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Chocolate Ale - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Chocolate AleChocolate Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

736 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 736
Reviews: 240
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 16.94%
Wants: 51
Gots: 148 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.10% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
One of the brightest stars in a city filled with culinary treasures, Christopher Elbow has been handcrafting masterpieces in chocolate for more than ten years. In that time the reputation of his artistic delicacies has spread around the globe. Elbow’s sweets are distinguished by their use of unusual and sometimes surprising flavors and ingredients; in that adventurous spirit we joined forces to bring you a very special Chocolate Ale.

In developing this beer, Elbow and Boulevard brewmaster Steven Pauwels sought to harmonize the interplay of chocolate and malt, with each supporting and enhancing, but not overwhelming, the other. Just the right chocolate was essential. Elbow recommended a rare variety from the Dominican Republic, prized for its robust flavor and aroma, and a personal favorite. More than a mere flavoring, the chocolate — in the form of nibs, or crushed, roasted beans – was incorporated into the brewing process itself.

24 IBU

(Beer added by: HOPPYKC on 02-09-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 736 | Reviews: 240 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brewandbbq
2.88/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

750ml bottle.

Pours hazy copper with a two inch head of white. A partial skim coat and tattered lacing for the duration.

Aromatics lead off with faint cocoa, tart apples, and the inside of a box of chocolates. A hint of powdered sugar and fruit follow through.

Medium bodied with a crisp, sharpish mouthfeel.

Soured apples with some chocolate dust start the palate. Extremely tart with faint notes of chocolate. Light malt with hints of chocolate and vinegar.

Finishes with a lingering sour note and sherry vinegar.

Something went wrong with this one. The infection either wiped out most of the chocolate character as well or it was never there. Either way, very dissapointing.

brewandbbq, Feb 20, 2012
Photo of Jeb37
3/5  rDev -19.4%

Jeb37, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of Archimedes
3/5  rDev -19.4%

Archimedes, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of poisoneddwarf
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

8,3,8,4,16. 750 ml bottle. This is the first chocolate beer I've ever had that wasn't black or dark brown. It pours hazy orange with a huge beige head that collapses after a few minutes. Aroma is of course chocolatey. I also smell a hint of coffee. Taste is sweet with a hint of sour leading to a faintly dry bitter finish. Velvety mouthfeel and medium carbonation. It's a nice beer, but I prefer Southern Tier's Choklat and Sam Adams Chocolate Bock.

poisoneddwarf, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of jjholt
5/5  rDev +34.4%

jjholt, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of Beezee
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Beezee, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of theminutemen
4/5  rDev +7.5%

theminutemen, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of bbeane
4.33/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is from last year, so not sure if the chocolate will have faded...

A- Poured into an oversized snifter... starts with a soft off white almost two finger thick head that lingers for a bit before disappearing and leaving behind some moderate lacing. Beer is a cloudy amber color

S- Little notes of lots of of things... sweet malts, bittering hops, chocolate, phenols, and booze

T- Wow... not sure if any flavors have dulled in the aging process, but this stuff is delicious. Very sweet malts from start to finish with light notes of chocolate, maybe some banana

M- Light/medium body with pretty mild carbonation

O- Loved it. Might have to try little harder to get one next year to give it a try fresh


bbeane, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of TheRealDBCooper
1/5  rDev -73.1%

TheRealDBCooper, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of ksimons
3.55/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-for a chocolate ale the color was not what I expected. An orangeish amber color with a nice looking white head

S-malts and a light chocolate smell, maybe a bit of vanilla. Not very strong.

T-Finally picking up the actual chocolate! A dark chocolate taste sticks out the most with a light roasted coffee taste, caramel and a light bready taste finish things. Alcohol is present but not overbearing and light hops keep things balanced. The beer improves in flavor as it warms.

M-medium body, moderate to high carbonation

Overall this is sort of a strange drink. I like the chocolate but wish it was a bit maltier. It is not too sweet which is a good thing, and things start to improve once it warms a bit.

ksimons, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of cdugan
4/5  rDev +7.5%

cdugan, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of RyanLigeia
2/5  rDev -46.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance- 3.5 Looks interesting, not what I was expecting. Orangy/brown in color, somewhat cloudy, not much of a head on this one.

Smell- 2 Not a fan. Small hints of cocoa but I cant name what this mostly smells like. Its just...odd.

Taste- 1.5 Again, I can't even pinpoint what the most prominent taste is here. An earthy sort of cocoa powder comes secondly maybe? No hops, no caramel or vanilla like the bottle claims just some sort of intense, bad taste. Did I get a bad batch? The strong ABV is what earned it the .5 only because I like that boozyness in most of my beers.

MF- 2.5 Medium to heavy body with a fizzy carbonation level.

Overall- 2 One of the most unique beers I have ever had but NOT in a good way. Very surprised/let down by this beer. First time boulevard has ever failed in my eyes. Maybe its just a fancy culinary move by Christopher Elbow that went over my head, maybe its just an awful beer. Either way I will NOT be rebuying this one OR recommending it. Pissed I spent $11 on this bottle.

EDIT- Turns out it was a bad batch and the company reimbursed me 100%! VERY VERY cool of them! I'd love to find this beer again and have the chance to give a review on a good batch

RyanLigeia, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of substanceD
4/5  rDev +7.5%

substanceD, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of Ryan1423
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

Ryan1423, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of bradner
4.5/5  rDev +21%

bradner, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of donkeyrunner
3.4/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark orange with an expansive white head. No lace but a hearty skim and collar.

Cocoa coated butterscotch and bruised pear aroma. There's a definite off scent here - tinfoil and peanut oil come to mind.

Chocolate is definitely here but it's not the rich, indulgent chocolate I was expecting. More of a spicy cocoa with a raspberry type tart finish. An addition of chile would have been nice.

donkeyrunner, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of Blargimus
2.9/5  rDev -22%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

750 ml bottle poured into tulip.

Pours a brownish-orange, slightly hazy. Initially quite a bit of head, but it fades rapidly, and leaves almost no lacing. Very few carbonation bubbles after the initial burst. It just kind of sits there like it's flat. Not an enticing look.

Yeasty smell that starts off with a bitter cocoa powder, then gets sweeter as you take longer whiffs. A bit of alcohol, too. It seems like the bitterness comes from the chocolate rather than hops, but maybe they're melding in my nose. It's very interesting, but not amazing.

Starts off with a sort of roasted/burnt chocolate malt flavor without any sweetness. The middle is almost pure bitterness - and again, the bitterness seems to come from the chocolate. Whenever I think I start to taste some hops or malt, it turns into bitter chocolate. The aftertaste is where the sweet milk chocolate hides. There's malt and cocoa powder and a bit of yeast. It's a warm taste that's helped by the alcohol, and I enjoy it. Speaking of the alcohol, it seems a bit strong for the rest of the beer (9%!). I like the flavors here, but there's so much bitterness beforehand it's almost like a chore getting to the desirable tastes at the end.

The alcohol gives this a fairly thin mouthfeel, and there's not much carbonation to give it creaminess. What carbonation there is adds to the bitterness of the rest of it. It's not a very pleasant feeling.

I'm not displeased that I tried this beer - It's a very interesting brew, especially since you only seem to get chocolate incorporated into stouts. Unfortunately, "interesting" doesn't equal "good." I'd only recommend this for novelty, but sometimes novelty can go a long way.

Blargimus, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of canadianghetto
4/5  rDev +7.5%

canadianghetto, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of UTCengOwl
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Valentine's Day! Time to bust out the Chocolate... Ale, that is. Popped and poured into my Great Divide balloon glass.

This beer is... reddish-orange? I thought this was a chocolate beer? Interesting. Have to say that I'm intrigued. The head is initially ok, but dies out pretty quickly. Otherwise, I'd give it a great score.

The nose is... also interesting. Dry cocoa power. Comes across as somewhat smoky. Almost feels like there's a bit of pepper in there. Unfortunately, I feel like there's a sweetness that doesn't quite match with the rest of the interesting aroma.

The taste is similarly dry. Powdery, spicy cocoa. Surprisingly flavored and I'll always be up for that. Ends with a bittersweet finish driven by the mild hoppiness, but still calling forth chocolate. There's still a spiciness there, though I'm not sure where from. Very interesting, but not necessarily spectacular.

This is a good beer. A very interesting beer. However, it's by no means a great beer. A bittersweet Valentine's Day? Geez, that sounds depressing.

EDIT: As I keep going, the vanilla and caramel pick up in flavor. Interestingly candy-driven for a beer that comes across as powdery and not overly sweet. Score going up!

UTCengOwl, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of ratty918
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Amber copper body with a good white head. Very well carbonated and a little hazy.

Smell: Initial hints of citrus, vanilla and a small hint of chocolate that I really had to sniff out.

Taste: A caramel and vanilla taste with some hints of chocolate laced in to the brew.

Mouthfeel: A smooth start that finishes with a sweet to the tastebuds feel

ratty918, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of tigg924
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: 3/4 inch head, moderate carbonation, brownish-orange in color, cloudy

Smell: toasted malt and chocolate

Taste: toasted malt and caramel at the start, pale malt, then big cocoa in the middle an at the end

Mouthfeel: sweet with a slightly bitter backbone, moderate-high carbonation, light bodied

Overall: Very chocolaty. Love the big cocoa taste and it still tastes like beer. This is another beer from Boulevard, that when I first started drinking it, I was like this is just above average. Then it will hit me that it is very good, then I will go back and forth between above average and good until I discovered I finished the bottle and want more...So long story short--a good beer, but Boulevard makes better--or maybe they don't...yes I will get this again--once a year for Valentine's day.

tigg924, Feb 14, 2012
Photo of tvazteca
4/5  rDev +7.5%

tvazteca, Feb 14, 2012
Photo of DarthGuitarHero
4.5/5  rDev +21%

DarthGuitarHero, Feb 13, 2012
Photo of VelvetExtract
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours surprisingly orange. Was expecting this to be darker. Head is bubbly, even, and larger. Retains to a degree and leaves slight lacing.

S-My first initial thought was not chocolate. Mostly just generically sweet and a surprising amount of corn. Strange nose.

T-Here she lies. A pretty spot-on chocolate flavor. Very, very sweet. I liked it more at the beginning than at the end. Nutty as well.

M-Not as heavy as expected. Good amounts of carbonation. Overall, a medium bodied beer with a sugary lingering feel.

O/D-A cool gift for Valentine's Day. I was happy to try it but at about $10 for the 750 ml, I think I kinda wasted my money.

VelvetExtract, Feb 13, 2012
Photo of andylipp
4/5  rDev +7.5%

andylipp, Feb 13, 2012
Chocolate Ale from Boulevard Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 736 ratings.