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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.
very good

84 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 84
Hads: 332
Avg: 3.9
pDev: 24.1%
Wants: 9
Gots: 30 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 84 | Hads: 332
Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +2.6%
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.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.4/5  rDev -12.8%
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.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle
Served in a nonic pint glass

A - It pours dark, allowing just a little light through to create some ruby highlights. A couple of inches of tan head made an appearance, leaving behind a skim of tan on top. It looks a lot like a porter.

S - The first scent I recognized was grapefruit. Then the roasted aromas come through. I get a little cocoa and a little coffee.

T - The hops are less prevalent in the taste. The coffee and dark chocolate are more pronounced. Delicious!

M - Medium

O - This is a very well balanced black ipa. It has to be one of the top two that I have tried in this style. I will probably be in the minority since the hops aren't overwhelming. I prefer this style to be more balanced rather than a hop bomb.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A heavy pour delivered a finger of tan head over a deep brown body. Lacing can't quite hold on to the sides.

Mmm-mmm, this smells good. Grapefruit and pine start off the aroma, and its quickly followed up with brown sugar and passionfruit.

The hops on the flavor here are very mixed. I get grassy, orangey, grapefruit and pine. Conglomeration actually doesn't seem to go as well as I would expect, but it's still good. Brown sugar, light crackers and caramel finish off the end with just a hint of bakers chocolate and passionfruit.

Good carbonation bite, medium body. A little sticky on the back of the tongue, definitely dry.

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Photo of superspak
4.42/5  rDev +13.3%
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!

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Photo of warnerry
4.09/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours very deep brown with less than one finger of tan head. Head fades quickly to a collar and leaves spotty lacing.

S - Initial aroma is a big blast of citrus, both juicy citrus pulp and bitter citrus zest. Orange and grapefruit are both prominent. The malt profile is heavy with chocolate, both bittersweet and a faint amount of milk chocolate, along with roasted malts. Very nice.

T - Malts and hops appear simultaneously in the taste, which is a nice blend of the same components found in the aroma. There is a nice bitter hop presence, but it melds very well with the malt profile. Not sure which hops are used in this, but they seem to be well suited for a Black Ale, bitter, but blending very well with the chocolate and roasted malts.

M - Medium mouthfeel is by turn semi-sweet, creamy, bitter and dry. Finish is a nice bitterness comprising both the hop bitterness and earthy roasted malt bitterness.

O - One of the best I've had from Arcadia, and one of the better black ales I've had.

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Photo of Gfhislop
4.92/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Searched for a while for this one. Many new beers take a while to get to my corner of the thumb.

A- Pours black with a light tan head, barely 1 finger thick. Webbing hangs on for quite some time

S- While you should expect a little roasty malt from this style, the hops really steal the show both here and in flavor. Very pine-forward aroma.

T- Almost instant hop eruption. Definite pine and citrus presence, possibly a mild earthiness. After it warms some, the roasty aspects come out of their shells and bring the whole thing together.

M- Appropriate for the style.

O- Definitely plays more like a DIPA than a regular black IPA. I'd say definitely worth a pick up

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Arcadia's B-Craft Black IPA the other day for $2.59 at The Lager Mill. I have heard this was a good beer so when I saw it at the store I knew I should pick up a bottle, I think this is the first time this beer has been bottled, lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date, Spring 2012 vintage. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- I like the label, it has a well done picture of a white owl flying at night with a crescent moon shining in the background, looks good to me. It poured a nice dark black color that took on some dark ruby highlights when held to the light. It had two and a half fingers worth of smooth dark tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left a nice amount of lacing. This is a good looking American Black Ale, it's on par for the style.

S- The aroma starts off with a good amount of hops that are mainly citrus with some grapefruit, mango, blood orange, and pineapple sticking out the most, there was also some piney and floral hops aromas but it was the citrus that stuck out the most. Next after that comes the malts that have a medium amount of sweetness and impart a medium amount of roasted malts, brown sugar, and chocolate aromas. This is a great smelling beer, it had great balance and the aromas worked very well together.

T- The taste of this beer is very similar to the aroma, it starts off with lots of hops, I find that the citrus hops stick out the most imparting all those great citrus fruit aspects that I got in the aroma, it has a really well done hop profile. Next comes the malts which have a medium amount of roast to them and a medium amount of sweetness, they impart some nice, roasted, milk chocolate and dark chocolate flavors. It had a pretty low amount of bitterness with a roasty, hoppy, and a little citrusy aftertaste. This was a very good tasting American Black Ale, the flavors were bold, but there was also lots of balance and complexity.

M- Very smooth, creamy, rich, on the thick side of being medium bodied, with a good amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was very nice, it was very smooth and the added creaminess was nice.

Overall I have to say that I really enjoyed this beer and I thought that this was a great example of an American Black Ale, the hop profile mixed very well with the malt base which made for a very complex and great tasting beer. This beer had great drinkability it was very smooth and hardly had any bitterness which I wasn't expecting, this beer went down way faster and if I had another one I would for sure drink it, the alcohol was hidden very well also, there's no doubt that a couple of these would for sure hit the spot. What I liked most about this beer was pretty much everything, I can't think of anything I would want to change, it's great just the way it is. What I liked least about this beer was nothing, I wish it was just a little cheaper, but with a limited release I can't really complain. I would for sure buy this beer again, in fact I will be getting more in day or two and I highly recommend this beer to just about anyone, it's just that damn good. Arcadia did an awesome job with this beer, I have found that they can be hit or miss sometimes, but in this case it was a huge hit, I am now a big fan of this beer, and I think it's pretty safe to say that this is now my favorite American Black Ale, and one of my favorite beers from Arcadia, North Peak's Furry used to be my favorite but this beer is better in almost every aspect, I am glad they bottled this beer, I can see a lot more of this beer in my future.

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Photo of GRPunk
4.14/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a nonic pint.

B-Craft Black Double India Pale Ale. Black Ale? Imperial IPA? Both?

A- A careful, one handed, pour created a 1/2 finger, tan head that fades to a thin foam. The body is nearly black with deep, dark brown edges. Light stick left on the glass.

S- Right as I pop the cap, there's a really fresh, organic, hoppy aroma. It's almost, how do I put this, schwag? It only opens up even more after the pour. Light hints of sweet malts give an impression of brown sugar. Maybe a hint of chocolate.

T- Initial hit of those fresh, organic hops. Medicinal, herbal even. Just as I think it's all hops, rich malts come through. Toasted and chocolate-like. Like a quality made milk chocolate or even a rich chocolate milkshake. Hops come through again at the finish to make an oddly pleasant combination of flavors. Hoppy chocolate?

M- Rich and smooth. Thick, and creamy with a moderate-light carbonation that really compliments.

O- A really nice brew. Seems pretty unique at this point, combining the newer "American Black Ale" and Imperial IPA styles. Things work really well together. It's difficult to explain. It's something of a hoppy Imperial Stout, but not really. Glad I bought it. At around $2.50 for a single, it's not an everyday beer, but certainly doesn't break the bank. I would buy it again.

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Photo of BellsFan
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance. Deluged into a Lakefront twelve ounce glass from a bottle of the same volume. Halfway through the pour on to the side of the tilted glass there was no noticeable foaming. Because I'm a proponent of foam (I think it releases more aroma) I continued the pour directly into the beer with an eye toward generating some aromatic foam. My technique must have been flawed because I only managed to make an eighth inch of brown foam that quickly scattered into nothing.

Nose. Amazing green hops.

Taste. Bitter, tart, resonous, delicious.

Mouthfeel. Full, spicy.

Overall. Get me another! Oh wait, how much alcohol is in this?

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Photo of hosehead83
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
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.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.45/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow. This is a powerful ale. It has a ton of aromatics going on. Hops, roasty. Wow. Niceand unique smell.

The taste is similarly hoppy. A piney hoppiness is in this. It also has a lot of burnt (not really roast) flavor.

I would buy this again looking for a unique stron ale, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes hoppy stuff.

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Photo of BB1313
4.31/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 4/10/12. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours black, but there's light getting through making it a very dark brown. Decent head and nice lacing and retention. Ok, this has a really nice nose. Lots of fresh berries dominate, with some grass and dank lemon zest. It kind of has the onion/garlic aroma. There are subtle roasty chocolate aromas as well. The flavors are very bold. Lots of fruity bitterness from the hops, but a nice sweetness from the chocolate, making it bittersweet. Lots of pine resin going on. There's a touch of heat, but nothing overboard or unbearing. The mouthfeel is very impressive, it's extremely creamy. It's pretty slick and has a resiny feel. The carbonation is very low, but it really works in this case. This is a FUN beer to drink. Very complex.

Wow, this is a nice "Double Black IPA". This is a great beer from Arcadia.. there's something unique about it that I can't put my finger on. Well crafted.. I feel like it should have a higher score from me.. highly recommended.

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Photo of BrianOhio
4.24/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark cola like pour that leaves a very thin head.

Aroma is extremely unique, grapefruit, orange with some dark chocolate like notes to it. A completely new beer smell for me and something I really like.

Taste starts with some citrus, and then mellows into more of a typical porter taste with coffee and chocolate. Gentle pine in the finish, and I like the that hops continue throughout the taste.

I have never been a huge fan of black IPA style, but this one sets the new highwater mark. A really good beer and one I plan to have many more of. Another winner from Arcadia.

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Photo of alexgash
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
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!

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Photo of kdmcguire10
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Gorgeous black with a tinge of ruby when held to the light.

Dank grapefruit nose. Getting some tobacco notes. Unlike everything I've ever smelled. So intense for a Black IPA.

Taste is so unique. Hop citrus assault up front then you're slapped on the back end like a stout almost (coffee, chocolate, and the tobacco).

Really nice texture and smooth finish. You don't know the alcohol until you feel it at the end of your glass.

Home run from Arcadia. This should give them some recognition then deserve.

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Photo of BMMillsy
2.92/5  rDev -25.1%
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.

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Photo of zeff80
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Sycamore.

A - Poured an opaque, jet black color with a two-finger, light brown head of foam. It left sticky rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of pine with a touch of citrus. Nice roasted malt aroma, too.

T - It tasted strongly of pine with a burnt toast maltiness. Nice chocolate and caramel flavors, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - Very cool to get a tap only offering here in Columbia. Thanks, Sanford. Very nice brew!

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Photo of b3shine
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draft to tulip (at Hop Cat in Grand Rapids, MI, which is a PHENOMENAL beer bar. Everything about this beer is GREAT! The best black IPA I've ever had. Black as midnight with a great bouquet of hops and malts. The taste has great balance. And by balance, I mean the hops and malt are equally over-the-top and complement each other nicely. And the mouthfeel is great too. Surprisingly refreshing for its genre. I'd drink it again and again - if it was made with any regularity :(

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Photo of FightingEntropy
4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nearly opaque black beer with ruby highlights in a strong back light from the summer sunset for my draft on site. Thick, light brown head with extremely tight bubbles. Clean and clear singular hop in the nose with a burnt biscuit and heavy malt underneath. First taste is burnt, charcoal tasting, but, oddly, no smoke. Heavy handed on the patent malt or similar? Very nice. Hops kick in quickly and the light spice and floral of the nose turns into a clean, spicy bite on the tongue. Well balanced and fun. Roast/burnt qualities mellow as this 8.5% IPA warms and is still refreshing on a hot summer night.

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Photo of biga7346
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Asheleys in Ann Arbor.

Pours a dense, black but oily pour, very little white lacing, no head. Black licorice, plum, dark roast coffee, vanilla bean, some citrusy to grapefruit hoppy notes in the nose.

Big beer this one, ABV comes in at under 10% and it hides the alcohol well. Much more of the hop flavor comes through in the finish and lingers on the palate for quite some time. Dark roast to acrid offee, raisin bread, beet sugar, cleaning solution to rubber band phenol.

I have been told by some that Arcadia is a really under-appreciated brewery in MI having to compete with the likes of Founders and Bells (but that is a little apples to oranges IMO). This beer impressed me by its creativity and boldness from Arcadia which has lacked in "signature" beers.

I must admit this is pretty much the first Arcadia I have really liked, Hopmouth has become tiresome at this point even though I know it still sells.

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Photo of jwinship83
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at the bavarian lodge. served in a snifter.

A- this one comes to me looking very dark brown with a small khaki colored head. the head quickly becomes no more than a crown and doesnt leave behind much if any lacing.

S- roasted malts and a little bit of chocolate are the first things i pick up in the nose. after that i get some dark fruits and a bit of coffee. floral and herbal hops at the end.

T- the taste starts out with lightly roasted malts and a little bit of sweet milk chocolate. after that i pick up faint raisin notes with some figs also. then comes some coffee. floral and herbal hops at the end.

M- medium body with ample carbonation. very smooth. nicely bitter.

D- this was easy enough to finish. id try this one again if i could find it in a bottle. one of the better arcadia beers ive had in a while.

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Photo of david131
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a very deep, dark brown with some dark red highlights. A touch of haziness adds a nice aspect. The head is thin but creamy, has nice retention, and leaves nice lacing.

S- Figs, cherries, clove, mint, and cinnamon. Very unique and inviting. Surprisingly aromatic.

T- Coffee, black cherries, mint, smoke, and a touch of citrus fruit. Very unique. The alcohol is not apparent.

M- a very creamy body with enough carbonation to keep it light. A fairly clean finish.

D- The alcohol is well hidden and the flavors are robust but don't build on the palate. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of jale
3.17/5  rDev -18.7%
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

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Photo of SupaCelt
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired during 7AM happy hour at Logan's Alley, this brew filled a pint glass with a magnificent, rich brown capped by a tan head. The nose was ripe with hop character and roasted darkness. The great malt character of this beer, with its mild roasted tones and subdued sweetness, mingled well with the hopping to produce a smooth and utterly drinkable brew while still boasting a large profile.

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