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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

1,411 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,411
Reviews: 487
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 16.12%
Wants: 85
Gots: 174 | 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: 1,411 | Reviews: 487 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of alpinebryant
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Light raspberry color with some hazy fruity blue

Smell - Sweet winecooler aroma with raspberry the msot present

Taste - Very sweet, to cover the 10% abv. Raspberry notes mixed with more subtle blueberry, relatively dry finish. Doughy finish from the yeast.

Mouthfeel - Medium body with plenty of carbonation.

Drinkability - It is drinkable. As it comes in a wine bottle, it may actually be more appropriately served from one. Tastes more like a wine than a beer.

alpinebryant, Apr 10, 2009
Photo of BlissJunkie
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

BlissJunkie, Jul 22, 2013
Photo of mrasskicktastic
2.1/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A - Strawberry juice red with a small head, no lacing. Clear.

S - Smells like Saaz hop, amber and light malt, also smells like lager yeast (although I don't think this was lagered). Some faintly tart berry sugars. Smells like a tart Sam Adams lager.

T - Tart berried, light malt. A bland bitter aftertaste with a bit of undescernable berries. Not worth having.

M - Drying, thin, a tad harsh and ascerbic.

D - I won't bother with this ever again. A definite was of money and liver strength. Much better beers exist out there and for much less. Yet another drastically overpriced DFH offering.

mrasskicktastic, Sep 21, 2007
Photo of BMoney575
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
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.

BMoney575, Jan 14, 2009
Photo of BB1313
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split this bottle w/ a buddy. This is my second time enjoying this unique brew. Pours a purple w/ red hints, not really what you see everyday in a beer, looks great. I can smell blueberries, blackberries, vanilla. Those characterisitics are very noticeable in the taste as well. Pretty malty w/ a tart sweetness. Finishes sharp, well carbonated. Drinkability is good, but since it's borderline cloyingly sweet, it loses a point. The taste will have you coming back for more; alcohol is masked, but it's still dangerously drinkable. Awesome brew!

This definitely isn't your ordinary beer.. but the flavors alone make this very worthy. These are the kind of beers I expect from DFH. Well done, recommended!

BB1313, Jan 02, 2011
Photo of HollyHops
4/5  rDev +9.3%

HollyHops, May 14, 2013
Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Beautiful peach/ruby body with a thin white head. A perfect mix of orange, red and pink.

s: Slightly funky, wonderfully fruity. Berries abound.

t: Fruity with a musky, bitter bite in the finish. Not as much tartness as I had anticipated. Seems like a pretty mellow belgian ale with a nice berry layer thrown on top.

m: Very active on the tongue, feels almost like a seltzer.

d: Hard to believe its so strong. The berry sweetness is balanced out brilliantly by the musky bite in the finish. The fruit is more subtle than I had expected, but I am happy with the result. Won't pay $14 for another bottle, but I'm glad I tried it.

BradLikesBrew, May 26, 2008
Photo of Nightrain87
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Nightrain87, Jun 01, 2014
Photo of larryi86
3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottled 2010 poured in a snifter

A- A nice red/amber color with an off white one finger head with hints of orange.

S- Over fermented blueberries and raspberries, not the best smell in the world, reminds me more of a wine smell.

T- Sweet, sweet, and sweet. The taste is mostly blueberries with a hint of tartness from the raspberries.

M- It is smooth and a little on the lighter side.

D- This does not feel like a beer, but it is not bad. If you do get a bottle be ready to split it with someone because half a bottle is all that one person needs in a night.

larryi86, May 21, 2010
Photo of BierFan
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Light tan head has a slight pinkish hue. Hazy dark reddish body.

Smell: Like a really quality fruit beer. Slightly tart. Raspberry and blueberry are not easily detected, instead it's just a general mingled "berry" aroma.

Taste: Good tart berry flavors that linger on the tongue.

Overall good, but there are better fruit beers at a better price.

BierFan, Oct 11, 2010
Photo of vrbulldog22
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

vrbulldog22, Jun 04, 2012
Photo of Hessian257
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Hessian257, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of soupyman10
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I maintain it's tough to review fruit beers. This one is just kind of in-keeping with the style in general (with a few exceptions). One consistent, fairly straight-forward sweet flavor (raspberries, in this case) that comes to kick aside the other flavors and aromas in the brew. It's not bad, and I didn't mind drinking a touch of it. However, it's a missed opportunity, as they could have run with some more interesting tart or sour flavors. Overall, alright, but nothing too complex or interesting (which is a total miss for DFH, a brewery that specializes in "interesting").

soupyman10, Jun 16, 2009
Photo of IBUnit63
3.55/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 shared with the beautiful bride - poured into a Portsmouth snifter. Bottled in 2009.

Pours a slightly murky yet carbonated honey/bourbon/copper color with hints of purple fruits. There are yeasty wisps atop this deal and nice sparse lacing. Carbonation is apparent but not huge.

I detect a fair amount of sourness - not necessarily Brett but something close? In the background are the dark berry fruits along with a fair lot of husky light caramelized malt and some sprightly alcohol.

OK, the notion of infection goes away for the most part on the taste - we are left with a little tinniness on the front court and some definite feel of blueberry skins and the black raspberries. This is a step up from first impressions - there's light fruity booze and the ABV and aging are coming into play with warmth. Still, on the finish there's a little carbonated sweetness that's not exactly in the Boone's farm zone but is definitely a style tweener. Not a true strong dark ale, not a lambic...it's not bad but the "jack of all trades, master of none" rap may be at least a touch relevant here.

Palate feel is kind of nice with this one. It has some carbonation, berry and citric zip to it but the huskiness of a high-gravity strong ale...with a bit of hop pininess to match. It tingles on the tongue and back of the palate even after warmth. Much lighter than its ABV heft suggests. Not too bad.

I don't like to pour a snifter of beer, drink it and say, "wow, I have all that left in the bottle?" I'm not there with this, but it is a project to put this whole thing down. Not an unenjoyable project but as a judge on Iron Chef once said about Iron Chef Sakai (sic?) and his lobster with masatake (sic?) mushrooms, "I don't think I'm enjoying this quite as much as the Iron Chef intended me to enjoy this." It's well-crafted for what it is...by the way, what is it, anyway? It's a moderately enjoyable little piece of confusion...not that I'd know from experience but if you got stoned and instead of listening to the Dead you listened to technohouse all night and you actually enjoyed it a bit, that would be close. Again...confusion.

IBUnit63, Apr 19, 2009
Photo of cdkrenz
2.98/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Copper colored body that shows a nice red when held to light. The head is a bright white but quick-lived.

S - The aroma of apricot is prevalent and not all that becoming.

T - I'm a bit disappointed here. I'm a fan of a blueberries, black raspberries and of course beer. Combine the three and I would hope to find a harmonious flavor fit for the gods. The flavor combinations here are interesting but not all that tasty. You have a beginning of mild malt and then a move to a dark bitter middle also hosting a strange, slightly pungent fruitiness. The finish has an uncomfortable
blueberry-plum combination that makes it difficult to keep drinking.

M - The feel of this beer is by far is highest characteristic. The feel of the brew is soft and smooth with a hint of abrassive catchiness allowing each pull to be its own journey. It contradicts the flavor by begging me to keep drinking.

~ Overall I'd say this beer is certainly something you should consider trying. I don't recommend you run out today and try to find a bottle. But, if you come accross one and can find it for a reasonable price (less than $11.99 which is what I paid for the 25.6 ounce bottle I purchsed) then I suggest you add it to your cart. At any rate its an interesting beer, the bottle labeling is artistically considerate and its brewed by a fine brewery.

cdkrenz, May 03, 2010
Photo of StephRai
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

StephRai, Sep 25, 2014
Photo of JMS1512
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

JMS1512, May 02, 2014
Photo of POTABLE83
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

POTABLE83, Mar 12, 2014
Photo of cp45
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

cp45, Jul 28, 2013
Photo of bmjivi221
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

bmjivi221, Jul 17, 2013
Photo of jkane101
3/5  rDev -18%

jkane101, Jul 21, 2013
Photo of mattreitz49
4/5  rDev +9.3%

mattreitz49, Jan 20, 2014
Photo of kingmaker
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

kingmaker, Feb 03, 2013
Photo of gshackles
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

gshackles, Oct 13, 2013
Photo of hockeyfighter19
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

hockeyfighter19, Jul 06, 2012
Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,411 ratings.