Smashin' Berry Dark | Hoppin' Frog Brewery

Smashin' Berry DarkSmashin' Berry Dark
Liked This Beer
3.16 w/ 15 ratings
Smashin' Berry DarkSmashin' Berry Dark

Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Ohio, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by klewis on 12-19-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 15 |  Reviews: 14
Reviews by seangroves:
Photo of seangroves
4/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler purchased at the brewery into a wine glass.

Pours very dark with medium brown head that slowly dissipates with a touch remaining around the edges of the beer.

Very strong raspberry smell with a slight hint of chocolate.

Tastes of raspberry followed by a chocolate aftertaste.

Very light feel with a medium body that is incredibly smooth from start to finish.

This beer is very easy to drink and is an excellent pair with any type of sweet dessert. I would and will have another as even by itself it is a very good beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of tigg924
2.5/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: minimal head, medium-low carbonation, clear, redish-brown in color.

Smell: berries, caramel, and malt

Taste: berries--dark cherry and raspberry dominate, malt, and caramel. This has a fruit punch/wine cooler taste to it.

Mouthfeel: smooth, sweet, light body, with minimal carbonation.

Drinkability: I find it hard to believe that the same brewery that produces B.O.R.I.S. produces this. I actually found myself wanting this beer less and less as I sipped it. This is very sweet and artificial tasting, almost like fruit punch. I think it needs more of a beer taste. I will pass on this in th future. Still if you like Leinenkugel's Berry Weiss, this may just be the beer for you.

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Photo of Kegatron
2.78/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a dark ruby amber with a finger or so of fizzy light tan head. Retains around the edges, with an OK flareup, and leaving some spotty swathes of lacing that slowly slide down the sides of the glass. The aroma is won hands down by the Smashing Berry character with the scent of sweet berries totally dominating the little bit of roast and chocolate sweetness that lie underneath.

The taste is pretty much the same, with the cloying sweetness of the Smashing Berry completely running over the underlying chocolate and light roasted of the B.O.R.I.S. that's mixed in. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and is actually a pretty decent mix of the two styles, with the prickliness of the Smashing Berry and beefier feel of the Imperial Stout bouncing off each other well.

I wasn't a huge fan of the Smashing Berry Ale to begin with (much too sweet) and this just seemed like more of the same to me. The little bit of Stout character that was present in this brought a touch of balance but not nearly enough.

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Photo of bluejacket74
2.82/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle, no date shown on the bottle or label. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown with about a half inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent. Aroma is mostly raspberries, with a bit of strawberries and chocolate noticable too. The fruit aroma smells artificial, like candy or syrup (even though the bottle says natural flavor was added). With that being said, it does smell nice to me. Unfortunately this beer goes downhill from there. It tastes like bad fruit cola with a bit of chocolate added to it. Mouthfeel/body is light, and it's watery. Moderate carbonation. Drinkability would be better if I liked the taste of the beer more. However, it's really not hard to drink at all. I didn't care for this beer too much. I'll have to revisit this one in the future, but I won't be trying this again anytime soon.

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.65/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From bomber into Cab glass...

Pours like root beer - dark-brown translucent body with thin cream-soda head - little bit of lacing present upon quick dissipation

Major scent is the raspberry (extract)? Hint of sweet malt, maybe some alcohol but not a lot else; still - very pleasant

At first taste, the only thing there is a somewhat artificial sweetness with the strong raspberry presence layered in. This gradually evolves upon warmth to a malt-heavy, sweet roasted chocolate and malt, maybe a little yeast and some sweet alcohol, but unforuntately never quite turns the corner.

Mouthfeel is tight and sweet; finish is a little shallow.

This is by no means undrinkable but it didn't deliver on the strength of the brewery's more traditional offerings. Good to sip.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.34/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Dark brownish red with slight wisps of foam but no head.

Smells like red starburst and rhubarb.

Fizzy raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, licorice and chocolate come through in taste.

Interesting take on a fruit beer, but that's what it is, a sweet offering for the less adventurous.

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Photo of TheHoppiest
2.08/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into an oversized wine glass. Pours a dark brown, like the color of cola, with hints of ruby. Head is minimal and disappears quickly.

Has a heavy cherry aroma, with strawberry, peach, with hints of vanilla and malt. The smell is almost medicinal, like one of those alcohol syrups you would add to coffee at a coffee shop.

Mildly fruity, with no tart, bitter or any hop presence at all. Is this beer? If this were a blind taste test, I'd guess that I'm drinking a weak fruit tea. There is no alcohol presence, very little malt presence, no hop presence -- just a mildly herbal taste with overly sweet fruit flavoring.

Mouthfeel is flat, with no carbonation at all.

This isn't beer, it is alcholic tea. If that's your sort of thing, then have at it. I, however, am not a fan.

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Photo of smcolw
4.18/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm surprised to be the third person to rate this one. I bought this 22oz bottle at Julio's in Westboro, MA.

Dark ruby color where light will only shine through when directly applied. Modest but thick headed and it leaves a ring of lace.

Strong raspberry and black cherry aromas--sweet and fruity. I cannot detect any balancing smells like hop or roasted malt.

Think dark chocolate covered cherries. This could be an excellent beer with some strong cheeses. Sweet but not in an overpowering way. Complex finish that starts sugary but ends with bittersweet cocoa and a touch of hop bitterness. Full body.

This is unusually easy to drink given the flavoring. Great complexity throughout with unusual tastes showing up continually. I believe if this were paired with a sharp and rich cheese might be an awesome after dinner treat.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.39/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - pours a cola color, a thin light mocha head springs up but has little lasting power. A few wisps and pockets here and there, that's about it. A few dots of laces but not a lot.

Aroma - unmistakeable whiff of candyish raspberry, like Kool-Aid. Okay, it' s a berry ale, I get that, but there is no indication in the nose that this is actually beer or that any Boris resides here.

Taste/Mouthfeel - though the Boris lends a thickness and smoothness to it suggesting something significant, the beginning is very light on flavor with regards to the grains. It's like I can feel them but I can't taste them, most unusual. Quite smooth, very nice there. The swallow has a measure of fruity berriness that is all too expected; even a little note of hops on the aftertaste. Finishes without much else to say. Kind of a disappointment, but for a summer sweet beer, yeah, it's that.

Drinkability - thanks to beachbum for the chance to try this one, but it's not one I'd come back to.

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Photo of CPAles
3.25/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of klewis
4.39/5  rDev +38.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler from the brewery

84% Smashin Berry 16% BORIS

A: Pours a dark brown with a brief, bubbly head that quickly subsides to a frothy ring. The beer leaves some lacing that slowly slides back into the brew.

S: Smells much like the original with a strong, mixed berry aroma. Perhaps a bit of a chocolate smell from the BORIS, but it may just be my imagination.

T: A pretty predictable taste if you've had both beers before. The berry taste makes up much of the profile with a subtle chocolate flavor adding a bit of depth and character. Smooth taste and a nice combination.

M: Fairly light in body with moderate carbonation. The flavor lingers for quite some time.

D: Another great beer from Fred. Quite a nice combination, however I would prefer a bit more of the BORIS. Still, this beer is very good (better than the original Berry) and worth picking up.

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Photo of DoctorDog
2.77/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Presentation: 1 pint 6 oz bottle into a nonic.

A- Dark brown with ruby highlights. Pours with very minimal, fizzy light brown head, that fades nearly instantly into nothing.

S- Rather unsurprisingly, big berry sweetness is on the front, with some undertones of dark chocolate.

T- First taste is a rather unpleasant melange of artificial sweet berry flavors and strangely numbing bitter notes. The unpleasantness of the first few drinks subsides as I consume, but never truly ventures towards "good."

M- Moderate carbonation. Thin and watery.

D- Not very good. Sub-par flavor and feel don't leave me anxious to down this.

Future outlook: I don't know how, when, or why this beer found it's way into my stash, but I shan't be revisiting.

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Photo of sophisticated
3.28/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark brown with reddish highlights around the edges. Small head dissipates quickly.

Smell: upon opening the bottle a strong sweet-fruit scent emerges. My non-beer-drinking significant other exclaims that it smells good!

Tastes: Strawberries, raspberries, grapes, a little chocolate, bread. After a while it starts reminding me a lot of grape soda. Definitely reminiscent of cola and on the sweet side.

Mouthfeel: smooth, not super carbonated, medium.

Drinkability: one for sipping slowly. The sweetness made it hard to drink after a while.

Extra points for the cute frog logo though.

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Photo of HopDerek
3.62/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Kegatron for sharing this with me.

Poured a dark brown with ruby hues in the light with 1 finger of foamy light tan head. OK retention yields some spotty lacing. Smells like Frankenberry cereal, lots of raspberry and cherry sugary syrup extracts with some chocolate notes as it warms. Tastes very sweet from the start, almost like a kid dumped some of his raspberry Kool Aid into your stout, but after a while the roasted malt and chocolate come into play. Finishes with a mild hop presence. Medium in body with a nice pop of carbonation. Smooth and sweet, different. A nice twist combining a fruity sweet beer with a stout. Enjoyable on occasion, but not something I would drink very often.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.35/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Charred walnut brown with orange highlights... that becomes radiant russet when backlit with sunshine. A barely audible escape of CO2 on crown cracking has led to a slim slice of beige foam after a fairly vigorous pour. It looks like lace will be on the scarce side.

Red raspberry sno-cone syrup dominates the nose. There's a hint of Hershey's syrup as well, but whatever amount of chocolate malt was added contributed much more to the beer's color than to its aroma. I'm still sceptical about the 'natural' fruit flavor claim.

Sorry, but I'm just not diggin' these Hoppin' Frog Smashin' Berry beers. Dark tastes quite a bit like the standard version, with the addition of a little chocolate flavor. If that offering tastes like Franken Berry cereal, Nestle Strawberry Quik and cream ale, this one tastes like all that plus Count Chocula and regular Nestle Quik.

The dark malt isn't prominent enough to make the beer taste like a porter. Well, maybe a watered-down porter. It also on the sickly sweet side, which has never bothered me too much as long as the beer is otherwise good. This one isn't. It's hard to figure out who the target audience is for something like this.

The body/mouthfeel might be a little more enjoyable if it was properly bubbled. Although it isn't flat, there aren't many signs of life. As always, quality control is crucial when it comes to how a brewery's beer is perceived.

Smashin' Berry Ale and Smashin' Berry Dark occupy the sub-sub-sub-sub basement of the Hoppin' Frog house. Just like SB Ale, SB Dark needs a massive overhaul. Better yet, the brewery needs to forget about these clunkers entirely and give us something completely different. American barleywine? Smoked beer? Weizenbock? Belgian IPA? The possibilities are endless.

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Smashin' Berry Dark from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Beer rating: 20% out of 100 with 15 ratings
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