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Allagash Black - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash BlackAllagash Black

Educational use only; do not reuse.

688 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 688
Hads: 2,400
rAvg: 4
pDev: 9.5%
Wants: 139
Gots: 414 | FT: 7
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:
Beer added by: Bassetdawg on 12-14-2007

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 688 | Hads: 2,400
Photo of Csikic93
4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged. Pours a pitch black with almost no head. Smells smokey, with hints of black licorice and chocolate. Tastes like chocolate and very malty. Overall a fantastic beer. (181 characters)

Photo of ikantspel
4.27/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle into a hanger 24 barrel roll tulip

Pours a dark cola color with a carbonated light khaki fizzy head

Great combination of strong Belgian ale smell of dark fruit and spices kicked around with dark chocolate and cocoa

Great balance in taste as the stout is strong and heavy without trying to be and the Belgian ale floors finesse in beautifully. The caramel and roasted malt finish seem to work well in unison with a classic abbey ale spice.

Remarkably a great beer (478 characters)

Photo of ImusBeer
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Small pour, 11oz very dark, and is black as the name suggests. It had a thin head, tan in color.

The aromas of cocoa, chocolate, caramel and roasted grains. The first impression is of malt and molassas than a bit of tangy finish with a smokey aftertaste.

It is silky and warm feeling on the tongue you can also feel the alcohol along with the carbonation. At 7.5 it's a bit too much for a session beer but the flavours are mellow and complex. (444 characters)

Photo of ebby82
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown or light black into a tulip glass.

A- Dark chocolate, coffee, and perhaps a nutty aroma. Very sweet with just a hint of the Belgian yeast.

T- Roasted malts and coffee, beneath a dubbel like taste, perhaps a bit of dark fruit. Dry, with a bit of the alcohol showing through.

M- Very dry and light, medium carbonation.

D- Very quaffable because of the lighter viscosity than normal dark stouts.

A very interesting, very tasty brew.

T- (459 characters)

Photo of kasper
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark chocolate with a foamy tan head, lilly pad lacing sticks on the glass.

S: Aromas of chewing gum sweetness (from the belgian yeast), sweet milk chocolate, tad of spiciness.

T: Flavors are much of the same, dominated by belgian candy sugars, milky chocolate, tad of dried dark fruit.

M: Well carbonated, bit velvety but not all the way there. Medium bodied.

D: I've been warming up to this (especially after the last flood of casks into Manhattan). I find it pretty drinkable. I could have more than one. (523 characters)

Photo of capeannbass36
3.71/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle...Batch 33....only $7.99....

A- Poured into a tulip....3 finger khaki head over a dark, dark, brown...not quite black glass of darkness. Ruby grape, almost black cherry tones when held to a very bright light. Decent lacing throughout. Beautiful. Somebody take a picture of this!

S- A little bit of malt. Perhaps a faint scent of very weak coffee. Burying my face into glass....still not getting very much. Almost bland.

T- A little better than the nose. Nothing great. Nothing bad. Weak coffee. Hint of baking chocolate.

M- Considering the huge head, surprisingly mild carbonation. A little oily. Thin. Slightly dry finish.

O- On looks alone, expected much more. Cannot bash it though. May need to try another, based on all of the high ratings. (762 characters)

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

Appearance: Pours with a very large, almost four-finger head - extremely lively stuff, the color of egg whites or off-white. This settles slowly into a one-finger head. Lacing is there, but not particularly prominent and also pretty fleeting, but it does leave a variety of patterns on the glass rim. Body is a jet stout black. Looks like a stout.

Smell: Cork wood, belgian yeast, grape flavored cough syrup on the front end. Grape cough syrup aroma seems to be a result of the lower end's coffee notes hitting the belgian yeast and cork wood aromas. Burnt sugar, almost a similar aroma to when you're actually making home-made caramel, really prominent about halfway through the inhale. A general sweet char quality, like tira misu crust, accompanied by vanilla (again, tira misu crust). Chocolate notes are buried, in my opinion, and only really hinted at. It's intriguing.

Taste: Much more stout in the flavor than in the nose. A sort of sweet See's candy chocolate lollipop flavor followed by some dark fruit esters, such as grape and fig. Grapes there, as well. Coffee upon swallowing along with some peanut brittle. Really, pretty delicious, and a lot better in the bottle, I think, than the one time I had it on draft.

Mouthfeel: Syrup-y, well carbonated. Pretty damn dry, though, although not quite enough to be detrimental.

Drinkability: It's a sipper, but not too bad of one. The alcohol others seem to be talking about in their reviews I can't really find too well - which is a good thing, given that it's "only" 7.5%.

This beer really is one-of-a-kind, to my knowledge, and I really enjoyed its flavors. On-tap this beer just seemed confused, a misguided experiment in mashing two disparate styles, but I really enjoyed this in the bottle a lot more, so maybe age/secondary ferm. had something to do with it. (1,827 characters)

Photo of spicyvelveetas
4.83/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed this beer thoroughly. From the very first sip to the last. Served on tap from British Beer Co. in Westford MA

Definitely one of my favorite Allagash brews. Possibly top ten overall.

Belgian styles are always a favorite and to have the dark dark strength of this black makes it something special. (307 characters)

Photo of BeerGodz
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Dark brown, dense frothy tan head with staying power and excellent lacing

Smell: Chocolate, espresso, and subtle cloves

Taste: Up Front: Chocolate, and roasted malts. Finish: Chocolate, spices, and a slight smokiness

Mouthfeel: Medium body, creamy with medium carbonation

Drinkability: Very drinkable and interesting beer

Overall Impression: This is billed as a Belgian Stout, and it delivers. It has the body and mouthfeel of a Begian Ale, with the chocolate/roasted malt/coffee flavors of a stout in addition to some subtle flavors associated with Belgians. Yet another winner from Allagash! (604 characters)

Photo of KelsoSaaz
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into oversized wine glass

A: Pours a deep brown/black with hints of chocolate brown when held to light. Thin, quickly dissipating khaki head.

S: Roasted malt and chocolate with hints of funky, musty aromas. Notes of caramel and toffee as well.

T: Dark fruit and candi sugar intertwines with dark chocolate and black coffee. Toffee and smoky flavors are present, but subtle. Roasty bitterness lasts through the finish.

M: Medium to slighty-viscous body with moderate carbonation.

O: Allagash puts a tasty twist of the stout here with its strong Belgian overtones. I think this beer is a classic in its own right, along with Allagash White. Anyone who is a fan of either stouts or Belgian beer should try this. (721 characters)

Photo of bgildea
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice thick brown color with a thick tan head. Left a good amount of lacing.

S: Nice aroma typical of a Belgian style brew.

T: Very nice sweet flavor that balances well with the beers slight bitterness. A good set of earthy flavors -nuts, barley, malts, with just a slight hint of hops at the end and also a nice smokey flavor. Very nice.

M: A real nice thick beer. Great amount of chew. It definitely delivered.

D: A very drinkable beer. Very great beer, so I wouldnt mind putting back a few more of these.

Overall: Overall the beer was very good. If delivered on all fronts. I would highly recommend this beer to ANY beer drinker. Well done. (653 characters)

Photo of ZX6Chris
4.06/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A=Dark black color, pours nice with a thick head that seems to stay around. Head's a tan offwhite that seems to stick on the glass.

S=A huge toasted smell, a litle caramel sweetness at the end.

T=Huge smoky flavor, a little candi and coffee in the middle then a stong toasted flavor at the end.

M=Light bodied that feels smooth in the mouth and not as heavy as you'd think by looking at it.

D=Easy to drink if you like dark beer. I can't wait to take another sip. (467 characters)

Photo of Flyer
4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Another very good entry from a brewer that's rapidly climbing my list. Pours a dense purplish black with a dense, surging head. Lots of roast on the nose. The initial flavor notes are actually kind of sweet (candi sugar?) but that gives way to a really nice mix of roastiness, Belgian floral, unsweetened chocolate, and some woodiness. Moutheel is amazingly smooth and lush. Aftertaste is pleasantly sharp, mild roasty bitterness layered over some sweetness and floral. Definitely recommended. (493 characters)

Photo of Crossmd
3.61/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 55 degrees Fahrenheit into a tulip glass. No born date.

Pours an opaque black, with a lush, Belgian like head of about 1.5 fingers high. Some lacing.

The smell is a tight, non-projected coffee. Some yeastiness, but it's relatively faint.

Interesting taste of a plush blend of belgian textures and mouth feel that turn into a rich, dark chocolate and spice with a hint of cocoa liqueur. Unique and intensely flavorful.

Soft, smooth and effervescently round. The mouthfeel is everything here. It vys for attention though, I believe next to a robust flavor profile that makes it feel as if it's arguing among itself. Split personality disorder comes to mind. IMO, there's a reason that stouts generally don't have a tremendous amount of effervescence and this is why. Really pretty odd.

Overall, it's difficult for me to adequately assign a rating to something like this because I don't know that my palate believes that these two styles were supposed to have been married. It should be known that I am eternally a champion of creativity within the brewing community, pushing out the boundaries even of what we think beer is. Despite this, I don't derive a tremendous amount of pleasure from this beer. Certain styles marry well, and these do not in my opinion. l Despite this, I think it's well made, it's intentionally and creatively crafted and it's my hope that this is reflected here.

89. (1,405 characters)

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

A- Taken off the cask at the Ginger Man in NYC. Poured into a pint glass. This beer is a dark brown or black. Lacing left on the glass as I drank this beer.

S- Not a strong nose. Some dark malts and slight coffee nose.

T- Great tasting beer. Definite dark malt flavor with notes of chocolate and coffee. There are some definite notes of the Belgian yeast with some slightly fruity esters.

M- Obviously there was very low carbonation b/c it was from a cask. This really allowed the flavors of the beer to come through.

D- Give me another bartender! I really like this beer. Great flavor w/o being overwhelming. This beer does hide it's alcohol well also. (657 characters)

Photo of hayesez
3.88/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

This one has been sitting in one of my beer fridges for quite some time, so I figured it was about time to give it a shot. Our second and final beer of the afternoon, Kate and Ridgley joined me for this one. Split between the three of us and poured into snifters. Although not one of my top beers or anything, this one was definitely enjoyable to drink. Both the taste and the smell morphed toward each other throughout the session. By the end, they had basically flip-flopped. Very interesting to say the least.

A fairly thin, dark brown beer poured into my Portsmouth snifter. A huge sandstone colored head quickly surged to the top and wasn't in any hurry to return. A ton of thick lace was left behind as this one slowly backed down.

So we started out drinking this one right out of the fridge. At the time, the smell was led by the Belgian yeast spiciness that I was expecting. Cloves, a bit of coffee, but quite a bit of the Belgian spice. As it warmed up, the Belgian smells diminished to the point where they were actually very difficult to discern. A very roasty maltiness crept over the top of the Belgian and kicked it right out. Chocolate and coffee become the preeminent scents, with spiciness , cloves, etc. all but gone. Very odd.

After taking the initial whiff of this beer, I was fully expecting a Belgian taste to smack me in the tongue. I was quite surprised when I took a drink, looked around, and realized that the Belgian had left the building. Seriously, where was that spicy, yeasty taste I expected? Very, very roasty for a Belgian style...I guess that is where the "Black" comes in. At the very end, there was a bit of spice, but it was quite muted. However, as this thing warmed up, somehow the smell morphed into taste, and although it was no longer evident on the nose, this thing turned Belgian. Spicy, cloves, a bit of that fruitiness that comes from Belgian yeast. Again, quite different than I expected...but good!

The mouthfeel definitely fell a bit short. Medium-bodied with good carbonation, but no volume and nothing notable. Quite easy to drink, and certainly enjoyable. I'm not sure about the whole "Belgian and Stout" combination, but it was certainly something different.

Consumed: 6/16/2010 (2,238 characters)

Photo of bifrostguard
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Black with a light tan head.

S - Yeasty, coffee, chocolate and spice.

T - Yeast is the first thing that catches my attention. Chocolate and spice soon follow. Not bad.

M - Medium bodied.

D - Although I thought this was good, I'm not sure I could drink more than one without thinking about switching to something else. (325 characters)

Photo of beerbiatchMD
3.83/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap.

A: very dark--black. Off white head with one finger in quantity. Quite good lacing. A great looking stout.

N: Lots of coffee up front, some sweet malts but can't call them out specifically (for example, no chocolate or caramel).

T: Coffee bitterness, definite sweetness midpalate, some bitter chocolate flavors. A hint of belgiany spice. Pretty good, a very unique stout.

M: Nice, smooth, not really any alcohol heat. An easy drinking stout.

O: This is certainly not my favorite Allagash, but it's very good, unique, enjoyable, and approachable. I definitely recommend it. (586 characters)

Photo of jiggahertz
4.36/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Frothy big two finger head on top of a deep dark black beer. Nice lacing throughout.

S: Fruity malts, smokiness, nutty.

T: Malts really come through up front, roasted toffee, dates, caramel, some hoppiness towards the ends and a bitter chocolate finish that's pretty dry.

M: Big and bold, low carbonation.

O: This is a huge beer with a lot of complexities (362 characters)

Photo of rwrk42
4.53/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour: A dark brown almost black with a nice tan head.
Smell: A sweet malty smell with faint chocolate and coffee aromas.
Taste: Extremely smooth. Roasted Malt flavors with some caramel, coffee, chocolate and faint spice.
One of my favorites from Allagash and I highly recommend (278 characters)

Photo of Minotaur
4.28/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Black - with only the slightest bit of deep amber on the very rim of the Ommegang Adoration goblet. The head is thick and big and evaporates slowly leaving an etching like lacing and skim of smoke grey-tan on the top of the beer.

The aroma is the earth and coffee of stout, with a slight hint of belgian style yeast esters. There is a slight bit of banana as per standard in belgian ales.

The taste is bitter with just a slight bit of sweetness at the back of the tongue. It is amazingly dry like bitter cocoa. There is a slight amount of hops in the flavor and bitterness giving it a bit of tanginess, plus a hint of breadiness from the wheat and Belgian yeast. The bit of chocolate, candi-sugar and roasted malts are deep ane rich.

It has a full, smooth chocolate cake-like mouth feel. There is a definite sense of strength in the back of the mouth but it is not disruptive to the enjoyment of the flavor. It is very drinkable and is an excellent example of two very traditional styles merged to create something luscious and unique. (1,038 characters)

Photo of abecall98
4.53/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

At pangaea, having a glass of this on tap.

A - pours a very pretty black, with and offshore head. Laces great with a nice head.

S - smells great. Hints of roast, slight hop in the nose. Very nice, and strong

T - this beer is very roasty, but not as much as a stout. It's got some yeasty esters in the aftertaste as well.

M - creamy, and not heavily carbonated. Complimens the taste well as it coats the mouth

D - this beer is very approachable. The drinkability is great due to the 7.5 being hidden and the fact that the beer doesn't have any off favors. (560 characters)

Photo of petacutlasaurus
3.8/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Allagash White's dark reflection, and it's pretty good that way. Not quite as good as the Odyssey (also a Belgian strong dark), but for half the price, I can deal with losing the oak-aging and getting some added body.

From the pour it separates itself from its bigger odyssean brother - a little bit thicker and lacking some of the carbonation. A little muddier as well with less uniformity. A thin layer of almost roasted brown head rests on top. Smells like cocoa, vanilla and sweet malt. Taste is much of the same, with more dark fruit and a complex body. Kind of unsure of itself, honestly, like it could have gone one of many directions a little bit further. Still an awesome brew, and maybe it's just that lack of commitment to one ostentatious note that makes it such a stable, staple beer. Really, I just shouldn't drink it alongside the Odyssey. Very laid back beer here. Can't wait to force it out of a tap one day. (926 characters)

Photo of brian44556
3.24/5  rDev -19%
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. (357 characters)

Photo of Beer_Runner
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dated as Batch 29 on the label.
Slowly poured into a standard pint glass.

A: It poured to a huge four-plus fingers of dark khaki and very foamy head that disapated to about half a finger and left some nice lacing.

S: It has a candy sugar sweet aroma, and there are also hints of sweet dark fruits and dried fruits. Also, there is a slight hint of funky Belgian yeast and just a little bit of alcohol booziness.

T: The taste has plenty of sweet dried fruit flavor consisting of raisins, figs, and plums; and, there is also just a little bit of a tart bite. There is also just a hint of Belgian yeast funk, but not too much.

M: It has a medium body, and it is very smooth. It also leaves a little bit of a slick mouth coating.

O: A very nice stout. The dried fruit and the little bit of Belgian yeast funk work well together. Also, the little bit of tart bite nicely balances with the sweetness and the dried fruit. (918 characters)

Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 688 ratings.