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Black & Blue - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Black & BlueBlack & Blue

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

1,432 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,432
Reviews: 488
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.85%
Wants: 92
Gots: 183 | FT: 8
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,432 | Reviews: 488 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Teleweizen2
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of comfortablynirm
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of tripledbrew
4/5  rDev +9.3%

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

750ml bottle into imperial pint glass on 11/12/08. Shared with brewslut.

A - Hazy, deep rusty orange body with a reddish tint and almost one finger of bubbly off-white head and plenty of active carbonation bubbles darting to the surface. Head settled into a quarter inch of creamy retention that deposited a bit of lace on the glass.

S - Extremely fruity nose with apparent blackberry, raspberry and blueberry right up front. Fruit aroma appears to be authentic rather than artificial. Sweet malts are complemented by a mild sour tang and a more subtle yeasty character.

T - This is definitely not as sweet as I had anticipated. There is quite a bit of sourness present to complement the sweetness of the berries. Some bready and caramel malt notes emerge in the backend. No noticeable bitterness to mention.

M - Medium body with a mild syrupy - yet slick - texture and moderate carbonation. Surprisingly, this brew is not overly sweet or cloying at all. For 10% ABV, the alcohol is barely noticeable. Finish blends sweet and sour characteristics on the palate.

D - I heard mixed reviews about this brew, so I wasn't sure exactly what to expect. However, I found this to be a flavorful beer with a nice sourness and authentic berry character. I admire the fact that DFH really tries to push the brewing envelope. Not everything is going to be outstanding, but you have to respect them for going against the grain. With that said, I found this brew to be quite drinkable.

Photo of dw2430
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of szmnnl99
4/5  rDev +9.3%

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

A - This beer pours a hazy orangish copper color. It has a nice 2-finger slightly off-white head on it. The head has decent retention and it leaves behind some nice lace on the glass.

S - It has a big beer scent which is to be expected. There are a lot of scents of blueberry, blackberries, and raspberries. There is also some honey sweetness and some belgian yeast.

T - There is a lot of blackberry and blueberry flavor up front. There is some nice candied sweetness and belgian yeast in the background. There are are also some spices and honey flavors present.

M - This has a medium body and good carbonation. It goes down easy and has a nice smooth feel to it. There is some sourness, but it is balanced out by the sweetness. A bit of alcohol warmth on the back end.

O - This has good drinkability. It goes down easy and the flavor is very nice. Overall, I thought this was a very nice fruit beer. It has just the right amount of sweetness to perfectly balanced out the fruit. Definitely worth a try. I would buy this again.

Photo of brheuer
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of xenjoiii
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of gio540
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of marvin213
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown with a pink tinge--and tons of floaties--I love the look! A fruit beer at 11%, it's sexy and alluring. Carbonation is solid, but I honestly wish I had more headies on this one; nevertheless, a great-looking beer!

A 2008 batch, the nose borders on sour--might be that blackberry puree that's been swirling for a couple years. The blueberry is also there but, in context of this strong ale medium, it's so unlike your status-quo blueberry beer. It's a candied sour tartness, and I like it.

A unique liquid, I think you could warm it on a skillet and pour it over a blondie. The taste is also on the sour side, but not in a eye-squinting, cheek-raising, mouth-puckering kind of way. Perhaps this could serve as a sour gateway beer. I really appreciate how it's over-ripened berries instead of a sour apple candy. Again, the strong (almost old-style) ale in which the fruties float seems like the ultimate medium. The combo is like sex in a bottle! A contrast of tough, strong power with...well, you get it. Consequently, it feels really good.

Drinkability is pleasant enough but, among its peers, this 11%er has to have a relative weakness. It's not that it's too strong, it's just that it's so unique and unlike other beers that you wouldn't typically make a long session of it. I mean, it IS a brew with blackberry and blueberry puree. It's another example of why Dogfish Head Brewery is iconic in craft brewing--a trail-blazing fruit beer!

Photo of zaphodchak
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish amber body, fine white trace of head.

Musty, dry blueberry and trace cocoa... quite nice on the nose.

Big flavor, blue/blackberry. Not super sweet nor tart, but faintly dry. Really quite nice, and you wouldn't necessarily guess this was 10%.

Thick with a bit of fluff.

Nice bold fruit beer-- not sugary, not too dry or sour, gets the flavor well.

Photo of akorsak
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 7.5 dL capped bottle purchased at Capone's.

A: The ale pours with a thick billowy white head that consumes three plus fingers in the glass, easily overwhelming the body of the beer. As the head recedes, it does not lace. The body of the beer is a red-blue hybrid color, light and clear with a definite purple tint. Very unusual, I don't think I've seen a beer take on this hue. You have to see it to understand it.

S: The nose has the sweetness of a fruit juice undercut by a grainy malt profile with hints of sour tart fruit. Much like the color, the blueberry/blackberry aroma is unique.

T: The first sip surprised me with its solid grainy cereal body. I was expecting all fruit all the time so the chewy malt was nice. Those malts are a nice foundation for the fruits, contrasting with the tartness of the fruits. Those fruits are quite sweet at times before yielding to a more tart element. At the end of the sip, some alcohol warmth comes through but it is very minimal, leaving me to wonder where it is at throughout the glass. There is a sweeter yeast flavor blanketing the beer from start to finish.

M: The strength of the fruits is pleasant, livening the mouth with flavors that are rarely seen in a beer. The alcohol, while not evident until the end, leaves it mark quickly.

D: This 10% beer (per the label) is a whopper that you may want to share with someone. The fruit flavors are strong but don't mistake this for a sugary sweet experience, this beer is big and bad with a lot of swagger.

Photo of shand
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 24oz bottle into a snifter.

This looks about standard for a big fruit beer, a golden red color with a tiny head. Aroma is about what I'd expect from a 10% alcohol brew brewed with tons of blueberries and blackberries. Taste? Berries and booze. with a bit of malt. What else would you expect? Mouthfeel is on the thicker side of medium, with prickly carbonation. Drinkability is very good. Overall, a great "extreme" fruit beer, there's a ton of fruit in this high alcohol beer.

Photo of jdhilt
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a one-finger white head that fades immediately leaving no lace. Clear amber with red tinge color. Sweet fruity nose. Strong carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor is sweet and sour, slightly fruity with raspberry, blueberry is hidden and so is the high ABV. Nice clean finish. Bottled 2/12/2007, $11.19 for a 750ml bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.
Label has ABV at 10%.

Photo of Naugros
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A reddish orange hue with a tan head that has a pink tinge to it. A finger's width head forms and bubbles down to a thinner version and then disappears altogether after the first sip, leaving a ring of foam and a surface haze. No appreciable lacing.

The smell is immediately blackberries and alcohol with some yeast beneath it all, but the yeast is definitely there.

Berries up front and liquor on the palate with a little bit of a bitter bite at the end. The malts hint at caramel sweetness. Fruity and sweet, like bubblegum, is the overall impression. It almost reminds me of a weakly flavored rum punch.

There's enough carbonation to allow you to enjoy the sweetness of the beer. Without it, this would be cloying and have a "thick", syrupy feel to it.

This is an enjoyable beer and one that I'd get again, unlike DFH's Red & White. The alcohol is not masked, but that might be intentional in order to balance the fruitiness.

Photo of Thickfreakness
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle properly cellared and dated 2009 D. Poured into my NEW DFH signature glass.

A- A ruddy reddish, copper color. Bits of berry and yeast sediment floating in the glass. Decent pink hue head that clings to the glass in places as it fades. Awesome carbonation up the center from this new style glass!!!

S- Sweet & Sour berries, pungent yeastiness... A touch of alcohol hotness even after 2 years in the dungeon! Smells like real blueberry and blackberry's... not like the liquid extract that some use! Nice acid sourness mixed with the sweet malts. Not very complex, but I don't think it was supposed to be! This one is all about the berries!!!

T- Fresh squeezed berries!!! Sweet and sour bite that never lets go! The yeast throws itself into the party and gives some banana and figgy notes, but the sour fruit slams you in the face and lets you know that this is a berry forward brew!

M- Still a ton of carbonation after 2 years! NICE!!! The sweetness and sour of the berry blend well, and really lean forward on your tongue. A nice yeastiness that seems to keep it all in check. Again, you're not gonna be looking for all the flavors that a Quad, IIPA, or RIS bring. But for what it is, and what it's supposed to represent... it's really nice!

O- A really nice fruit forward brew! Love the berry/carbonation POP!!! For what it's supposed to be and do... I'd say it's very good for the style it represents! Pair this with a fresh berry/spinach/blue cheese salad, A cheese and fruit plate, or blueberry jam glazed grilled chicken w/ coconut couscous!

Photo of fastsrt
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle to a wine glass.
A: deep amber, slowly dissipating head
S: fruity, berries and a hint of booze.
T: berries all the way, for 10% there was no booze bite.
M: light, refreshing, with a dry finish the alcohol is well hidden
D: this reminds me of a iambic, this beer carried a high price tag for what i got, i would say its worth trying but not drinking all the time, and i probably would not buy again, I made a black and tan out of the last glass which was off the charts.

Photo of branimal9
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Barley's Greenville 5/20/2010.

Clear, bright reddish orange in color. Nice lacing. Berries, berries & more berries on the nose. Black berry does dominate, however. Lambic-style sour in the taste, with mouth-coating consistency. Estery. Nice warming finish.

Photo of heebes
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

1 pint bottled 2010

Pours a hazt reddish amber with huge slightly pink foamy head leaving a nice sticky lacing.
The nose is sweet malts, a berry scent from the blue and black berries, some booze.
The taste is big on tart berries, some upfront fruit bitterness long finish getting hot at the end. Definately a different approach for a beer. Mouthfeel is moderate, medium mouthfeel becomes chewy a bit.
Overall this was fun to try, as it always is with the folks from Dogfish Head. Drinkability is moderate though, at 10% and being bottle in the stadard big beer pint as per DFH specialty brews.

Photo of Portertime
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a hearty brew with a nice ABV. Poured a dark sunset red color no black nor blue though. Smells like sour raspberries and blueberries with a kiss of oak. Tastes of ripe and sour raspberries and blueberries. I little tart for my taste. I enjoyed this one chilled in a bubbler.

Photo of bsend
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received a 13 oz. pour from my server in a Dogfish Head tulip glass.

Appearance: Moderate copper colored beer with mixes of berry red undertones. Minimal amounts of white head, and little lacing on the side. The beer lets in decent amounts of light.

Smell: Mix of alcohol, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, and bits of mild hop.

Taste: Blackberry and blueberry flavor at the beginning, and minimum amounts of alcohol that becomes more apparent as it gets warmer.

Mouthfeel: Slightly dry, and warmth of alcohol. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: Despite the high abv, easily drinkable. Wonderful brew.

Final Thoughts - Really enjoyed this brew. Excellent for the style, and high abv. I really enjoyed this limited release brew (as the tap stated) without having to go to Dogfish Head's brew pub. Kudos to Dogfish Head.

Photo of WhatsNewinBooze
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

What a unique beer to say the least. This Belgium style Golden Ale brewed with black raspberry and blueberry puree is a must try for any serious beer lover. The label art comes from the portrait painter David Larned from Pennsylvania, accompanied by his wife Sarah, they are both huge Dogfish Head fans. This interesting brew pours garnet color with a thin white fizzy head. Aromas of black raspberry and blueberry are the most pronounced along with hints of citrus. The palate is not dominated by the fruit like you would think, it is definitely there but it is different than you expect. The fruit is balanced with a nice amount of malts, a great acidity and fine bubbles that are almost Champagne like. If you are looking for something new and interesting to try, this is it.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle,

A: Pours a medium red, poofy white head, fizzy thick lace. Pinkish red overall.

S: Lots of coriander/wit initially, but gives way to a beautiful pure raspberry, shades of New Glarus.

T: A different beer to put into words. Lots of blueberries and tannic character upfront. Sweetens out with a blood orange/raspberry finish.

M: A bit boozy, but these imperial wits always have it. Fairly smooth, some biting carbonation.

D: As one of the beers I've personally hyped to hell in my head, it didn't really live up to it. In the end though I liked it quite a bit, better than Red and White for me, a unique flavour.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is richly fruity and somewhat malty with an undertone of yeast. It pours a clear coppery amber with a fairly thick but not persistent head. Flavor is more like a good apple cider than a beer, and has a decided alcohol bite. There are hints of molasses and raspberry as well. Texture is rather edgy and a little fizzy, and aftertaste is a little tart.

Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,432 ratings.