Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale - Deschutes Brewery

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Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark AleHop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale

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504 Reviews

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Reviews: 504
Hads: 1,337
Avg: 4.06
pDev: 16.75%
Wants: 158
Gots: 122 | 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 (158) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 504 | Hads: 1,337
Photo of NiceTaps
3.67/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle, poured into a pint glass.

A- Dark, opaque brown color. The 1-finger head is tan in color, fades to a film and leaves a little bit of lace.

S- Coffee, roasted malts, a bit of chocolate, and some piney hops.

T- Ok, the piney hops are there, but it's mostly coffee and chocolate.

M- Solid body and feel, flavors linger. Good carbonation.

O- I don't see this beer as an IPA. The 70 ibus are lost in there. The chocolate and coffee win the flavor race and will not give up. It is not bad, but when I drank this, I'd had enough.

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Photo of mwilbur
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bottle into shaker pint glass. Best by 9/21/12.
A: Pours a very dark brownish black with 1/4 inch tan head. Decent retention.
S: Nice aromatic pine and citrus hop notes. Resinous, sweet, and sharp. Hint of roasted malt and coffee.
T: Follows aroma nicely...resinous pine and spicy citrus hop notes up front. Bittersweet chocolate, medium roast coffee, and roasted malts in the background.
M: Light body. Smooth and oily feel. Astringent and mildly bitter hop finish leaves you ready for your next quaff.
D: A solid, but not special BIPA. A nicely drinkable offering from Deschutes. Would go best with a meal.

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Photo of mscudder
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed this one with a good friend a while back.

A - A deep, dark black hue with a finger tan head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Roasted dark malts, semi-sweet chocolate and piney hops.

T - Interesting beer here. A sort of black IPA carrying traits of piney hops, chocolate and roasted malts.

M - A bit thin, almost a light body. Carbonation is good, but the body just keeps taking away from it for me.

O - This is an interesting beer that if we widely available, I may consider picking up again. Granted I had to order this and have it shipped into the state, I doubt I'll ever have it again.

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Photo of MrKennedy
3.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bomber thanks to biglobo8971, into a Midnight Sun glass.

Jet black appearance no light permeating. Has a nice mocha coloured foam head on top that has plenty of size, retains well and recedes leaving good lacing.

Nice mix of grapefruit and pine in the nose. Just a little bit of chocolate comes through, but very much IPA for the most of it. Nice and long lasting.

Taste has some pine resin early and builds into chocolate and cocoa powder later on. Sadly the latter two have a bit bigger role towards the end. Still good nonetheless.

A real mixed bag here. Some cocoa astrigency here along with some decent hop bitterness. Add in the odd watery moment. Still it's solidly drinkable.

Fun to drink, certainly is more right than wrong. A good representation of an India Black Ale, but still enough there to please a dark beer drinker.

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Photo of sleuthdog
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by: 8/31/12
Received in a trade after this best by date and just noticed the date. Luckily today is only 9/22/12 so I didn't miss the date by too much.

Appearance: Three fingers of a mocha color head formed without a very aggressive pour. This head is retained for about a minute or so and leaves some lacing behind. The color is of a dark black reminding me of a stout without any light penetration at all. Holding this up to the light I see a constant rise of bubbles along the edges of the glass.

Smell: Big time hop presence in the nose of the grassy type with a slight showing of some citrus hops. Behind the hops there is a nice background of dark malts bringing out a sweet chocolate aroma.

Taste: This follows the nose but the dark malts hit the front of the tongue first with the chocolate. This is followed by the piney and resinous hops hitting with grassy notes and this fades into a wonderful bittering aspect that lasts on the back of the palate from the swallow. A great balance of bittering and chocolate malts shine through in this beer!

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly smooth feel for a beer with such a high hop presence. A silky feel leads to a very easy drinking beer despite the bitter taste.

Overall: Love the chocolate and hop balance. This is one easily consumed beer due to the awesome balance of this beer. Again the dark IPA impresses me as a lover of both stouts and IPA's since it brings them together and Deschutes of course doesn't disappoint. The only thing that leaves me wondering is what did the almost one month past best by date do to this beer?

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Photo of stephens101
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A huge dark tan head rises quickly from a cascading flurry of carbonation bubbles and resides static for near an eternity. The brew color is dark brown with some crimson hues at the edges. Lacing is almost unbroken.

Floral hops to the nose immediately. Underneath that is a hint of caramel and then some notes of toffee and cocoa.

Tastes hoppy with just the right amount of sweetness thrown in. The fusion here is just about as perfect as it gets. A little black coffee, ripened dark fruits and nutty notes mingle, but never get in the way.

Medium and viscous. Soft up front and dry going down. Some alcohol is noticed, but not much.

The best CDA I've had so far. This one blends the bitter and sweet like none I've had before and shows just how brilliant this style can be when pulled of well.

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Photo of hoody711
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just moved to Texas, and my loss of Midwest beers saddens me, but access to Deschutes tempers that. Found at Spec's for only like $6 or something ridiculous. Here we go.

A - into a tulip. Pours a beautiful dark, dark brown but looks almost black in the glass. Two finger lightly fluffy head. Good lacing. Beautiful.

S - oh man, deliciousness. Starts a little roasty, then a little sweet malt, and a hint of coffee at the end. I feel like the hops are trying to poke their head in at the back, but the roast just shoves them away. Every now and then I smell them, just a hint. No booziness here.

T - follows suit beautifully. Starts roasty and nutty, then a little sweet malt and coffee, then beautiful crisp hoppiness, then roast and coffee again. Changes almost constantly and obviously quite complex.

M - smooth, creamy, very nice. Carbonation is spot on. My only issue the lingering bitterness.

O - yeah, this is amazing stuff. I love the black IPAs as a nice segue from IPAs, which are my preferred beers by far, to stouts/porters, which I'm too nancy to try. BPA from Lakefront, Black Top from New Glarus, and others are making the transition quite easy. A fantastic beer, and for the price, you might as well get a ton of it.

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Photo of Treebs
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle served in a Deschutes tulip. . Big thanks to Matt (mfavoino) for sending this my way. Best by date of 9-21-2012.

A: Pours a dark black color with a huge layer of tan foam forming on the pour. The head has amazing retention and leaves some nice sticky webbings of lace.

S: Bursts of citrus, bitter pine and roasted malts all mingle together. Slight hints of chocolate mix with a nice malty sweetness as well.

T: More bitter roasted malts with the hops peaking up mid palate. Citrus zest, some orange peel and slight green pine. The finish is clean, but then some sweet chocolate notes and slight roasted malts creep back up on the very back end.

M: Medium bodied with a nice medium-high carbonation. The finish is nice and roasty.

O: Great beer. We're heading down towards the "best by date" so I'm not sure if the hops would have been more vibrant a few months ago. I might have liked it a tad more then. Either way I wouldn't hesitate to have this again.

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Photo of match1112
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: as close to pitch black as it could be. an inch of thick creamy sandstone colored head slowly settles in to a creamy frothe cap that stays until the last drop. as close to a solid coating of lacing as you could get is left behind.

s: roasted bready malts. some pine and citrus mix together in a perfect blend of hops.

t: roasted malts at first with a juicy citrus center and a dry pine needlefinish.

m: full, rich and creamy. carbonation is absolutely perfect. dry roasted bitter finish. a little oily.

o: too good to be true. really like this beer and would not be upset to have to drink more than one.

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Photo of One2Remeber
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pitch black, tan leather head. Lacey, sticky legs.

S: Smoky, roasted malts, clean h2o, pure.

T: Tangerine, citrus, pine hops. Smoky, chalky malts. Yeast presence is clean and strong

M: Dry, soft, medium carbonation.

O: Best of both worlds. Dry roastiness of a stout with up front, delicious hops. Rare to drink Deschutes and extremely satisfied.

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Photo of AllHailBeercules
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a chilled pint glass

Appearance--Dark. Almost stout dark, but not at all murky. Some reddish brown highlights. Good head, light tan, hangs around for a while but dies after a few sips. Didn't notice till halfway through my second glass, but it laces pretty well too.

Smell--Roasty malt, a tiny bit of pine, and a background of bready sweetness. Doesn't really lead into the taste, unless you like understatement.

Taste--Still roasty, but not nearly as much as the look and smell made me think. Huge malt backbone, but not the weightiness of burnt or coffee flavors, it all trends up and the bitter is more like chocolate. And that cocoa bitterness blends right into the hops. Not the strong, separate hop profile I'm used to, but that's the strength, everything goes in exactly the same direction. That hint of pine in the nose comes through a little more toward the end, then blurs into a soft fading sweetness.

Mouth--Contrasting the stout/porter look and smell, this is way more thin than I figured. Not in a bad way though, I just keep needing reminders that this isn't going to be a porter. Carbonation is pretty smooth, not prickly. Not bad, not different, just great.

Overall--This beer is almost too balanced to be memorable. Everything works so well together and toward the same goal, and I have to remember that this isn't an IPA or a porter, but those conflicting signals make it its own class. I've had this style a few times (Cascadian Dark Ale is apparently the name they're pushing for black IPA, I love it) and this is a prototype for the group. Not as stunning as Mountain Standard was to me the first time, but as solid as Deschutes always does.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.81/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I love all things Deschutes, but this seems to be falling short a bit. It carries the required black ale character, but it isn't blowing me away; or even keeping it interesting really. It's kind of a mundane brew that isn't really memorable. Unfortunately.

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Photo of ThePaleRider
4.36/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Very dark with a two finger head. Head sticks around for a while. Couldn't see any light through this ale, very pretty. I'm amazed at the amount of head stuck to the side of the glass, exactly what I want to see from suck a dark beer.

S - The scent of roasted malts. Almost reminds me of a porter. A little hop aroma, but very heavy on the roasted, smoked scent.

T - Starts like a dark lager and then the hops kick in. Very complex and perfectly balanced. I'm a big fan of the black IPA's, but this beer is in a league of its own. Hops, malts, smoke, what more can I say.

M - I can't detect any carbonation. Drinks like a lager, but the taste is so much more. Very smooth with the malts really sticking to the palette.

O - Super great beer with a mass appeal. As usual, Deschutes packs a great punch with a beer I could drink every day.

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Photo of cradke
3.91/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark dark brown. Initially a very big head which settles down but is very frothy. Looks like a nice cappachino.

Smell: Nice pine nose that's pretty tame.

Taste: Pleasant hop taste with a very present malt backbone. Roasted malts and grains paired with bitter hops are the lasting aftertaste. A very interesting and pleasant combination. Even some bitter dark chocolate in there.

Mouthfeel: As the pour would suggest, there's quite a bit of carbonation but the beer is a bit thin and not very viscous.

Overall: This beer is pretty good but just missing on great. The nose is nice but not very strong, and the taste is very nice but the aftertaste is a bit to bitter and the feel is carbonated but too light and thin. I think if they did one more iteration on this, it could be really great.

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

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a brandy snifter. Best by 21 Septemeber 2012. Batch 1209. 6.9%. 70IBU.

A: A finger of creamy-thick off-white head. Black and opaque as any stout. Heavy lacing.

S: Roasted malt is prevalent, with pleasant hoppy overtones. Still, nothing special.

T: Hm. Solid, but uncompelling. This is basically a moderately nice IPA with roasted malt thrown in. Which is...interesting, but not a hugely exciting combination. Or perhaps the execution is what's off. Anyway, the flavour starts with splash of grapefruit, followed by robust hop bitterness, then quickly replaced by a nutty/chalky bitterness that lingers long after the beer is gone. The excellent, porterish aftertaste is my favourite part of the beer.

M: A touch thin considering the malt base whose bitterness can sometimes make it feel lightly metallic.

O: Worthwhile and pretty good. I'd recommend one, but I probably wouldn't jump at the chance to buy another.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into pint at Falling Rock, Denver. Nice deep dark color with a good thick white head. Crazy hop aroma with roasted malts. Ok taste of bitter dark malts and high alpha hops. Some coffee but mostly bitter and slightly un balanced. Ok brew but better dark ipas out there. Worth a visit though for sure.

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Photo of vic21234
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter. Purchased from an online retailer, not available here in Illinois.

A- Pours very cola-like, dark brownish-black with a small amount of light toward the top and bottom of the glass. A finger's worth of an off-white head sticks around for awhile.

S- Not too much going on in the smell for me. Up front I get some slight citrusy hop notes make way to some roasty malts but neither are very dominant.

T- The taste of roasty malts hits first and lingers. Some hop notes are out back but not much. An overall bitterness from the hops is at the backend of each sip.

M- Medium-bodied, roasty, nicely carbonated.

While not a huge fan of the black ale/ black IPA genre, I thought this was an overall decent beer. Nice to have a Deschutes beer since it's not available around here.

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Photo of jaasen64
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into Founders snifter, huge thanks to glitchedmind. Best by date of 9/21/12 (over a month away). Drank back to back with Wookey Jack.

A- Pours a very dark, completely opaque black with about a finger of creamy mocha brown head that slowly recedes, has great retention, and leaves very nice lacing. Leaves very nice thick lacing. Looks even better then Wookey Jack with a little bit nicer head.

S- Citrus hops of pine and grapefruit balanced with dark malts and a little bit of chocolate. About average aroma strength.

T- Chocolate definitely dominates more then the citrus hops which are definitely present but hide in the background a little bit. Initial presence of dark chocolate with some roasted malts that finishes with a light citrusy hop taste that balances decently well. Finishes a tiny bit bitter. Aftertaste of lightly bitter dark chocolate mixed with some light citrus hops.

M- Medium bodied, smooth, easily drinkable, nice carbonation.

O- This was another great black ale. Almost as good as Wookey Jack, however I liked Wookey Jack a little bit more. This beer definitely had a slightly nicer appearance with a slightly better head, the smell wasn't as citrusy or strong, the taste was without a doubt dominated by more chocolate and malts (which wasn't a bad thing), and the mouthfeel was slightly less creamy. Overall I thought this was a great Black Ale, one of the best I've had, however Wookey Jack was slightly better. This beer did have a very nice balance between the chocolate and citrus and was a very nice beer. I would definitely recommend trying this out if you like Black Ales.

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Photo of vickersspitfire
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a very black color, you can’t even see the reddish hues in the outer edges and you can’t see the carbonation, but it certainly looks like there’s plenty. The head is thick , dark tan and very soft, bubby and looks just like heaven should. I got a two finger thick head and it just won’t leave your side! It’s got a rather thin aroma, some roasted malts, mild dark fruits, very sweet overall, raisins, figs and prunes all come through. Pouring more into it, the beer cuts right through the head like an all too tight pair of jeans on an all to fat ass…it leave an mark to say the least. Its rather light and crisp on the tip of your tongue, and rather light bodied, but as it travels towards the back of your mouth it feels more like a medium bodied beer and then slightly heavier as it hits the back of your throat. The roasted malts re strong, the fig and raisin come through pretty well too. Its slightly bitter overall and the hops are well hidden until you get to the aftertaste…then it sort of kicks you in the tongue. Overall I really like this beer, I would categorize this beer's badassedness right up there with a Remington 870 Police Magnum with a 14 inch barrel. A damn good beer.

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Photo of msf1cnc
4.52/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer was a pleasant surprise. Takes the best qualities of a porter and IPA, and puts them together in a wonderful, complex beer. Strong hops on the nose, but not over powering. However, given the hop aroma, the hop flavor is somewhat muted. This gives way to the porter characteristics, notes of toast and bitter chocolate are up front, with some citrus from the hops... Which almost take a back seat to the porter characteristics.

By and large a great beer, with the looks of a classic porter.

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Photo of TheRealBigC
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another pleasant surprise from Deshutes! Looks like a porter, smells like an IPA, tastes like both. I'd say it's closer to an IPA, but the dark malts are noticeably different than, say, their Inversion IPA. It's a winning combo, even if it isn't one you'll reach for every time. Good thing it's a special release beer so it's nice to see it turn up when it does.

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Photo of TheCondor
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paired with a Pun Roll with roasted duck, fresh greens, and rolled in lettuce with a sweet sauce to dip in. Poured into a Deschutes Brewery snifter

Appearance - Pours jet black with a thick tan head that has some retainability. Leaves good lacing on the sides of the glass as well. An impressive looking beer that could pass for a porter or stout in appearance.

Smell - And here is where the beer starts to display more IPA character and less porter/stout character. There are certainly some dark roasted notes and malts, but the piney hops make their presence known in a big way, as well as some breadiness.

Taste - Following the nose, but with even more hop assertiveness. Big pines, earthy breads, and the dark roasted chocolatey flavors combine like an episode of Captain Planet, swirling around on the palate and complementing each other remarkably well.

Mouthfeel - Finishes clean and smooth, with a more porter like aftertaste of chocolate and roasted malts. A little watery for a porter, but good for a CDA or Black IPA

Overall - Absolutely a brew worth your time. Buy it, try it, it is very unique. I certainly will. And if you don't like it, send it my way, because I'll drink it anytime.

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Photo of cvm4
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured dark cola or rootbeer, tan-ish head.

S - Pine, roasted malts and maple syrup. Guess it hasn't warmed up enough yet.

T - Slight pine hops, malts shine through a lot and a dark chocolate finish. Very good!

M - Medium body/carbonation, dry finish.

O - Hit the nail on the head! Well put together beer here.

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Photo of largadeer
3.78/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Appropriately black-ish body with a dense tan head that retains nicely.

Smell: A ton of green, sappy pine on the nose along with a touch of mint. Plenty of dark malt, too, largely dry and ashy. There's a hint of caramel, but sweetness is reigned-in on the whole.

Palate: Pine alongside orange-like citrus. There's plenty of roastiness, a hint of dark chocolate and a big resinous kick in the finish. Acidic and slightly ashy. Carbonation feels too high at first, but it settles out quickly. This is hugely flavorful and quite bitter, perhaps a bit too sharp for its own good. The mouthfeel is light and dry, a touch thin toward the finish.

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Photo of Lawl3ss
3.49/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Lightly chilled 22 oz. bomber into a stemless 12 oz. tulip. Best by date 9.21.12.

Look- Ruby brown with two fingers of toasted coconut head. Excellent retention, plenty of thick legs and lace.

Smell- Fresh pine sap, coriander, cinnamon rolls, maple syrup, dark roast. Swirling brings out a powdery scent and a hint of alcohol.

Taste- First taste comes off as one-dimensional and somewhat plain, but revisiting as it warms reveals a number of fairly subtle flavors. Star anise and spiced Turkish coffee come to mind. piney hop presence. Vaguely lemony flavor (lemon seeds, actually) asserts itself halfway through the glass. Aftertaste is of espresso and campfire biscuits. Mineral character builds as the glass empties.

Mouthfeel- Smooth, clean, extremely easy drinking. Wish it was a bit more substantial, however- almost watery. Half of a bomber was fine, I wouldn't mind having the whole thing to myself.

Overall- Mixed feelings here; it's good, but feels like it fell just shy of being great. Decently priced, definitely worth trying.

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