Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp) | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp)Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp)
Very Good
534 Ratings
Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp)Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp)

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jeffthecheff on 01-14-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 534 |  Reviews: 369
Photo of leinie13
2/5  rDev -49.1%

Photo of TastyIsBeer
2/5  rDev -49.1%

Photo of nickthetick
2.44/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: pours an opaque black in a St. Bernardus ballooned goblet with a thin dark tan head that leaves no lacing.

S: a lot of dark chocolate, pine and alcohol.

T: dark chocolate, burnt biscuit. Overcooked is the primary theme here, but there are some sweet notes in the background.

MF: warm, medium body and bitter/sour.

O: meh beer, I wouldn't buy it unless in the mixed 12 again. Even then I'd probable pawn it off on my dad.

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Photo of FrankyLikesIt
2.5/5  rDev -36.4%

Photo of bobhits
2.5/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This is one black, black ale. Pours a huge tan head with some notes of lacing.

Smoke and almost a liquorish smell without any of the sweetness associated with the candy. There are some fruity notes in the background that almost take on more citrus characteristics. A very unique smelling beer here.

Bitter hop bite followed by smoke and bitter dark chocolate, amazingly interesting beer here. The malt profile here imparts virtually no sweetness which is fascinating given the rest of this beers qualities. I think the malt flavors come off as a bit of a malted milk like flavor. The hop profile is the dominate flavor but some kind of spice or something that’s adding this smoked flavor is easily the second biggest flavor.

The finish here is chalky and lingers leaving my mouth a bit dry. The body is medium and there is appropriate carbonation.

This is certainly one of the most unique beers I’ve had in a long time. They certainly have added a few extra layers to the black IPA style which I somewhat appreciate, but I don’t see myself going back for more.

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Photo of trappistlover
2.54/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(12oz bottle from Beer Camp mixed pack). Pours black with full tan head. Aroma of resin, charcoal, juniper. Taste is bitter with a semi-sweet malt backbone. Tastes like ashtray. Medium bodied with a creamy texture. Bitter finish. I do not like hoppy black ales. Pass.

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Photo of jeffthecheff
2.68/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Served in a shaped glass. The bar is dark, but it's a nice looking beer. Black color with a tan head that has solid retention and lacing.

The juniper berries added a slight minty, toothpaste character, which combined with the dark malts smelled like a chocolate covered mint left on a hotel pillow. I got a bit of pine character, seemingly from American hops, but the berries could have added to the "tree" aspect. All is good, but the strength was a bit low, and it could have used more juniper character.

The first impression on this beer was okay. It had a thick, smooth mouthfeel with some rich chocolate notes in the front. There was some chocolate-mint character that was interesting, but not very tasty. There was some berry character towards the finish, but a the bitterness combined with the mint character was a bit harsh. The beer is rich, but is a bit overwhelming. The finish is bitter, and lingers a bit much.

It took a while for me to finish this beer, and I wouldn't (and didn't) order another. Judging by the description, I thought this could be good, but after tasting it, I'm not sure this beer could ever work. I wouldn't reccomend it, but it was very popular on the kickoff night.

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Photo of scottfrie
2.69/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle into Portsmouth snifter.

A: Pours a very dark brown with a billowing fluffy dark tan-ish brown oily head that slowly faded into a thick film leaving a network of sticky lace.
S: I don't know why I'm surprised, but I can actually smell the juniper (although it's not very strong). It's hoppy as well with notes of pine, but there is also a darker, maltier, burnt character.
T: Pretty big hop punch on the palate at first followed by more roasted and coffee-like flavors. A decent, well rounded black ipa if I've ever had one, but the juniper doesn't stand out. Finish is fairly bitter with a hint of coffee.
M: High carbonation that is prickly at times, medium-thin body and a slightly astringent mouthfeel. This aspect could use some work.
O: SN are pros and definitely one of my favorite/go-to breweries. However this one just doesn't really do it for me. I can see what they were going for in this, but to me it's just not that exciting or drinkable.

 968 characters

Photo of Thehopluver
2.75/5  rDev -30%

Photo of bigfnjoe
2.82/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured from a bottle into a Victory tulip

A- pours black with a one finger light tan head. Looks about like what you'd expect

S- tons of juniper coming through in the, almost overwhelming, but really nice aroma

T- with a year of age, this is a juniper BOMB. It absolutely overwhelms any other flavor in the beer, and is downright painful to drink

M- medium bodied

O- it was much better fresh....but man, this thing falls off in a way I didn't expect it to at all with age on it.

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Photo of zoolzoo
2.91/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown, approaching black. One finger cream head.

S: Herbal / piney hops, roasted malts.

T: Clashy hop and malt combination. Large amount of hop bitterness on top of dark roasted malts. Sort of like an overhopped porter. Juniper seems to add little else but astringency and bitterness.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation.

O: This really didn't come together for me. Not the best selection from the Beer Camp pack.

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Photo of jsh420
2.93/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

pours dark dark brown(black in the glass) with a 1+ finger tan head that left plenty of lacing down the glass

smells of juniper roasted chocolate malt with the hops some citrus and pine in the background

taste - quite a bit of grapefruit upfront then the bitterness of the roasted chocolate malt takes over and makes this into a sipper

mouthfeel - way too much carbonation - every sip turns into a bitter foam ball

overall - this is a tough one - there are flavors in this beer that i did enjoy but the bitterness of the malts matched with the over carbonation makes this beer fail miserably - this beer drinks slower then GI BCBS - tiny tiny sips was the only reason that kept me from drain pouring this beer

 713 characters

Photo of uziangis
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of dgeebs07
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of Another6Pack
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of AWS2111
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of DocDownUnder
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of RichBeer
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of Kiniey01
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of JAHMUR
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of vonnegut21
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of jcanddr
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of KSac4115
3.04/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very very dark brown, almost black. Almost no foam whatsoever gives the initial impression that it is very lightly carbonated. The smell is very strong of brown sugars and malts. Gives off a very brown ale scent. Maybe a bit of a honey scent in there. Overall just very sweet. Taste is pretty much what you would expect in a brown ale. Sweet and roasty. Not very very bitter whatsoever. Aftertaste is negligable. Mouthfeel is also what one would expect. Very little carbonation yet it has a somewhat strong kick considering the 8% alcohol content.

Overall, not a bad beer. It's essentially just a strong brown ale. Nothing really special about it. Flavors are week. The only black aspect of this beer is the color. All other black ales I have had are more distinct in comparison with brown ales. Not the type of excellence in brewing I have come to expect from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of Jaycase
3.05/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

a: black as night. large tan head. nice sticky lacing

s: roasted malts up front. molasses, coffee, chocolate. slight hops presence

t: roasted malts are the most forward. Some hops then come through. Bittersweet.

m: medium-thin body. meh, nothing special

o: From promising appearance and smell, it went downhill from there. This beer doesn't do anything for me. Glad I had a chance to try it but not something I'll seek again. Most disappointing of the SN Beer Camp 12 pk mixer.

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Photo of beerman21
3.05/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It seems to me Black Ales/Black IPA's have become all the rage lately. I've yet to come across one that’s really all that great. It takes me awhile for a certain style to grow on me. Anyways I got this from there Camp variety and I really haven’t had a bad brew from the pick. I've saved this one for last being as its not my favorite style so lets see how it holds up.

Poured from a 12oz bottle aggressively done so as usual forming a fairly substantial light cinnamon brown 2 1/2 finger head. Color is nearly black which I'd expect, when held to the light nearly opaque although some brownish shades come through near the bottom of the glass. Head looks strong, and fades down but hold up well. I can see already this will have some nice lacing.

Smell-Has a nice earthy smokiness to it, with faint fruitiness. Dark figs, plums soaked in alcohol with a nice blending of roasted malts. Nothing over the top but decent aroma.

Taste-Nice maltey sweetness, then a slow bitterness flavor, great earthy roasted smokiness. Very balanced. Alcohol a little pronounced toward then of the flavor profile but to be expected, and I'm not one to knock the booziness of any brew.

Mouthful- kind of chewy, coats the mouth well and the flavors linger, this is definitely a big beer.

Overall probably the best Black Ale I've had and as i said before I'm not to keen on the style in the first place. Very enjoyable although one is enough for me. The beer itself runs a fine line between a black ale and a Imperial stout. Recommend although its not going blow you away.

 1,560 characters

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Juniper Black Ale (JBA) - Beer Camp #16 (Best Of Beer Camp) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 534 ratings