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Black Oak Ten Bitter Years - Black Oak Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Black Oak Ten Bitter YearsBlack Oak Ten Bitter Years

Educational use only; do not reuse.

67 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 67
Hads: 152
Avg: 4.18
pDev: 13.88%
Wants: 11
Gots: 12 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Black Oak Brewing Co. visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 11-26-2009

Our 10 Bitter Years has been voted Canada’s best Imperial IPA. For us it celebrates a decade of survival in the craft brewing industry. It was first brewed as an anniversary beer when Black Oak turned ten. Categorized as a Double IPA, it has perfect balance between caramel malt body and hop bitterness. Double dry hopping, using three different varieties of hops, creates lots of flavour and hop aroma. You’ll smell pine, grapefruit, mango and pineapple. All that malt and hops balance it’s exotic character and provides just enough alcohol warmth to enhance the flavour. The exact ingredients are top secret and we are sworn to secrecy. It’s so popular we can’t keep it in stock (Please take smaller sips).

We hope you enjoy our special edition anniversary beer.

PS Ken’s still bitter.
View: Beers (26) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 67 | Hads: 152
Reviews by decimator:
Photo of decimator
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

650ml bottle poured in a mug. ABV 8%.

A - Poured a clear deep gold with a 2cm frothy head. The head reduced to an everlasting foamy cap. Good lacing.

S - Pine, grapefruit, citrus, some herbs, some spice, caramel in the background. Damn that smell is addictive.

T - Caramel, malts, and then its all hops. Pine, grapefruit, other nondescript citrus and tropical fruit, hint of spiciness, hint of tobacco. Plenty of bitterness yet the balance is amazing.

M - Medium carbonation, medium-heavy body, some heat in the finish.

O - Very drinkable for an DIPA. One of the best I've had so far.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of CantankerousCaveBear
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bomber purchased from LCBO- poured into Tulip glass

The appearance of the beer is amber, burnt orange or even saffron in colouration, depending upon the lighting. There are some streaks of red and gold. Head is a cream white, about 2 fingers worth. It is hazy and turbid upon pouring. Carbonation seems to be on the higher side of things.

The nose is quite lovely. Immediately hit with grapefruit, pineapple, resin, orange rind, pine, and delicate floral notes. I can detect a malt presence, a shot of caramel, and biscuit in the background. Upon warming, I can detect some further smells of intense peach and mango.

Taste is crisp, medium body, with a smooth and oily mouthfeel. Finish is long, bitter and dry. You can detect a certain pithy quality and earthiness in the finish. Really smooth, drinks like a regular IPA, alcohol is only present in a warming sensation, there is no astringency. Again, the juicy tastes of jaffa orange, mandarins, blood orange, grapefruit, peach and mango are all present. Powerful citrus and pine notes are underpinned by a toffee/caramel/honey malt backbone.

Delicious, and almost restrained in a way. A treat to have. One of the better examples of the style in this province. I like sweet and juicy DIPA/IIPAs and this fits the bill.

Edit: Having another bomber, the malt backbone is sweeter and tastier than I remember!

 1,371 characters

Photo of beerhunter13
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of coffee84
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Volo as part of Black Oak Tap Takeover.

Poured into a nonic. Ruby amber, good frothy head, nice lacing.

Rich hoppy nose - notes of citrus, pine, grapefruit, malt sweetness.

I tip my cap to you, Black Oak - this was bloody terrific. The perfect melding of hoppy and malty sweetness made for one damned enjoyable sipper. Almost chocolately was the malt, but the hops certainly held true. Great stuff. Moderate carbonation and body, slight creamyness.

Run, don't walk to the bar if you see this on tap.

 513 characters

Photo of mjtiernan
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of chickenm
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of djcreepshow
3.77/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of biboergosum
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

650ml bottle - wow, I've tried to acquire this perennial Canadian Top Beer list denizen for a while now, only to have it plunk onto the shelves of my local bottleshop, of course. Not that I'm complaining.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium copper amber colour, with two pudgy fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and mildly bubbly ecru head, which leaves some low-lying fog bank lace around the glass as it lazily recedes.

It smells of edgy and somewhat metallic pine and spruce tip bitters, acrid citrus pith, gritty and grainy caramel malt, some dried-out honey, and more leafy, floral, and pugnaciously herbal hoppiness. The taste is grainy, lightly doughy caramel malt, a further faint biscuity toffee sweetness, some chalky flintiness, muddled fleshy citrus, and a rather heady leafy, herbal, grassy, and floral green hop bitterness.

The carbonation is fairly restrained in its come-hither frothiness, the body a decent middleweight, and generally smooth, the various hoppy esters stepping outside for a smoke, or something. It finishes off-dry, the base caramel malt holding tight, while the piney, citrusy, and herbal hops start to consider why that 16-proof booze hasn't quite shown up yet (or maybe that's just me).

Overall, a pleasant, and mildly challenging DIPA, the hop schedule leaning more towards the green forest floor, rather than the fruity side of the spectrum. I am happy to report that this is one of those quasi-whales that certainly lives up to the expectations built up around it, for better or for worse.

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Photo of mintjellie
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Orange toned copper in colour; capped by off-white foam that, here and there, clings to the walls of my glass in small patches. Ten Bitter Years smells citric and tropical, also showing notes of bread and cedar. It's a laser guided tangerine bomb aimed straight for my taste buds, leaving behind an aftermath of citrus pith, pine, and lingeringly embittered taste buds. Mildly sweet. Medium bodied and smoothly carbonated. Feels oily, resinous, and a little bit sticky. Sadly staring at my empty glass, I wish I had more of this extremely moreish drink. It's a damned shame this is a one off.

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Photo of Tmappin
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Sammy
3.78/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on-tap at Rhino's. This beer is the rage, and a rare DIPA in the Ontario market, worth the try. Pours cloudy grapefruit with sitting pretty white crowning head, and a sheet of lace. Hop aromas. The taste is big bitter, with malting to tame it somewhat. A DIPA all the way, and alcohol is well hidden. Full mouthfeel.

Had on cask at Volo's, and the aroma came through a little stronger, the drinkability better, however the appearance and mouthfeel were not the same. Just as good, overall, on cask, which is saying a lot.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - hazy red copper hue, tall off white head held steady, decent spot lacing
S - peppery and earthy notes with hints of butterscotch and mild pine
T - earthy and peppery hops up front, light grains and caramel, touch of piney hops on the late finish along with alcohol sweetness, nicely balanced for a DIPA
M - almost drinks too easy for a beer of this stature, nice bitterness throughout, crisp dry through the finish
O - this is so well balanced without sacrificing the best aspects of a good DIPA, big flavours and very drinkable, a must try if you are an IPA fan

 566 characters

Photo of randallpink
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of jsnoek
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of eat
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Volo. Very nice appearance. Clear and dark-amber in colour with a finger of off-white head. Wicked lacing, though the retention could be improved.

This smells American! Pineapple, grapefruit, flowers, tangerine, candy malt. Tons of hops. Ridiculous smell, for a Canadian IPA.

This is one of the most American Canadian IPAs I've had. Tons of hops: pineapple, grapefruit and grass along with some wheaty cracker. There's enough malt to serve as a good base, but the hops definitely outweigh it, like many of the great American IPAs. Not balanced...in a good way! The ABV wasn't listed on the chalkboard at Volo and for some reason I didn't think to ask, just assuming it was in the area of 5%. I didn't think twice about this, going to show how well the extra ABV is covered up. There was no style listed at Volo, so I'm not quite sure what to review this as. I wouldn't say it's a double IPA; more like a strong regular IPA, somewhere in the middle of the two.

Great medium body and lightly carbonated. The feel pairs very well with the flavour.

Maybe an evening of sampling good-but-slightly-disappointing beers biased this review, but I definitely think this is an awesome IPA. Pretty much as good as any I've had. This could very well be the best Ontario-brewed beer I've tried. It really tastes like it was brewed somewhere else, not in meek little Ontario. These hops are not polite. Hopefully other Ontario brewers take Black Oak's lead.

 1,460 characters

Photo of Reinheitsgebot71
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had the chance to sample this one on tap at rhino while waiting for my girlfriend to return from a meeting.

What came to my table was a beautiful clear dark amber beer with a very nice thick off white head to crown it.

The aroma was simply wonderful. A powerful fruity, floral hoppiness greets the nose. Aromas of blond raisins and peaches drizzled with fine honey mingle3 beautifully with a hint of malt toastiness and hope resin character.

A fine bitterness first hits the palate followed by caramel coated peaches and other fruits playing around in the mouth. Rich honey malt sweetness with a sense of infused spices perfectly plays between resinous hop flavours. The bitter sweet ballet works wonders on the tongue all backed up by a wonderful viscous full body which is marvelously smooth.

Well I think my girlfriend put it best when she sipped the beer and I quote "holy shit that really is 10 bitter years" as she scoffed, She's not much of a hop head. An excellently balanced beer with a wondrous bitter taste and aroma, a pity this is only a one off as its one of the best I've had from an Ontario brewer.

 1,121 characters

Photo of DaveBar
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

Purchased at the LCBO for an pricey $6.50. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a nice white heat that is gone pretty quick. Very dark gold color

S- Lots of.... yup you guessed it.... hops, roasted malt and barley.

T- See above!! Plus a lot of caramel and grapefruit.

M- Very dry

O- Very good but very expensive. Will not buy again just due to price

Food Pairing

This wonderful little IPA went well with...... take out Chinese food. All sorts and a good assortment!


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Photo of Rutager
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Pours a nice looking hazy orange-gold with half a finger of cream coloured head that leaves some nice bands.

Smell. Toasted malt and sweet caramel, Some pine sap and alcohol with a little yellow grapefruit rind.

Taste. Wow!. Big citrusy, piney and a little bit grassy hops and bitter yellow grapefruit juice and rinds, some roasty toasty grains. Good, lasting oily bitterness. Really nice.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body, medium-low carbonation.

Overall. Wow! A really great dipa here. I would love some more of these some time!

Thanks TheSevenDuffs!

 564 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark amber color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of citrus and piney hops is quite dominant with some light spicy notes (some rye malt maybe). Taste is also dominated by powerful citrus and piney notes with some bitterness with light spicy notes and a dry malt backbone. Body is average for style with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Well brewed and very enjoyable. Glad they kept making this anniversary beer.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a fresh bottle in to a Duvel tulip

A - Light to medium amber colour with one finger of creamy cream-coloured head. Appears to be completely filtered (not cloudy at all).

S - The nise is bursting with fresh, juicy citrus hops. There are hints of tangerine, grapefruit and some tropical fruit. There is also a slight pine nose from the hops. The malts are there but are very subdued in the background. A truly wonerful nose.

T - A nice bitter hops flavour up front with notes of grapefruit, tangerine and pine. The bitterness is just right - not overpowering but definitely the dominant taste. The malt profile is present but lurks in the background providing a light sweetness to this hop-bomb. The nice citrus bitterness lingers in the finish. A world class DIPA.

M - Light to medium body with a nice chew. Lightly carbonated.

D - A truly excellent DIPA. I can't believe this was brewed in Ontario. What a pleasant surprise.

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Photo of Supergenou
3.85/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ThinkAgain
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of ZorPrime
4.21/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to fellow BA liamt07 for sending me 2 bottles of this brew. I was looking forward to tasting this one.

Copper color beer with some reddish notes on the edge. Nice cloudy head which sticks very well to the glass. Nice looking beer. The aroma is hoppy (citrus). Not very intense. I get some bitterness in the aroma. Cool. Lets dive in... WOW! First sip is very surprising. I was like... wow, what the hell I'm getting here... Lots of stuff in there. Second sip, I calm down and are able to pick up different aspect of this complex beer. It is very bitter, almost acid but still sweet! The bitterness is strong and lingers in the mouth for quite some time. Woody on the taste too. Light notes of fruits there too. The 8% is well hidden here.

Superb and a very excellent beer. Cheers Liam for sending me 2 bottles! Awesome.

 828 characters

Photo of WillAndSarah
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

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Black Oak Ten Bitter Years from Black Oak Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 67 ratings.