too high and fizzy. I've heard that CO2 tastes metallic, perhaps that's what I was picking up in the flavor profile.

Overall
This stuff is thin, way over carbonated and doesn't have enough redeeming flavors to save it. Not worth buying. Lately I've been very happy I didn't spend the money on Allagash beers while they were distributed in Ohio.

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2011 00:19:54 | More by MbpBugeye
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

2.58/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

From on tap poured into a tulip glass an interesting walnut red color with big brown opaque appearance. Faint chestnut colored head that leaves a ring throughout the glass.

A very closed bouqeut. Faint and does contain weak coffee notes but not fruit components whatsoever.

Taste is way too carbonated with a soda finish but has a neat bitter coffee and yeast like tinge.

This would have been great if it had some sort of fruit or estery component on the nose or taste but it doesn't. Very dissapointing I don't care for it at all.

Serving type: on-tap

01-03-2011 18:33:44 | More by smakawhat
Photo of Smurf2055
Smurf2055

Washington

2.73/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours in between black and deep dark red with a khaki head.

Smell is a bit fruity, belgium yeast, and a bit of roast.

Taste is very roasty, almost like an imperial porter, bit of a burning on the tail end. Red fruit present, but ash and bitter coffee dominates, the Belgium sweetness doesn’t come through in the flavor.

Slightly disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2013 17:28:01 | More by Smurf2055
Photo of johncampbell
johncampbell

Kentucky

2.78/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I've had this 750 ml bottle in a temperature controlled wine cellar for over a year.

The cork was still fresh and holding pressure (it was stored on it's side at an angle). It poured black with a hint of red-brown around the edges when held to the light. It had a nice 3/4" tan head that slowly dissipated to an 1/8" cap that covered the surface for the duration. It left a thick, creamy lace in the glass.

The aromas were of dark chocolate, roasted malt and sweet Belgian yeast, but with a worrisome old ale smell.

The beer tasted oxidized. I'm not sure how long it had been on the shelf before I bought it, but it tasted old and not as vibrant as I'd hoped. There was still a distinct dark-roasted malt flavor with hints of espresso and bitter chocolate, but the age left an unpleasant taste in my mouth.

The mouthfeel was good - a medium-bodied beer with lively carbonation.

I have to say that the drinkability wasn't there. I love Allagash beers and think this one was simply stored too long. There was no date or batch number.

Aging is not recommended.

I look forward to trying this beer again and changing my review.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2010 00:24:07 | More by johncampbell
Photo of Sixpoint
Sixpoint

New York

2.8/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

In my humble opinion, this is the weakest offering from a great artisinal craft brewer.

I've made/tasted/sampled many "Belgian Stouts" over the past 10 years, and the only conclusion I've arrived at with general consistency is DON'T DO IT.

Why? Well, something about the yeast that brings out the soy sauce and licorice character of these beers. In extreme cases it tastes exactly like Kodiak chewing tobacco.

Good try with undoubtedly good intentions, but off the mark IMHO.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2008 19:35:02 | More by Sixpoint
Photo of Spider889
Spider889

Ohio

2.93/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle purchased while I was in DE. Shared with beace.

Poured into a snifter. Nice black color with a very tall dark sandy head. Lacing was alright. The foam was pretty fine though, and the beer was a bit thin, evidence of the Belgian yeast strain.

The smell was pretty damn estery. The yeast doesn't mess around with this one. Lots of banana and clove spiciness, along with a light roast and muddled char.

I have not found many a Belgian RIS I have liked much. The yeast, in this case at least, overpowers everything that a good stout normally aims to be. The beer is all spice and blindingly strong carbonation. Quite a strong mineral presence as well. Perhaps it's just the overabundant C02 from all this carbonation.

Very light hints of chocolate and black malt trickle through, but this beer is a Belgian yeast bomb.

Again, the mouthfeel is both thin and over-carbonated. Both qualities I usually loathe in a RIS. Prickly and thus seemingly bozzier than it should have felt.

Overall I wasn't very impressed, and the price tag was high for what it was (I want to say $14-15 for this 750ml).

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2011 01:04:51 | More by Spider889
Photo of vfgccp
vfgccp

New York

2.96/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A - Tall, foamy, light khaki head with ok retention and poor lace. Dark cherry wood body with bright cranberry highlights.

S - Dusty roast grains and dry cocoa powder.

T - Dry roast coffee. Milk chocolate. Tart grape sins. Copper penny aftertaste.

M - Relatively light frame.

O - The label says belgian stout, but BA has it down as a belgian strong dark ale. I'd tend to agree with the latter.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2013 02:44:36 | More by vfgccp
Photo of dedrinker
dedrinker

Kansas

2.98/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

It's black with a thin and rapidly dissipating chocolate milk colored head. - you can find a variety of lighter hues depending upon how you struggle to hold it up to various lights at various angles in various glasses. Pardon me for being cynical on that score. There is an aroma of roasted malts - some cocoa and black coffee with hints of phenols appropriate to Belgian ale yeasts interacting with "a large addition of Belgian dark candi." The flavor is roasty, acidic and bitter - the qualities that cause most people to insist on cream and sugar with their coffee. The mouth feel is thin with prickly carbonation that lifts the acidic coffee flavor to the roof of the mouth and up the nose through the back door in your throat. This may very well benefit from some aging, though not for too long. Maybe up to a year? As it warms up, the aroma becomes more stout-like, and the flavor more Belgian. Objectively speaking, this is an interesting study for my palette. Subjectively speaking, I'm not very fond of it, but don't worry, timtim is on his way here within 48 hours with a disorienting rave review.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2008 05:35:05 | More by dedrinker
Photo of alysmith4
alysmith4

District of Columbia

2.98/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not as impressed with this beer as I thought I'd be. I'm not sure if I didn't give it a good pour, but their was almost no head to it. The smell was of maple, coffee, and bitter chocolate. The taste was similar, with a more syrupy, burnt toffee flavor. It was a lot like Dogfish Head's Chicory Stout. I was hoping for a sweeter flavor, but it wasn't coming through - even when the beer warmed. On a more positive note, I think the bottle (label) is sexy as hell!

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2010 21:38:03 | More by alysmith4
Photo of schwaeh
schwaeh

Ohio

2.98/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

750ml shared by inebriated joker.

A: Monstrous cascading head on top of this thinner-looking black beer. Brown and ruby hues around the edges of my glass.

S: Roasted malts and tons of Belgian yeast are easy to pick out here. Some candy sugar, light faded hops, and some slight metallic scents are in there as well.

T: The stout shows up a bit more in the flavor, otherwise I may have thought this was some crappy dubbel. The malts are lightly roasted with a fair amount of char. Candy sugar and Belgo yeast stand out quite a bit, adding some odd banana and clove to this beer. Light chocolate and grassy, metallic hops come out as it warms. This is sweet for sure.

M: This has a thin mouthfeel and high carbonation. Its a sticky beer.

O: I don't really know about this identity crisis that this beer has. They are going too many directions with this and ruining two styles that are good on their own. I heard this was quite an investment at around $14-15 to boot, no way.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 20:10:33 | More by schwaeh
Photo of biglite351
biglite351

Pennsylvania

3.03/5  rDev -25%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - A good bit of orange around the edges. Tall creamy off-white head.

S - Smells like a bock. The belgian influence is up front and a majority of the scent. A touch of fruit and cocoa (just a hint).

T - Mild. A bit of the yeast, some malt. A little cocoa in the mix.

M - Thick but light on the coating. Just a hint of timgle on sides of tongue and back of throat.

O - Too bland and boring to drink over most other choices. Not "bad" at all, but not worth picking ove many others.

Review from 2/6/10:

A - 4.5 - very dark, nice froth.

S - 3.5 - mild but nice.

T - 3.5 - taste of a solid stout, but mild. No one flavor over riding the others.

M - 3.5 - mild tingle, not too bitter.

D - 4.0 - the mildness makes this quite drinkable. The problem is the mildness, which could be described as weakness, combined with the price. It is too expensive to really drink often.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2011 23:36:39 | More by biglite351
Photo of MisterClean
MisterClean

California

3.05/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

At Manderes' Allagash tasting

A - Black, but slightly see-through, with a nice sized head, which dissipates moderately.

S - Light notes of chocolate and malt.

T - Dark chocolate and deep roasted malts.

M - Lightly carbonated and smooth.

D - Missing all qualities of a belgian and did not live up to its description. It was decent, but replaceable with most other stouts.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2008 00:49:47 | More by MisterClean
Photo of gr0g
gr0g

New Jersey

3.14/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A not quite opaque black. A khaki-colored head, about two fingers tall, caps it off. Head retention is quite good, and the head never totally fades away. Lacing is sparse and fleeting. The aroma is tame with a prevailing cocoa note that lives up to Black's billing as a stout. A faint chalky note of Belgian yeast and some candi sugar are the only other smells that come through.

The flavor is similarly tame and somewhat underwhelming. A mix of dark Belgian ale and stout characteristics, as expected. Surprisingly dry flavor profile, which is a trait that doesn't work well in a dark Belgian-style ale. Some smoke from the roasted malt. Off-putting aftertaste. Muted dark fruit notes. One aspect that deserves praise is the mouthfeel, with a nearly silky texture despite vigorous bottle-conditioned carbonation.

Despite being exactly what the bottle says it is -- a Belgian-style stout, Allagash Black is quite disappointing. Boring and demure despite a reasonably stout 7.5% ABV, it's not a bad beer but also not worth the price.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2013 00:07:36 | More by gr0g
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

3.15/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Consumed 05/21/08 and 05/23/08.

Clear dark brown pour with excellent carbonation (no doubt due to the bottle conditioning). A tan three finger head formed right away, fading to half a finger that stuck around quite a while, continually replenished by persistent carbonation.

Aroma is charcoal, ashes and mild chocolate. A touch of banana as well. Ashes kinda ruined it for me, though.

Mouthfeel is creamy, though the first bottle was a bit thinner than the second. The first bottle I tasted was quite tart, almost sour and strongly redolent of ashes. The second favored the smooth chocolate character that was mostly missing from the first, though the ashes were present in the background as well. Both bottles exhibited a bit of hot pepper on the finish.

Not a beer I particularly liked, though it was interesting and well-made.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2008 01:55:34 | More by charlzm
Photo of magictrokini
magictrokini

California

3.15/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown, almost black. Foamy, cascading brown head. Pleasant aroma of vanilla, anise, chocolate malt, oak, and a kind of yeasty funkiness. Watery mouthfeel in terms of a stout. Some roasted malt and chocolate, but no coffee, bittersweet chocolate, or smokiness. Instead, there is the fruity-yeasty tastes one would expect from a dubbel. Anise, molasses, and some prune flavors come out when it warms. I hate saying this, but an overall disappointment.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2008 19:44:45 | More by magictrokini
Photo of deebo
deebo

Minnesota

3.15/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A-Poured in a chalice this brew is indeed black as night with a finger of dense light tan foam, a little retention and lacing.
S-Aromas of those Belgian yeasts slap you in the face. Beneath this, notes of dark chocolate and coffee accentuated barley malt.
T-Taste is predominantly dark malts with flavors of rich coffee with a lingering bitter aftertaste, the estery flavor of Belgian yeast is also noticeable, especially upon warming.
M-Rather medium in body with a little bitterness and astringency in the finish, moderate level of carbonation.
O-Nothing really stands out about this beer, pretty average. Maybe I’m just getting spoiled with the great selection of super beers to choose from nowadays.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2013 03:59:39 | More by deebo
Photo of cynicgiraffe
cynicgiraffe

District of Columbia

3.2/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours opaque black with faint coffee. Not as aromatic as I would think it would be, but maybe I'm a little stuffy. Tan head that clears quickly, but leaves lots of lacing on the glass. Watery taste up front, almost like a tap water taste. It gets better as it gets to the middle and back palette. Coffee with roasted malt. Kind of disappointing, for something in the 95th percentile I expected good flavor and mouthfeel across the whole palette. This didn't deliver, but I will probably revisit it to be sure.

Serving type: on-tap

11-16-2009 02:13:11 | More by cynicgiraffe
Photo of witness
witness

Pennsylvania

3.23/5  rDev -20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I am continually disappointed w/ allagash brews. I don't like the allagash white and I feel the same about the black. For an $11 bomber, it is really boring. There are so many cheaper stouts that I enjoy far more than this one. It lacked flavor and was over-carbonated. After I let it sit for a little while it improved a little, but I would not recommend this to anyone.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2010 19:49:36 | More by witness
Photo of jdubjacket
jdubjacket

Georgia

3.25/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a typical pint glass.

I had high expectations this beer and I was a little disappointed. The beer is considered to be a Belgian ale. But, frankly, the beer lacks character. The effervescence is apparent, like most Belgian ales. That's where the similarities end. Nothing jumps out at me when I taste it. There are no defining characteristics in the taste. Overall, this beer isn't bad, but I've definitely had better.

Serving type: bottle

02-29-2008 02:17:49 | More by jdubjacket
Photo of nick76
nick76

Florida

3.25/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is almost salty with chocolate, coffee and toasted malt. The appearance is dark brown with a nice large head. The flavor is like the aroma and bitter. The palate is smooth. Overall interesting but not great considering the brewer. I would drink again but still not what I was expecting.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2008 14:12:44 | More by nick76
Photo of brian44556
brian44556

Kentucky

3.25/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured this into a wine glass. Batch #9.

Pours a pitch black with little to no head forming. Almost no lacing present. The beer smelled of chocolate, roasted malt, molasses, and coffee. Taste was about the same as the smell, strong chocolate and coffee notes. Almost no carbonation was present and the mouthful was extremely thin. Overall an average beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 01:32:08 | More by brian44556
Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr
SammyDavisJrJrJr

Illinois

3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - Basic dark body with little head.

S - Mild lactic aroma with bitter chocolate and sweet biscuit and cherry notes.

T - Creamy, tart in enrty, with building bitter chocolate flavors that builds into the finish and mixes with cherry. Not crazy about this one.

M - This beer stuck me as too crisp for the style.

D - This beer really didn't work for me. Body was too weak, flavors were jumbled and didn't seem to compliment each other. Might need another taste, but seemed bad to me today.

Serving type: on-tap

01-11-2008 07:46:52 | More by SammyDavisJrJrJr
Photo of jsled
jsled

Vermont

3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle; cork + cage.
Winooski Beverage Warehouse, 2008-01-26.

Pours: Moderately clear very dark deep amber. solid finger of rich tan head, receding modestly. Evident carbonation.

Smell: Roast. Alcohol.

Taste: Rich stout. Roasted barley. Minor tobacco/tar notes. Alcohol. Minor bitterness. Some candi-sugar.

Mouthfeel: Reasonably light for a stout. Little residual presence or bitterness in the mouth.

Drinkability: Medium-high. Certainly a lot more drinkable than some heavy stouts.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2008 01:50:11 | More by jsled
Photo of RunawayJim
RunawayJim

Rhode Island

3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked this bottle up about a month ago. The beer got a lot of hype and given that I like most Allagash beers I had to try it. The bottle calls it a "Belgian Style Stout".

Poured into a tulip glass (bottle says to pour into a wide mouthed glass, but given the style on BA, I went tulip, which is wide mouthed). It pours a deep dark black/brown color with a 1-2 finger light tan head that linger for a bit.

Smells of roasted malts and a slight hint of coffee.

Taste is dominated by the roasted malty sweetness, but a slight hint of coffee and even a slight smokiness show up. This beer is all malt.

Mouthfeel is nice and medium-full bodied, nothing overly heavy, but definitely not light and thing. It has a lot of the nice tiny carbonation of Belgian beers.

This is a drinkable beer. It goes down easy, and makes for an above-average stout. Unfortunately, I couldn't figure out where the "Belgian Style" comes in except for the carbonation. Is it a good beer? Yes. Is it worth the $12-13? I don't think so. Would I buy it again? Only to age it for a year to see what happens to it.

Bottom line: There are plenty of good stouts and good Belgians (some by Allagash), this one just isn't worth the cost and definitely does not meet up to the hype.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2008 01:09:27 | More by RunawayJim
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Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,759 ratings.