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Black & Blue - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Black & BlueBlack & Blue

Educational use only; do not reuse.

520 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 520
Hads: 1,587
Avg: 3.68
pDev: 26.9%
Wants: 118
Gots: 271 | FT: 9
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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 520 | Hads: 1,587
Photo of chefhatt
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this beer from a 750ml bottle into a pint glass. It has a nice rich auburn color body with just a small white head that leaves a nice lace down the glass. The smell has a nice berry aroma to it. The taste is a little tart to start then the berries come in on the middle of the tongue and gives it a nice like sweet flavor. I get like a white wine finish on the back of the tongue. Very nice mouth feel, very little after taste. Overall this is very different and i really like this beer.

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Photo of magine
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a DFH goblet.

Pours a clear dark cherry amber, with a pint tinted thick fluffy head with tons of tight bubbles. Lots of grate lace remains, surrounded by a patch thick layer. Good looking brew.

Brew smells of tons of berries, dark fruits, Belgian flare for sure; yeasts. Sweet malts. Good nose.

Brew tastes creamy smooth; spicy heat in the middle and the finish. High abv lingers. Dark fruits, yeasty malts thicken it up. Semi dry finish. Good full body and flavors.

The best fruit beer I have had so far; full body, great flavors and has lots of kick to it. Never been the biggest fans of these type of brews, but this one is great. Great fruit brew here, another stud from DFH.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle that was purchased god knows when by me. I have had it in the cellar forever and just got around to it tonight. Served at cellar temperature in a snifter. Consumed on 08/18/2008.

The pour was nice with a very hazy, reddish tinted liquid coming through almost immediatly. Small whispy heado f white crashed down quick and left nothing in its wake. Subtle side glass lace, but unremarkable.

The aroma was loaded down with fruit. Berries of all sorts, Blueberries and blackberries dominant, with a touch of light grassy hops and some light grain. The flavor was all about fruit though. Staright up berry juice here, rich and very sweet, but nowhere near overpowering. This was extremely good, easily drinkable with a light body, good carbonation and very well hidden alcohol. Long drawn out fruit finish, lightly dry and easily pleaseant,

Overall one of the better fruit beers i have had. I was really shocked by how good this one was. I would have no objection to having this again at any time. Really very solid and one of the good ones from DFH.

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Photo of bonkers
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

split a 26 ounce bottle with a friend, split into pint glasses
A-pours a light red color with a thin head
S-very sweet with fruit notes
t-sweet right from the start, but it is well balanced with hints of berries
m&d-very drinkable, not overly sweet, nice carbonation, not very filling
Overall-A very good fruit beer. This is well balanced and a fun beer.

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Photo of trankin6
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
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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Photo of Pencible
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This poured a slightly hazy copper with moderate white head.
S: It smelled like sweet blueberries and wild Belgian yeast, with some slightly tart blackberries and candi sugar and fresh wheat.
T: It tasted like tart blackberries and sweet blueberries, with sour yeast and spicy saison hops and a bit of fresh wheat. It had a light and clean aftertaste that was a bit dry.
M: It was slightly thick and viscous with lots of carbonation. Decent.
D: This was a very nice beer with good balance of sweet and tart. It could maybe be a bit more bold, but the alcohol was very well hidden so it was dangerously easy to drink. Great beer for any season, and could be really fun with food pairing. I enjoyed this better than Red & White.

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Photo of farrago
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hardly any head at all, even with a somewhat aggressive pour, gone quickly with no lacing to be seen. Murky orange rust color with some brownish orange brick hues too, brightens a touch around the rims. The berry scents come through clearly in the nose, however, these are nowhere near being dominant, grapefruit and tangerine citrus there, raw brown sugar, peat moss, lighter yeasty bread dough, sweeter maltiness more apparent as it warms. Full-bodied, dry, sour and borderline acidic, really gives your palate a nice twist. As in the nose the berry flavors knit into the whole and not clumsily obvious, not a "dumb" fruit beer. More herbaceous qualities here, match up nicely with the sour grapefruit and lemon component. Presents sufficient apple, apricot, pear fruit as well as honey and yeast to keep the sourness in check. Carbonation is light but contributes when it has to in order to continue forward progress. Given its genre there's a limit to its inherent complexity, that accounted for, sticks to the script well and can't fault the execution.

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Photo of Boto
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle: this one pours a hazy Ruby tinged Amber color. Just a wisp of an off White head. Good nose. A bit musty. Red wine grape notes. Light Candi sugar, other fruits, malts. The taste is very good. Malty, a slight funkiness, touch of red wine flavors. Some blackberry also. Unique and good.

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Photo of vandemonian
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
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

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Photo of CFHMagnet
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Marked "Bottled in 2011"

A. Poured a finger of creamy, off white head. Body is a nice amber color. Head retention is a decent frosting on top. Lacing is nice as well.

S. Maltiness starts off the nose, and quickly gives way to a cocktail of fruit flavors. I smell grape and mixed berry aromas. Floral undertones emerge near the end.

T. Floral tones start her off, and then it's all about the fruit. I taste blueberry and blackberry, but still taste a slight haunting grapiness in there.

M. Medium bodied, well carbonated, this beer is refreshing. It's my first beer home after working a 12-hour day, and it hits the spot.

O. Didn't know what to expect going into this, DFH is phenomenal, but blueberry beer? But it works, it tastes good, and it's definitely refreshing. Good stuff!

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Photo of cleeze
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've yet to be disappointed by a DFH brew...

This baby poured a nice mahogany color with a hint of purple. Decent head that disappeared rather quickly to show some bad ass lacing.

Smell was as fruity as they come. As soon as I opened the brew a whiff of berries is very strong. Also after a second whiff, I picked up on some malty alcohol goodness.

Yummmy... Tart berry goodness at first. Warms my belly too on this cold winter day. The yeasty taste contrasts great with the sweet berry taste. the 10% is amazingly masked.

Great drinkability for a fruit beer.

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Photo of BMoney575
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on 1-13-09
Bottled on 2-10-07

Pours much lighter than expected, a super cloudy orange/red. A fizzy head starts, but fades quickly. Lacing is thin and short-lasting.

Smell is very fruity, thick and sweet. Very wine-like and complex as it settles, strong grape and apple juice comes through. A little aged, in a good, caramelized sugar way.

Taste is super sour at first, very, very grape-y, followed by a slight blueberry and lots of light malt. The alcohol adds a warming, wine-y finish, with a very dry and tart aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very thick, yet highly carbonated. A great combo.

Drinkability is surprisingly good, considering the abv.

Overall, I'm not sure if age has done this one well, but it's still a tasty beer and a very pleasant change.

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Photo of phiberoptik
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
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.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured unto a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber, head is thin roughly a 1/2" white head.

Smell: Just smelling it before I drink it, it comes off sweetthe blueberry is obviously apparent.

Taste: It tastes exactly how it is described, seriously I can't give it any higher because it comes off little sweet and it's just not my cup of tea.

Mouth: Light-medium carbonation easy down and not hard to drink the ful 25oz on your own.

Overall: I have had a couple of blueberry beers before this one is definitely at the the top of the food chain. Not super sweet but just RIGHT...you will definitely like this beer on a warm summer night and appreciate it's purpose. Hope you all enjoy and cheers!!!!

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Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I found some bottles of this upstairs at the liquor store I work at. So when I had this on-tap before (unreviewed), I found it to be alright.

But this was really good. Probably because it was aged. There the taste wasn't very complex upfront, but it had a nice sourness towards the end of the taste. It was pretty darn tasty.

I then poured some more from the fridge a little later. I can definitely pick out some blueberry taste.

I agree with one of the previous reviewers. This beer needs more fruit. I think the underlying ale doesn't seem to complex though. But with the sourness/whatever at the end of the sip, I was tempted to give it a 4.5 on taste.

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Photo of adamette
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap an hour ago at Winking Lizard in Mentor, Ohio, an "on tap limited availability" offering. Cost of $6.25, poured into a 10 ounce snifter. Thanks to my father in law for buying me this one as we are celebrating the recent birth of my twin daughters (born April 8th).

A Little head over a cloudy copper body. Good look. I did not expect a big head with the high ABV and the fact that it is a fruit beer. 4.0

S Nice, gentle blueberry smell without the heat of alcohol that I expected. 4.0

T The rather high ABV presented itself well in the taste, however, but it was welcomed along with that continued gentle blueberry taste. 4.0

M Pleasingly syrupy, big. 4.5

D Good for the high ABV, I finished every last drop. 4.0

Notes: A treat to find this one on tap. Thanks again Mr. P!

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Photo of Gusler
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer sluices from the 750ml bottle a slightly chill hazed golden amber color with a bright white creamy two fingered head that settles quickly leaving a thin blanket of lace to seal off the glass. Nose has a sweet and sour note, spicy with a modest hint of the berries, hints of fusel alcohol, and at 11 percent ABV, no wonder. Start is ambrosial, fair to middling malt presence, and a mild tartness from the black raspberries, but not overly so, top is light to medium in feel. Finish carries on the sweet and tart duo, hops understated, and the alcohol present but well hidden, acidity benign and the aftertaste dry and tart. I’ve learned to like this style, and “Dogfish Head” has been the reason why, a “Marvelous” brewery.

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Photo of BabySnakes
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Red orange hue with a quickly disappearing head

smells like black raspberry and blueberry, even blueberry pie. go figure. Sweet Malts come thru, couldnt say which malts. Also a boozy aroma

warm boozyness hits along with the aforementioned fruits. Sweet maltiness (honey?) maybe even a mead-ish character.

Boozy, tingly mouthfeel, but heavy.

Overall, a really nice unique fruit beer. It reminds me of a light bodied mead. I was expecting something insane from DFH, but you pretty much get what you read on the label, which is nice. Just unexpected from my point of view.

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Photo of seanpachefddfa
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance-poured a light copper color with pink tone to it. A thin light fluffy head that faded quick.

Smell- very nice aroma of sour blueberries and black raspberries. Also getting some nice earth notes as well.

Taste- Blue and raspberries up front. The berries are bit on the tart side but in a good way. Also getting some earthy spice flavors as well. All the flavors are very subtle but well balanced.

mouth feel-a medium body beer with a very high carbonation level. But I think that the high carbonation level works in this beer. Very clean and refreshing

Drink ability- a very good beer. the only bad thing about this one is the price @ $15 it is a little out of my price range.

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | 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.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a slightly cloudy, light reddish brown color, with a thin, but fluffy off white head. The head has a slight red tint to it. It fades slowly, leaving many thick laces.

This beer has a slightly grainy aroma. The fruit aromas are very subtle. Some blueberry and raspberry aroma. It has a sweet malty aroma as well.

This beer tastes like it smells. Very subtle fruit flavor. Slightly grainy, with a sweet malty aroma. The alcohol content is detectable in the flavor.

This beer leaves a slightly grainy aftertaste. It is a litle undercarbonated.

This beer would probably not make the best session beer. It is high in alcohol. The flavor is good though.

Overall: Thanks HimerMan for giving me the chance to try this one. Although not quite what I expected, it was good. I love everything I have ever had from Dogfish Head.

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Photo of wingman14
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy light brown with reddish tints with a nice white head that fades fast. The smell is of tart fruit, a few sweet notes, some wheat and yeast notes as well. I expected the smell to be a little more potent. The taste starts tart with a hint of sweet, lots of berries, finishes with the wheat notes and has a long tart aftertaste, very enjoyable. The mouthfeel is smooth a good blend of flavor, a medium-light body, nice carbonation. The drinkability is good, a nice balance and not an overemphasis on the fruit make this one a good session beer. The high ABV might steer you away from too many. Worth checking out, especially fruit beer and saison fans.

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Photo of tipfortap
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

5 words to describe it: Tart, Red Wine, Effervescent, Jam, Bread

Paired it with: n/a

Should have paired it with: Sweet grilled cheese— maybe brie and jam? Grilled pork, Fried Chicken (and other picnic foods.)

Drink it if you like: Lambics, Kirs/Kir Royals, Fruit beers, Pinot Noir, Sangria

A few other thoughts: Because of the fruit sugars and fermentation process, this guy takes on characteristics of red wine, which makes for something super interesting and not too sweet. It would be awesome to take a 750mL bottle on a summer picnic.

Watch out, though, for the ABV— a very well-disguised 10%.

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Photo of ClassicBrad
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

I poured this beautifuly ruby amber brew into my brand new DFH pint glass out of its 750ml bottle.

Like I mentioned, the body was an intriguing ruby amber and its head was light and slippery; not much retention.

The beer's aroma hints of its told BLACK raspberry and BLUEberry with some amazing malt characteristics.

Anyone weary of a beer with way too much fruit shall be freed of such fear. This is a tastefully disciplined brew with tactful fruit flavoring.

An outstanding pro for this beverage is its 10% ABV and its unbelievably coy drinkability.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - pours an orange/mauve with a very flat white head of almost a finger. Receding rapidly, it leaves no lace behind and has only a thin collar and single circle of foam in the center of the Belgian glass. I like the color though.

Aroma - an indistinct fruitiness, faint yeast, and a rumbling of alcohol beneath it all. With some worthwhile effort, I can identify the raspberry.

Taste - an initial burst of yeast, quickly swept over by the fruit flavors. No definite flavor there, and then that is washed away by warm and enveloping alcohol. On the aftertaste, after some delay, the raspberry makes a nice statement, lingering past the booziness. With warming I get more of the blueberry. It took some time but eventually everything plays out on the palate nicely.

Mouthfeel - very bubbly, a bit of fruit/alcohol slickness and a medium to medium-full body.

Drinkability - a sort of Imperial Fruit Beer, this is tasty and potent like Genesis 10:10, yet more elegant like Quelque Chose. Though an expensive bottle, I'd purchase it again.

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Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 520 ratings.