1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Arcadia B-Craft Black IPA - Arcadia Brewing Company

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

289 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 289
Reviews: 81
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 12.66%
Wants: 9
Gots: 15 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: alleykatking on 07-27-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 289 | Reviews: 81 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jwc215
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with some ruby highlights. A creamy, thin tan head stays, leaving some lacing.

The smell is strongly of pine with some tropical fruits. There is a "black" undertone - more like anise/black licorice than of smoke (which is good - doesn't clash - lets hops really shine through).

The taste is of sweet resin/pine with a touch of tropical fruits. The "black" character adds a touch of licorice, with just a hint of roast. There is a bitter, boozy bite in the finish. Chocolate comes through in the after-taste.

The body reaches close enough to full-bodied to fit. It is between creamy and slick. The carbonation is under-stated, which works well enough in this case. A touch more carbonation would probably give it a more velvety feel, but it is creamy/velvety enough not to tinker with it.

This is a potent, hoppy - mainly piney - black ale. I do have issues with the term "Double India Pale Ale" on the label - as it should just say what it is - a hoppy American Black Ale, but as for the beer - it's nice - if you like piney beers that have a boozy character with some black (licorice/chocolate) traits - and is balanced enough not to be just pine sap - give this one a shot! Well-done!

jwc215, Oct 18, 2012
Photo of wrightst
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

wrightst, Jun 04, 2014
Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

duceswild, May 03, 2013
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer pours a jet black body with a oatmeal tan bubbly head that last a good bit and trails of bubbles that glide up the surface.

S- The tropical fruit and bubble gum esters lead into a faint smoky hint of roasted black malt that is overtaken by woody green hops in the finish.

T- The bubblegum, double bubble flavor blends with green herbal hops in the finish and a soft roasted black malt note comes through in the aftertaste. There is a cola note that grows as the beer opens up.

M- The medium mouthfeel has no alcohol heat and a gentle fizz compliments the hops.

O- This beer has full yeasty ester flavors with the hops being much softer. It is a nice beer but not much of a session beer at 8.5 % abv.

rhoadsrage, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of superspak
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled 4/24/2012. Pours almost pitch black dark brown color with a nice 2 finger tan head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Some nice soapy lacing on the glass. Aromas of big pine, grapefruit, orange rind, toast, roasted malt, herbal, earth, and light chocolate. Great aromas with big fresh hoppiness; and nice balance. Taste of big grapefruit, orange rind, pine, chocolate, roasted malt, caramel, toast, herbal, and earthy hops. Moderate citrus rind bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, orange rind, pine, chocolate, roasted malt, and herbal on the finish for a while. Fantastic balance of hop flavors with the roasted malt. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly creamy and slightly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming after the finish noticed. Overall this is a fantastic black IPA! Great hop and roasted malt flavor balance, and very smooth for 8.5%. Amazing stuff!

superspak, Jun 01, 2012
Photo of Stinkypuss
4.09/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

SMELL: Upfront roasted malt, fig jelly, and chocolate.

TASTE: A good mix of dark malt and citrus hop flavor. Pine, earth, and grapefruit come from sizeable hop additions. Cocoa powder and rooty hop flavor work well together. The 8.5% alcohol is well disguised.

FEEL: Full bodied, well carbonated ale. Cocoa like malt flavor lasts well into the finish.

OVERALL: The B-craft Black is a well done strong black Ale. Solid all day, would have it again sometime.

Stinkypuss, May 04, 2013
Photo of biegaman
3.83/5  rDev -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.

biegaman, Sep 26, 2013
Photo of Latarnik
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Latarnik, May 24, 2014
Photo of beerthulhu
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
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.

beerthulhu, Dec 18, 2012
Photo of dmorgan310
4/5  rDev +3.4%

dmorgan310, Jun 28, 2013
Photo of Zaphog
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Zaphog, May 27, 2012
Photo of Tone
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. One inch head of an off-tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of hop oils, slight floral hops, pine, slight roasted malt, and a hint of sweet malt. Fits the style of an American Black Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight roasted malt, hint of floral hops, hop oils, citrus hops, and hint of sweet malt. Overall, good appearance, aroma, feel, and body. The blend and complexity are a little lacking.

Tone, Aug 12, 2012
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Kuhnhenn snifter.

Appearance - Pours a dark brown, not quite black body with only a touch of a head. The faintest of collars around a translucent edge at the surface.

Smell - Some musty pine hops, but it isn't hop dominant. The hops are well balanced by a chocolate and caramel malt.

Taste - Pine hops throughout, which is nice. The chocolate is consistent with just a hint of sweetness shining through. It gets more bitter throughout without ever getting heavy on the malts.

Mouthfeel - Like a light, overhopped RIS. Never too sweet. Never too bitter. Nicely balanced without being a hop bomb of a black IPA.

Overall - I usually like hoppier black IPAs, but this is quite nice. There is a strange aftertaste that is there and gone in an instant. So brief I can't really identify it, so I won't peg it back for it.

Alieniloquium, Aug 22, 2012
Photo of xnicknj
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
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.

xnicknj, Oct 27, 2012
Photo of WoodBrew
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

My bro-in-law is awesome!!! He set me up with b-Craft Black from Arcadia...and it is amazing!!! The beer poured a opaque black with thin ecru head that is lacing. The smell contains a piny roast that could be more bold if I am to compare to SSRA from Stone. The taste is more of the same of the smell. It starts off roasty then finishes bitter. The mouthfeel is very nice, full bodied and creamy with smooth carbonation. Overall it is a good beer....the 8.5% will cause everyone pause....and may be a one and done.

WoodBrew, Dec 23, 2012
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Hopheadjeffery, Aug 13, 2013
Photo of tone77
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%

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.

tone77, Aug 31, 2014
Photo of DrDemento456
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Snagged a single from Vintage Estate in Ohio. Cost is $2.49

A - Ah good no sediment I fear it was over 3+ months old. Just a 1/3 inch of deep mocha head and the beer itself is Imperial Stout Back, very viscous.
S - Mild tones of citrus hops, and some ashy roasts.
T - Quite an original Black IPA it seems to have some anise or molasses tone along with some citrus hops, English malts, and coffee roast.
M - The ABV seems well hidden if not somewhat watery.
Overall I really liked this black IPA it imparts tones of Russian Imperial stouts with anise and molasses and hides the ABV well.

DrDemento456, Feb 23, 2013
Photo of OWSLEY069
3.86/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber to black in color with a tannish head. In the aroma, big citrus hops and a small caramel like malt. In the taste, dryer orange citrus hops, somewhat minty even. A small hop bite, but mainly smooth and a medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dryer orange citrus and small maltiness in the aftertaste. Nice big hops, and a nice balance of flavor between orange citrus and caramel malt.

OWSLEY069, Jul 15, 2013
Photo of barnzy78
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a snifter, pours black with a thin head, even with a fairly rigorous pour, and leaves minimal lacing on the glass. Aromas are somewhat odd, or at least not what I expected: Dank citrus, evergreen, mango, candy black licorice cigar. Tastes are well balanced and very complex with up-front citrus/grapefruit, tropical with sweet fresh pineapple and mango, then pine, anise, mint, and roasted barley. Wild ride, but comes together nicely collectively. Mouth-feel is medium bodied and resinous, finishes bitter, but rather refreshing. Alcohol is well concealed. This one was strange, but I really enjoyed it. I wasn't expecting the tropical flavors that were present, but it was well balanced, both sweet and bitter, and a pleasant surprise. I need to grab another one when I get the chance!

barnzy78, Jun 23, 2012
Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer may perhaps be the definition of what's referred to as "cola" as far as the color: very dark brown with lighter brown highlights and just a touch of red visible. A creamy tan head grows to almost 2 fingers and recedes fairly slowly, dropping a combination of rings, legs and patches of lacing.
On the nose, I get an initial burst of raw pine and a tinge of alcohol. Delving deeper, there's a touch of mint, something like spruce, and a bit of roast. Rind pulls out a bit with the bitterness and some leaf finishes it out.
As for the flavor, at first sip it's an even level between roast and pine with some unexpected toffee-like sweetness and a bit of wood. The mint comes out again and there's the ghost of char just coming out in the finish. A touch of cocoa and coffee grounds are drawn from the roasted malts while the hops remain at an even level, adding an herbal element.
The body is medium with an evenly crisp and smooth feel to it. Carbonation is light and keeps it lively without overdoing it.

Brenden, Jun 20, 2012
Photo of mrfrancis
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

mrfrancis, May 10, 2014
Photo of enelson
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

enelson, Feb 10, 2014
Photo of alexgash
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle. Bottled 4/16/12.

Dark cola amber-brown body. Some light gets through. Small, light khaki head. Nice lacing. Nose is a nice mix of hops and dark malt. Lots of pine sap, cat pee, and herbal notes. Caramel and roasted malts complement.

Toasted chocolate malt up front. Caramel and roasted malt settle in. Citric, piny hop bitterness gradually comes on. Some herbal, cannabis-y funk as well. Stays pretty-well balanced until the finish. Dries out, with lingering espresso and pine hop bitterness. Faint resinous notes in the end. Medium-full body with a slightly creamy feel. Nicely done!

alexgash, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of Holland
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Holland, Dec 14, 2011
Arcadia B-Craft Black IPA from Arcadia Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 289 ratings.