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Arcadia B-Craft Black IPA - Arcadia Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Arcadia B-Craft Black IPAArcadia B-Craft Black IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

84 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 84
Hads: 327
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 10.94%
Wants: 9
Gots: 29 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: alleykatking on 07-27-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 84 | Hads: 327
Photo of jtierney89
1.65/5  rDev -58%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Deep hazelnut color with light mocha sticky head. Can tell right off the bat that this is gonna be a big beer based on the nose alone.

Lots of earthy and citric hop resin on the nose. Touch of licorice and pine-sol, some phenolics, soapiness, throat lozenges. Dark fruit some rubbing alcohol.

Taste is strange. Big body, good carbonation. Layered in a strange way hits ya from back to front. Chocolate, burnt malts, some plastic like taste with some citrus hop profile. Drinkable but I feel like it wasn't thought out enough. comes at you in weird layers with flavors that dont exactly pair up perfectly. (607 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
2.92/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Had both on draft at Ashley's and the bottle. Smell of mostly roasted malt, some peppery presence, very little citrus or hop. Tastes of roasted grain and very little else, a watery roast to me, with little sweetness, muddled hops if any, just weird. Heavy mouthfeel for the style despite the lack of flavor. Nothing to really enjoy here for me. Bland, and no hop bite. An unfortunate miss by Arcadia. (400 characters)

Photo of AwYeh
3.1/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into nonic pint. Reviewed to a 3 average, with style heavily in mind concerning ASTM.

A: Pours a nearly opaque black color, with reddish fringes around the edges. There's just a thin coating of tan head on this glass, but some spotty lacing still manages to remain.

S: This beer has a pretty complex smell, anchored by roasted malts and black licorice. Particular aromas include an initial burst of grapefruit, strong pine hops, black licorice, earthy hops, and alcohol.

T: Fairly earthy, with big bursts of licorice and alcohol on the finish, along with piny and citrus hops. Oddly, the taste is quite weak before the finish; as I hold the beer in my mouth, its flavor is quite faint, with just a bit of roasted chocolate malts, mint, and pine hops showing up. Once the flavor does get bigger on the finish, I don't know that I'm the biggest fan of how its components mesh. There's a lot going on, but the more abrasive (alcohol, licorice) flavors seem to stand out and detract from the others. A light soapy flavor as the beer warms doesn't lend it any favors.

M: Fairly thin-bodied, but well-carbonated which lends a considerable creaminess. Rather smooth, with a lightly dry finish.

O: This seems like a pretty standard Black IPA. I enjoyed my glass, but its piny hops coupled with roasted malt, black licorice, and alcohol flavors didn't make the beer stand out for me. I am not the biggest licorice fan (but have grown to appreciate it in other beers), so this still may be one for you to seek out. Despite the slightly below average rating in taste (made with style heavily in mind), I think this is a slightly above average beer overall. Reviewing seems to have drawn me to my least favorite characteristics of it, whereas I enjoyed it a bit more after the review finished and I was simply drinking it for the enjoyment that beer inherently brings. (1,880 characters)

Photo of jale
3.17/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had on cask at the brewery. They added ghost chilis to the mix.

A:Pours a clear brown with little head.

S: Very hoppy with slight hops.

T: Hop forward as it should be. Light sweet malt. Heat from the ghost chili continues to build in the finish along with a nice hop bitterness.

M: Thin and lacking carbonation.

D: One is enough (334 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours pitch black with strong anise and herbal hop notes rising strong. Tan head dwindles too quickly, leaving anise black licorice notes behind it's crazy. Aroma has sharp herbal hops, black licorice anise notes, dark roasted peppery base malts. Earthy flavor, alcohol flowing fully on each sip, dark malts and dark chocolate...it's unbelievable how harsh the beer is with explosive dark anise notes. Mouthfeel is dark roasted malt sweetness with a slight alcohol burn, dry fruity finish intertwined with black malts. Overall not a beer I'm looking for anytime soon, it's full of dark fruit herbal and earth hops, it's too wild for my tastes. (653 characters)

Photo of secondtooth
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pretty well impenetrable black, with a hint of ruby highlights. Thick head of tan foam, but distinct lack of any lacing on my pint glass.

Aroma: Sticky citrus hops, big roasty malts, some fruit. Seems like a balance, though.

Taste: Very strong — lots of sweetness from the malts melding with a bitter citrus hops presence. In fact, it’s so cloying it’s actually boozy. There are also detectable notes of dark fruit and leather, even some peat, which goes way against this one being a “black IPA”. But that’s splitting hairs. This is a bold and boozy brew (at 8.5%) and not one I’d care to revisit. (625 characters)

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pretty black with a one finger head and not bad thin spots of fine lace.

Astringent smell with piney notes, lots of hops, burnt malts, some alcohol.

Taste is very piney, lots of hops again, chocolate, roasted and burnt malts, a little dark fruit.

Body is kind of slick, low on carbonation, a little syrupy, alcohol is quite notable going down with plenty of warming.

Overall it's pretty tasty but won't be one of my favorites from Arcadia. (444 characters)

Photo of Calypso
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Tried this on tap at the Detroit Fall Beer Festival. Obviously from the name it's a Black IPA. It pours a surprisingly clear black, with fizzy head. There are notes of grapefruit and leather. The darker notes give this an interesting twist on a traditional IPA. (261 characters)

Photo of tone77
3.48/5  rDev -11.5%

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a 1 inch head. Smell is mild, roasted malts. Taste is roasted malts, some fruits, hops are present but subdued, easy drinking for the abv. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a little less hoppy than expected, but a pretty good beer. (304 characters)

Photo of hosehead83
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Dark brown/black in color, with a short ,tan head of foam.
Aroma-Dank, resinious hops
Taste-Roasty,mocha coffee, then onrush of those dank, resin hops that throw off the balance of flavor in my opinion. Finishes dry and unsettled.
not terrible, but I was hoping for better. (328 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.56/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours mahogany with 2 fingers of mocha colored head. Great retention & lacing

S: Woody hops, dark fruit

T: Follows the nose, much dryness & a bit of boooze bite up front. Some pineyness & figs as this warms, more dryness, some leafy hops too, a touch of raisin. Finishes dry, fruitty & with woody hops, just a bit of orange peel

MF: Fairly thick, low carbonation, okay balance

Seems more like an English Barleywine to me, not bad, just not hop-centric enough to please me (476 characters)

Photo of krustster
3.57/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

I poured just a tiny bit into my glass and immediately had to stop because the head reached the top of the glass and threatened to spill over. UUuuuaauuuhhh god man. It looks fluffy and inviting, but a little too ridiculous since it's taken me over 5 minutes to pour the whole bottle into my glass. The beer itself is very dark brown, not black and more transparent than a stout, but certainly qualifies as a black ale. It's been almost 10 minutes and I still haven't finished pouring the bottle; the head is absolutely ridiculous. It looks like a root beer float and isn't going away any time soon. Still going strong at two "fingers". This isn't necessarily a bad thing but kind of inconvenient and possibly over carbonated.

Things pick up a bit once you start sniffing. Sweet citrus, "roasted malts" and "dark fruits", making this one smell like a cross between a lighter stout and a regular DIPA. Seems pretty interesting.

Taste is, once again, somewhere between a lighter stout and a DIPA. The roasted malts and sweetness/coffee flavors are battling to the death with the citrus hops inside of my mouth. On one hand, there's next to no balance between the flavors. On the other hand, I like them both, so it's okay. Bitterness is present throughout the entire profile rather than just on the finish. I like it, but it's confusing and lacking in complexity because everything sort of jumbles together.

Mouth feel is fairly thin and very high in carbonation. The CO2 itself seems to contribute to the bitter/metallic fruit taste. I think this was the main downfall of the beer for me: way too much carbonation. The huge globs of soap suds from the beginnning of my review are still there, nearly half an hour later.

In closing, I'm glad I tried this one; it's rather different and fun to drink, but the flavors are very disjointed and the carbonation is way too high. When all is said and done, this comes across as more of a lighter stout--high in coffee flavors, low in body, high in carbonation--than anything like a DIPA. I don't worry too much about styles but when drinking this one, it's obvious that they were going for something that didn't quite happen. Still a tasty beverage that just falls short a bit. (2,223 characters)

Photo of beerthulhu
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich chocolate pour is dense black in the vessel. A mocha tinted head has a beautiful coloring, sadly is weak and washy, refusing to hold to give you a lasting visual even after constant agitation. Minimal lacing.

S: Chocolate coffee-roast and pine is most evident on the nose. A touch of dark licorice, burnt citrus bitterness with a strength a bit under par for a advertised.

T: Roasty pine bitterness, citrus and dark licorice first meets the taste buds. Rich coffee, vanilla with a dark roasty bitterness that was fresh and very smooth and polished. Hop bitterness level was good, some roasted barley, burnt flowery bitterness and coffee on the finish.

M: light to medium body, oily slickness texture with a quiet carbonation factor. Huge roasted bitterness on the swallow with signs of black licorice (sambuca type alcohol) coming upon warming and stay.

O: Overall while the nose could of used a bit more ummph the flavor was generally good and easy consuming material for casual affairs. (1,003 characters)

Photo of carlborch
3.59/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark reddish-brown with a 2-inch tan head. The initial nose suggests toasted grain, smokiness, and density. Medium full body with rich, smoky notes on the palate. Nice bitter lingering. Belgian lace. The ABV is not noticeable. Modest carbonation. Delicious. Would be excellent with grilled and smoked food. Will seek again. (331 characters)

Photo of Omnium
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle > Sensory Pilsner Glass

A - Pours dark ruby brown, very very thin head, medium lacing.
S - Lots of roasted malt, toasted grains, some earthy hops, and a little chocolate, even a little honeydew.
T - Sweetness of the malt stands out, and then comes in dry earthy and piney hops. A minor chocolate taste and more of the roasts are at the end.
M - Thicker and chewy, definitely some warmth from the alcohol as it goes down.
O - I dont think the full potential of this brew were brought out. The hops are a little subdued and more of the roasted malt takes over, and the ABV accompanied with the burn lend this more to a hopped porter. (643 characters)

Photo of lochef81
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This ale pours a dark brown almost black hue with a large and lasting light tan head. The aroma is malty with some notes of coffee and chocolate. This one sips light and smooth for an ale with its abv. The flavor is almost reminiscent of root beer with a sweet roasty maltiness accented by notes of vanilla, coffee, and creme soda. This is by no means a bad black ipa but given some of the other offerings out there, it makes one wonder why you would try this witb so many much better offerings out there. (505 characters)

Photo of emerge077
3.71/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Odd single in the cooler at Warehouse, hadn't seen before, hopefully fresh.
Code on the bottom reads "153 12 BIE 0351", if the date is the first part: May or June 2012... 4 months old.

Pours black into a mug, a sticky collar of light tan lacing adheres inside the glass, leaving behind a delicate web of lacing. Pretty good head retention as well.

Aroma is fairly subdued, mildly roasty, light herbal hops.

Flavor carries a slight citrus sweetness,medium bodied with a fair amount of roasted malt comprising the main flavor accent. Moderately bitter with a drying finish that is somewhat chalky in feel. A textbook IBA, nothing too wild but it's drinkable with a good hop character to it. (691 characters)

Photo of mfavoino
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled poured into a pint glass on 9/1/12.

Appearance: Very dark brown, almost black with minimal head that is off white in color.

Smell: Pretty bold dark roasted malts and a touch of vanilla. Can't get a hold on the hops.

Taste: Dark roasted malts, burnt brown sugar, and a moderately earth hop bit and booze heat as it finishes.

Mouthfeel: Moderate to full-body, low carbonation and noticeable alcohol warmth.

Overall: Fairly straightforward, not overly hoppy black IPA. (483 characters)

Photo of Suds
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a deep brown color. The head is a tan, thick foam. Some brownish-ruby highlights when held to the light. Murky. The smell is great...roasts malt, earth, smoke and charcoal...nice hop scents...resin and spice. It has a sugary, malt flavor, and a very sharp hop bitterness. Hoppy and flavorful. The mouthfeel is full and thick. This beer was enjoyable and worth having again. (386 characters)

Photo of xnicknj
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into tulip - thanks elliot

Pours an opaque blackness with a finger-high toasted head resting on top. Slowly fades into a bubbly collar of retention with some cloudy film retaining. Spotty lacing dots the glass while drinking.

Pleasant dose of pine and citrus hops in the nose, nice bitterness with underlying boozy warmth. Roasted dark malts and light chocolately sweetness.

Biting, resiny pine hops right up front. Sticky on the teeth with a touch of grapefruit rind and pith. Roasted dark malts with cocoa and nuttiness. The backbone is formidable, but still struggles to burst through the slightly abrasive hop profile. Light caramel and cocoa powder sweetness. Finishes bitter, dry and long with a boozy punch.

Medium body, nice carbonation, sticky and a bit rough on the tongue. This is a pretty solid black DIPA, although the alcohol and strong pine hops can combine to become somewhat of an overwhelming force at times. (952 characters)

Photo of thedoubler55
3.77/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Completely black in apperance with a nice tan ring around the top, very minimal head, left a tiny bit of lacing around the glass as you drank it.

S: Smokeyness up front, some hints of chocolate, pronounced malt notes all around, subtle nose on this brew.

T: Not to sweet on the tongue, lots of malt characters coming through, as well as pine and some chocolate on the tailend.

M: Easy drinker, not a great amount of carbonation, slight stickyness as well, medium to light mouthfeel.

O: Definitely a good Black IPA, I enjoyed this one, good subtle flavors and not to boozie like others that I have like this beer. (621 characters)

Photo of andrewjraab
3.78/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Pitch black with some mocha head and some spotty lacing.

S - Fruity, malty, faint hops, cherries.

T - Malt forward, chocolate, warming alcohol, raisins, cherries, finishes with a snap of hops. Dry aftertaste.

O - Heavy hitting Black IPA - a nice offering from Arcadia. (276 characters)

Photo of thecheapies
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark with some prune-brown tones. Small lip of foam became a ring pretty quickly.

Mellow earthy nose with a languid hoppiness and smooth maltiness in the balance. Lightly fruity. Not particularly roasty.

Spicy pine and woodiness, blanched by stewy roast malts and notes of unsweetened chocolate. Bit of a boozy sting. Almost rosy. Finishing bitterness gets a little intense. Dominated by grain and earth. Not dirty, but a little woody. Hints of dark fruits or berries. Almost port-like in the finish, only super-dry.

Smooth and a little oily. Biting carbonation toward the end punctuated by the bitterness. Alcohol turns out to be a whole lot sneakier.

Pretty good black ale. A DIPA is a bit of a stretch. Still enjoyable. (732 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Arcadia misguidedly labels this beer a Double IPA despite that it uses enough dark malts to virtually turn it opaque. Though relatively light for an American Black Ales, it's black nonetheless. Heck, even its head isn't entirely white; the surface is encircled by a dirt brown foam.

The aroma has the desired coffee-and-cream sweetness and is blended with leaves and herbals, but it's all a bit sapless (pun intended) by my tastes - there isn't the resinous pine notes that I (and most hopheads) fiend for. I've come to expect my Black IPAs to smell like a tree that's been dissected into two... whereas this merely smells like I'm in a treehouse.

The taste, fortunate for me, offers a more vivid glimpse of the hops; spruce and pine grow in stature but not as much as the citrus notes; the flavour is like a strongly-steeped black tea blended with lemon myrtle. It is earthy, bitter, herbaceous and lightly, faintly tropical. There's also a flash of coffee on the finish that provides a juxtaposing kind of flavour...

And texture! This modest and subdued beer proves to have a fairly roasty aftertaste, however short-lived; the impression of burnt grain comes built-in to the finish but, for all its pent-up bitterness and roast, little interferes with drinkability. Ditto the 8.5% alcohol. At 85 IBUs this has a kind of profile that could appease both hop-heads and stout or porter fans.

For a well-hopped beer that is almost 9% and contains a good amount dark malts, B-Craft Black is surprisingly approachable to just about anyone. Sure, some will react by spitting and running as far as possible from this considerably bitter, comparatively bold offering but, on the whole, it's an ale that marries dark malt and bright hoppy flavours in a mild and engaging fashion. Good stuff. (1,790 characters)

Photo of Ego
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

eyes...
audible head starts with loud fizzle and then settles down, off white head hovers around that for some time (ie good retention), lacing is good, black in appearance but not a pit of unearthly blackness, upon close inspection you can catch the streams of suds rising up to the surface, pretty nice looking

nose...
on first pop the hops dominate, but after this settles for a minute you get some nice roasted malt tones, not a dark roast, somewhere residing in the medium range with whisps of faint smoke, some of the juicy nature of the hops is always lurking in the background, a nice balance

taste etc...
immediate bitterness that melds into some sweetness and then lingers in roast tones, all are sort of mid range and not strong or competing, medium in the mouth with sort of underwhelming carbonation, the further you go on in the glass the roast tones become slightly more pronounced, the ABV taps you on the shoulder but is pretty well in the back for the most part (kudos), in the medium zone weight wise (just right)

verdict?
a tasty version with some kick, better executed than many black IPAs but lacks the deep roast or top hops of the best, a very good beer though. definitely grab one if you see it, well rounded! (1,237 characters)

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Arcadia B-Craft Black IPA from Arcadia Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 84 ratings.