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Allagash Black - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash BlackAllagash Black

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

1,976 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,976
Reviews: 645
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.89%
Wants: 101
Gots: 220 | 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: 1,976 | Reviews: 645 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Damian
Damian

Massachusetts

3.68/5  rDev -8.9%

Drank on-tap at Prime 16, New Haven, CT
Served in a cervoise

The beer poured a nearly opaque, dark brown/black with a creamy, bubbly, saddle brown, one-finger head that quickly faded to a thin ring of froth. Streaks of lacing cascaded down the sides of the glass.

The aroma was rather straightforward. Slightly roasty with a powdery yeast note. Chicory came through strong along with hints of coffee.

The taste was similar to the aroma except perhaps a bit more interesting. Roasty up front with notes of cold coffee. Nutty in the center. Slightly fruity and a touch sweet. The finish was moderately hoppy (piney), crisp and off-dry. The flavor profile displayed few (if any) signature Belgian beer characteristics.

The beer was medium bodied for the style. Fairly creamy and smooth with a moderately aggressive carbonation.

Drinkability was good. This is a smooth, quaffable brew which hides its alcohol content quite well.

Overall, I was disappointed by Allagash's efforts on this offering. While this beer is unoffensive, it is hardly memorable. I would compare it more to a mediocre American stout than a quality Belgian strong dark ale.

12-06-2009 19:36:04 | More by Damian
Photo of adamette
adamette

Ohio

4.4/5  rDev +8.9%

Live review. The second of four Allagash 750 ML corked and caged bottles that I picked up at Rozi's Wine House in Lakewood. This one was $10.99. Poured into my gold rimmed Gulden Draak tulip glass. Batch # 8 and the phrase "Belgian Style Stout" stamped on the label.

A Four inch light brown head that leaves a sparse lacing on the inside of the tulip glass. Body is extremely dark, indeed may be black. I held it up to direct light from a light bulb and no light came through. 4.5

S An interesting, grainy type of smell as if one is smelling the husks of the barley. It resembled rolled oats as in cheerios. There is also a whiff of dark roast malt and maybe a measure of chocolate but that could be the dark roast smell just the same. A unique, intriguing smell. 4.5

T Very interesting taste of just what the label suggests...a Belgian Style Stout. There is medium to dark roast malt but also the distinct taste of Belgian yeast and some sweet malt that I simply do not find in American Stouts. This is not a deep, dark roast malt stout but a medium to dark roast malt with a much "softer" taste of the barley husks and maybe even a nutty aspect as well. The ABV is well hidden at 7.5% but it presents like maybe 5%. 4.5

M Carbonation is high as evidenced from first pouring this into the glass, the head just rises up tremendously from the body and it also stayed with the beer well after pouring it, creating a dancing sensation across the tongue, not common in stouts but more common in the stated style listed here on BA. The feel is as unique and enjoyable to me as the taste. 4.5

D A delicious, interesting, intriguing, challenging beer with a great, mature kind of taste with a manageable ABV means that it is very drinkable for the style which is Belgian Style Stout. 4.0

Notes: Allagash continues to impress with this really nice beer.

12-05-2009 08:27:09 | More by adamette
Photo of nanertak
nanertak

Massachusetts

4.47/5  rDev +10.6%

Poured 22 oz to tulip.

Apperance: Poured 2 fingers light tan head. Thick and dark. Hints of dark amber and brown around the edges.

Nose: Belgian yeast and malts. Coffee, caramel, raisins, very mild hint of alcohol. Slight "funk" of the yeast gives a delicate mossy or subtle mushroom smell hidden in there somewhere.

Taste: Dark malts, bitter chocolate, coffee, dried fruit. Small amount of alcohol heat near the end. Almost a mildly bitter and woody flavor (oak-ish) that lingers.

Mouthfeel: Well balanced. Round, but not syrupy. Mild carbonation, but enough to put a slight peppery spice on the tongue which quickly and pleasantly fades.

Drinkability: The usual for Allagash --- excellent. Slow sipper. Would be excellent with gamey meats, beef roasts, or an after dinner drink in lieu of dessert. I'd find it again.

12-03-2009 20:21:36 | More by nanertak
Photo of drowland
drowland

Georgia

3.9/5  rDev -3.5%

Poured on the warm side this beer is solid black with ruby on the edges and a thick and tight 3-finger khaki head. The aroma is sour Belgian funk on top of a layer of wonderful stout coffees, chocolates, and roasted malts. The flavor is sweet like brown sugar at first followed by a wallop of roasted malts (coffee, chocolate) which then displays Belgian funk but lingers with chocolate. Some alcohol comes through as well, but juuust barely. The mouthfeel is medium in body and carbonation.

12-03-2009 03:24:51 | More by drowland
Photo of dbexpert
dbexpert

Massachusetts

4.63/5  rDev +14.6%

Let's just say WHOA!

A. Black, dark with a huge luscious head, that starts off 2" thick in a 25cl tulip glass. The head reduces to a solid 1/4-1/2" thick and holds leaving solid lacing. Appearence=WOW!

S. Aromas of smoke come first with sweet notes of chocolate followed by fresh brewed dark roast.

T. Flavors explode following first sip. Mirroring the nose, subtle coffee notes followed by milk chocolate hints. Creamier than expected, but definitly not a milk stout creamy, almost a more sweet finish.

M. Tight, small carbonation allows for a balanced dleivery of the flavor profile with out interference. At 7.5% ABV. I expected more obtrusion but it is quite subtle.

D. Definitly could drink pint after pint of this brew, responsibly though! I now have a new task, to find Allagash Black on draft.

PS. Guiness has alot to learn!

12-01-2009 23:57:33 | More by dbexpert
Photo of mmmbeer
mmmbeer

Massachusetts

3.58/5  rDev -11.4%

750 mL Belgian bottle, batch #6, purchased at the brewery. Brewed with German 2-row, oats, torrified wheat, roast malts, dark candi sugar and their house Belgian strain; bottle conditioned. It pours near solid black, with an inch of almost fluffy, tan head that doesn't leave much lacing. Nice chocolatey roastiness in the nose, steely, with a drop of licorice. It gives the impression of an oatmeal or Irish stout. Similar in flavor, but it tastes a bit sharp, minerally?, with prevalent green hops that impart a medium bitterness. Not incredibly Belgian at first, but after some time to breathe it picks up a bit. It has a well-attenuated medium body that at times pushes to thick, with very fine carbonation and a dry finish. The beer comes across as a mishmash of styles at first, but it does improve a bit. Good, but not great, just make sure not to drink this one too cold.

11-30-2009 22:05:27 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of Cakanator
Cakanator

Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +10.1%

Draft at Sierra. Great color and nose. Pours a jet black color with tan head. Looks like a big stout, but I keep reminding myself its not. Aromas are big coffee roasted almost heavier than what I know the palate feel to be. Mouthfeel leads it to be higher than 7.5 but overall a great smooth flavorful beer. I'd kill to try the BA version as I think the bourbon would blend into this one very well and to see the alcohol increase.

11-26-2009 14:01:59 | More by Cakanator
Photo of irishking1977
irishking1977

New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -11.4%

Interesting hybrid that I found in a 750 ml bottle. Curiosity got the best of me and compelled me to give this one a shot.

A: Nearly jet black with a massive off white head. Ample lacing as well. Does look like a stout, but with a Belgian strong dark ales head. It's a mutt.

S: Slight malt accent with hints of spice and alcohol. A little surprising considering it's a moderate 7.5 abv.

T: This one appears to have both characteristics of a Belgian dark ale and a stout. It's more like a strong Belgian dark stout. Both the malt characteristics and the fruit accents from the Belgian yeast seem to fight for dominance, with both of them being moderately distinguished.

M: Smooth, rich and creamy, with reasonable carbonation. For a hybrid attempt, it seems to be quite balanced with flavor and feel.

D: Pretty good, kind of what I expected from Allagash. I don't think I've had anything offered by the brewery that I haven't liked at least somewhat. Not as heavy as it would appear to be, but still not something I would drink for hours on end. Good once in a while for sure.

11-25-2009 05:56:53 | More by irishking1977
Photo of micromaniac129
micromaniac129

Pennsylvania

4.35/5  rDev +7.7%

This is a good beer pouring quite nearly black with ample head fading to just lingering around the edges with a smear in the middle. Good carbonation when held to a bright light.
A wiff of roasted malt can be smelled along with a hint of alcohol warming.
Tastes like a stoudt with raosted malt, sweet. Can also tatse chocolate and coffee tones. Dry at finish, mouth puckering.
Smooth with a thick mouthfeel alcohol warming at the end that tickles the tongue and lips.
Over all this is a very drinkable beer. I wish I had another but I don't.

11-21-2009 15:28:18 | More by micromaniac129
Photo of woosterbill
woosterbill

Kentucky

4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

On-tap at Prime 16 into a deep, 40cl Allagash goblet - cheers to proper glassware!

A: Black body with reddish-brown tinges around the edge of the glass; two fingers of dense brown head that won't go away; tons of glass-coating lace. Simply beautiful beer.

S: Straightforward roasted malts, predominantly coffee. Maybe a bit of fruity sweetness. Nice, but not terribly complex or exciting.

T: Huge improvement over the smell: coffee, chocolate, fruit (prunes and raisins), and some citric bitterness. Robust and smooth at the same time. Some Belgian yeast flavor on the finish, and a distinctively ginger-bread aftertaste that provides delicious company for my entire 25 minute walk home. Great stuff.

M: Medium body and tons of carbonation - I love a bubbly beer, but this is a bit much even for me, especially for what's essentially a Belgian stout.

D: Smooth and highly drinkable, no overt signs of alcohol at all.

Notes: Excellent beer, but it doesn't differentiate itself from a great RIS enough to convince me that I should buy it regularly instead of, say, Old Raspy. The Belgian aspect of this beer is a lovely little added complexity, but honestly doesn't play much of a role on the predominant flavors or (especially) aromas. Still, this is a classic New England beer and I was long overdue to try it. Good show, Allagash.

Cheers!

11-17-2009 02:39:50 | More by woosterbill
Photo of cynicgiraffe
cynicgiraffe

District of Columbia

3.2/5  rDev -20.8%

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.

11-16-2009 02:13:11 | More by cynicgiraffe
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

I drank this batch 8 from the 22oz bomber into a Rochefort chalice.

This beer pours a very dark brown, almost black, but in the light you can tell its brown. The closest brown I've seen to black. The head is a medium creamy tan that has about 2 finger of head. It falls in about 2 minutes to a light coating on the surface of the beer. There are streaks of head hanging to the glass, very good lacing.

The aroma is very your really get some nice roasted malts, and a hint of toast. caramel and light hops.

The taste is right on the aroma very malty at first with sweetness then a nice light roasted coffee to finish. A surprising smooth drink but yet full and clinging on the palate.

This beer is easy to drink, I could put away quite a few with ease.

11-13-2009 01:39:04 | More by jrallen34
Photo of Mistofminn
Mistofminn

Minnesota

3.48/5  rDev -13.9%

Got this bottle in a trade with Rrheisler. Thanks Ryan!

Pours a dark, but translucent, brown color. It's definitely dark, but not anywhere near what a "stout" should be. Very nice creamy light tan head to go along with it, with excellent retention. Also leaves very nice lacing. For a Belgian Style "Stout" I just wish it was more opaque.

The nose is distinctly Belgian. Yeast and dark dried fruits are the focal point, but there is a nice light toasted malt character in the background. Smells like someone dumped a Trois Pistoles into a Cadillac Mountain Stout (don't ask why I chose those two as examples).

Taste is very similar to the nose, with the dark dried fruits and spices being the key, but there is a chocolatey, bitter coffee bean, toasted malt character that comes in right at the end and leaves a nice bitter aftertaste. It's good, but I'm just not feeling it.

Mouthfeel, at first, is way too overcarbonated. I served this right at cellar temperature, so no need to let it warm up, just needed a little bit to calm down the carbonation. After the carbonation reaches an appropriate level, it gets really smooth and creamy, very easy drinking.

Overall, not a bad beer. This is my first foray into Allagash, and I wasn't expecting much. Of all the Allagash brews I have in the cellar (various trades, but mostly from Ryan!) I figured this one would benefit the least from aging, so I thought I would give it a shot and wasn't expecting anything too great. Nevertheless I was impressed. It doesn't really pull off the "Stout" as much as I would have liked, but it's still a good Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

11-12-2009 03:36:10 | More by Mistofminn
Photo of craytonic
craytonic

District of Columbia

3.4/5  rDev -15.8%

Sadly my least favorite Allagash beer, lowest score I have given the brewery. I didn't know what it would be like, I just saw Allagash on tap and ordered immediately.

Appearance: Black or near black, decent head and lacing.

Smell: Big roasted malt and a bit too much coffee. Coffee completely dominates, perhaps a faint touch of dark chocolate as well, and dark bread crumbs. A bit earthy.

Taste: Coffee dominates, followed by roasted malt and some chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Relatively full body, but something is off about the carbonation.

Drinkability: I was very thankful I had only a glass, and not a bomber, of this one.

11-07-2009 14:46:24 | More by craytonic
Photo of thegodfather2701
thegodfather2701

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -5.9%

This is a dark beer, but no nearly as dark and thick as other stouts. It has a nice off white head that leaves some nice lacing. There is not much going on in the nose; mostly clove, some Belgian spiciness and a hint of chocolate. There is not much going on in the flavor department either. Mostly spicy with some chocolate and a touch of coffee and the slightest hint of dark fruits. The flavors come through as it gets warmer. It seems over carbonated. It is drinkable beer, though I doubt I will ever purchase it again. This is my second beer that blurs the line between being a Belgian beer and a stout and its the second time I've been disappointed. I think I will just stick to drinking either a RIS or a standard Belgian beer, not something attempting to be both.

10-31-2009 19:07:36 | More by thegodfather2701
Photo of matty
matty

Pennsylvania

3.55/5  rDev -12.1%

Dark brown colored beer with a slowly fading creamy head.Aroma is malty.Taste is malts with hints of chocolate and coffee.Overall drinkable and smooth with a hint of warmth on the back end.This is something I would recommend especially in the winter months.I'm sure I will buy this again somewhere down the line.

10-27-2009 05:40:18 | More by matty
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

3.58/5  rDev -11.4%

Batch 7. Room-temperature bomber into a glass.

A: Pours a dark, um, brown in the glass with some light penetration indicating it's not opaque. Oh well. The head is pretty fizzy, with two fingers of creamy beige bubbles generated at first, before receding into a half-finger cap on top of the brew. Some streaks of lacing as I drink.

S: Roasted malt, some dark fruit and spice. But really, it's not a very strong nose. I find myself struggling to pick out anything.

T: Flavor-wise, this is a large improvement. Roasted malt up front, coffee, and chocolate. The beer progresses into its "Belgian-style" half in the mid-taste, offering up dark fruits (plums, raisins) as well as pepper. The finish is toasted marshmallow and grain, with a smoky bent. I also get yeast in the aftertaste.

M: Medium-bodied, creamy mouthfeel.

D: I think I paid $10 for this, which isn't offensive. But the beer is kind of mediocre. I could go either way on having it again.

10-21-2009 15:05:42 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of sisuspeed
sisuspeed

New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev -5.9%

Poured this into a wide mouthed wine glass. Allagash Black is almost black in appearance. I guess I would say that it is a very, very dark brown. A slightly off-white head thinly floats across the top of the beer, leaving some sudsy lacing down the sides.

The nose on the beer consists mainly of dark, roasty, malts and very small bit of hop aromatics. As it warms up though, I do get some sweet wine like aroma. Grapes dipped in honey.

The taste is very much like the aroma. Dark, roasted malts. Almost a bittersweet chocolate flavor. Slightly sour grapes mingle in the background, otherwise there isn't much of any fruitiness to the beer. The flavor is very dominated by the roasted malts.

Mouthfeel is fairly smooth with a bit of prickly carbonation, but not too much. Just about right. The body is pretty good, but I was expecting it to be a little thicker. The drinkability is good. Some malt bitterness, but you don't even notice the ABV, so this one goes down pretty easily.

Overall, I find this to be an enjoyable beer. Allagash has managed to put a nice spin on the typical stout by giving it some Belgian like qualities. Make sure you let this one warm up a bit, because it does become somewhat more complex.

10-18-2009 21:11:35 | More by sisuspeed
Photo of abuliarose
abuliarose

New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev -5.9%

Nice pop. Poured into a wide-mouthed goblet to the tune of a clear but solid dark brown body, no head. What smell there is comes off as a little metallic, a little earthy and a little roasty.

Tastes bitter, acidic and well-roasted. The earthiness is pervasive and carbonation immediate, but rounded enough not to pierce. Ending notes include raw cacao and slight nuttiness. Overall mouthfeel matches taste: medium-bodied with a little grainy dryness. Fairly smooth. I happen to find this beer pretty drinkable, but I'm not gonna finish a bomber alone.

I haven't had many Belgian strong darks, but this fits the bill enough for me. A solid offering.

10-18-2009 21:03:51 | More by abuliarose
Photo of ImusBeer
ImusBeer

Georgia

4.05/5  rDev +0.2%

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.

10-18-2009 19:04:34 | More by ImusBeer
Photo of ATPete
ATPete

New Jersey

4.08/5  rDev +1%

corked/caged 750ml
batch 10

Pours a truly black color, even when held up to the light only a faint ruby glow barely peeks out of the edges, a small brown head sits a top the abysmal brew leaving lots of sticky lace. Creamy, long roasted malts, coffee notes, hints of chocolate and a fruity Belgian-like yeast characteristic in the nose. Spicy, a heat like in some chili beers ive had sits on the tongue, i love it, creamy, smooth and silky in texture, light and well carbonated. An awesome beer, although ive never had a Belgian Stout that tasted quite like this one, this beer goes above and beyond. A good balance of flavor and sweetness, id actually coin this one as more dry than the average stout, although the stickiness on the lips is undeniable. The 750ml is an ideal serving, i dont see it becoming a chore any time soon. Recommended.

10-15-2009 21:22:55 | More by ATPete
Photo of Metalmonk
Metalmonk

North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

Batch 11. Pours a head over an inch thick, down to a quarter inch in about a minute. Brushstrokes of lace left on the glass. Color lives up to the beer's name, although held to the light some nice burgundy highlights show through.

Mineral in the nose is not overwhelming, but serves as a base for powdered cocoa, woody milk chocolate, fresh sweet cream and faint white pepper spiciness.

The flavor is outstanding, and I'll get to that in a sec, but that finish...whoa...long, even seeming eternal. A milk chocolate/light-roast coffee essence, balancing sweet and bitter, is painted on the tongue in the finish and rides on forever. Very, very nice. But before that, a more pronounced, less-subtle blast of cocoa, coffee, fresh milk, light peppery spice, dark fruit, sweet spices (nutmeg, allspice, a ghostly flash of cinnamon, clove), even something that reminds me of just barely turned white cheese of some sort. That latter impression lends uniqueness to the beer, and also rides into the finish with the sweet-and-bitter characteristics. Even a bitty nip of salt comes in, presumably a residual flavor from the hops?

As most Belgian-style stouts are (and that's exactly what the bottle calls it), this is on the springy, fizzy side of the carbonation bubble...but it's thankfully not overdone. While the body itself is firmly medium, at least, and its has a velvety glide and even a good bit of stick to it, the carbonation makes itself known and throws a curve into the mix if you're new to Belgian stouts and were expecting something creamier and thicker.

As with all Allagash stuff I've had so far, this is above the norm while also seeming sensible, drinkable, made with love, and all the rest. Solid, solid, solid...a word that comes to mind every time I have something from this brewery.

10-13-2009 22:36:53 | More by Metalmonk
Photo of ZX6Chris
ZX6Chris

California

4.05/5  rDev +0.2%

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.

10-12-2009 02:57:58 | More by ZX6Chris
Photo of treehugger02010
treehugger02010

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +1%

My buddy brought a bottle of this over and I poured it into a pint glass.
Appearance: The body is a dark brown color. The head is many fingers tall, mother of pearl in color, stupendous retention and very nice lacing.
Smell: The aromas are coffee, roast notes and more coffee.
Taste: The flavors are sweet sugar, earthy hops and toffee.
Mouthfeel: The body is pretty thin and smooth.
Drinkability: This beer is very drinkability.
Don't drink and review.

10-12-2009 02:13:56 | More by treehugger02010
Photo of Kadonny
Kadonny

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Poured from tap into a tulip sampler glass.

A: A dark brownish color with a one finger light brown head. Glass lacing was minimal but it left vertical laces. Interesting.

S: Dark roasted malts with coffee, chocolate and a belgian yeasty smell. Subtle hops and some sweetness.

T: Ok, this is a Belgian Stout, tried and true. Tastes of dark roasted malts with coffee, chocolate and molasses mixed with the nice estery yeasty spice of clove. Dark fruits mix in with raisin, plum and cherry with a dry and slightly hoppy finish. Minimal sweetness, nice beer.

M: Medium, coating but dry on the finish. Nice.

D: Very drinkable. I enjoyed my pour and wish I had a full pint.

Overall this was an enjoyable beer. The BSDA category covers a lot of different type beers, but this one is squarely a Belgian Stout. A very enjoyable beer, I recommend to all.

10-09-2009 12:19:52 | More by Kadonny
Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,976 ratings.