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Blakkr | Surly Brewing Company

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BlakkrBlakkr
BA SCORE
4.21/5
Exceptional
1,144 Ratings
BlakkrBlakkr
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
surlybrewing.com

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.99%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This double black as night IPA is too massive for just one brewery's efforts. BLAKKR took the trinity of Real Ale Brewing Co, Surly Brewing Co, & Three Floyds Brewing Co, to actualize this crushing ale. Cheers.

This is the 16oz canned Surly version.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
148
Ratings:
1,144
pDev:
8.31%
 
 
Wants:
100
Gots:
190
Trade:
9
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,144 |  Reviews: 148
Reviews by DeFaz:
Photo of DeFaz
4/5  rDev -5%

More User Reviews:
Photo of nhindian
3.67/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to TGanyone for tossing a 4-pack of this into a recent trade as an extra!

Too massive for just one brewery, Blakkr sees three heavy-hitting breweries team up to release this imperial black ale. Generally not my favorite style - I don't exactly like the combination of fresh hops and roast flavors - but if anyone can do it, I whole heartedly place my faith in Surly and 3 Floyds.

Appearance - Rather than being black, Blakkr more closely resembles a dark cola as shades of brown poke out from around the edges. Atop the surface, a light tan head slowly builds until peaks at around a figure in height before fading away, leaving nary a trace behind. Instead a thick lattice of foam speckles the glass.

Aroma - The nose is a cacophony of hop and malt that I find myself constantly wavering about. On one hand, the hops are just as juicy and tropical as a DIPA and the malt is roasty and filled with coffee, but on the other hand, when those two extremes are coupled there isn't a smooth mingling. It is hard to reconcile the spectrum but I truly do love each individual component.

Taste - Much like in the aroma, the flavor has all the punch of the hops and malt behind it. Unlike the nose, however, the ingredients play much more nicely together here. The coffee subsides and is replaced with a licorice note that bridges the gap. A slightly bitter chocolate flavor also meshes well with the pineapple and citrus hop taste.

Mouthfeel - The mouthfeel is imposing without being syrupy. Perfect carbonation helps move the flavors along, and in a beer with so much going on, it's much appreciated.

Closing Arguments - At the end of the day, I still feel like my impressions of this style are unchanged. Unlike other black ales I've had, Blakkr kicks it the hop and roast to a previously unseen level, but still suffers from the fate of not co-mingling the two in a seamless manner. To be fair, taken separately, both the hop and malt components are near top-notch, but there is a clear separation between them. This is much more apparent in the nose than the flavor.

 2,081 characters

Photo of cokes
3.79/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Thoroughly shadowy, blackened Crimson with an impressive and lasting stack of beige-peach foam.
The nose brings pine bark, burnt grapefruit, toasted sugar, raisin bran flakes, brandy, and flares of pineapple and peaches.
A slap of tropical fruits across the tongue. Peaches, melons, pineapple, lime leaves. A dusting of coffee grounds. Some creme brûlée, burnt sugar and custard notes. More herbal on the swallow. Alcohol is not a factor, other than a twinge of post swallow bitterness.
Thinner bodied than i expected with a trickling carbonation.

I really don't know what to do with this. I like it as an Imperial IPA with touches of roastiness. But the style is one I can't really embrace, nor know what to expect. The IPA part of this works, but the black part seems completely underdeveloped. And I'm not sure if I like it more or less due to this (lack of) balance. Ultimately, it's a handicap, because I still have no idea what I want in black IPA, nor have I found an example to adore. Not here either.

Sorry Blakkr, it's not you, it's me.
But at $16/4-pack, I'm not going to try any harder to salvage this relationship. But I know you'll make someone else very happy.

 1,199 characters

Photo of beertunes
3.33/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Another from garymuchow. 16oz can poured into 10oz goblet. Pours a solid black color, with just a thin cap of tan head that dissipated quickly, and had very low lacing.

WHOA! Holy licorice bomb! As the glass neared my olfactory opening, a huge blast of licorice assaulted me. Underneath, there was a light grain scent, soft hops, and a lot of licorice. On the tongue, there was licorice. Lots and lots of licorice. Some low malts showed through, and a medium level of hoppiness was apparent. Did I mention that this brew tastes like licorice? Because it does.

The body was light-medium, and had a crisp, dry finish. Drinkability is going to depend on how much one likes licorice. It's not my favorite, so my enjoyment level wasn't premium. YMMV. Overall, a pretty nice beer that a lot of folks will love. I wasn't one of them, but I appreciate the chance to have tried it.

 874 characters

Photo of broodog
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of shigg85
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of Devman171
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of luth0019
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of thinwhiteduke
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of Lorihall1
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of Fcolle2
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours viscous thick black in color with a good 2 finger head that has good retention.

Smell is a nice mix of hop and malt forward. Hops come slightly first and more potent. Big herbal hop aroma covers a milder fruity hop aroma. Malt has notes of char and some lighter chocolate and coffee.

Taste follows the nose. Big herbal hops hit the palate first with a mild bitterness that is followed by a big charred slightly smokey malt flavor and bitterness. Finish is intensely bitter, maybe a little to much for my liking.

Mouthfeel is good. Super thick body is cut with mild carbonation. Lots of sticky hop oils and resin along with an aggressive bitterness.

 659 characters

Photo of McBAINx
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of sdaly3
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of JJWIGHT
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of BeerGreg
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of gobuccos
4.36/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of EROCK75
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of JohnnyMc
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of NJB145
4.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of mdlb44
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of lucasj82
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Evango
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of nick_asian
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of Bristopher89
4.41/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of warmbier804
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

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Blakkr from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.21 out of 5 with 1,144 ratings