Brew Ridge Trail Collaboration Ale | Starr Hill Brewery

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Brewed by:
Starr Hill Brewery
Virginia, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CrellMoset on 08-09-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 2 |  Reviews: 2
Photo of argock
4.01/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a brown growler into a Duvel tulip. Purchased at Beer Run (Charlottesville, VA) at the Trail Ridge Beer Summit.

A: Burnished dark brown with creamy 1-finger steely, off-white head with good retention and a thin line of lace.

S: Orange and pine hoppiness meets roasted malt. Less complex than the best of this style (see ST Iniquity) but still a good representation of this fresh style.

T: The earthiness of the hops, missing in the aroma, comes through more strongly in the flavor which work really well with the orange, pine hops assault. Malt is still king as the dark malts lend dry, bitter chocolate, roasted coffee, and lightly acrid qualities that fall short of explosive but is very full-flavored. No shortage of malt is used in this brew. the alcohol is not detectable.

M: The active carbonation is welcome in this style and leaves a nice coating character. The acridness rears its head a little more through in the aftertaste along with some pine and orange hoppiness.

D: A really good brew -- I hope our local, central VA brewers keep collaborating: this is a super-enjoyable beer.

 1,108 characters

Photo of CrellMoset
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A collaborative Black IPA brewed jointly between Charlottesville's South Street Brewery, Crozet's Starr Hill Brewery, Afton's Blue Mountain Brewery, and Roseland's Devil's Backbone Brewery. Jason Oliver, brewmaster of Devils Backbone, describes it as follows: "The Brew Ridge Trail Collaborative Ale is brewed to be a Black India Pale Ale (IPA). This is an emerging style of beer, which is one reason why we decided to make it; we wanted to do something new. It's made with five types of malt and four types of hops and will be a full bodied dark beer with assertive hop flavor. I can hardly wait to try it when it's done."

Appearance: Pours a garnet-tinged onyx, obsidian at the core but laced with sienna. Head retention is pretty solid, with the two fingers of creamy, darkly tanned head maintaining a good showing for quite some time before fading to a thick, soapy surface sheen and a foamy collar. Lacing is similarly above average, with sheets and tendrils of thin, delicately bubbled lace forming dry, rocky patterns up and down the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Dry, toasty malts dominate, throwing up a good showing of bittersweet cocoa, dark toffee, and springy, earthy coffee. Piney hops follow closely behind, with a few hints of tobacco and herbal leafyness rounding out the nose.

Taste: A dry, toasty backbone showcases strong dark malts, toast, dark toffee, and chocolate-covered espresso beans. A moderate to moderately high level of bitterness mingles well with the toasty dry astringencies and the sharp, bitter pineyness and astringent, leafy herbal notes of the hop profile.

Mouthfeel: Relatively thin bodied, perhaps a little too thin, but with a good amount of fine carbonation for an even and assertive mouth that works pretty well with the bitter dryness this beer brings to the palette.

Drinkability: A solid, impressive ale, a style I like a lot, and courtesy of four fantastic central Virginia breweries - this one's a definite winner. I know South Street had done a Black IPA recently (the India Ink), so I know regional brewers had been dabbling in this area for a little while, but I hope this one becomes a regular member of one or several of these breweries' rotations. This is one enjoyable brew, full of flavor, well-produced, and interesting enough that I kept going back for more. Recommended.

 2,342 characters

Brew Ridge Trail Collaboration Ale from Starr Hill Brewery
4.01 out of 5 based on 2 ratings.
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