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Black & Blue - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Black & BlueBlack & Blue

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BA SCORE
83
good

1,490 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 1,490
Reviews: 505
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.85%
Wants: 105
Gots: 214 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ggaughan on 08-23-2006

Black & Blue is a Belgian-style golden ale fermented with blackberries and blueberries. Because we dose Black & Blue with real berries -- rather than artificial flavoring -- the fruit comes through in the flavor, not just the aroma.

The pureed berries are added as the beer leaves the brewhouse. In fermentation, the yeast -- the same one we use in Red & White and Pangaea -- feeds on sugars from the barley and the berries, giving Black & Blue a unique complexity and a high ABV.

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,490 | Reviews: 505
Photo of homebrew311
3.14/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Served in a snifter, appears a deep purple/red with decent clarity and sticky white head. Aroma feature Belgian esters paired with mild indiscernible berry character. Some tannic like red wine notes come through as well. Taste again feature mild berry with a mellow tartness. The fruit has a syrupy flavor and clashes with the base beer. Notes of a Belgian pale are present, not a whole lot of character. Overall, this beer is kind of blah, the fruit character comes across as syrupy and almost medicinal while the base beer is rather mom descript. Mouthfeel is highly carbed and somewhat heavy on the feel. Overall, would not come back to this one.

Photo of largadeer
2.25/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Tastes like a blend of Chimay and NyQuil.

Photo of npachl
2.53/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.75

I can get into the fruity beers (see New Glarus Serendipity), but this guy just lacks great flavor and feel. Dollars are better spent on other D-Fish beers.

Photo of Wilshade
4.11/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Belgian Style Golden Ale
ABV: 10%
Glassware: Tulip

Appearance: A beautiful translucent amber with a thick, creamy, off white head with substantial staying power. (Yes, I was careful with my pour.) Very active effervescence in the head and body.

Smell: Berries and more berries. Very pleasant.

Taste: Definitely tasting the berries with some floral hints. Very flavorful and surprisingly well balanced. Slightly bitter aftertaste.

Mouth feel: Tingly on the tongue, but smooth on the whole palette.

Overall: Pretty beer with a nice bouquet and a distinct berry taste. High ABV is very well hidden. .

Photo of cjgiant
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle:
Pours a rose to amber in color, with a fair amount of clarity. Light pink head billows on the pour, receding eventually to thin surface, medium edge head. Lacing is significant.
Nose is Belgian yeast, banana-y esters, mainly. As the beer warms, there is a flower blossom scent that comes on. Some whiffs I get some berry, but not all and not strong. Others times there is a strange mix of tart and funk that has a wet cardboard note to it.

Taste starts like a Belgian pale or saison, dry with light carbonation, and an earthy, lightly herbal taste. Little banana, but that is replaced with blackberry tartness - lightly combined with a sweeter blueberry taste. These flavors are nicely represented, but they combine with the farmhouse taste (yeast funkiness?) in a slightly odd way. This becomes less noticeable at warmer temps. Feel also improves at a certain temp, carbonation is fine throughout, but the palate is treated to a smooth beer as the carbonation fades a tad later in the pour.

A decent offering, but the combination of Belgian yeast with the berries created a slightly too weird taste to get a better score from me.

Photo of mchegash
3.94/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4/5
Bright red-orange. A little hazy--a close look reveals many small particles in the beer. Lots of head (though I may have poured it a little too quickly). Head is tan colored with the tiniest hint of red to it. Visible carbonation is sparse

Smell - 4.25/5
Smells like a Belgian (I don't know all the terms to describe that). It's got that light malt taste with a little spiciness. Also slightly sweet, and I think I can get tiny hints of that berry fruit flavor. The sweetness of the fruit combined with the belgian aspects makes this smells almost like a trippel or a quad.

Taste - 3.75/5
Strong blueberry and blackberry flavor tempered by a yeasty belgian malt flavor. Hints of spices typical in a Belgian. A high level of sweetness, but very well balanced by the rest of the beer. Overall this tastes like a Belgian Dubbel/Trippel/Quad/something in that ballpark. It's a nice Belgian, but nothing special. I would have liked stronger berry flavors. The berry flavors are quite weak.

Mouthfeel - 3.75/5
On the lighter side of medium-bodied. Fairly smooth, has a medium amount of medium-light carbonation. Moderately crisp.

Overall - 4/5
This was a tasty beer but the blueberry and blackberry flavors were a little too subtle for my liking. I would have liked a stronger berry flavor. Besides the berry aspect, it's a quite nice Belgian ale.

Photo of martyl1000
3.89/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Sampled upstairs at Coopers Tavern

Photo of Bingja18
2.75/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Flat out doesn't taste good at all.

Photo of gonzo000
3.36/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Disappointed - too much coriander, not enough black and blue (Berry that is).

Photo of Flounder57
3.81/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750 ml bottle was poured into a large Duvel snifter.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is an amber orange color with goodclarity and vision of tiny bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Wheaty, bready, blueberry, blackberry, and a little yeasty.

Taste: Love the sweet fruity sweetness with bready and wheaty malts, and yeastiness. Almost like a blueberry and blackberry angel food cake. Crazy.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, a bit dry, some fruit sweetness, medium to high carbonation, and a little chewy.

Overall: I like the fruit character that steps up this golden ale. Will always look for more of this in the future.

Photo of pat61
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours cloudy reddish amber under a 1” finely bubbled off white foam collar that clings to the side of the glass through the whole drink.
S: More blackberry on the nose than blueberries, spice, and fruit.
T: The blackberries and blue berries taste like real berries and not like a syrup. The blackberries come out up front and the blueberries come out more on the finish. The fruity funky Belgian yeast flavors are a little off on their own like that out of place person at a party – sometimes they connect and sometimes they don’t. There is a little grape or white wine thing going on as well. A light bitter hop accent provides some balance to the sweetness of the beer.
M: A big beer with a luscious, creamy body and slightly above average but very soft carbonation.
O: This is a sipping beer – it’s a touch to sweet to drink a lot of. It has a lot of interesting elements but they do not always come together.

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: pours a orangish color, at times looking purplish, reddish, or yellowish at parts. a finger or two of a white head with low retention but leaving behind a very slight lacing. a hazy clarity to it.

Smell: strong belgian yeast, with clove making itself immediately known.definite berry, but hard to pinpoint the type, blueberry being the most prominent. somewhat vinous.

Taste: opens with berries, certainly some blackberries and blueberries I can pick out, but the taste isn't limited to those. certainly some white grape taste. the alcohol kicks in and takes over the taste before the berries fully develop, but the alcohol is never astringent. belgian yeast plays around in the background. notes of clove and other phenols.

Mouthfeel: full bodied. definitely a good balance on the sweetness.

Overall: a solid fruit beer but not quite top tier. the fruit/belgian yeast clash just a little bit too much. it could be nice with either more fruit flavor or less phenols. other than that the amount of alcohol is nice but takes away a little to much since the fruits don't fully develop.

Photo of bluehende
3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I was not a fan of the blueberry backberry along with belgian yeast. I thought the fruit flavors were done real well. I just wish they had put this in a wit.

Photo of garuda
3.89/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a 2012 vintage at the brewpub.

Photo of trickynicky
2.43/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

I was curious to try this combination of black raspberries and blueberries but this just didn't do it for me. I found it to be too sweet, and although I have had far worse, this is not a beer I would have again.

Photo of JDW4195
4.56/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Is this a beer??? It definitely is a treat for beer drinkers. Medium Sweetness, the fruit comes through like a red wine. Like nothing I've ever drank before. I'd recommend it for a change of pace, or nice splurge buy one afternoon.

Photo of Mikefriedman90
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Very fruity, almost cider esque. Strong but not my favorite, won't reach for it again for a while with all the other great dogfish options

Photo of stwok21
4.8/5  rDev +31.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Felt great. Looked great. Smelled great. Tasted great

Photo of thedoubler55
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

A: Pours a bright red in color, with a nice frothy pink head at the top that leaves some nice sticky lacing around the glass.

S: Lots of berrys and white grapes, Strong scent of white wine. The rasberry is very prominent on the first sniff.

T: The taste is just like the nose, but lots of white wine on the tongue, the berrys come though on the tail end of the sip, and a sour note in there as well.

M: Light bodied, high carbonation, almost juice like with carbonation.

O: Not a bad brew from Dogfish, if it wasnt for the rasberry and blueberry puree I probably wouldnt like this beer because it taste a lot like white wine and I am not a fan of white wine. Very sweet and fizzy.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.74/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a snifter at Beelow's.

Gotta love it when your local bars get some cool kegs. This case in point pours a partly hazy sunset rusted gold topped by a finger of glowing bone foam. The nose comprises blackberries, light blueberries, very light banana, mild biscuit, light sourdough, and a pinch of allspice. The taste brings in more of the same, the berries matched by some Belgian yeast-infused bread and a hint of orange peel and light grass. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly syrupy feel. Overall, a pretty nice beer, one that I could see going well with plenty of foods (muffins and lamb dishes spring to mind).

Photo of douceman
3.16/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I think I got hyped up for this beer thinking it would be something really great. I love blueberry beers and I love Dogfish, so I thought it would be a great combo. So when I opened the bottle, I didn't think the smell was great, but they don't all smell great so that was whatever. The pour was good and the appearance was a good hardy beer. When it came to tasting I think it was just something that I didn't expect, so I didn't love it. Wasn't bad, but I'm not sure if I'll buy again soon. Mouthfeel was actually nice. Overall I gave it a 3 because it just wasn't for me.

Photo of seedyone
3.24/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

08/07/13 On tap. Just a taste. Not quite the fruitiness I'd hoped for. All in all a good tasting brew but I was expecting to be gob smacked and that didn't happen. I guess that's what I get for hyping myself up. This is one those that may just fare better from a bottle. Worth a second chance.

Photo of srandycarter
3.33/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A - Pretty, lightly hazy light pekoe orange tea. Nice large near white head slow to leave. Tons of fine bubbled lace.

S - First thing I smell is the fruit and booze. Frankly, it reminds me a little of a mixed berry cider I made, which is not a good sign. Malt present but fainter.

T - Sweetness from the malt and the fruit battling it out, a little cloying.

M - Thick, sweetish, not very good balance.

D - A nice one to try as very different, but I don't know if I will get much past the first few sips.

Photo of far333
3.21/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Clear copper colored with a ruby tightly bubbled head that slowly recedes to a fine cap.

A low aroma of yeastiness and fruit, but tough to discern the type of fruit without knowing.

Yeasty flavors upfront, phenolic and footy, hints of fruit come through, would like a bit more. Tough to discern berries, seems mostly blueberry emerging. Spicy bite in the finish. Yeast dominates too much for me, which detracts from the ex-berry-ence.

Photo of trankin6
4.07/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Found in a discount bin of bombers at local store and was delighted to find this nice fruit beer! pours a beautiful reddish-peachy color with thin pinkish head. the blackberries come in heavy on smell with tinges of that sourish belgian yeast. nice strong flavor of the golden ale base plays under those real berries and extra notes of dates, licorice, granny smith apple on the back. as other reviews note, all the layers mask some of the booziness nicely!

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Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,490 ratings.