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Back In Black - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Back In BlackBack In Black

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

677 Reviews
THE BROS
72
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 677
Hads: 2,199
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 13.08%
Wants: 51
Gots: 299 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tpd975 on 11-23-2008

ABV varies around 7%.
65 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Back In Black Alström Bros
Reviews: 677 | Hads: 2,199
Photo of mothman
1.82/5  rDev -50.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I really cannot see how this beer has a B+

Poured into pint glass.

Pours 1/2 finger of light tan head. color is a dark copper brown with high clarity for how dark it is. Decent retention with some lace.

Aroma: Pepperonis and crushed black pepper. This beer actually smells like pizza. Roasted malts. Where are the hops?

Taste: Tons of pepper flavors. Grassy hops show with some bitterness. Roasted/smokey malts. This beer just doesn't work.

Mouthfeel: Spiced and roasted with a slight bitterness to it. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry and grassy.

Overall, not a very good beer, at all. It is actually quite terrible. Doesn't taste anything like a bipa. Hardy any fresh hops. Pretty much a drainpour. (733 characters)

Photo of mntlover
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black, deep drown with red when held to light. Head is tan two fingers that falls slow and laces well.

Aroma is roasted malt with nice piny hops thrown in to balance it out. Roasted some what weak coffee notes with hints of coco and pine.

Taste is roasted malt with more coffee thens present in the nose. Malt is not overly strong but then neither are the hops, Seems like a nice balanced brew. Hops are piny and leave a lingering bitterness in the finish but there not over powering. Nice crisp, dry brew with lots of flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium with carbonation thats not fizzy but pretty peppy.

Drinkability is good and enjoyable black IPA, perfect balance going on with out either side dominating. (713 characters)

Photo of mattcrill
4.42/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Slight roasty notes up front with piney, sticky resiny hop aromas that dominate. Clean American yeast character.

Appearance: Clear chocolate brown pour with leather edges. Tan sticky head that retains well.

Flavor: Lots of earthy, piney hop character. Balance is firmly bitter. Background roasty notes but just hints. All dominated by the American hops. Finish is clean, roasty, and dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with medium-high carbonation. Slight hop and grain derived astringency.

Overall impression: An easy drinking American Ale. Love this interpretation. Very glad we can get 21A in Central OH now. (617 characters)

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.61/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque warm sable with a thick, fine-bubbled, light tan head. Strong aroma is fairly hoppy with a firm undertone of citrus, mainly orange and a bit of grapefruit. Strong, hoppy flavor has smoky and nutty undertones and hints of chocolate and licorice. It fairly successfully marries most of the flavors I like in a stout or porter with the hoppy and citrus flavors I appreciate in an IPA. Maybe I should change my favorite sort of beer to black IPA. Texture is fairly smooth and fizzy with a slight tinny undertone. (524 characters)

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

16 ounce pint - $5.50 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Slowly served up on a busy Saturday night a clearish, very, very dark brown body with a slim, off-white head.

Smell: Aroma smelling of bitter cocoa bars, Maxwell House ground coffee, grapefruit, yellow pine, and light caramel wrapped up with an earthy character.

Taste: An initial rush of roastiness, followed by an expanse of pale malts, more than anticipated. Of the various malt tastes, bittersweet chocolate leads, with lesser tastes of simple coffee and caramel trailing behind. Blend of citrusy, piney hops deliver a moderate amount of bitterness. Maybe a small hint of herbs lurking in there as well. Then, the taste rolls back towards the dark malts, leaving you with a close tasting of chocolate and coffee.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: It's black, it's bitter, but the hop profile, while certainly present, wasn't (thankfully) abrasive and as such, it kind of reminded me of Avery's New World Porter. (1,014 characters)

Photo of SkunkWorks
3.82/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the Lark in East Northport, New York. Served in a pint glass.

It was dark in color like a stout and had very little head, but I think that was a consequence of the pouring. The smell is strong with the maltiness and the hoppiness (grapefruit and citrus hops). The taste is a little chocolatey, mostly malty and a little bit of hops. The mouthfeel is smooth and medium bodied. Its very drinkable and is a very approachable beer.

Overall, its pretty decent. I don't think I'd have again but I'm glad i had it once. Definitely worth a try. (553 characters)

Photo of lstokes
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark and very fragrant--you can really smell the grapefruit and citric hops on this one as well as some nice cocoa undertone.

The taste picks up on the smell but adds some coffee and brown sugar, and the mouthfeel is a little on the light side but still very wonderfully drinkable. It's one of the lighter, more approachable dark IPAs I've had, and I would definitely drink it again. (389 characters)

Photo of Thiestru
4.47/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12-oz. can into my Terrapin pint glass.

Appearance: A dark, transparent, porter-like color. I poured this too hard, which resulted in a billowy two-finger, creamy head.

Smell: The style is evident in the smell, as both the malt and hop scents are very strong.

Taste: Surprisingly refreshing! This is not very bitter, but the hops are there; the real star is the sweet, pleasant maltiness. It's a little chocolatey, very like a porter.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. I don't normally pay much attention to this aspect of beer, but here it stands out.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink. This is the kind of beer I find myself gulping, however I try not to. This is the first beer I've had from 21st Amendment, and I'm impressed. Check it out. (758 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As The CANQuest (TM) approaches # 350 (!?!), I decided to give the nod to the Tallgrass people, but in order to do so, I had to insert a CAN of someone else's beer as either 348 or 349. This is number 348 on this journey. CAN you dig it?

The ol' Crack & Glug produced a solid two-fingers of deep-tan foam with excellent retention. It looked like the top of a root beer float. Color was NOT black, as a previous reviewer noted, but instead a deep, dark-brown with cola highlights. Nose was rich with piney hops. I have missed drinking IPAs with the preponderance of CANned beers coming in the form of AALs. I don't get a hop jones like I used to, but neither have I kicked the hop habit. Thank Bob that the chattering monkey on my back has gone away, though. Mouthfeel was medium with a solid hop bite initially followed by a roastiness in the mouth. Wow! What a brilliant way to play with the style. Finish was dry with a magnificent interplay between the hops and dark malts mentioned on the CAN. I am not sure that it would be terribly refreshing on the beach, but it definitely merits inclusion in the cooler in a limited quantity. Put it towards the back, on the bottom, next to the Ten Fidy for the end of the day. Great lacing throughout! (1,245 characters)

Photo of Spider889
3.59/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice and black, decent lace, this beer smells of aggressive hops (Columbus or something similar) that are not as pleasant - floral/cirtrussy - as some. Plenty of pine notes. Bitter but drinkable this is a beer that I wouldn't mind several of, but the malt doesn't play much more of a role other than color-indicator. Some caramel malt in the nose and slight burnt bread on the finish. Dry aftertaste. (400 characters)

Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured a deep black hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a resinous hop and roasted malt.

The taste consisted of a moderate hop spice with a residual roasted barley.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a nice black IPA. Could use a bit more hop presence. (379 characters)

Photo of THORN
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 Fl. Oz. can poured into pint glass. Served about 45 F.
A: Black with red around the edges. Retains a quarter inch of bubbly tan head.
S: Dark toasted malts.
T: toasted dark malts and bitter hops. A ferric after taste is very apparent.
M: Very light on tongue.
D: After taste ruins any flavor that comes before. (314 characters)

Photo of Brideshead
3.61/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very dark, as the name would suggest...but some brown tinge. Quite a nice head, with moderate retention and nice lace.

Smell: The Sweetish/Bitter combination of toasted malt and bitter cocoa/burnt coffee is quite memorable.

Taste: This is an IPA worth trying, mostly due to the heavy and sweet presence of toasted malts. The bitterer hop presence follows up, along with a bitter cocoa taste. The feel in the mouth is thickish and full. Overall, immensely drinkable, but perhaps not quite as nicely complex as some other options...like Dogfish Head's 190minute IPA. (578 characters)

Photo of mdwalsh
3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Well, if there was ever a beer that looked like Coca Cola, this was it. The beer is dark brown (NOT black) with a decent to small beige head. A little active carbonation, but overall, not a very inspiring beer. From the looks it should have been a brown ale.

S: There's hops here, mildly spicy but also a little citrusy. But the roasted malt is really strong as well. There's a lot going on here and the aromas are fighting it out, not to the pleasure of my nose. I get a little burnt coffee, but then a wife of orange peel followed by a lingering, very light pine smell.

T: The taste leaves a lot to be desired, but not so much as the aroma. The hops take a back seat to the roast, but they linger much longer and the balance works better. Still, not anywhere near an IPA in my book.

M: Light, very appropriate for an IPA type beer.

D: I'm not a fan at all, if this were my beer I would tweak a little bit and make something more like a Schwarzbier out of it. (967 characters)

Photo of jdoncbus
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown leather, fluffy tan head that sticks nicely to the SA turbulator glass. Active carbonation creates nice visuals when held up to a light.

Malt dominates the nose. Whiffs of dark roasted grain, coffee, and butterscotch-carmel. Cutting through it all is a raisin, citrus fruit smell; interesting.

Similar to the nose the malt takes control of this offering; giving the drinker a nice taste of burnt grains and a pinch of coffee; almost reminds me of a smoke beer. The hops are not overpowering in the least but manage to cut through the malt onslaught to a degree. It does its job of balancing it all out.

Smooth mouthfeel, almost creamy on initial contact. The hops manage to dry things up a bit at the end; performing a little mop up duty.

A very nice change up for the hopheads out there (me included). As the leaves start to fall, I can see myself putting a few of these down. In tne end it is a nice, ballanced beer. (943 characters)

Photo of xnicknj
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

can poured into pint glass

A - Pours super dark with a slight brown hue around the edges of the glass. A frothy, bubbly head nearly erupts right over the rim of the pint glass with a slightly tan hint. The retention is nearly everlasting, forming a substantial layer over the beer with an abundance of stringy lacing.

S - An array of heavier malts and dark scents. Grain, malt, and a healthy helping of caramel all swirl together.

T - It seems to have a tendency to wander while tasting, as toasted grains and caramel malt begin the initial wave of flavor. Bitter hops attempt to break through, especially during the finish, but a decent amount of dryness from the malts and a touch of coffee continues to linger, which appears to impact the hop profile.

M/D - There's a relatively chewy, medium body, as the silky smooth feel makes it an easy beer to drink.

This is decent enough, but it almost feels like a cross between multiple styles (porter, ipa, stout) which can confuse the palate. (996 characters)

Photo of Ricochet
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the first true "craft brewed" beer I've ever had from the can. I have been meaning to try Dale's , but never have. When I saw this at my "weird beers" store, I figured I'd give it a go. I took a swig from the can too, just to see.. Yep. It's what I thought. Damn good taste from a can. So, I poured and let's get to review:

A:Black. No see thru here, Poured with average head, but thick lace, sticky to the glass. Porter? Anyone? IPA! Hmmm.

S: Porter anyone? IPA! Hmmm. Coffee note is the strongest but a malty smell, like Co-Co Wheats brings up the rear. I also get the distinct smell of ice cream cones? That's different.

M: Bursts creamy in the mouth, washes with coffee bitter but aftertaste of bitter dark chocolate. Very nice.

T: Heh. This isn't from a can. It's a joke right? As I see more brewers are doing it, I say GO! When I took the tour of Yuengling Tampa, the tour guide said the boss hates canning. I say, WHY? Let's start with the coffee like bitterness then get into the follow through which adds a sharp malty-ness that really asserts itself. Sharp malty-ness? I said it. It bursts out in front of the hops but not enough to dominate.

D: I'd love to have this beer when everyone else is drinking Bud light...or maybe I need new friends. (1,269 characters)

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours as expected, black, consistency a little thin w a beige head. Aroma was burnt malt and big on the bitterness.

Taste comes in a little soapy, after a few sips, it acts as better friends w yr palate, the bitterness melds with the hops, just takes some time to get it all together. Leads to a good mouthfeel, a dank dark resonance on the tongue. This one seems to be a bit of a palate wrecker. (398 characters)

Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I like it when canned beers are tasty. Pours a dark brown-black, nearly opaque, with some chocolatey head. Smell is pretty typical of a black IPA, though I would love it to be a bit more hop-forward like fresh Iniquity or Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous. Roasted malts, piney hops, and a hint of chocolate take the main stage on the nose. Taste is the same--bright kick of resinous hops on the start, quickly overwhelmed by some dark roast malts with dark chocolate underneath. Bitterness re-emerges on the finish, which is lingering. MF is pretty good, standard for the style except that it might be a little thin. Smooth though. Drinkability is really good. I could make a quick session out of this stuff, well done. (717 characters)

Photo of Wiiare138
4.24/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wanted to try a new beer. The packaging jumped out at me in the store so I went for it.

Decided not to pour into a glass. Had straight outta the can.
I gotta say Its a little low on the hops to be called an IPA, they are there it's just not the punch I'm used to.

Each sip is super foamy-frothy, with some roasty-toasty afterbits. Very very dry beer after sip. It makes me thirsty for another one, but that wouldn't help a bit.

All in all I wouldn't buy again(maybe) but if it was bought for me I couldn't complain (521 characters)

Photo of Kolsch
3.46/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz can poured into sniffer.

Appearance: Stout like with nice 1' mocha head. Can see through when brought up to light.

Smell: malty dark cocoa with a slight hop resin

Taste: Taste started out malty and stayed malty. Hops were subdued to say the least. Malt dominated as I detected chocolate, slight raisins and smoke. Not sure this should be classified as a black IPA. More closely resembles a stout or porter.

Overall: Classifications aside, this is a pretty good stout and one I will have again. Just don't call it a Black IPA....not even close. (553 characters)

Photo of Dubber55
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First black ipa. Here we go:

Dark brown/black. When held up to the light, its looks dark brown. 2 finger mocha head.

Smells hoppy, grassy, and a little metallic.

Flavor is hoppy but not really piney. Not really citrusy either. A little earthy/grassy. I taste some roast as well. Definitly a unique take on the style. I have never had an ipa with a flavor profile like this but, its pretty good. Its a little bitter but not too crazy. I guess I would have liked some more hops. Dry on the finish.

Mouthfeel is solidly medium. Carbonation is medium to high

Drinkability is good. The roasted flavor is bit drying but I think I could drink a few of these. (656 characters)

Photo of claspada
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours fairly black/dark with a nice toffee colored quickly dissipating head.

Aromas are caramel, robust, toffee malts; definitely some piny/resiny hops as well.

The taste is really nice; almost a robust porter taste to it; def not your average light/watery Schwartzbier. It still has that IPA piny/citrusy hop character taste to it to remind you that you are not drinking a porter.

Overall I loved the smooth taste; wouldn't drink a whole 6 pack of this but a few could be in order. I really enjoy this new Cascadian Black IPA style, not the best one I've had but still good. (578 characters)

Photo of hogwildhogwild
1.35/5  rDev -63.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Got a 6 pack from WholeFoods and I never even finished a can. Tried pouring into a glass, drinking it out of the can, either way it was terrible. Resiny hop bitterness, dingy malt character, and an unpleasent sweetness from underattenuation. All in all this is in my top 5 worst beers in the bay area. (301 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep copper color to black with a light tan head. In the aroma, roasty coffee and a small hop presence. In the taste, just like the aroma, roasty coffee and a small pine like hop. A small bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry, roasty, coffee aftertaste. Kind of like a hoppy porter. (297 characters)

Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 677 ratings.