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Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark AleHop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

504 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 504
Hads: 1,339
Avg: 4.06
pDev: 16.75%
Wants: 159
Gots: 123 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 05-27-2010

An India Black Ale.
Available - May to September
Alc. by Vol. - 6.5% (2010), 6.9% (2011)
IBUs - 75
View: Beers (161) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 504 | Hads: 1,339
Photo of philbe311
3.97/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Just shy of three finger's worth of slightly late to develop cascading creamy and lush medium brown colored head with a waffled top... Rock star retention... Once receded there is an ultra thick, ultra creamy, ultra lush layer of whipped lacing... The color is a deep menacing dark brown that allows just the slightest bit of light to leak in around the edges of the glass... Mostly still with just a few small carbonation streaks seen towards the top of the glass... Sheets of lacing cling to the sides of the glass...

S - A bit restrained but quite satisfying... There is a pleasant mix of earthy and noble hops... Some lightly roasted malt... A hint of milk chocolate... Perhaps just a faint whiff of vanilla is noticeable with a very deep inhale...

T - The flavor profile is dialed up several notches from the timid aroma... The slight burnt and charred character of the roasted malt dominates throughout... It yields occasionally to allow a sharp piney hop bite to emerge and impress... Perhaps a hint of bitter dark baker's chocolate... Very nice...

M - On the lighter side of medium bodied... Limited yet sharp carbonation... Starts smooth and finishes with a bit of a burnt texture... Attention grabbing...

D - A stellar American Black Ale that lags the best in class by just the slightest of margins... A bit more aroma and a bit more of a well rounded taste and mouthfeel would elevate this one to epic... Regardless this is a rock solid offering from the fine folks from Deschutes who continue to impress me since entered the PA market... I can easily recommend without hesitation...

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The appearance is a rich completely black beer with a thick dark tan head that is long lived and leaves a great amount of lacing down the glass.

The nose is rich and complex with dominating sweet malt that has notes of bitter chocolate, coffee, grass, pine bread and floral hops.

The taste is a nice roasted malt start blended with buttery hops and a sharp hop finish. The sweetness is complex as well with notes of apple, citrus and oatmeal.

The mouthfeel is a bit watery for this one. A little more richness would nice. However not a reason to say no to this one.

Overall this one is extremely good and very enjoyable. I would highly recommend trying this one.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours cola black color with a small off white foam head. The head has a decent level of retention, slowly fading to leave a moderate level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma of the beer is a mix of sweet chocolate and roast along with a rather stronger showing of some hop. The hop aromas ore heaviest of a pine nature, with some other aromas of a citrus grapefruit and herbal smell as well.

Taste – The taste begins with a nice smooth roasted malt flavor with a big shot of chocolate. Right from the start there is a lighter grapefruit hop flavor which gains in intensity as the taste advances to the end. Along with the increase in grapefruit, a pine hop also comes to the tongue. This is the dominant hop taste of the brew really taking over the hop profile. Along with these new hop flavors comes some flavors of a light coffee which meld rather well with the pine to leave a nice chocolaty but bitter and resinous flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average to thicker side with a carbonation level that is average. The slightly thicker body is quite nice for all the roasted flavors all while the carbonation, at its moderate level, blends well the resinous hop with the roasted tastes not allowing either to really dominate.

Overall – A nice tasty black IPA with some good dark chocolate flavors and a decent resinous bite. Rather enjoyable overall.

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Photo of fannypakit
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, almost black. Thick fluffy head with pretty good retention--left a nice ring of foam and good amount of lacing. Nose is a nice combination of pine and malt, some coffee and chocolate hidden in there as well. Balanced taste of the malt and hops, you get the hops initially with a malt backbone. Bitterness hits the tongue first and the sweetness flushes in before ending with hops again, dry finish. Mouthfeel is moderate and right in the middle, not too light and not too heavy. Well-balanced and nice carbonation, which makes it easy to drink. Overall, a solid black IPA. I like stouts and IPAs separately, not a huge fan of this style, but Deschutes makes this well.

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Photo of WesMantooth
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours what I would call light black, with a frothy expresso colored head that hangs around awhile and leaves some lacing souvenirs behind.

When you stick your nose in it you get roasted malt of a porter and faint hops

Taste gives you some hops up front, then slightly sweet, faint chocolate and roasted beans in a nice malt that is thin and easy to drink. The aftertaste is just slightly bitter combination of the hops and subtle coffee, but smooth. This beer keeps hinting hoppy porter, but has enough of a touch of sweetness to make it a dark ale. I would compare it to a hoppy, sweet, Black Butte. Very good

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Photo of barczar
3.77/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours an opaque black with a frothy cappuccino head that lingers.

Sweet, chocolatey roast malt and coffee counter skunky hops and sharp citrus in the aroma.

Grapefruit and tart orange lie at the flavor base, fairly tart, with roasty malt taking the helm mid palate, finishing slightly charred, with bitter coffee notes. Floral notes surface as it warms.

Body is moderate, with carbonation a touch low, and modest alcohol warmth.

Black ipas are always a toss up. This one is not offensive. The malt and hops don't clash. But, for me, they don't really improve each other, either. Seems a touch disjointed.

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Photo of richj1970
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pitch black with generous two finger head and heavy lacing.

S: Roasted malts mixed with piney and floral hops.

T: A nice hop bite combined with roasty malts.

M: Medium body and nicely carbonated. Finish is just a tad dry and crisp.

O: Very nice black IPA. Similar in a lot of respects to Lagintas Nighttime.

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Photo of archyquaffer
4.24/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a shaker. A moderate pour produces 1.5 inches of a creamy, bubbly head that proves good and sticky. Deep ruby brown color with light carbonation (you need to use a flashlight).

A fairly complex and even delicate hop aroma, evoking light floral qualities, lemony citrus, and a little pine. The hop aromas don't overwhelm the malt though- you can smell some distinctly malted milk ball and caramel tones. These aroma-flavors follow through in the overall taste, and are reinforced by some dark fruit, smooth dark chocolate, and a little coffee. The citrus characters build a bit as you go, and some grassiness manifests itself but it's not too over the top. Very creamy mouthfeel with lingering but very light nutty and citrus bitterness. The alcohol is well hidden beyond maybe some gradual warming and a touch of fruitiness under the tongue. Malty goodness akin to a candy bar come through in the burps.

This is my second example of this particular style this evening, and this Deschutes version is superior to the one I drank earlier (Lagunitas). An excellent brew with a complex and satisfying flavor.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.74/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

For a style that no one can come to any confident consensus about, its flavor is nearly as illusive as its name. Is it a "Cascadian" ale, a black "American" ale or the more commonly but oxymoronish black "Pale" ale? Naming aside, is the beer more importantly an American IPA with a black hue or is it a hoppy porter?

Hop in the Dark carries the dark brown hues, appearing black in its center and plays out in an interlude to toast, cocoa and coffee flavors that settle upon the early palate and nose. Timidly sweet and malty, all that is overcast in strong citrus and floral plume.

More balanced in the middle palate than IPA but aggressively tilted toward hops compared to American robust porter, its mild caramel and toffee center links up with Whopper-type maliness, just ahead of a strong white grapefruit and orange zest component to easily outlast the beer's fleeting sweetness.

Because of its porter tone, its dry finish seems slightly thinned. However, its dry and resinous hop finish saves the "India pale" part. Yet for any IPA, I need the hop bitterness to pull much further ahead than is felt here. And with the coffee-type bitterness to assist hop bitterness, both seem to seek greater heights in taste and texture.

While the classic Oregonian Willamette valley is well represented with acute citrus bittering, I expect more tropical, orchard and citrus variety to allow the hops to take better command if its malty rival.

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Photo of BrewUSA
3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deschutes Hop In The Dark

Look 8/10
Smell 17/20
Taste 34/40
Feel 7/10
Drinkability 18/20

Overall 84/100

Nice light coffee flavored IPA. Has a nice smooth rounded flavor and texture. Has a decant hop profile, yet isn't nothing striking. I always compare any black IPA (or the like) to Self-Rightious. It's probably not fair, I do it anyway. It's good, but my Self-Rightious

Final Verdict: Good smooth balance on coco and hops. Very smooth me drinkable~

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

We pop a bomber with a best by date of 8/21/14, pouring a brew of darkest chestnut brown, with flecks of ruddy maroon around its edges, into our Great Lakes pints. It supports a two finger head of latte foam that sticks around for most of the tasting. The aroma is clean, but somewhat subdued in robustness. It gives notes of soapy and citric hops, richly roasted brown, chocolate, and caramel malts, tangerine flesh, lactic creaminess, and graphite. The hops, through the taste, too, come across much more soapy and biting, and less juicy, than one would expect from a robustly hopped cascade profile. These notes dominate, and are particularly notable in the aftertaste. Otherwise, silky black and brown maltiness, creamy café au lait, light leathers, gentle char and smoke, tobacco leafiness, sulfuric mineral, salt lick, pencil woodiness, and chemical phenols poke through. The sip is nice, with pleasant cream, froth, slurp, and smack, with tannic dryness of the malts left lingering. Although more bitter, the beer drinks back quickly.

Overall, this is more of a “serious” take on your black ale. Where many black ales will meet the dark smokiness of the malts, and any bitterness of the hops, with a sugary sweetness of inclusions, or more commonly of a secondary fruity hoppiness, here you get the unabashed raw side. While we prefer our black ales to have more of that sweeter balance, this brew works well with the chord it has struck. We do lose a fair amount of pointage on the nose, which comes across dull, and dry. Warmth does help it along a bit, as it does with the thick creaminess of the feel, but it doesn’t quite eradicate those initial misgivings. This is a very nice black ale (C.D.A. if you will), but we don’t feel it entirely and adequately represents the bulk of what you should expect from the style.

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Photo of Jimmys
4.01/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

bomber into tulip. best by 08/21/2014.

A: pours a moderate shade of dark brown with a massive frothy head. great retention and a thick rim of lacing as well.

S: big roasted malt aroma. some resinous hop aroma in there as well. definitely get some pine characteristic. the hop aroma is certainly assertive, but all on the pine side of things. wouldn't be surprised to see that this brew utilized some American classics in the hopping.

T: a roast and hop bit. mostly in the form of bitterness right at the middle of the drink. very minor roasted malt bitterness in the finish. I think all of this is derived from a hearty hopping.

M: moderate amount of carb on a medium bodied brew.

D: overall a fairly hopped ale that is well represented from the darker grains out there. not earth shattering, but certainly a well made American black ale. as with anything hoppy, drink it now!

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Photo of hopsputin
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

a: its a silky dark black color with a nice 2 finger solid tan white head

s: so good. it s great blend of pineapple, roasted malts, dark chocolate, juicy orange/citrus hops, and the faintest hint of black licorice

t: smooth smooth smooth. right away you taste silky roasted malts and dark chocolate which fades to a zesty citrus (lemon & grapefruit). there is an initial malty sweetness which is then balanced out by a smooth grapefruit bitterness on the back of the tongue. middle of the tongue remains tasting the chocolate and roasted malts. this beer has immaculate harmonization in my opinion - great balance of roasted malts, chocolate, and juicy citrus hops.

m: its a silky medium mouthfeel with not much carbonation

o: by far my favorite black ale/cascadian dark ale. great balance, easily drinkable, and full of great flavors

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Photo of DenverHopHead
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber with a best by date of 8/21/14; into a tulip.
Appearance - pour as black as ebony, head is a bubbly brown, but a tad thin. Lacing is terrific!
Smell - nice arrangement of citrus and floral hops complimented by medium roast coffee!
Taste - a subtle sweetness at first sip, lends to a very balanced hop/malt profile that sees neither give way to the other!
Feel - would prefer a bit more bitterness, but the feel of a gourmet cup of coffee is an excellent characteristic!
Overall - a lot like their Obsidian Stout, which I love, this beer has some very fine qualities!

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Photo of mikem0487
4.09/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoy by 8/21/14 poured into DFH ale glass.

A-Mocha brown fluffy head, dense with good lacing. Black opaque body.

S-The aroma has a nice balance between the malts and hops. One does not over power the other. Resinous, piney, wheat bread, light chocolate and a hop dankness throughout the nose. Subtle all around but lovely...

T-Where the smell has a nice balance between an IPA and stout the taste leans towards more of a stout with a bittering finish that lingers. The sweet dextrose notes keep a good balance with the roasted malt profile. In the middle of the palate you get melon, peach and pine like flavors mixed throughout the roasted yet sweet flavors than you obtain that bittering finish.

M-On the sweeter side with a medium/full body. Carbonation spot on.

O-Overall a fantastic Black IPA or what they like to call it a Cascadian Dark Ale. Worth picking up and enjoying. Deschutes is a great brewery and this beer does not disappoint like many of their beers.

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Photo of BB1313
3.41/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Best by 8/21/14. 22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a very dark brown, almost black; nice tan head that leaves great retention and okay lacing. The aromas have a nice blend of subtle citrus and roasted dark malts. Some tropical notes in the mix as well. Some grapefruit and orange is there. Smells really nice, I just wish the aromas were a bit more pungent. The flavors are extremely earthy. Very bitter, but it's a clean bitterness. Sharp and crisp. Tons of pine and grass. More grapefruit. Hints of chocolate. Very subtle coffee notes, but they're hard to pick up on. Lots of soap. Finishes pretty dry. Mouthfeel is great. It's medium-bodied with active carbonation. It's creamy and fluffy; very smooth. Alcohol basically goes unnoticed. This is a very clean and crisp take on the style.

This is a solid take on the style. The craftsmanship really sells this beer for me and makes it enjoyable. It smells a little better than it tastes. It's a nice value in the world of bombers.

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Photo of ExaltedNecrosis
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

32 oz growler poured into pint glass.

A - Pours a pitch black with 2 fingers of creamy dark brown head. This is indistinguishable in appearance from a stout or porter.

S - Grapefruit is the prominent flavor, followed by roasted coffee and chocolate

T - Mildly bitter grapefruit hops, roasted coffee, chocolate, caramel. This tastes like a hybrid of a porter and IPA. There's a nice fruitiness with the grapefruit which is balanced by the coffee and chocolate, with a nice roastiness to round it out.

M - Moderate-to-thick body with moderate carbonation. Nice and full, this is a bit thicker than most black IPAs I've had.

O - I was very impressed by this. It was darker and fuller than most black IPAs I've had, with a great roasted coffee character that made this seem like a stout, combined with the fuller mouthfeel.

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Photo of barnzy78
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, 2014 release, date stickered over original bottle label:
BEST BY: 8/21/14
ALC. BY VOL.: 6.8%
L - huge, frothy beige head tops a dark brown/near black ale; great head retention and sticky lacing
S - fruity, chocolatey, citric, faint roast
T - chocolate, fruit, citric grapefruit, roasted barley, caramel, pine; both sweet and bitter with nice balance
F - medium body, drying bitter finish
O - nice flavors, nice balance, very drinkable, but missing a wow factor. I also prefer this style to have a more prominent roastiness. Either way, still worth the try and still very good.

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Photo of LambicPentameter
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed out of a 22 oz brown bottle with a best by date of 8/21/14 stamped on the side of the label. Poured into a Speigelau IPA-specific glass, even though I know "black IPAs" are sort of hoppy porters.

Appearance - Pours a body that is black with just the slightest twinge of dark brown. No light passing through. Atop the body sits a two finger head of densely packed bubbles that resembles mousse and contains a fair amount of pocking on the top. The color is mocha tan. Retention is quite good, buoyed by a likely stream of carbonation rising from the glass' laser etching. Obviously, I can't see the bubbles, given the darkness of the liquid. Lacing is pronounced, leaving sticky sheets in rings as I drink it down.

Smell - Nice up front bouquet of pungent hops, with citrus and some bitterness hinting at semidark chocolate. There's also some nice earthiness, but it's hard to tell if that's coming from the hop profile or the roasted grains. And lastly, some hints of herbal pine as it warms a bit.

Taste - The citrus is far more subdued in the taste than it was in the aroma. Dark chocolate and muted orange that reminds me a bit of a chocolate covered orange, or maybe more accurately, orange-infused dark chocolate. Bitterness from the roasted malts and herbal hops as well as hints of drip coffee on the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied and moderate carbonation, with a lingering bitterness on the tongue.

Overall, a tasty little hoppy dark ale, but it doesn't quite stand up to my favorite two or three in the same style range. That said, I would encourage anyone who likes the interplay between bitter, roasty malt and citrusy, herbal hops to check this one out.

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Photo of Dustbowl83
3.72/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours black, crystal clear, no haze, with a rough, one finger head.

Mild hop and dark roast aroma, some alcohol.

Relatively thin, smooth mouthfeel.

Flavor is well balanced with moderate roasted flavors with a nice firm bitterness. Moderate hop flavor; citrus, pine. Some alcohol warmth, especially as it warms.

Overall, this is a nice drinker; I would like to see stronger hop flavors and aroma in a CDA, they seem to be a bit buried by a slight over-application of dark roasted malt.

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Photo of larryarms847
4.49/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful dark brown, almost black in appearance, poured a thick and frothy off-white two finger head.

Smells of malts, chocolate, slight coffe notes, and burnt caramel.

Thick and delicious chocolate, toffee, malts, and enough hops to kick through the sweetness to make this one hell of a black IPA.

Mouthfeel is creamy and thick, very satisfying.

Overall Deschutes continues to deliver with this offering.

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Photo of mnredsoxfan69
3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I wanted this beer to be more than it was. Oh, well.

22 oz. bottle poured into a 13 oz. tulip glass.

A gorgeous, black pour with a thick, fine, light brown head, two fingers tall that quickly disapated to a foamy ring that left nice, sticky lacing on the glass.

The smell is roasty and hoppy, light citrus fruit with significant bitterness.

I tasted the roast malt and heavy hops with a little alcohol. I wished that the malt had been a little sweeter to balance the hops more, but still and all a good mix. Sweeter than a dry Irish stout with more of a black ale flavor. Vague citrus taste from the "C" hops, most certainly.

The mouthfeel is medium, not as chewy as the color might suggest.

Overall, very enjoyable, especially if you like both stouts and IPAs.

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Photo of PBIU
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I am sure from my other reviews, you can tell I am a bit Deschutes biased. But had to get a review in of Hop in the Dark.

Appearance is jet black and when held up to the light you get a very subtle ruby red on the corners. But really, it is safe to say you cannot see your way around if you were to hold this beer up to your face.

Smell is a really nice balance of roasted dark malt and hops. Not as piney as some other Black IPAs but very quaint.

Taste goes along with the theme of Deschutes, which is balance. Just the right amount of roast that is married with the hops.

Mouthfeel is creamy with a hop tinge that lingers.

Overall a quality Black IPA that I guess you could put in the sessionable category with the 6.8%.

Cheers to Deschutes again....and again...and again.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice. Best by date of 8/21/14.

Appearance: Pours pitch black with a moderate amount of bubbles. Big three finger tan head that slowly fades into a thin creamy layer. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing.

Smell: A spicy, juicy, and roasty hop forward aroma with good hints of earthy and citrus hops with dark roast. Earthy, floral, and herbal hop hints with some dank pine resin and grass. Citrus hop hints of grapefruit, orange, lemon, and tangerine. Big dark roasted malt balance with hints of chocolate, coffee, toasted bread, biscuit, grains, wheat, oats, and yeast. A very solid black ale aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a juicy, earthy, and roasty black IPA taste with big notes of pine, citrus, and dark roast. Upfront mix of earthy, floral, and citrus hops with spicy and dank notes of pine resin and grass. Good citrus notes of grapefruit, orange peel, tangerine, and lemon. Solid balance of dark roasted malts with notes of dark chocolate, coffee, burnt toast, grains, biscuit, oats, wheat, and yeast. Bold taste but nicely balanced. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Body leans towards the fuller side. Carbonation is moderate. Juicy and fairly chewy with a drying finish.

Overall: A very good black ale. Very bold taste but the hops are balanced well by the dark malt notes.

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
3.6/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A- great looking black ipa. Very lil light comes through. Tan head that has impressive lacing.

S- full on pine and citrus. No mistake that its an ipa. Juicy quality

T- a bit of a let down from the nose. Hops seem to take a bit of a backseat to the roasted malt character. At the very least its "too balanced" for an ipa if u will. Earthy, piney, crystal malts, toasted caramel.

M- sits a bit heavy do to the malt intensity. Creamy. Mid body.

O- not bad. Not great. Nose left me wanting more.

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Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale from Deschutes Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 504 ratings.