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Spanish Peaks Black Dog Ale - Spanish Peaks Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Spanish Peaks Black Dog AleSpanish Peaks Black Dog Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

144 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 144
Reviews: 124
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 12.86%
Wants: 2
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Spanish Peaks Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-28-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 144 | Reviews: 124 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of garymuchow
2.98/5  rDev -14.9%

I wonder if this has any connection to the Led Zeppelin song?

Surprisingly, a malt aroma. I'm so used to expecting strong hops. Uncomplicated.
Very fizzy, very short-lived head that completely dissappeared before my first sip. Amber and clear.
Flavor is more malt based too, some sweet caramel and nut-brown qualities. Hop dryness and slight bitterness on the finish. Fairly uncomplicated too. Little watery.
Carbonation is busy upon drinking. Fullness from it, otherwise thin to medium.
Seems like a starter beer for those first trying something beyond an Am. lager. First dark beer sort of stuff. Just not enough to it to make it a session beer.

garymuchow, Sep 30, 2003
Photo of beerguy101
2.85/5  rDev -18.6%

Medium gold color, small head. Aroma is malty and slightly sweet. A medium bodied, kind of mild brown ale. Malts are a little sweet and the hops are a little subdued. There is a slight fruitiness to the beer. Mouthfeel is full. Finish is clean. Aftertaste is slightly sweet. Nothing really wrong with this beer, it just that there are so many beers that are a whole lot better.

beerguy101, Sep 23, 2003
Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev +14.3%

A nice brew with very traditional English ale attributes. Poured an amber-gold with good lacing. Aroma was a solid, somewhat sweet malt, with a hint of orchard fruit. The mouthfeel was substantial, with very light orchard fruit notes submerged in the malt. Hops stepped in and delivered bitterness at the finish to cap things off. Not a smooth beer, but pleasant nonetheless.

Brent, Sep 09, 2003
Photo of pezoids
3.9/5  rDev +11.4%

This beer poured a bright and clear amber-orange color and had a thin white head to it that thinned out to nothing after a few sips. There's a pleasant and fruity aroma with some hop bitterness. This is a crisp and fruity dry ale that finishes clean and has some substance to it. Not bad at all.

pezoids, Sep 03, 2003
Photo of kelticblood
3.33/5  rDev -4.9%

Average pour nothing special.Color is a gold to amber.Has a malty aroma.Hop bitterness is noted on the finish.A medium body with good carbonation and a crisp mouthfeel.Spotty lacing left on my glass.Citric flavors balance the hop bitterness.The aroma has a sweet caramel malt quality Very average beer nothing special at all.I doubt I'd buy this again.

kelticblood, Apr 16, 2003
Photo of Thrasher
4.22/5  rDev +20.6%

Ah, revisiting an old friend. Spanish Peaks was one of the first craft brews I enjoyed as an underage drinker, Yellowstone Pale Ale being my 2nd "epiphany" beer following Sam Adams (Jr yr in college). Looking at the ratings for that particular beer, it may have been a youthful indiscretion, but anyway I haven't tried this brewery since those halcyon days and it's nice to be back. This Black Dog ale is a solid pale, slightly hazy and raw, the way beer should be. It's hard to tell how old this sample is, there are some tiny numbers on the bottom of the bottle but almost impossible to read. The last 2 digits could be "01" - could mean anything, but if this beer is two yrs old it's held up remarkably well. The thing that does it for me is the use of the chocolate malt in the pale ale setting. I don't know enough about brewing to know if this is common practice, but its more pronounced here than any other beer I can thing of. Wow, it's an incredibly successful venture, offsetting the caramel sweetness with a burnt roastiness and bitter chocolate. Much better than any black and tan you will ever have. I think more breweries should pursue this avenue; until then I will be drinking this often.

Thrasher, Apr 11, 2003
Photo of tavernjef
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Notes from a trip to S. Dakota and Wyoming May 2001 Purchased at Devils Tower, Wy

750ml bottle - Color is a amber/ light brown with a big fully head and has a light smell of honey/caramel and fruity hops. Tastes like it has some honey in it with some caramel malt and light hops, very clean and smooth. Brightly flavored, but mellow light/medium body. Easy drinker, not bad.

tavernjef, Apr 07, 2003
Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%

Pours a light amber, bordering orange, a large and very foamy head, clings nicely. Wonderful lacing and texture are noticed up front. Aroma is faint, slightly fruity and maybe a touch of honey on the nose. Taste of bitter and malt combination up front, a combined grapefruit and orange peel taste is noted. The body and finish are bitter and acidic, a very slight creamy finish. Not much on the pale ale side, too bitter, but not bad.

GeoffRizzo, Apr 04, 2003
Photo of IrishRedRock
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%

Had to pick up a bottle of this, along with their Monterey Lager, as I have never seen them anywhere else. Label states "no whiners." All righty then.

Poured a rich copper color with a thick fluffy head that did not retain well. The aroma was initially very fruity, but as it warmed I picked up some malts and a soapy aroma as well.

Flavor has a bit of a roasty caramel thing going on, with a somewhat acidic malt flavor at the end. Could use a kick of hops. Mouthfeel is smooth, somewhat creamy, and enjoyable. A pleasant drinker, but nothing spectacular.

IrishRedRock, Jan 31, 2003
Photo of Fabric8r
2.73/5  rDev -22%

Not impressive at all. I get some as gifts every now and then and they sit in the fridge for months. Every similar brown ale I've tasted is better. They don't even make this in Bozeman anymore, which has ruined it.

This beer is a good example of: a good beer marketing firm can cover up truth and a bad beer..

Fabric8r, Dec 06, 2002
Photo of budgood1
4.22/5  rDev +20.6%

a very interesting brew here! cloudy deep gold in color, there was a bit of sediment in the bottom of my bottle that i, of course, swirled in. the best way to describe the aroma is to say it smells like tootsie rolls...very nice. upon drinking.... creamy, buttery....flavors of caramel, toffee, and hints of chocolate with a discernible hop finish, which adds a weird sensation of starting creamy and ending dry to the mouthfeel. i pick up sweet, fruity overtones as it warms, making this one delicious experience. lots of complexity to this brew. highly recommended.

budgood1, Oct 24, 2002
Photo of Mark
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Way back when this was one of the first craft beers I ever had. Today I saw it on sale and I thought I'd give a go. Nice deep amber and very clear, good lace. I found this very English in style. I liken to a decent English bitter. A nice drinkable ale that I'm glad I got reaquainted with.

Mark, Sep 22, 2002
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.03/5  rDev +15.1%

Slightly hazy, deep reddish-copper color with a thin creamy head. The aroma is of caramel malt and light fruit with some grassy/piney hoppiness occasionally appearing in the background. The body is medium-full with a gentle carbonation and a somewhat dullish but creamy mouthfeel. The flavor is mainly of a sweet & toasty caramel malt, with some summer fruit and lightly piney hop character following, supported by a bitterness that shows itself mainly in the finish along with some cocoa. Well made, and quite enjoyable with a very nice maltiness. Worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Sep 16, 2002
Photo of EagleTalon
4.22/5  rDev +20.6%

My wife calls this the "whiskey of beers". Why? because like a fine single malt scotch, it has "complexity". You can analyze it with your senses and be continually surprised. Everybody else pretty much said what I was going to say: Complex, malty, Munich malt character, fruity aroma, chocolate finish... Great beer that I will buy again and again.

EagleTalon, Aug 24, 2002
Photo of beernut7
4.33/5  rDev +23.7%

This English-style pale ale has a sweet caramel fruity bouquet with a noticeable Munich malt flavor character. There is just a hint of chocolate malt in the last few sips. This is a complex and flavorful beer

beernut7, Aug 16, 2002
Photo of John
3.5/5  rDev 0%

A well made American version of an English pale ale. A nice brew to reach for when you in a quandry for what to drink. Medium amber with decent head. Light malt and faint hop aroma. A bit more flavor than the aroma indicates. All in all a solid brew. Cheers to the longevity of Spanish Peaks.

John, Apr 17, 2002
Photo of JahNoth
3.15/5  rDev -10%

A decent ale. Very smooth, with a spicy, citrusy flavor. Let this warm a bit, the first sip out of the fridge isn't as good as the last. An enjoyable ale.

JahNoth, Apr 11, 2002
Photo of Todd
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Presentation: 12oz brown bottle. No freshness date.

Appearance: Deep amber with reddish hues. Nice off-white cream lace, that has just enough stay and stick.

Smell: Raw aroma of malts, floral hops and fruity esters.

Taste: Smooth, creamy and full-bodied. Nice fruity flavour of raisin and grape, touch of background chocolate malt, bready malts and a floral hop character that peaks with a zesty flash of semi-citrus bitterness, but not enough that it overpowers the mild malt sweetness. Bit of crispness from the Munich malt. Turns coarse, a bit raw, on the palate (hops), then finishes out dry with lurking husky tannins and some traces of yeast.

Notes: A damn fine ale, very traditional English in its character and very easy to drink. Described by the brewer as an English amber, which I'd translate into being a pale ale.

All in all a good beer, and well worth a tasting.

Todd, Mar 30, 2002
Photo of ThreePistols
3.1/5  rDev -11.4%

An English style special amber ale. This ale's full body imparts a distinctive malty, robust palate and fruity bouquet. Brewed from pale malted barley, Munich, crystal, carastan and a touch of chocolate malts, Pacific Northwest hops, water and ale yeast.

Awards:
1st Place (Brown Ale): 1993 Great International Beer Tasting
Silver Medal: 1995 & 1998 World Beer Championships
Bronze Medal: 1994 & 1996 World Beer Championships
Bronze Medal: 1997 Cheers World Beer Festival

Dark bronze almost amber in color, some color in the head, probably from the chocolate malt. The head is big and dense but dissipates quickly. The nose is malty with notes of caramel, sweetness of raisin fruitiness, floral hops, and yeast. The taste is sweet, malty and sugary like caramel, with underlying tones of yeast. Hops presence almost creates a balance throughout. Mild toasted flavor is detected midway and is carried into the aftertaste.

ThreePistols, Feb 28, 2002
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Spanish Peaks Black Dog Ale from Spanish Peaks Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.