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Back In Black - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Back In BlackBack In Black

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

1,861 Ratings
THE BROS
72
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,861
Reviews: 650
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 13.55%
Wants: 42
Gots: 133 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV varies around 7%.
65 IBU

(Beer added by: tpd975 on 11-23-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Back In Black Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,861 | Reviews: 650 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beerluvr
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip with a nice long-lasting light tan head that leaves a nice pattern on the sides of the glass as it settles out. Very dark damn near black liquid goodness in the glass, fresh hoppy and bitter aromas with subtle roasted malts. Good mouthfeel and wonderful hop bitterness mingles with that roasted malt, giving a touch of bitterness as well. Finishes long and bitter with again that little roasted malt snap. Interesting and quite drinkable twist on 'ye olde I.P.A.'. Not too strong yet makes a nice 'gonna have a few of these'-type beers.

beerluvr, Jun 07, 2012
Photo of 1424IpA
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

1424IpA, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of Arithmeticus
3.15/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: whoa! more head than beer; as advertised, it's black
S: pleasant quaff of hops with a strange overtone of something, almost like palatable burned rubber
T: as one other reviewer noted, there is a tinny taste; perhaps it's of the can and perhaps something else; at any rate, if that overtone were not present, this would be a stellar beer, with subdued but complex hop profile and a citrus sweetness
M: about as good as any craft beer

21st A: please check out that strange taste; drinkers: enjoy with the above proviso

Arithmeticus, Dec 22, 2010
Photo of JizackFH
2.83/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - This beer pours a very dark brown color, that glows ruby on the edges when held to the light. It has a big 4-finger light tan head on it. The head has great retention, and leaves a nice layer of lace on the glass.

S - It smells of sweet and roasted malts. There is a bit of piney hop character, but I definitely expected more. Also, I am getting some scents of chocolate and a touch of coffee.

T - The taste starts of with some sweet caramel and roasted malts. There is a piney hop presence throughout the drink, but it is quite subdued. I am also getting some notes of chocolate, coffee, and some citrus. The finish leaves some lingering roasted bitterness behind. I really wish there was more hop presence here.

M - It has a lighter body and decent carbonation. It goes down quite easily, but the flavor is sort of bland for an IPA variation. There is some lingering bitterness in the finish.

O - The drinkability was alright, seeing as how its goes down quite easily. Overall though, this beer just doesn't stand out amongst other beers of this style that I've had so far. I would drink it again, but I wouldn't pay for it.

JizackFH, May 22, 2011
Photo of bernat1971
3/5  rDev -18.7%

bernat1971, May 04, 2014
Photo of marct
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

marct, Nov 08, 2012
Photo of kushlash23
4/5  rDev +8.4%

kushlash23, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of briandaube
4/5  rDev +8.4%

briandaube, Jun 02, 2012
Photo of Vdubb86
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass

Thanks to TMoney2591 for providing me with my very first BIPA.

This one pours a nice blackness with ruby shades when penetrated by light. There is a nice white frothy head upon it which is interesting to me for usually beers this dark produce a tan or brown head. The smells are intriguing as well. There is the obviously citrus and floral notes from the hops that comprise an IPA, but it's mixed with (and to a lesser degree in this instance) roasted caramel malts to give the beer a different dimension on the nose. The taste is of a pretty hoppy IPA. The main flavor is citrus specifically lemon. This causes the brunt of the bitterness that is experienced. The mouthfeel is surprisingly light for what the beer actually is, and it does a service to the beer in my opinion. If you like the hops, this is highly drinkable. If you're like me and are indifferent, it's still a pleasant brew.

Vdubb86, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of Mosstrooper
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz can into a 16oz Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: Not quite black, but more of a darker coloa color. Large, foamy off-white, slightly tanned head dissipates very slowly and leaves behind a thick ring of lace.

Smell: Prevalent cascade hops backed up by buttery and roasty malts.

Taste: Begins with a buttery sweetness and a light hop flavor, finishing with intense (though not overly bitter) resiny hop flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with light carbonation and a dry finish.

Drinkability: A highly drinkable and sessionable IPA. Nothing outstanding, but still very solid all-round. This is a beer I would enjoy drinking again and would recommend to others readily.

Mosstrooper, Oct 19, 2010
Photo of TheMultiYeast
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass producing an very dark opaque brown/black with a big tan head.

Smells toasty with rich malt and aromatic hops.

Caramelized malts and brown sugar at first followed quickly by a solid flow of piney bitterness. Leaves a bit of a smoky char aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is a slightly thick yet smooth with even carbonation.

Overall I can dig this black IPA. Solid hop profile as expected from an IPA with a supportive malt background.

TheMultiYeast, Oct 22, 2011
Photo of beerdrifter
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown, nearly black pour with a two finger beige head with good retention and great lacing. The nose was a bit subdued for the style. Roasty up front with hints of black licorice, mocha, and soy sauce with a touch of citrus and pine emerging as well as a touch of smoke. The taste is a bit more bold with roasty coffee and chocolate complemented nicely with citrusy, piney hop notes with some cola on the finish. The mouthfeel is a tad bit fizzy and a little thin, but has a nice finish. Overall a solid Black IPA, but not quite up there with Sublimely. Very sessionable though...

beerdrifter, Nov 19, 2012
Photo of fuzzcherry
4/5  rDev +8.4%

fuzzcherry, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of tastymug
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

tastymug, Sep 29, 2013
Photo of CarolinaKev
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

CarolinaKev, Oct 20, 2012
Photo of tkdchampxi
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%

tkdchampxi, Jul 02, 2014
Photo of RMoeNay
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

RMoeNay, Aug 17, 2013
Photo of BigGingDrinker
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%

BigGingDrinker, Jun 20, 2013
Photo of hopfacebrew
4.22/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note: This review was a re-post from my former account, jmkratt, which was hacked and I lost all my reviews...sorry for the redundancy.

12oz can poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A: Very dark with a solid 2 finger head and favorable lacing.

S: Citrus hops and roasted malt.

T: Very strong citrus hop flavor upfront. Bitterness of the hops follows which compliments the roasty malt flavor well. Not as much roast as I would expect but decent.

M: Well carbonated and rather full.

D: Extremely drinkable.

Overall Back in Black is a good representation of the style. I would recommend to a friend.

Serving type: can

Reviewed on: 01-13-2011 17:21:59

hopfacebrew, Jan 28, 2012
Photo of Bockerdoppel91
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

Bockerdoppel91, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of damndirtyape
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Single can poured into a shaker pint glass. I know the company is in San Fran, CA, but my can says made in Cold Spring, MN. Huh? Maybe they contract brew there.

Appearance: On the table, black, with a light tan foam with lacing all over the place. The foam dies down to a thin 1/16" head across the top, but the foam will be more persistent if you give it a hard pour. Held up to the light, the beer is a very dark ruby red. The artwork on the can is very appealing...I have to admit it was what made me decide to pick it up. Nice work to whoever came up with this one.

Smell: An interesting combination of grapefruit/citrus hops up front and roasted malts at the end. Nicely appealing.

Taste: The beer is an odd clash of flavors. Not bad, just kind of odd. The citrus/grapefruit collides with a roasted malt and bitter coffee finish (probably from the roasted malts). It's okay cold, and better when warm. For the blend of hops and malt I think I prefer the Indian Brown style. It's good though - just not "wow" fantastic.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation, but not too much on the tongue. Does stick to the teeth a bit.

Drinkability: Interesting, but a one at a time beer for me. I've had it by itself and also with a meal...but I don't think I've found the right food to go with it yet.

damndirtyape, Aug 15, 2010
Photo of jondeelee
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Back in Black comes straight out of the can smelling mainly like an IPA, heavy on the grapefruit and pine notes, the emphasis being primarily on a more sugary version of the grapefruit notes. Hints of lemon and lime add extra citrus zest to the nose. All this lies atop a darker bed than is normally found in an IPA (this is a Black IPA, after all), which brings black malt, ash, and tobacco to the mix, albeit in far lesser proportions, compared to the hops.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a good shock of hops, here the flavors moving more toward grapefruit zest and pine than the sugary notes found in the nose. Again, lemon zest brings a heavier citrus burst. The beer isn't particularly bitter--only 65 IBUs--but the hops bring good flavor. The "black" part of the IPA--that is, if the hops were removed or lessened to only showcase the malts--tastes much like a weaker, watery stout geared almost exclusively towards ash, coffee, tobacco, and black malt flavors, though toasted pecans also come into play. Some sugars play in the background, and a few fruit esters (apricot, orange) peek their heads around the corner meekly. Late the in mouthful, especially if the beer is held on the tongue long enough, the ash and tobacco flavors largely take over. The aftertaste is mainly ash and tobacco, with a remaining runnel of grapefruit hops and pecans, and lingers for a while. Mouthfeel is medium-light, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is good beer in terms of flavor, the hops and malts each bringing a good series of tastes, and all of which meld together fairly well. At times the ash and tobacco flavors can slightly outshine the rest of the beer, and the medium-light mouthfeel is strange, given the potency of the flavors. Still, this is a far better-than-average Black IPA, and worth trying.

jondeelee, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of ColdPoncho
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From notes, 7-24-2010

A - deep mahogany/black body, thick tan head with good retention

S - spicy hops and a hint of toasted malt

T - mild malts, light on the hops. Supposed to be an IPA?

M - dry, medium-full body

O (D) - not that great, but still very enjoyable.

ColdPoncho, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of JRed
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown with frothy off white head that lasts. Roasted malts, earth, hop spice in the nose. Tastes of cocoa, earth, hop spice, roast, slight medicinal, hop bitterness and a echo of citrus. Medium body with medium carbonation. Roast and hop bitterness lasts in the palate. Well balanced between hops and roast.  

JRed, May 30, 2011
Photo of mikepcarney
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

mikepcarney, Oct 23, 2012
Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,861 ratings.