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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

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1,247 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,247
Reviews: 496
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 10.22%
Wants: 144
Gots: 105 | 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:
An India Black Ale.
Available - May to September
Alc. by Vol. - 6.5% (2010), 6.9% (2011)
IBUs - 75

(Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 05-27-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,247 | Reviews: 496 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kevanb
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Notes, bomber into a pint glass.

It pours a lovely dark dark brown color with hints of amber and a smooth caramel head that exposes some lovely web lacing along the sides of the glass. Smells quite hoppy with hints of pine and a touch of coffee, very inviting. The taste is great, hoppy, bitter, lots of pine. It has lots of toasted malt flavors with some espresso flavors on the backend. It goes down smoothly although I do find it leaves a bit of a cottonmouth feel afterwards.

Verdict: One damn good black IPA. It mixes some great flavors in proper balance and with a milder 6.9% ABV it makes for great drinking.

kevanb, Oct 04, 2011
Photo of nitro0292
4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber, best by 12/30/11.

Poured pitch black, easy pour produced a one finger cream colored head. Looks spot on. Good retention - not Belgian levels, but the head stuck around for a while. Lacing all the way down.

Initial aroma is strong coffee, mixed with some chocolate which gently gives way to resin and citrus hops.

Taste is bittersweet roasted grains followed by grassy and resinous hops. Taste finishes with a flash of fruity esters and more bitterness, with some lingering roasted coffee quality. There is a fair amount of complexity - there are 4 distinct characteristics which blend together very nicely.

Carbonation level is just enough to sting the tongue and bring out the flavor. Medium-bodied, which feels right for what is going on here.

Overall this is one of the best BIPA/CDA/ABAs I've had. This brew truly captures both the IPA qualities and stout qualities of the style, and does them both right.

Certainly worth seeking out and I would buy again (if I ever find myself on the West Coast).

nitro0292, Oct 04, 2011
Photo of bonkers
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up in the tickers bif, jet black pour, medium white head. Big pine notes backed with some citrus and roasted malt notes on the nose. The first sip is nice and hoppy, lots of pine. It finishes with roasted malt, some bitterness. The body is medium, no alcohol notes, easy drinking. A very good black ale, not a big fan of the style, but this one is very good.

bonkers, Oct 02, 2011
Photo of jsprain1
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours very close to black. Head is a finger and tan, but man, it doesn't last as long as I'd like.
S- Initially, it was all hops, specifically pine. As I let it warm the roasted malts really started coming through. For aroma purposes, it seems imperitive this one warms. Once it does, it's a pleasant milk chocolate, coffee, and pine.
T- Even when it warms, this one leans too far toward hop for me. Quite bitter and piney. Roasted coffee flavors show up, but it's more or less not until the finish. Too late on the malt for me.
M- Medium-light for style. Slightly prickly carbonation. Dry finish.
O- A really great aroma, but once you drink it, I feel like the hops take over too much.

jsprain1, Oct 02, 2011
Photo of woemad
4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap a few weeks ago at Jones Radiator, but haven't had time to do a review until now.

Pint consumed for $3 (happy hour price). It looked like a stout, black and making light go round it, with a mocha colored head.

The nose was of piney and citrusy hops and of coffee and mollasses. Very rich aroma t5o this one.

The taste didn't disappoint. Hops hit the tastebuds first, but are immediately balanced by robust coffee notes and sweet toffee flavors. Tremendously balanced and delivering hop-wise and malt-wise simultaneously. Sharp hop note at the swallow.

Slick, oily mouthfeel, with a medium-full body.

I think I've finally been converted to the BIPA style. This is a very tasty beer, and I'd drink it again in a heartbeat.

woemad, Oct 01, 2011
Photo of tjkinate
4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gotta love these Black ales

From a hard pour into a standard pint glass produced a 1 finger head that had good retention and a soft khaki coloring. The beer exhibited good lacing too. The beer smells of abundant roasted malts and strong citrus and floral hops. Did also enjoy the subtle earth and smokey undertones. Flavor is very similar to the smell and to compare to my favorite black ale, Sublimely Self-Ritcheous, Hop in the Dark is overall a more tame animal. Still displays a high hop profile, but more balanced with the malts. Mouthfeel is medium, fairly high carbonation, that coats the mouth well. Overall I found this to be a great addition to a growing beer style.


tjkinate, Sep 30, 2011
Photo of LordAdmNelson
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a treat to try... definitely something I've been looking forward to having for a while. Opaque black with moderate tan head. Nose is citrusy with a moderate hop presence on top of a bit of coffee--a little weak for what I want, but not bad at all! Flavor is really nice with a big blast of citrus hops on top of an assertive coffee/roasted bitterness. Feel is light and drinkable, overall a good example of the style, worth a try.

LordAdmNelson, Sep 30, 2011
Photo of kojevergas
2.88/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

1 pint 6 fl oz. brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. I had 2011's 6.9% version. Expectations are high as I've had some good brews from Deschutes in the past.

A: Pours a two finger head of slight tan colour, appealing cream lacing, good thickness, and great retention. Colour is a solid black. So far so good.

Sm: Heavy cascade hops, cream, and caramel. Simple and pleasant. Aroma is mild in strength.

T: A full bodied barley body with nice cream undertones and layered cascade hops atop. The bitterness is a bit high - especially on the open - almost resembling a mediocre IPA, but it manages to steer clear enough from that effect. Caramel and a slight chocolate note come through on the finish. It's simple, oddly imbalanced, and pleasant to drink. I wish they handled the cascade hops better. The finish shouldn't be this bitter.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but a bit thick for the ABV and relative lack of flavours.

Dr: It's easy to drink for its relatively high ABV, but it does suffer from some problems with the hop balance. The price is a bit too high, but then it is an import. Dissenters may argue that it's brewed "to style", but there's certainly room for improvement.

kojevergas, Sep 30, 2011
Photo of ChimRichels
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - On the pour I noticed more of a very deep ruby color, but in the glass it shows nothing but black. the head is quite a bit darker than I expected, pushing the border between tan and brown. A two-finger head shows phenomenal retention, and the lacing is average. Great looking beer.

S - At almost the very instant I broke the seal I could smell some vibrant citrus hop aromas. The nose of the beer itself smells about like I expected, like a black and tan between a porter and an IPA. Hop aromas are intense, with citrus phenols dominating. Toasted malt character is not outdone, however, and the roasted/charred flavors hold their own in the nose.

T - Wow... quite a bombardment of flavors going on here. Bitterness is definitely there, to say the least. Between the acrid coffee/burned toast flavors and the sharp twang of pungent hops there is a complex body of sweetness and buiscuity malt.

M - Mouthfeel is quite complex, much like every other aspect of the beer. The prickly carbonation is accentuated by the ubiquitous bitterness, yet a rich viscous body lies beneath.

O - This is my first experience with this style, and I must say that I am quite impressed. Not my favorite beer, but definitely something I enjoyed immensely... for encroaching a new horizon of flavors, if nothing else

ChimRichels, Sep 29, 2011
Photo of mdfb79
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received a bottle as an extra from PretzelCity; thanks Mark, been wanting to try this one. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip, split the bottle with my dad.

a - Pours a very dark brown color with two inches of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Very very dark.

s - Smells of citrus hops, roasted malts, chocolate, light pine hops, and light smoke. Really like the chocolate coming through, as well as all the hops.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, citrus hops, pine hops, and light chocolate. Definitely less chocolate than the nose and a little bitterness, but more hops coming through. Think I like the nose better.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Thicker than I was expecting, almost like a porter, but nice.

o - Overall I really liked this one; one of the better black IPA's I've had. I loved that the hops really came through in the nose and taste, and really enjoyed the chocolate in the nose. Would like to have it again.

mdfb79, Sep 25, 2011
Photo of setexascustoms
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a wine glass.

A- nearly black, with a light tan head that dissipated quickly. Leaves very nice lacing on the glass.

S- Spicy citric hops backed by coffee and dark unsweetened chocolate. Delightful.

T- Citric hops up front with a full roasted malt middle. Mild bitterness finds it's way into the finish with some carbon/charcoal flavors. Very well balanced and quite drinkable.

M- Medium/full body, lighter than I expected. Lighter carbonation is just right.

O- Delightfully well rounded beer. This is my first cascadian dark ale, I will have to try more. I'm impressed and really enjoyed this beer, and would highly recommend it.

setexascustoms, Sep 24, 2011
Photo of etaggie09
3.83/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

appearance: quite black with an off-white head. leaves good lacing even when i haven't taken a sip. can see through the beer a bit, so it is not stout level black, but definitely blacker than a brown ale. i didn't even take much care in pouring this, and it is leaving some really nice lacing and a tiny cap of a head.

smell: definitely focused on being more malty than a black ipa like sublimely self righteous. this is up front roastiness and dark chocolate. definite toasted oats with a dark chocolate background to it. i don't get too much hops here. Now that I look for it, there is definitely some grapefruit rind in the background. a little bit of piney flavor as well.

flavor: definitely malt-centric as the nose would suggest. stout like in its roasty chocolate notes. very little hop presence initially, but they kind of show themselves in the dry finish. After a couple sips, the hops assert themselves a little more, but I definitely feel like they are fighting the malt a little bit. Overall, though the flavor is balanced. The hops definitely show themselves more over time with residual bitterness, but they seem a little supressed by the malt. I would say that sublimely self-righteous is at the hoppiest end of the spectrum while this beer is at the maltiest end. If I could just find a Black IPA in the middle, that would be golden.

mouthfeel: lively carbonation. silky feel. i like it. didn't have to think about it much, which is a great sign for mouthfeel as far as i'm concerned.

overall: this really is just a solid beer. I would have to say that I like the Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous more because it is simply more assertive. This beer is well-done, without a doubt, but just not overly memorable yet not completely unforgettable. Good, but just not exciting.

etaggie09, Sep 24, 2011
Photo of evyoung
4.88/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

-black, black, black--the dark waters of a lake at night
-brown, chocolaty head

-sweet, almost fruity--like currant or blackberry

-surprisingly balanced and full-bodied

-hop bitterness goes well with the obvious coffee malts
-citrusy hops lend to the bitterness in the coffee
-just like the smell, there are hints of blackberry which work extremely well with the citrus hops

This is the best “black IPA” I’ve tasted. I enjoy this new style because of its uniqueness and clever mix of black coffee, rye, and hops, although most other attempts overdue it with the rye malts, etc. Hop in the Dark is complex and different while still maintaining the qualities we’ve all come to love ( and are taken aback as if personally affronted if they aren’t present) in an IPA. The best black IPA--I’m sorry--Cascadian Dark Ale yet. Hands down.

evyoung, Sep 23, 2011
Photo of tito42
4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to an imperial pint. Best by 12/30/2011. 6.9% ABV, 70 IBU.

A: Thick, frothy cocoa head. Nearly pitch black. Outstanding lacing and nice retention.

S: Piney hops, coffee, and peat.

T: Roasted malt, generous coffee flavor, toffee, chocolate, plum, earthy hops, and a nice bitterness at the finish. Very nice.

M: A bit on the watery side, actually. A nice hops bite and bitterness at the finish. Great flavor but the body is a little lacking in my opinion.

O: A nice black ale. Some of the coffee and fruit characteristics of some stouts, but a generous dose of hops as well.

tito42, Sep 22, 2011
Photo of Cmack15
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark foamy head

Aroma: a really interesting blend of hoppiness and roasty notes of chocolate and hint of coffee

Taste: nice clean bright hops finishes with roasted malt notes

Mouthfeel: medium body nice carbonation

Nice beer well done. I would trade for this to have again.

Cmack15, Sep 18, 2011
Photo of MrDonQuixote
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into an oversized wine glass:

A- Oily black with a medium sized creamy brown head

S- Super citrusy scent, grapefruit hints. Pine is also present.

T- Very bitter, but near perfect in its hop character. Grapefruit taste is strong, and very satisfying. I tasted a bit of pine and other citrus notes in there as well.

M- Very smooth, and slightly creamy. Goes down well.

O- Black IPAs are quickly becoming one of my very favorite styles. This is very indicative of the style, and I was quite impressed.

MrDonQuixote, Sep 18, 2011
Photo of EgadBananas
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black color, with lighter edges. Tan head, nice splotchy lace.

Aroma is lightly pine and floral with subtle notes of citrus.

Tastes bitter, floral and piny, with a touch of citrus. There is some roasted notes coming through and bits of chocolate.

Light to medium bodied, creamy and clean.

Nice solid ABA. I've had this on my wants before, but I gave up... thanks Andrea for the past want!

EgadBananas, Sep 14, 2011
Photo of antlerwrestler19
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle says best by 12-30-11

Pours black with a thin light brown head that falls leaving little lace strings sporadically. Smells of sweet, citrusy and floral hops with a nice backing of the roasty chocolaty malt. The taste is so well balanced in this beer it's incredible. A nice hop bite up front followed up with roasted malts, coffee, burnt sugar - a delightful take on this hybrid style. This medium bodied beer is silky smooth and a punch to the palate with bold aggressive flavors. This is one of the better if not the best takes on this style of beer that I've ever had.


antlerwrestler19, Sep 13, 2011
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've had an aversion to this style of beer lately, the Black IPA, the India Black Ale, the Cascadian Dark Ale, whatever it may be called (and it WILL be called many things). There were a few too many that were not integrated well at all, resulting in a dark, chocolatey, goopy, grassy mess. So much so, that I'd forgotten that this is one of the good ones. Of course it is, it's Deschutes.

And it's on tap now, for our mini-events, Hoppy Days are Here again. After all these IPAs and Imperial IPAs, it's back to Belgians, and stouts, and maybe a few German brews, for a change. This one won't last long, though, it's a big favorite so far.
Here come the notes....

Thoroughly stygian appearance, ultimately black, huge head, cocoa-toned, rocky and lacy. Beautiful.

Aroma: Grassy hops up front, cocoa and toffee below. dark, lush malt meets full bore hops. Very nice. Dark, malty, and hoppy all at once, what do you know?

Taste: more incredulity, as the tongue is greeted by sweetness, and grassiness together. I'm getting a minimum of bitterness, just enough to keep the sweet at bay. Great balance. Full bodied, long finish. Uniquely flavorful. Yum. Zesty hop sting on the palate, with tasty, sweet malt below.
Intriquing integration, a wholly unique hybrid of dark malt, and pungent hops, well played. Delicious, honestly, seriously.

feloniousmonk, Sep 11, 2011
Photo of Florida9
4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Appears black in the glass. Forms a fairly large, inch plus of dark tan, nearly brown head that reduces fairly quickly to a thick ring around the edge. Leaves some large blotchy spots of lacing on the way down.

S: The nose is surprisingly restrained. There is a good bit of roasted malts, some coffee, and a little cocoa. Some citrus hops blend with the mix.

T: Starts off with a slight sweetness. Then heavily roasted malts, lots of coffee, and even a slight hint of char. Cocoa and chocolate are noticeable to a lesser extent. Citrus hops show up on the end, as does an appreciable bitterness.

M: Medium in body. Appropriate carbonation. Moderate to strong bitterness.

O: Probably one of the best Cascadian Dark Ales I've experienced. Complex, yet balanced, with lots of conflicting flavors that actually blend well together. A very nice and quite enjoyable beer.

Florida9, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of tavernjef
3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice ebon brown settling in the glass as a black solid tone that catches some deep umber and amber castings. A firm tan crown of lushly thick foam sits about a finger high, swiftly setting aside its seat to keep a light skim and thick collar of lace and a nicely placed broekn sheeting as well.

Aroma is soft and clean of some orangey fruit tones and a bit of tangerine and peach. There's a bit of deeper roastyness underneath that serves up chocolate coffee notes. Nice, but could use a boost.

Taste is well balanced, even as it sets a fairly bold hop tone of orangey citrusy tones in the front. The playful chocolate and coffee notes found in the aroma are much more evident across the palate. More so, on the end and along the finish as it pinches in some bite of hoppy bitterness, it also squeezes in some coffee burntness around the corners.

Bold, biting, yet smooth and clean medium body with a starchy quick and snappy carbonation, which helps pop the hop tones to the front.

A nice dark IPA here. Very approachable and tasty with a nice play in balance of hop tones and a darker underbelly of malts.

tavernjef, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of Philousa
3.7/5  rDev -10%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with very little head. A stiff swirl stirs up an earthy, soapy hop aroma, a bit of biscuit, followed by light roasted malt. Taste is dark, chocolatey malt finishing with soapy, bitter hops. This would be a much heavier beer if not for the alcohol and hop presence. Lingering bitterness stays at the back of the tongue, reminding you it's an IPA.

This is a very drinkable black IPA. The time of the year I tried it makes me wish I had it months before for freshness; it definitely would have benefited from it. Maybe I would have had some head after a stiff pour... Very solid black IPA, one of my favorites so far.

Philousa, Sep 09, 2011
Photo of DaftCaskBC
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: 1/2" light brown head that dissipated quickly over black liquid.

S: Floral and citrus hops.

T: Citrus and floral hops up front which transitions to toasted malt. It tastes like the beer has a higher level of IBUs than 70.

M: Thin viscosity with a medium level of fine carbonation.

O: Better than most in the style but not as enjoyable as the imperial version, the Deschutes Hop in the Dark CDA is a good sipper. I find that the drinkability is better than most American Black Ales, and that the beer becomes more drinkable as it warms. For that reason, I suggest letting it sit out and warm up for at least 10 minutes before opening the bottle.

DaftCaskBC, Sep 08, 2011
Photo of mdaschaf
3.78/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes.

A: Pours a nice black color with a two finger tan head on top, dissipating to one finger relatively quickly. Decent lacing.

S: Neither the hops nor roast qualities are overpowering as is usually the case in most black IPAs. There is a nice mix of citrus and pine as well as some roasted malt and a little bit of cocoa.

T: The taste is more of the same form the aroma, well balanced between the roast/dark malt and the hops. It is a bit more piney than citrus, with a bit of roast and chocolate.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, but on the smooth side for style. Has a slight creamy texture.

O: One of the better in a style that I am not really huge on. A nice, balanced blend of the black and the IPA here.

mdaschaf, Sep 04, 2011
Photo of LiquidBread219
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= Deep black in pour, decent head has some retention leaves behind some decent lacing.

S= Nice dark roasted malts on the nose I also pick up some citrus notes on this one very nice and very interesting.

T= Great Taste in this one you get the nice toasty roasted malts with the citrus hops coming out a little bit finishes nice and dry.

M= medium bodied, and it was a little bit on the thinner side.

O= Overall great beer glad I had this one one this tops any other of this style it was really good.

LiquidBread219, Sep 03, 2011
Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale from Deschutes Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 1,247 ratings.