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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

1,900 Ratings
THE BROS
72
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,900
Reviews: 652
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 13.55%
Wants: 43
Gots: 140 | 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: 1,900 | Reviews: 652 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of biggerboat88
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
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.

biggerboat88, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of rtepiak
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
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.

rtepiak, Oct 03, 2010
Photo of Vonerichs
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown with little light passing through with off white head. It resembles a cola.

Smell is citrus hops with a light roasted malt. Not very aromatic.

Taste is citrus and floral hop profile with an addition of burnt malt.

Mouthfeel is thin and crisp. Slightly bitter.

Good drinkability. A decent black ipa.

Vonerichs, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of Tucquan
3.23/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on 2010-10-02 in Columbia, PA. This is my 200th review.

A - Dark brown with a two-finger, tan head

S - Dried plums, mild roasted grain and mild licorice.

T - Not my cup of tea. Initial sour mash followed by sour rotted fruit, metallic, meat, then dried plum sweetness and significant bitterness.

M - Light body and medium carbonation

D - I'll pass on this one.

Tucquan, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of Risser09
2.7/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

12 oz can into a tall pilsner - fridge - 2010

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, but not quite black color with orange highlights. The head is a towering 3.5" in my glass and shows great retention. Tons of sticky lace on the glass.

Smell: Citrus, probably from centennial is strong and clinging. A nice, toasted malt backbone of chocolate and sweet molasses. A nice balance.

Taste: A ton of flavor that results in quite a cacophony. Lots and lots of espresso, chocolate nibs and even a tannic astringency of bitterness. That hops are strong, bitter and lingering. This is too much for me.

Mouthfeel: Sweet, leathery, malty, bitter and lengthy. Medium bodied, ample alcohol and tons of malt.

Drinkability: This beer has it all, but at what cost? It's so confusing and clashing that I don't really enjoy it very much. I understand the attempt being made, but don't agree with the overall result of the flavors. I would leave this one.

Risser09, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of dpnelson1978
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. can into glass pint.
40°F

$1.75 / ea.

A: Bright deep brown body topped with a tan two finger head of fantastic retention that leaves generous lacing and a thick rocky head. Really nice.

S: Piny hops dominate the aroma with a hint of peach citrus and mild roasted nuts and coffee.

T: Strong coffee flavors blended with a posted deep roasted malt character. The hops are piny, and the beer in general comes off as a bitter porter. The aftertaste is mild, and does not accumulate. The beer is good, but I'm not really sure how to grade it with regard to style.

M: Light body with high carbonation. Very crisp.

D: Very sessionable for me, but it may confuse some. The body is light, the flavor interesting, and finish crisp. If nothing else you will have some fun talking about it!

O: The blend of a stout and IPA will either please people, or offend two different expectations. Interesting beer none-the-less.

dpnelson1978, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of steve8robin
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Wanted to try this one for a little while. 12oz can...

A: Super dark with very faint ruby highlights around the edges when held up to the light. Super, super thick 2 inch off white head that fades at a slow pace. Very good.

S: Bitter, grassy hop scents upfront with a hint of chocolate and caramel on the backend. I get some breadiness in the middle. Good.

T: Hmm, almost tastes like a porter blended with an IPA. A creamy coffee taste upfront quickly followed by a nice blend of bitter hop, but not super bitter. Very dry brew. I get some booziness on the backend. I get some malts hidden in the back. Good.

M: Medium body with a medium carbonation. Ok.

D: This one goes down a lot easier than expected. Very good.

All in all, this is a solid brew. Glad to get to try it. Definitely good if you're looking for an interesting take on an IPA or if you're a fan of Black & Tan's. If you're looking for the straight and narrow though, don't worry about this one.

steve8robin, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of kingcrowing
2.55/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz can poured into a Duvel snifter.

Pours a pitch black silky smooth color with a nice solid one finger deep brown head with lots of cratering and sticky lacing. Nose is very sweet, malty and it almost smells a bit like Belgian yeast, interesting. There are some hops but it's not over the top.

Wow, taste is something different, I'm not sure if I like it. It's a bit metallic (I don't attribute that to the can), and has a somewhat sharp tang. It's fairly acidic and harsh, a bit grainy as well. There are some hops because I do get bitterness on this but it seems more like bitterness from roasted malt. Mouthfeel is fairly watery, with very light but sharp carbonation. It's not so easy drinking and it leaves a bit of an off flavor in your mouth. Honestly I'm a bit disappointed in this.

kingcrowing, Oct 01, 2010
Photo of sixerofelixir
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. My first can of craft beer! The mostly black can has a sweet picture of a patriot on a motorcycle.

Beer pours a very dark, almost opaque brown. A nice billow of tan head sticks to the glass. Smell is unique, high-pitched malts combined with an herbal hops. All-in-all sharp, but very nice. Taste is nicely complex as well. Dark, toasty, campfire malts meld into a pleasantly bitter finish. Feel is nicely carbonated, and deceivingly dry and thin at the end. The only drawback is that this beer is so "varied" that I could only have a few at one sitting. For that though, a good beer, and a great introduction to craft beer in a can.

sixerofelixir, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of beer2day
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown pour with 1-finger tan head. No retention but nice lace.

Cascade weak on the nose. Roast malt comes through a little stronger.

Nice roast flavor up front, with Substantial chocolate malt and coffee. Hop note is milder than expected but still nice.

Medium feel for a beer this rich.

Nice beer. Worth a glass or two.

beer2day, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of NCSUdo
4.15/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz can

A: Black body under a medium sized tan head. Good lace and retention. Good looking beer.

S: Toasted and chocolate malt mixed with some grapefruit/pine hops. Pretty balanced.

T: Some chocolate, toasted, mildy roasted malt mixed with some grapefruit and pine hop. Bitterness is about medium, and balances very well.

M/D: Medium to full bodied, carbonation is a touch high. Drinkability is very good. Overall, a very solid beer.

NCSUdo, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of magine
4.08/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a nonic glass.

Pours a near black brew, with some ruby shined through on the edges. Tan head with massive chunky head that settles to a lace island and has great lacing throughout. Very good looking brew.

Brew smells of hops, nutty malts. Piney hops, maybe even grapefruit, nutty earth malts. Decent smell.

Brew is smooth and on medium feeling, slightly thin and carbonated. Very good flavor balance; nutty flavors, piney and fruit hops. Brew finishes a tad bit bitter and slightly dry. Has a oily resin noticed as you drink. This is a very good tasting brew.

The brew is thin enough to session like crazy. I bought a case and I am very pleased. This will be gobbled up for a nice session, at 6.8% it will catch up with you. Very good stuff. My first from 21st Amendment, certainly impressed.

magine, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of ujsplace
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an oversized tulip.

This brew is black with a thick, frothy two-fingered tan head. Nice lacing and a thin, wispy layer is left as the head is reduced to a chunk sitting in the middle of the layer.

Smells of roasted malts and citrus hops with a piney resinous smell in there as well.

Initially tastes of big citrus hops that is balanced nicely with a nice maltiness that is like dark chocolate, coffee and nutty. The finish is an astringent pine-like hoppiness.

Medium bodied, nicely carbonated.

An easy drinking brew that definitely doesn't let you forget that this is an IPA. Would easily buy a case of this stuff. This is a very sessionable brew.

ujsplace, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of ArrogantB
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can purchased at Beverage World in Ft. Oglethorpe, GA $2. Dark black color, decent lace, short head. Smells roasty, like a porter. Tastes very much like a porter and nothing like an IPA, it wasn't even hoppy. I have no idea how old this was but I am really starting to doubt the whole black IPA phenomenon. Its like most of them are just porters and the really hoppy ones still don't make me think IPA. Hoppy black ale would be a better moniker for these shits.

ArrogantB, Sep 24, 2010
Photo of WesWes
4.2/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark brown/black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice black and roasted malt scent along with a refreshingly bitter, citrus hop aroma. The taste is good. It has a killer, citrus hop bite up front laid over a bed of black and roasted malt flavors. It's dry and roasted with a fresh hop character that resinates in the finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking black IPA. The hop character is outstanding; very fresh and flavorful.

WesWes, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of DIM
3.45/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

a: This was pretty far short of black, more of a dark, reddish brown color. It poured with a thick, craggy, and super-sticky head.

s: Kind of an odd nose, but it works well enough. I found some gentle, porter like roast and healthy dose of citrus.

t: Here again, an odd juxtaposition of flavors the works, but I can't say I loved it. I tasted roasty, chalky, porter like cocoa up front. The finish wasn't all that bitter, but the pine/citrus flavors came through.

m: Despite, or possibly because of, the robust head thses feel kind of lifeless and watery.

d: These aren't bad, but I won't in a hurry to buy more without freshness dates.

DIM, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of Natural510
4.08/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, dark brown with thick, dense off-white head with a creamy consistency.
Tangy, bitter nose with alternating notes of roasted malt and grapefruit rind.
Dry, roasted malt with charcoal character meets a sour, tart citric hop.
Full in mouthfeel & body, this one is sturdy.
My first of the style, unlike any other "IPA" I've had. This is not only due to the roasted malt character, but the utter lack of sweetness to the ale. I like.

Natural510, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Back in Black is beautiful, sweet, and flat.

It poured black (!) with a huge creamy tan head. It left a wall of lace from the rim of the glass to bottom. The head and lace were as impressive as any I've seen. The smell and taste were sweet with hints of licorice. The feel was flat and slippery; there was no bitterness to balance the sweetness and no impression left on the tongue.

Back in Black has drinkability that belies it's look. It's smooth and thirst-quenching and is suitable for drinking more than one on a hot afternoon. The flavor and feel are like flat cola or root beer; however, with nothing lasting.

MetalHopHead6, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of grittybrews
3.9/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a cola black into a Duvel tulip with two fingers of light tan head (excellent retention and some sticky lacing). Slightly sweet and roasty aroma of coffee, toast, and caramel with only a hint of hops.

Moderate carbonation and a full, creamy mouthfeel. Roasty chocolate and toast up front followed by creamy notes and some bitter lemon on the finish. Not my favorite example of the black IPA style, but still very nice. Light overall feel and quite refreshing, even if all the flavors don't quite gel together.

grittybrews, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of jjanega08
3.2/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= The pour is a moderate dark color. Clearly transparant when held to the light and even when not it has some ruby edges on it. The head is a nice perfect two fingers high with thick rocky foam on top of it. The heads color is an off white not quite tan color.

S= Nice piney hop profile to it. Not much in the fruity hop department at all mostly just piney hops. The roasty character comes through a little in the nose but not much. A little bit of sweetness makes itself present.

T= The taste is really intense coffee flavor. More coffee than hops by far. The hops do make themselves present but not nearly as much as the coffee and roast malt. I'm a person who believes there is a difference in the CDA and a hoppy stout. This is just a hoppy stout. It doesn't have the balance it should.

M= This is actaully pretty good. Velvety and creamy.

D= Not a bad beer but I would venture out to say that it doesn't fit the style very well.

jjanega08, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of JoePat
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark brown with a thick kaki head. Not sure if that can be considered a black IPA but it is definately a dark brown IPA.

Very intriguing aroma. Chocolate and roasted malts and maybe some smoke. I don't get a lot of hops but the malts are so aromatic I'm not sure I want to. Once I drink it I get some hop citrusy hop aroma.

The flavor is chocolaty, caramel, some piney hops but not much. I am not sure I can put this up there with IPAs. That is a shame because I really like this beer for a porter and I am getting something like a chili pepper flavor that I am loving. For a Black IPA not so good for a chili pepper infused porter...great.

The mouthfeel is spot on. Creamy, smooth and just the right consistancy.

I am reviewing this beer as a porter because I really like it but just don't see the black IPA it is suposed to be.

JoePat, Sep 21, 2010
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 flagmantho
3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz can into a pint glass.

Appearance: extremely deep amber color, bordering on black. Plenty of red light is allowed through when held up to a light source. Head is one finger of fizzy tan foam which dissipates somewhat rapidly. It's not precisely black, nor at all IPA looking, but it's not bad.

Smell: somewhat chocolately roasted malt aroma with a bit of acidic sourness present. Hops are somewhat earthy and not especially prominent at this phase. This smells rather like an American porter.

Taste: plenty of sourness and a bit of the roast character remains. Hops seem slightly citrusy and slightly floral, with an earthy bitterness toward the end. The sourness dominates the beginning, though, with maltier flavors coming in toward the end. This is kind of a bizarre tasting beer which defies standard classifications; it's not too bad, though.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with an OK level of carbonation. Nothing really exciting here.

Drinkability: not bad at all. The sourness does keep me coming back and I find this beer refreshing for all its weirdness. Made a pretty good tailgating beer yesterday as well.

flagmantho, Sep 19, 2010
Photo of dubc19382
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my first Black IPA and I must say I was quite impressed. It pours looking like you are ready to drink a stout beer, but this is one of those few beers where looks can be decieving.

Great hoppy taste and you really want to have one after another, but that 6.8% ABV really limits how much you can handle. Very drinkable beer with a nice hoppy taste in your mouth.

Will definitely get another case of this and I highly reccommend to other IPA drinkers who havent tried the Black IPA style yet.

dubc19382, Sep 19, 2010
Photo of metter98
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear very dark brownish amber in color. It poured with a thin beige head that quickly died down into persistent lacy patterns. There is a light amount of carbonation visible from the rising bubbles.
S: There are aromas of piney hops and roasted malts in the nose along with some hints of coffee.
T: The beer has a very good balance between the flavors of hops and malts and only has a mild amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a slight amount of dryness.
D: The beer is very easy to drink because the alcohol is well masked.

metter98, Sep 19, 2010
Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 1,900 ratings.