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

1,997 Ratings
THE BROS
72
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,997
Reviews: 659
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 13.59%
Wants: 45
Gots: 163 | 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:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Back In Black Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,997 | Reviews: 659 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JDH2000
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours nearly black with some reddish hues when held to the light. About a finger of creamy tan head that stays through most of the beer. Nice lacing on the glass.

S- Beautiful aroma of roasted malts, coffee, chocolate come first, followed by citrus and some pine hops.

T- The taste is so much more complex than the initial aromas let on. The roasted malts almost have an astringent and bitter flavor about them. The coffee and cocoa flavors come out and then are balanced out with the nice hoppy finish.

M- This is a nice, smooth medium-bodied beer with great complexity and flavors.

D- This was my first Black IPA and I was very impressed. I found it to be quite drinkable. I will definitely have it again and I look forward to exploring others in this style.

Photo of djbreezy
3.43/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - excellent head, good lacing, dark and black

Smell - toasty malts, vegetal hops

Taste - malts dominate, grassy notes, bitter

Mouthfeel - highly carbonated, medium body, dry finish

Drinkability - not too fond of the grass notes or the high carbonation, not a great example of the style

Photo of pzrhsau
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A nice rich dark brown color that is opaque with a two finger creamy coffee colored head (yay adjectives)
S: It has a dark roasty aroma coupled with a nice hop bitterness.
T: Its strange because the dark malt actually gives it a sweetness and a depth while still maintaining that bitterness of an ipa. Also some nice roasty notes in an after taste.
D/M: My eyes say porter but my head says IPA. This is just a cool beer style overall. Very innovative and brings some great crisp flavors together that I wouldn't have expected. I highly recommend this for someone who has not tried the style.

Photo of Mora2000
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to bman1113vr for sending me this beer.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a cream-colored head. The aroma is roasted malt and chocolate, with quite a bit of pine from the hops.

The flavor is bitter pine with some lightly roasted malt. I also get a touch of chocolate and maybe some coffee, but it is fairly faint. Low bitterness and the beer is very dry.

Thin, watery mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of wagenvolks
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can courtesy of xnicknj via the Nice Cans II BIF. Thanks!

Pours a deep, dark coffee color that lets cola leak in at the edges. Atop, a stubborn tuft of custard foam holds court and attaches sticky lacing to the inside of my BlackStar Co-op pint glass. A spicy aroma suggests black pepper and floral perfume. Wooden, musty hops balance well with a hint of chocolate & black patent malts.

Spicy hops continue their theme in the taste. Malts are crisp and lightly chocolate-coated, but the finish has a hint of metallic copper and other mineral notes. Still, the tight carbonation and creamy mouthfeel are a delight as Back in Black tacks on a snappy zest as the hoppiness lingers after each sip. All in all, a very solid Black IPA that drinks easily for the style. The mineral note is a bit of a distraction, but everything else melds harmoniously. Recommended.

Photo of thain709
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Served with a darker shade of brown body and some lighter ruby highlights...a one finger head stayed around for a little and showed some nice lacing

S - The nose is very hop forward...lots of citrusy hops...they are bold and juicy...some earthy tones but not a lot of roasted malt

T - The flavors turn around from the nose...the malts jump out first and present a pleasant roastiness across the palate...there is a brief bitter chocolate flavor that crosses in the middle of the beer...that bitter chocolate leads nicely into the bitter finish that the hops provide

M - Medium bodied...nice finish...smooth...no real complaints

D - This was a nice black IPA...the nose was very hop forward, but the flavors were malt forward with a nice hop finish...I would drink this again

Photo of DoctorDog
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: From a 12 oz. can into a nonic.

A- Brown. Pours with ~1+ fingers of off tan head, which fades gradually to a thin cap. Fair amount of lacing.

S- Piney, slightly herbaceous hopiness, with a roasty, biscuity, malty sweetness coming in behind the hops.

T- Herbaceous, citrus peel. A bit of acrid coffee bitterness. Sharp, fleeting citrusy sweetness. Unusual, hard to pin down flavors going on here...

M- Moderate carbonation and a medium-light feel. Slightly thin feel, and a bit astringent.

D- Decent. Easy drinking and interesting...

Future outlook: An interesting beer....a pretty decent experience, but probably not one that has moved me to buy again.

Photo of ToddT
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown almost black topped with a tan head. Head falls slowly to a ring but leaves little bits of lace on the glass.

S- Subtle aroma, some hops, caramel malt, and hints of oak. For suck a formidable looking beer the nose is kind of tame.

T- Sweet malt and some oak notes, big swell of hops in the middle that is subdued in bitterness but still forward on the palate. Finish is a struggle between the sweet malt and the bitterness of the hops with the bitterness and dryness of the hops coming out on top.

M- Medium in body and good carbonation, thinner in body that what I was expecting.

D- Decent drinkability a little sweet for my tastes, but the 7% ABV doesn't show through anywhere. Could be session able if you like sweet.

Not my favorite style of beer but a decent enough effort. Worth checking out.

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

Poured from 12oz can into SA Perfect Pint.

A. 3 finger head. Color of head is off white. Nice retention. Color is very dark brown almost black. Pretty thick lacing.

S. Smell is hoppy and malty. Has something going on in the aroma that I can't quite put my finger on.

T. Taste is somewhat unique as well. Some sweetness from the malt and a roasty dark characteristics balanced against some hop bitterness. Black IPA's have characteristics of quite a few different styles. Almost tastes like a porter.

M. Medium bodied. Medium carbonation. Finishes with a bit of bitterness.

D. Drinkable. Black IPA's are somewhat new to me. Don't know if it is one of my preferred styles. As for this beer it is pretty good. Nothing exceptional in the aroma or flavor department but good.

Photo of Arenbeer
3.33/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can thanks to UncleJimbo for throwing it in as an extra!

A- Pours a really nice dark dark brown that appears black out of the light. On top is a decent 1 finger off white head that doesn't stick around.

S- Dark roasted malts with some coffee and maybe some sweet chocolate. Slight hop presence but not to much. Definitely some fruitiness in there as well.

T- Strong roasted malts and coffee, take the flavor with a decent hop bitterness and fruitiness in the background.

M- Medium body with a lot of carbonation and a decent bitter finish.

SkÅL!

Photo of Florida9
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown, approaching black, in color, but edges reveal a chestnut color to this beer. Forms a big inch plus of khaki colored head. Decent retention, but little lacing.

S: Coffee, cocoa, and roasted malts.

T: Strongly pronounced dark roasted malts. Some citrus, maybe a metallic flavor as well. Moderate bitterness. Roasted flavor lingers on the finish.

M: On the lighter side of medium with appropriate carbonation. Drying.

D: A good beer, though not the best. Too heavy on the roasted malts for my preference, but the lightness of the beer does lend to an easier drinkability.

Photo of dudemuskie
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Snagged a single can at The Andersons in Toledo, OH!

Appearance- Deep brown with garnet highlights and a tall creamy, linger-n-lace beige head.

Aroma- Big, sticky grapefruit citrus nose with some grassy, herbal, and floral hop notes. Dusting of black malt hidden well below the blanket of hops with some biscuit-like maltiness also present. Very hop forward!

Flavor- Starts with nice bright citrusy hop kick that leads into a nicely balanced middle that mingles the big hops with a slightly sweet, fresh malt flavor. Finishes with a bit more malt complexity including the faint dusty black, almost chocolaty malt notes and a healthy dose of hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied, low-moderate CO2, nice balance but big hop presence. Low residual sugars and assertive hop bitterness makes this quite drinkable and almost refreshing, but the slightly bigger body might make this brew a bit filling after a full pint or two.

Overall- Mind bender of a beer because it feels like an IPA, with little other than color contribution from the dark specialty malt. I expected a lot more malt complexity/body out of this just eyeing it up! Well done black IPA and quite fun to drink!

Photo of beerhan
4.38/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Poured from a can into a pint glass. Beautiful thick head that just creeps towards the top of the glass. This has a real nice dark brown almost black color. A great blend of stoutiness and ipa. Smells very floral with a chocolatey feel. Tastes like caramel and grass. Interestingly enough an amazing combination. The only thing that this beer really loses points on is that I can still kind of taste can. I could drink this beer forever and it is quite cheap.

Photo of yesyouam
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

21st Amendment Back In Black is a clear, dim red-brown-black ale with a dense khaki head that has outstanding retention and lacing. It has a fruity and roasty aroma. It's pretty light bodied; a little watery and metallic with a pretty clean finish. It's quite bitter and dry; sharp and green. It's not very well balanced and not good for more than a pint.

Photo of dragonWhale
2.63/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Sometimes this is what happens when other people bring over. This should be better, though. Dark brown with rubies..Roast and sweet malt battle with grassy, floral hops. Fairly nice smell, though the taste is where it loses me.
Not bad, just doesn't seem like quite the right mixture of hops and malt. Too much roast/coffee? Perhaps just the wrong kettle hops? It's difficult to say what is off, but with this style, it just is a little hit and miss, and this one misses for me right now. Little metallic..
Hopefully the new brewer can put his stamp on this one. Or maybe this is his..

Photo of IronLover
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nearly black in color with a deep brown hue around the edge of the glass. Pours with a thick beige head that leaves lots of wet sticky lacings on the glass. Looks like it would be thick and chewy, but is surprisingly medium bodied with lively carbonation. Roasted malt and coffee aromas with a faint hint of citrus and dark fruit. Flavors are similar to aromas, with roasted malt and coffee flavors in the front, a bit of tangy citrus in the middle, and a dry finish with a slight piney hop finish. Pretty unique combination of flavors. Although I enjoyed it, I probably wouldn't be having 3 or 4 of these at one sitting.

Photo of ectomorph
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz can that states it is an American IPA brewed with rich dark malts, so I'm expecting some roasty/chocolate and not an IPA colored with sinimar... Served in a tulip.

A - Very dark, almost completely black except for ruby on the edges when held up to the light. Standard light tan head retains well with decent lacing.

S - Citrus and floral hops with a slight hint of sweet chocolate and caramel. Very pleasant.

T - Ok there is a LOT going on here. Moderate initial bitterness with a fair roasted presence. Big citrus hop flavors of orange rind and pine are battling with caramel and chocolate sweetness. While I was expecting the roasted aspect, this seems muddled to me.

M - Medium boded, big carbonation (almost too much), with a tart aftertaste/bite.

D - Medium to low. The ABV coupled with the palate confusion makes me think again.

Photo of JackieTH
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown/black with translucent ruby highlights.

Smell: Mildly roasted malt, citrus-lemony hop and earth.

Taste: Roasted malt and citrus hops. Subtle coffee and chocolate. Decent balance.

Mouthfeel: Thin bodied, smooth.

Drinkability: A mild black IPA that's unassuming, finishes clean, and is easy to drink.

Photo of zoso1967
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As one might expect, Back in Black pours a slightly transparent black. When I say slightly transparent, I pretty much mean only when held up to a bright light source does it show some clean motor oil like hues around the edges. The head is a surprisingly dark tan color, creamy, and stubborn in its staying power. It leaves some pretty serious lace on the sides of my glass. This is a beautiful looking beer.

It has a pretty powerful aroma full of slightly charred roasty malts and juicy citrus hops. There is also a fair amount of chocolate, and some pleasant bready malt sweetness. Everything is well integrated, and if you smell it without concentrating hard it adds up to just one singular and tasty aroma.

The flavor strikes me as much more complex. Right off the bat it is slightly smoky and leathery. Astringent charred malt comes in next, with roasty coffee and some bitter cocoa also making an appearance. Grapfruity citrus and pine are also there. If I was to describe the hop flavor in a picture I would draw a nice juicy ruby red grapefruit hanging from a pine branch. There is also a nice biscuity malt sweetness that combats most of the bitterness of this brew.

The mouthfeel is on the fuller side of medium. This is a smooth drinking beer that has a well crafted finish. This beer is neither too dry nor sweet and the slightly sticky aftertaste is chameleon like in its nature, vacillating between roasty, malty and hoppy.

This beer is fairly drinkable, but is one of those beers that I drink slowly just to appreciate all that is going on. The India black ale is still a young style, and the different interpretations I have had are all quite different, but one thing is for sure, this is one of the better examples I have tried thus far.

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

Pours a very thick head of rocky light tan foam, like that you'd see atop a root beer float. And the liquid is definitely black in the glass, after having poured out in a stream that was more like a glassy, oily dark brown. Some dark reddish tones are pulled out in the light. Immense lace stick, like webs of styrofoam. My god what a ridiculously good looking beer!

Nose is a roasty, toasty, even slightly burnt bit of malt. Like burnt popcorn and charred toast, with a coffee-like edge and a hint of steamed milk. Hops shine through all that darkness with a citrus-like brightness. What a contrast.

Taste: Charred/burnt malts are in control and not overpowering the palate, while a fruity, bright citrus spark flashes by, over and around the burnt stuff. It's a flavor that takes awhile to get the taste buds around, but here, in Back In Black, it very much works. It exhibits a healthy balance between two seemingly opposite poles. Dark, rough and dirty versus bright, tart and sweet.

Neither watery nor at all thick, the mouthfeel is one that is slick and slippery; round and present although subtle enough to let the delicate balance of the flavors take most of the attention. Almost reaches the creamy heights of the mighty Iniquity, but only almost. Very much does the job, is what it does.

This is my third can of this in as many days, and the first time I wasn't totally feeling it...the second go-around I started feeling more clued in to its secrets...and this third time I just totally get it. It helps that I really like this emerging style, and while this is no Iniquity, it can definitely stand as a good representation of the style.

Photo of robwestcott
2.65/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

poured from the can to a sun king shaped pint glass a dark cola color with a full finger loose bubbly mocha head leaving lace up the side of the glass.

strong aroma of floral hops and sweet candy.

sweet, tart and tangy, a very strange tasting brew. pungent floral, not at all agreeable.

thin, highly carbonated.

drinkable ?

Photo of BrewCrew2010
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: As it pours into the glass it's a brown color. However it sits in the glass opaque black with only brown highlights. A billowing and rocky head, light khaki color, sits on top that last forever leaving an amazing amount of lace.

S: A strong floral and citrus hop aroma balanced with sweet roasted malts. Very earthy smell.

T: A crisp flavor of floral hops with a citrus bitterness. Light chocolate malts are evident with hints of espresso.

M: A medium body beer with light carbonation. Creamy texture, yet dry finish.

D: Love this beer. Easy to drink, good price, great taste... all around- a must try.

Photo of hosehead83
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. can into a standard pint glass
Black in color with garnet highlights, and a moderate head of off-white foam.
Aroma-Faint roasted malt, citrus hop notes
Taste-Roasted malt, faint coffe and chocolate notes, a nice citric hop bite for balance.
Overall, pretty flavorful, if a bit thin-bodied, but not bad at all, especially out of a can.

Photo of biggerboat88
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a glass, this is a very dark IPA with a thick topping of light brown head. You get mostly sweet malts with some slight roasted aromas on the nose. The sweet malts come through first, I noticed some earthy undertones before the hops come through. There is a lingering bitterness that interplays with the malts as you continue to drink this one. The head faded rather quickly but left some considerable lacing on the glass. Another decent addition to the "Black IPA" family that seems to be quite popular right now. Very smooth and drinkable with an enjoyable little hop-bite.

Photo of rtepiak
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

the pour of a nice porter without any cloudy body. Nice mocha head. Simple lemon zest nose and floral soapiness. Brisk feel but rather simple but mild malt notes. Seems like color and not reinforcing the bright hop. Very subtle earth bitter and a hope for dimension. Simplistic jean backbone.

Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,997 ratings.