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Black & Blue - Dogfish Head Brewery

Black & BlueBlack & Blue

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

1,292 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1292
Reviews: 482
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 16.12%


Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: ggaughan on 08-23-2006)
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Ratings: 1,292 | Reviews: 482 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of buyBinboaVodka
buyBinboaVodka

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet from a bomber bottle.

A-Huge white frothy head with long lasting retention. Nice thick lacing around the glass. Has a dark amber color.

S-Smells of blueberries and rasberries(as expected). It has sort of a blueberry waffle smell with a hint of hoppyness to it. The blueberries smell very sweet.

T-Has a sweet blueberry taste, but not as sweet as the smell. That maybe a good thing.

M-I felt as if this was a medium bodied beer with some mild carbonation.

O-overall I think this is a great fruit beer. I don't think I could drink this everyday, but it would be nice to have on a mild summer night with some vanilla ice cream on the side.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 21:40:21 | More by buyBinboaVodka
Photo of Hopfenpeter
Hopfenpeter

Maryland

3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first fruit/vegetable beer. The beer pours a coppery amber and is clear in color. The head builds fast, but dissipates just as fast, leaving little lacing.
The smell is rather sweet and full of berry taste, like expected.
The taste is sweet up front, those raspberry and blueberry flavors dominating the opening. In the middle those berry notes will be somewhat influenced by some kind of hop, but are still dominating the taste. At the end those ever present berries mellow out in a soft way.
This is certainly not my favorite beer style, but I think that this beer is very greatly crafted and is exactly what it is supposed to be. A fruit beer!

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2011 03:35:36 | More by Hopfenpeter
Photo of b3shine
b3shine

Ohio

4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft to snifter. Beer looks good. Not that I'm sure what it should look like, but it had the depth representative of black and blue berries, so it's gotta be labeled "good" at minimum. The bouquet was also good; the fruit was well-represented. Taste was excellent. The flavors poured through nicely. Mouthfeel was good; definitely a sipper. Overall, a good beer that I'll definitely be ordering again.

Serving type: on-tap

05-12-2011 21:54:18 | More by b3shine
Photo of BEERMILER12
BEERMILER12

Maine

4.08/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled In: 2011

A: Pours a very nice dark copper-red color with dark red tinges throughout

S: Smells like ripe berries, specifically blueberries and blackberries. Expected, of course. Not much else aside from the berries, which is nice for a fruit beer

T: Same as the smell, along with a nice peppery alcohol towards the back end that helps to make this not too sweet of a beer. Fairly simplistic, but that’s how fruit beers should be (at least in my opinion)

M: Medium-heavy body with a nice amount of carbonation that washes over the taste buds and cleanses them for the next sip

D/O: Pretty much nothing but fruit throughout this one, which is ideal. Nothing fancy, just a nice mix of berries and beer. Yum

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 02:06:47 | More by BEERMILER12
Photo of BeerForMuscle
BeerForMuscle

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear amber body with a large foamy offwhite head.

S - A big bouquet of raspberries and blueberries. Fresh, sweet, tangy fruit aromas. Floral hop notes.

T - Tangy fruit with a buttery back note. Sweet splash of soft fruit liquor and tangy hops. Fruit-like acidity, akin to apple skin. Blueberry and dark fruit present here. Tangy starches and spiced alcohol bring depth to this beers flavors.

M - Warming, drying medium body. Clean on the palate and the carbonation buzzes the tongue.

O - Plenty of fruit in the nose and mouth. The starchy, buttery flavors add a different dimension here.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 22:00:46 | More by BeerForMuscle
Photo of vfgccp
vfgccp

New York

3.4/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A – Huge amount of sediment on a bottle that should have had plenty of time to settle. Light amber body. Nice white head hangs around throughout the, leaving a nice lace as the glass empties.

S – Huge, fresh blueberry note. Blackcurrant and a hint of tart raspberry. An incredible nose by fruit beer standards.

T – Nice blueberry note up front, but unfortunately the middle veers tart and dry before diving headlong into a huge cheery-Dimetapp off-flavor.

M – Rolling menthol / medicinal booze on the finish. Medium / light body. Overly carbonated imho.

O – The nose is fantastic, and the beer opens with a great berry flavor, but the medicinal backend sandbags this brew from really getting off the ground.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 00:42:10 | More by vfgccp
Photo of VMWhelan
VMWhelan

Pennsylvania

4.65/5  rDev +27%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a tulip.

Pours a reddish orange with a thick white frothy head. Head has shades of orange as well. Great lacing.

Nose is mostly the fruit (blueberries and raspberries) on top of some malt. Smells tart but sweet with some caramel and yeast notes.

Taste is again dominated by the fruit. Hits tart at first and the malt and some bready/yeastyness comes through after, almost reminiscent of a warm blueberry muffin. Some booziness in this one but its not overpowering, as it mixes with the tartiness very well.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Carbonation is medium-high. Slightly dry.

Drinkability is high. There's a good amount of booze in this one, but its very enjoyable and goes down easy. Not hard to kill the 750mL alone, but at 10%abv, you need to be careful.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2011 03:13:44 | More by VMWhelan
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: bottle from Total Wine, Cherry Hill, NJ

I had this in a 750mL bottle, and kept it in my fridge for just a little too long I think. Still good. Kind of tasted like a sweet tripel. Poured semi-cloudy, orange-brown with a nice white head. Fresh fruit on the nose. I got hit with the alcohol in the taste right away, which made the blueberry a bit harsh and acidic. Followed up by bright malty sweetness with some light sugars reminiscent of a Belgian tripel, and a somewhat bitter aftertaste. Medium mouthfeel and a bit harsh, but I could tell it was because I let it sit in the fridge too long, so I can't really blame the beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 12:57:15 | More by Rifugium
Photo of goblue3509
goblue3509

Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orangish pink color like a late day sunnyset. There is a two finger soapy white head whiches recedes to skim and leaves some lacing on the sides. Very nice long very inviting. The aroma is of sweet blueberries and blackberries with a hint of graininess. The smell is very inviting. Not a complex smell but a very good smell. The taste follows the nose exactly. A big blueberry and blackberry taste with a hint of malt to balance out the flavors. Sweet and smooth taste very good, very nice. The mouthfeel is of moderate carbonation and is slightly dry, kinda wine like. Overall it is a very good beer, nice taste for a fruit beer, upper ratings there, but the smell is very nice. This is a beer I would seek out again and again.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 14:30:16 | More by goblue3509
Photo of vandemonian
vandemonian

Maryland

4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dogfish Head Black & Blue is a tasty berry-flavoured beer. A lot of people hate on fruit beers, so if you're a fan of them then you'll like this.

A: Orange-pink colour and a 1 cm head that fades to decent lacing. 4

S: The smell is blueberries and some yeast. 4

T: The taste is all blueberries and yeast into a blueberry and alcohol aftertaste. Tasty. 4

M: Thick and foamy. 4.5

O: Fruity and enjoyable. 4

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2011 02:00:35 | More by vandemonian
Photo of u2carew
u2carew

Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle.
A) Pours with a big white head that slowly settles. Sticky lacing at the edge of the glass and on the drink down. Clear body. Copper in color. Active carbonation.
S) Delightful aromatics - the blueberry and blackberry combination. Subtle grainy-ness.
T) Sweet berry across the palate at first then moves to a nutty and caramel maltyness with berry subtleties. The alcohol is noticeable in the finish and aftertaste.
M) Medium body. A present alcohol warmth in the finish. Mostly dry across the palate.
O) A well crafted brew. The fruit flavors are quite authentic and not sugary imposters. I will finish this bottle myself and if I had more I'd probably drink it.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2011 00:42:06 | More by u2carew
Photo of ckollias
ckollias

Maryland

3.45/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A reddish-amber color with a one-and-half finger white head that turns in a nice white lace.

S: A very thick, sweet, berry aroma with hints of citrus fill the nostrils.

T: A very sweet beer that hides the alcohol well. The berries are present throughout and with the aftertaste. It is almost wine-like.

M: Medium body and medium-carbonation. Pretty light for such a high alcohol beer.

O: A very interesting fruit beer. Nothing I could drink 3 or 4 of, but a nice sipping beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2011 00:39:47 | More by ckollias
Photo of nukem5
nukem5

Pennsylvania

3.8/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Taken from notes last week when visiting Dogfish Brewpub:Served in snifter

A: Poured a rich dark amber color with some heavy lacing down sides of my glass.

S: Aroma is of a berry berry sweetness of fruits and malts.

T: Black and Blue indeed, Full of Blackberry and blueberry taste.The flavor is huge in this one and a solid malt backbone to make this one not just a malt beverage but a great beer.

M: Medium bodied with a slight estery/alchoholic taste.

O: I would definitly buy this again, will have to check out a bottle of it at home sometime.

Cheers!

Serving type: on-tap

04-19-2011 03:12:43 | More by nukem5
Photo of Gosox8787
Gosox8787

New Hampshire

3.45/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 750 mL bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip in a couple parts. 2011 vintage.

Appearance: Medium brown in color with some blue highlights. A nice two finger, white and sticky head. Impressive lacing and good retention.

Aroma: The blueberries definitely are assertive here. Sweet blueberry notes definitely stand out. A little tart blackberry note, but it is definitely overwhelmed here. Not a ton else.

Taste: Big blueberry essence gives way to sweet caramel malt and surpirsingly bitter hops. The hops don't really lend a citrus note but are just bittering. The resulting flavor comes off very medicinal and astrigent at times. When the backing notes do not dominate, the blueberry really shines and is nice but most of the time, the medicinal flavors overwhelm.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied and rather syrupy.

Overall, some nice blueberry notes that are at times overwhelmed by too many medicinal notes. The blackberry also really never comes through. Not a bad beer by any stretch, just not really worth getting more than once in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2011 13:54:53 | More by Gosox8787
Photo of JohnnyS17
JohnnyS17

Maryland

3.25/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I had recently tried Dogfish Head’s Red & White and loved it. Then, I heard that they had a “sister” brew called Black & Blue and I had to run out and get it. We are getting quite patriotic with the color choices here and I like it. Amuricah!

The beer pours a transparent brown tinted with a strong pink hue. Actually, it looks pretty cool when I pick up my glass because it tints my hands red. Anyway, the beer pours about a two finger tall head that retains a nice lacing along the glass throughout the drink. The head also has a slight pink tint too it, which is quite unique. Outside of the fact that pink is not considered very masculine or normal for a beer, it is a very interesting façade.

The black & blue [sic] berries punch you in the nose on the first whiff. The blueberries are definitely more distinct. The aroma assemblage is not very complex outside of that. The taste is very similar to any other blueberry beer I have had in the past. It leads with a refreshing sweetness and then finishes with a distinct tartness. I hear that DfH uses real berries instead of artificial flavorings. That allows the distinct taste to ferment into the beer, which I would assume adds to the ABV. I wonder how much the quality of the berries can influence the variation in the taste of the beer. To conclude on the taste, it is good, but not unique in my opinion.

This beer is very light bodied and packs a light carbonation. It leaves a coating in your mouth that I am not extremely fond of. That coating parts with a lingering fermented berry taste.

Overall, I choose Red & White. I think Black & Blue lacks a uniqueness to separate itself from other blueberry-flavored beers. I could probably get a six-pack of another blueberry beer for the same price as I paid for this bottled pint and get a very similar taste. That being said, I have had some blueberry-flavored wheats that are artificially flavored and taste nothing like blueberries. This beer is not that hopeless.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2011 03:08:08 | More by JohnnyS17
Photo of schoolcb
schoolcb

Texas

4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a sample last night at the brewpub in Rehoboth. I'm normally not a fan of fruit beers but had to try this one. WOW. Belgian Strong with blackberries and blueberries. Berries very noticeable in the aroma/flavor, but I don't know if I didn't know what they were that I would have been able to tell. Very well balanced between maltiness and fruit flavor. Don't think I could drink a full pint, but this is a perfectly executed fruit beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-14-2011 22:19:28 | More by schoolcb
Photo of vtblackdog
vtblackdog

Vermont

4.43/5  rDev +21%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a unique and well balanced fruit beer.

The appearance is a slightly reddish golden in color. Didn't get a lot of head and disappears quickly.

The smell is a pleasant fruity alcohol. I catch the blackberry aroma.

Taste is a balanced alcohol with fruit. The fruit is just right for the balance.

Mouthfeel is moderate not light and not thick. I like it.

Overall a great beer for the style. However, at $10 a bottle only a few can afford to drink much of this one.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2011 00:19:22 | More by vtblackdog
Photo of emmasdad
emmasdad

Colorado

3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Received a bottle of this one as a gift from my wife for some holiday or other. Poured a reddish-orange color with a slightly off-white head. Somewhat tart on the nose, with aromas of dark berries, alcohol and candi sugar. Medium bodied and tart, with flavors of dark berries, candi sugar and booze.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2011 05:56:15 | More by emmasdad
Photo of gskitt
gskitt

New York

3.43/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Eh. This is a beer that is not sure what it wants to be. Pours an attractive reddish color, impressive head with some decent lacing. Not as much berry scent on the nose as one would expect. It is there but its not strong. Tastes of fermented raspberries, not much hops or too much of anything else. Mouthfeel is ok, not syrupy like I expected. Ok beer, nothing I would go out and buy again.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2011 22:33:32 | More by gskitt
Photo of Krakistophales
Krakistophales

Connecticut

3.25/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Let me preface with this statement: I love dogfish head brews, with 90 minute, Squall, Chateau Jiahu, Burton Baton, Sahtea, and World Wide Stout being among my favorite craft brews.

A: It pours a light red, pretty translucent with just a rim lacing and a slight head with first pour.

S: It has a light, fruity, berry sort of smell. Pretty one dimensional, but I'm not good at smelling things anyway.

T: Honestly, it hits me like a strong raspberry lambic. It's very tart and is almost like a raspberry champagne. For the amount of berries described in the fermentation, I would expect sweetness, but it's more tart, dry, and raspberry than anything else. I'm trying to find the blueberry, but I just can't. Maybe a bit of it lingers in the aftertaste, but it's almost nonexistent.

M: This is nice and fizzy with not much lingering, and what I would expect out of a berry ale.

O: This is surprisingly good. It's light, refreshing, but I would've liked more:

Sweetness
Blueberry...anything
Balance...it's VERY tart.

If I saw this again where I usually frequent, I would buy it, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2011 04:25:40 | More by Krakistophales
Photo of Shoegaze99
Shoegaze99

New Jersey

2/5  rDev -45.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

If I wanted to drink a fruity champagne I'd drink a fruity champagne.

Dogfish Head is know for their "off-centered" beers. It's one of the primary appeals of the brewery and one of the reasons why I'll consistently get their product. But their penchant for experimentation means they sometimes miss the mark. And this one is a big miss.

This bottle was a year old when we cracked it; served the beer in wine glasses. Poured a quite lovely reddish color with a tiny head. The brew was murky but in an appealing way. It LOOKED great.

The aroma was ... well, it was not the aroma of beer. Smelled like a glass of champagne. The aroma of raspberry and blueberry were very much present. The smell "sparkled." Still, I rated it decently because while it didn't smell like beer it was still a pleasant aroma.

But the taste. Ugh, the taste. Judged as a BEER and not as another beverage it's hard to judge this one favorably. The brew was light-bodied bordering on thin. The bright, active carbonation and heavy fruits tasted more of champagne than beer. There is a *touch* of beer in the finish, but only a little. The tart of the raspberry was countered by the blueberry, but they didn't merge well with the overall package. Four of us tried it and the agreement was universal; this tasted like a fruity champagne, not beer.

Which is fine if you like champagne. I don't.

I've had many ups and a few stray downs with Dogfish Head's experiments. Even the downs I at least appreciated the experience and enjoyed having my expectations turned on their head.

But not this time. I'd rather drink a macro lager than this. Really. Huge thumbs down.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2011 14:30:27 | More by Shoegaze99
Photo of phiberoptik
phiberoptik

Ohio

4.08/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into white wine glasses because unfortunately we do not have any better glassware to sip this wonderful brew. Pours a cran-apple color, almost a pink amber with a light thin head.

I get a lot of red raspberries in the nose along with the maltiness and of course you can smell the alcohol as well.

The taste to me is all red raspberries. I eat red and black raspberries quite often and I dont get as much black raspberry in the taste, despite them being in the beer. Maybe my palate is just not that strong at differentiating. I might say there is some blueberry but it definitely doesnt come off as fresh blueberries. What do I know though. There is malt, yeast, and almost a tart cherry to it, faintly like a Belgian-style ale. Lots of alcohol in the throat, but of course this is a 10% ABV brew.

Mouthfeel is watery but tingles across the tongue from a lot of carbonation, almost like a champagne.

I could drink this for a lot of different reasons but its not highly drinkable due to the carbonation and alcohol level. It makes me burp, but it doesnt bother me.

For the price I wont buy up the store but if I see another bottle, I am most likely going to snag it.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2011 02:22:27 | More by phiberoptik
Photo of harrymel
harrymel

Washington

3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Vintage 2007: bottled 2/13/07

A: Pours a honey golden with red hue. Less than one finger loose foam slowly dissipates, eventually leaving broken surface of the same. Little visible bubbles.

S: Blackberries and blueberries well here. Below this is a malt backbone. Nothing special. Slightly tart.

T: Very sweet. I was hoping that over the years, the beer would maybe enjoy a little souring, but it seems no infection here. Maybe even not a live bottle.

M: Medium body with light and spritely carbonation. Like a thinned down syrup. Sticks in the mouth a bit. Not too much though.

D: This ale is drinkable, but would prefer more tartness from the berries if at all possible.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2011 18:01:33 | More by harrymel
Photo of sweemzander
sweemzander

Illinois

4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into a tulip. Yet again, thank you cjacobsen for sharing!

(A)- Pours a cloudy reddish orange color. Produced lots of white bubbles.

(S)- Dark fruits of blueberry, cranberry, and raspberry with a lightly dry oakiness.

(T)- Same as the smell. Has a nice profile of raspberry and blueberry with hints at a pomegranate too.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. A good complex fruit profile. Smooth.

(D)- Crisp and refreshing. Great fruit profile, yet sort of straightforward. Still enjoyable and tasty. Definitely a good fruit beer

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2011 16:15:00 | More by sweemzander
Photo of Kakaraht
Kakaraht

British Columbia (Canada)

4.55/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very cloudy reddish color, kinda like the inside of a blueberry. Medium head with nice lacing

S: Nice berry aroma with a hint of Belgian yeast.

T: Very subtle very smooth. The berry's blend very nicely into a sour saison like beer with warm sweet earthy notes and tart berry finish. I really like the smoothness of the flavors.

M: Medium carbonation and mouth feel,the flavors lingers nicely.

D: This is always a repeat beer for me, i find it perfect for sipping while sitting around a nice big campfire.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2011 03:58:50 | More by Kakaraht
Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,292 ratings.