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Allagash Black - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash BlackAllagash Black

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,915 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,915
Reviews: 638
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 97
Gots: 203 | FT: 5
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: 1,915 | Reviews: 638 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Crossmd


3.68/5  rDev -8.9%
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.


Serving type: bottle

10-30-2011 21:31:17 | More by Crossmd
Photo of BeerResearcher


4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in an Allagash goblet. Pours a blackened cola color with medium-sized khaki head and plenty of sticky lacing.

Smells of burnt roasted malts with notes of chocolate, coffee and toffee and some peppery spices.

Tastes like it smells with deeply roasted malt and mingling flavors of chocolate, resiny hop, spices and a slightly astringent yeasty background, followed a taste of dark rum.

A spritzy effervescence fades quickly and a fuller body is revealed. A bit more of the malty sweetness is noticed as it warms.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2011 17:08:55 | More by BeerResearcher
Photo of mactrail


4.28/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Really rich and hoppy dark ale. Great roasted flavors with very aromatic hops. Chocolate and warm flavors, hot with alcohol. Sharp and slightly acidic, but so full of mellow malt it's well balanced. Aftertaste is slightly bitter, but with more of the dark, deep, and spicy flavors.

This is really a great example of a Belgian-inspired beer that doesn't go overboard on the yeasty and bacterial dosage. Complexity merges with drinkability.

Serving type: on-tap

10-21-2011 05:24:35 | More by mactrail
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark charcoal black with small cap of desnse khaki froth. Scent is of roasted and charred malts, notes of chocolate and some spice. Taste follows suit, strong roast and char balanced with chocolate, light spice and yeast notes on the background. Finishes dry, medium bodied and quite bubbly. A solid nose and flavor that is only held back by a lighter body and ample carbonation.

Serving type: on-tap

10-10-2011 14:21:59 | More by rfgetz
Photo of kbuzz


3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a snifter. No bottle date, but labeled "Batch 29".

A: Pours a very dark brown with mahogany highlights. Even with an aggressive pour, only yields a thin off-white fizzy looking head.

S: Definitely some Bretty yeasty funk noticeable. There is roast and smoke in there too, maybe even some vanilla. Some of those dry irish stout qualities noticeable...tobacco, leather...

T: More stout than funk in the taste...some char and tobacco notes, cherry, vanilla and smoke. A little roastiness. Heavier on the smoke and roast than any sort of sweetness. There's a really thick "wet hay" coating over everything - like a stout that's been strained through a wet horse blanket. I get some spicy, earthy hop notes but not a lot.

M: Straight up medium bodied beer. A little thinner than a typical stout, but considering the Belgian qualities of this beer, it wouldn't taste quite right as a full bodied beer. Still get a bit of chewiness in the middle due to the Belgian yeast. Carbonation is solid for a corked bottle. Relatively easy drinking beer.

O: This is the first of this style that I've ever tried and I have to say that I don't know if the Belgian yeast qualities blend all that well with those of a stout. It's interesting...but that's where I'd stop. I can easily name about 20 other stouts that I've had that are better than this beer. And can name about 20 Belgian style beers that I've had that I like better. Glad I tried it...wouldn't mind trying again after I've had a few more examples of the style...then revisit this review.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2011 00:04:39 | More by kbuzz
Photo of DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #29 in my Duvel tulip.

A: 1/2" mocha coloured head that left a nice lacing over extremely dark brown/almost black liquid.

S: Yeast, chocolate, coffee, caramel.

T: Bitter dark chocolate and coffee up front which transitions to a caramel and toasted malt finish with a partially nutty taste.

M: Thick viscosity and a high level of fine carbonation.

O: A definite thick sipper that is best for sharing, I enjoyed the malts used in this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2011 23:49:30 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of isitsavage


3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Batch #31.

Very black about three fingers of cream/tan head taking quite a bit of time for the head to fade to a cinemeter or so across the top. Spotty lacing sticks to the side throughout drinking.

A lot of coffee and malt smell in the head and once that faded I got quite a bit of yeast aroma. A few swirls really brings that out more.

Creamy coffee flavor that quickly becomes more bitter, finishes with a nice roasted/burnt sugar bitterness.

Very smooth with a nice prickly bite after swallowing.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2011 03:35:24 | More by isitsavage
Photo of NickRivers


4.22/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A&S - Pours a ruby red then sits a bold black with a finger and a half of mocha colored fluffy head. Lots of Belgian qualities on the nose with some chocolate and roasty malts, along with some nuttiness, smokiness and a raisin like aroma.

T&M - Hits crisp and sweet, a light alcohol hotness grows with a stewed plum flavor that gets covered up by a nice hop flavor and chocolate flavor. Finishes smokey with more alcohol as well a certain nuttiness that is quite pleasant. Very light and drinkable mouthfeel and carbonated to perfection.

O - A great brew. Super drinkable yet complex. Everything about it is amazing without any overpowering tones. Pick this one up! Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2011 04:37:32 | More by NickRivers
Photo of peensteen

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had at beerbistro was Tuesday's "Beer Of The Day" for Toronto Beer Week.

Pours brown with caramel hued notes, moderate off white head that dissipates to a ring around the glass, not much lace. Smell is fairly roasty, coffee and chocolate, some dark fruits, jam like scents and good amount of belgian yeast. Taste is also fairly roasty, good malt bill, light sweetness, caramel and toffee, dark fruit, raisin and good portion of belgian yeastiness in the finish and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a little thin, light understated carbonation helps this along, med body. Nice easy drinking stout, alcohol is well hidden and overall its not too heavy feeling.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2011 15:52:32 | More by peensteen
Photo of xnicknj


3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on tap at varga in philly

Pours an opaque black with a thick, fluffy browned head, nice layer of retention which leaves plenty of patchy lacing.

Belgian yeast in the nose mixed with chocolate and roasted malt, coffee beans and nuts, a bit sweet, but still pretty balanced.

Nice roasted malts up front with bakers chocolate and nuttiness. A little sweet, yeasty Belgian notes and slight funk. Coffee beans and caramel throughout with a touch of vanilla. Finishes a little warm and sticky on the tongue.

Full body, a little higher carbonation, chewy and sticky throughout. Decent Belgo take on the stout, drinkable for the ABV, and an alright balance.

Serving type: on-tap

09-23-2011 04:00:21 | More by xnicknj
Photo of schwaeh


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 ADZA


3.3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cherry kola hue which leaves a bubble laden two finger head and sporadic lacing,the smell is quite subdued for my liking with aromas of dark fruits and dark sweet malts but i dont get much else,the mouthfeel is just medium bodied and creamy and taste is better than smell but not by alot with tastes of dark fruit,sweet malts,a touch of chocolate cherry,a touch of toastiness but not much and finished with a mix of very light coffee and plum jam and overall im not that impressed by this i mean i will drink the bottle and its not undrinkable by any means but it just doesnt have the smell of a BSDA and they say on the bottle its a Belgian style Stout and it doesnt have any characteristics of any stout ive sampled and i would not buy this again cheers.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 05:55:34 | More by ADZA
Photo of MbpBugeye


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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 Spider889


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 Paincane


4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown, not quite black in color with a bit of a reddish tinge. Small head with little if any lacing.
S: Roast malt, yeast, bread, and dark fruits all hit the nose.
T: Smoky malts and dark fruits with some sweetness.
M: Full bodied with minimal carbonation. Alcohol presence makes itself felt with warmth at finish.
O: Flavorful and enjoyable. Very drinkable. I will definitely have another.

Serving type: on-tap

09-13-2011 20:39:18 | More by Paincane
Photo of mostpoetsdo

Rhode Island

3.63/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dirty, reddish brown, with almost matching head, dissipates quickly. Looks rather evil.

S: Odd combination of coffee, burnt malts, and Belgian spices. Clove cigarettes.

T: Dark malts up front, paired with a smokiness and coffee. Dark fruits start to show up, along with subtle cocoa nibs.

M: A medium body, but more carbonation than expected.

O/D: Mellow tasting, and not "all up in your face" like other BSDA's. Pleasant to drink, but not something I'd search for.

Serving type: on-tap

09-12-2011 01:12:20 | More by mostpoetsdo
Photo of zeff80


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

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a one-finger, cream colored head of bubbly foam. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled very roasty with some coffee-like notes. There were some mild dried fruit notes.

T - It tasted of figs and dried plums with a strong coffee flavor. There were chocolate and toffee flavors, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry clean finish.

O - This is a very tasty Belgian Stout. Allagash always does really good beers.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2011 01:02:19 | More by zeff80
Photo of Brewski4Drewski

South Carolina

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

Poured from 750ml bottle into wide brimmed stout glass.
A: Pours black, but not as expected from the name "Black", with an almost red-brown edge...nearly opaque. Stirs up large khaki head that weighs in about three fingers, this big guy goes down quickly to leave a thin foam on top until the end, lacing there.

S: Had to smell this a few times... very complex nose, but noice. Slight sweetness (maybe dark fruit), coffee, chocolate, and that zesty Belgian tone/signature.

T: Again had to dissect this one... dark fruits, toasty oats and malts (almost smokey), mild coffee and cocoa at the end... more here I can tell just cannot snipe the exact flavors/words.

M: Slighty heavier than medium bodied, smooth but chewy... carbonated throughout

O: Enjoyable, Drinkable, have you feeling IRIE upon evacuation, and possibly more special than you know at the moment... "Solid Brew"

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2011 01:01:24 | More by Brewski4Drewski
Photo of JCellars


4.75/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 750mL btl into Duvel tulip at 45-50 degrees.

Nice two finger head with a dark black color on the beer as well as a dark amber hue. Good retention, little lacing.

Aromas of plums, figs, grapes, roast grain, espresso, yeasty black bread notes, a dark earthiness, and a subtle dark chocolate undertone.

The toasty, espresso flavors linger onto the palate with ripe fruit showing up as well. Subtle fig, vanilla, cocoa that swirl with the rich, opulent, creaminess of this superb beer. Excellent, silky finish. I honestly don't know how you could improve this beer. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2011 08:45:09 | More by JCellars
Photo of ryan1788a5


4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

A: Pours very dark brown with red hues. Thin tan head has modest retention. Thin slip of lacing.

S: Very fruity on the nose. Concord grapes, pear, faint cherry. Spicy Belgian yeast makes a slight contribution. Subtle anise. Chocolate and charcoal underneath.

T: Fruitiness skips across the palate with fleeting tastes of grape and pear. Spicy Belgian yeast has a bit of an understated presence, and is overshadowed by woody and smokey roasted malt tastes. Slightly bitter dark chocolate, cocoa. Dry and smokey in the finish with a slight fruitiness.

M: Medium bodied. Chewy and a tad viscous. Moderately carbonated.

O: A solid Belgian-style stout. It's got everything you could want.

Notes: I could see this pairing very well with a woodfire grilled steak.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2011 20:40:18 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of HopsYeast

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a-black body with no transparency when held to light. very nice thick light cream colored head. dissipates after a little while to less than half the size but it follows you down the glass with each sip.
s-coffee and roasted to almost burnt malt. chicory, vanilla, sweet molasses.
t-very clean taste, nothing overpowering. nice delivery of roasted to burnt barley and malt. additionally it features a nice roasted coffee flavor as well. there are subtle hints of many flavors passing from the glass to you with each sip.
m-nice body thats not heavy. low to middle level carbonation that seems to hit you more on the finish than the beginning. very clean wash from your palate.
o-extremely enjoyable. this is very unique and complex beer. would be perfect served with nice hearty meals or as an after dinner drink. great job again allagash!

Serving type: on-tap

08-19-2011 17:40:03 | More by HopsYeast
Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne


4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint. Pour black with ruby around the edges. Starts with a nice inch and a half of head, not much lace.

Oats, chocolate, plum and earth dominate the smell. Slight roasted malt note.

Chocolate laced oatmeal, earth and a nice mineral note. Plum and alcohol make a slight appearance. Smooth going down.

Very nice stout. I think I'd go for something else first due to the price. Glad I got to rock a bottle though.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2011 01:41:14 | More by OBeerMeGreatOne
Photo of yemenmocha


4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours BROWN, dark brown, or maybe black from across the room. Nose has a dark chocolate and coffee aroma. Bitter flavors on the palate, bitter chocolate, hops, some floral and citrus in there, and finishes with a coffee aftertaste that lingers. Also bitter. Light bodied and easy drinking, and surely hides the 7.5% well.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2011 04:13:19 | More by yemenmocha
Photo of SWMeyer4141


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Been a longgg time since I had an allagash beer. Excited for this one.

2010 Vintage

Poured into a snifter....

Appearance-Out of the bottle it looked like a pretty light brown and was suprised. Ended up being a Bold dark brown color with about a 3 finger khaki head that has some good retention and lacing.

Smell-Dark fruits and some spicey belgian yeasts.

Taste-Dark bitter chocolate, not so much in your face. Roasted coffee, not much sweetness at all, a little on the finish along with that light bitterness that stays with you the whole time.

Mouthfeel-Balanced. Very pleasant to drink. Medium bodied with spot on carbonation.

Overall-I was given this beer so not sure what it costs, probably about 10 bucks. At that price I'm not going to stash up on these, but definitely worth it even now and again.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2011 03:10:34 | More by SWMeyer4141
Photo of devinoconnor

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After having several Allagash's on tap, I picked up a bottle of the Black.

Pours a very rich and dark black color (as you'd expect).

Little head from the bottle.

Smell is again, rich. Coffee and stout flavorings, very nice aroma.

Taste is smooth, caramel, and a tad sweet. Coffee undertones.

Overall, very enjoyable stout.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2011 17:30:47 | More by devinoconnor
Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,915 ratings.