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Black Top - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Black TopBlack Top

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

890 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 890
Reviews: 192
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 11.27%
Wants: 65
Gots: 65 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: cdkrenz on 08-27-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 890 | Reviews: 192 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by SkeeterBoganski:
Photo of SkeeterBoganski


3.96/5  rDev -2.9%

A - nice deep brown in color with a full half-inch off-brown foamy head; lacing is decent but the carbonation looks like zilcho

S - it has that very traditional black IPA malt/hop aroma...the hops may even be a bit more announced; some hints of orange peel meets coffee bean; maybe a touch of lemon zest

T - Black Top tastes like a black IPA should, although I'm not overwhelmed with anything amazing flavor-wise; the flavors are pretty much the same as the nose, with the coffee/maltiness thing going in a harmonious song-and-dance with the orange peel hops; there are some earthy tones going on as well

M - the carbonation comes back! This beer is, again, well-balanced and pleasant on the tongue...the merging of styles is done well and this is a medium-drinking brew

O - this beer is quality and I can't say I've really not had anything quality from NG; that said, this is the first non-fruit-driven NG beer I've had. It's traditional for the style, hides the 6.9 well, and provides a solid amount of balance and flavor.

02-20-2013 22:41:34 | More by SkeeterBoganski
More User Reviews:
Photo of DanGeo


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

05-31-2013 22:39:48 | More by DanGeo
Photo of mykd


5/5  rDev +22.5%

11-16-2011 14:41:57 | More by mykd
Photo of weatherdog


3.6/5  rDev -11.8%

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter

Pours a pretty deep black with a nice tight dense cream colored head. A medium amount of lacing coats the sides.

Aroma of mild chocolate and dank grassy hops, a little bit of orange citrus on the backend.

Flavor is a bit of roasted barley flavor, assertive bitterness with some grassy hop flavors at the end.

The mouthfeel is the best thing about this beer. Its pretty creamy which balances out the bitterness and doesn't keep the roasted grain flavors from sticking around too long in the aftertaste.

Overall its a just a good black IPA, nothing to special but not bad either.

10-01-2011 03:13:10 | More by weatherdog
Photo of dmheinz57


4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

03-01-2014 02:59:04 | More by dmheinz57
Photo of orbitalr0x


4.03/5  rDev -1.2%

Nice hearty black pour with two fingers of creamy khaki foam sitting strongly atop the brew! Aromas kick off with big citric and grapefruit hops that are bright, green and resinous. Somewhat roasted chocolate malts in the backbone with a hint of molasses and caramel sweetness.

First sip brings a mix of roasted grain malts and citric, herbaceous hops. The hops don't come out quite as much as the nose suggested as chocolate, molasses and caramel flavors swirl in as well. Flows down with a nice bitter kick. Nice Black IPA.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with great carbonation. It's hearty but at the same time easily drinkable. A well made beer as I've come to except from New Glarus. For a brewery that does not focus on hops too much I was glad to see them release this and hopefully it will be brewed again sometime!

11-16-2011 00:15:30 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of csmartin6

New York

4.5/5  rDev +10.3%

05-19-2013 14:30:11 | More by csmartin6
Photo of equinox1


3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

11-20-2013 00:37:46 | More by equinox1
Photo of Jason


4/5  rDev -2%

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

LOOK: Massive tan head, a shade away from pure black.

SMELL: Dank hop resin, burnt sugar, candied dark fruit, mint, citric peel, hermit cookies.

TASTE: Hop oil, floral, citric, soft pine, mellow cigar, roasted grain, burnt cookies, smooth, herbal finish.

Hop forward but more in the flavor than bitterness, a pretty great example of the style. Very drinkable even with the complexities being thrown at the palate.

11-04-2011 02:09:08 | More by Jason
Photo of tigg924


3.85/5  rDev -5.6%

Appearance: dark brown in color, 1 inch head, clear, high carbonation

Smell: piney hops and roasted malt

Taste: expresso, roasted malt, and piney hops

Mouthfeel: light bodied, medium-high carbonation, slightly bitter

Overall: A good not great black IPA. I do like the piney hops. I would not turn this one down, but there are others in the style I would go to first.

08-20-2012 13:40:53 | More by tigg924
Photo of Mugenlude


4/5  rDev -2%

12-05-2013 20:04:05 | More by Mugenlude
Photo of fenlop54


4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

05-06-2014 17:35:38 | More by fenlop54
Photo of ryancl


4/5  rDev -2%

08-02-2012 21:15:29 | More by ryancl
Photo of strangebrew52


4/5  rDev -2%

12-21-2011 14:21:41 | More by strangebrew52
Photo of westcott


4/5  rDev -2%

07-28-2013 17:26:06 | More by westcott
Photo of NilocRellim


3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

09-29-2012 04:13:26 | More by NilocRellim
Photo of virinow

New York

3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

11-16-2013 00:12:11 | More by virinow
Photo of bpfrush


4.5/5  rDev +10.3%

11-15-2011 03:13:03 | More by bpfrush
Photo of ehammond1

4.13/5  rDev +1.2%


Acquired via trade

A nearly black pour, though though in actuality, it's a very dark brown with a three-finger high light brown head. This beer leaves the glass covered in sheets and irregular lines of lines. By all measurements, this is a truly gorgeous beer.

A very nice, well integrated, and balanced aroma. It's nearly perfect for the style. The hop aromas come in waves of pine and grapefruit, while there's discernible roast, earth, and coffee elements as well.. This is terrific.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, but not quite as bright and vibrant as I was expecting. There's still a good amount of pine and grapefruit presence, backed up nicely by earthy roast and a little coffee. Very nice.

Medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation.

A delicious black IPA.

03-14-2012 00:57:00 | More by ehammond1
Photo of MattyG85


4.28/5  rDev +4.9%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall New Glarus Signature Pilsner Glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with some hints of amber. Moderate amount of bubbles and a solid three finger light tan head with decent carbonation. Leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A nicely hoppy aroma with a good balance of roast and malts. Big hop scent upfront with hints of citrus grapefruit, pineapple, and orange peel along with lots of earthy pine resin. Solid balancing presence of dark roasty malts. Good hints of burnt toast, biscuit, chocolate, nuts, and a little smoke. Also some burnt molasses sugar and a little hint of anise spice. Aroma leans a little more to the hoppy side but the dark malt presence is good.

Taste: Like the nose hints, a strong mix of hops with a solid dark malt backing. Big taste of hops upfront with notes of citrus orange peel, grapefruit, and pineapple. Some earthy grass and a big taste of spicy pine resin. Midway comes the malts which add a nice dark bready balance. Taste of chocolate, burnt toast, biscuit, smoke, and nuts. A slight sweet kick of molasses. Subtle anise spicing. Slightly more hoppy than malty and fairly drying. Pretty good.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Juicy, spicy, and somewhat creamy. Finishes pretty dry.

Overall: A very solid black ale. Hops stand out at first but the dark roasted malts are very solid.

01-10-2013 07:22:53 | More by MattyG85
Photo of DrKarl


4/5  rDev -2%

03-22-2014 21:05:55 | More by DrKarl
Photo of Hairrrrrrrr


4/5  rDev -2%

06-15-2013 05:29:28 | More by Hairrrrrrrr
Photo of sourdog


3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

07-16-2014 19:53:05 | More by sourdog
Photo of Juicer


4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

03-28-2014 01:17:56 | More by Juicer
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


4.47/5  rDev +9.6%

Thanks to curtisloew for sending this out. Blacktop pours black, but far from the darkest black you've ever seen, has a great sizeable light beige head to it. Big hoppy aroma, not just bitterness, this one had some of that passion fruit of a tropical nature to it.

Taste was like the smell. Fruity, hoppy, kept the bitterness low. Body was nice and light, despite the appearance. Plus points for not having the dehusked bitterness that a lot of the less than ideal black ales sport. This drinks very different than the appearance, none of that chocolate, coffee or acrid bitterness. Carbonation was just were it should be. Dry and crisp mouthfeel so dominated by luscious non bitter hops.

I'm kinda skeptical of the reviews that give you the typical lazy review simply based on appearance. Coffee, chocolate etc. . . sorry, your eyes have played tricks on you my taste buds believe. Show some initiative, where's the peach, passion fruit and pineapple mentions with green fresh vegetal hop mouthfeel in your review? Or maybe you all got old bottles and I drank a fresh one 2000 miles from the source.

I need to drink this back to back with O'Dells and Grand Teton's black ales, these three beers make up the exemplary models for style, to this guys palate.

12-22-2011 18:48:20 | More by Beerandraiderfan
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Black Top from New Glarus Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 890 ratings.