Thorny Goat | Mountain Goat Beer Pty Ltd

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Thorny GoatThorny Goat
Thorny GoatThorny Goat

Brewed by:
Mountain Goat Beer Pty Ltd

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 21 | Ratings: 23
Photo of dansmcd
4.41/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Mountainous and thick beige head, stringy lacing, deep dark red, similar to coke colour.

S - Spicy fruity hops, blueberry and chocolate.

T - Woody roasted malts, bitter hops, dark berries and charcoal. Good complexity. Very dry.

M - Moderate body and carbonation, nice crisp bite.

O - Nabbed the last bottle at the Cellarbrations Carlisle and very very glad I did. This is a cracker! A wonderfully rounded beer and a credit to Mountain Goat and Thornbridge Brewery. A delicious collaboration.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.97/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Alex for this, AWESOME bottle and bottle cap... Dark brown body, really light on the fringes, light tan head, god retention, creamy... Light nose, but nice, a bit of soap with roast, a bit chocolate... The taste is pretty nice, one of the better black ipas I’ve had, pretty soapy overall but a nice chocolate roast balance this out

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a Jet black, which for a double IPA struck me as very odd. A little head, nothing really standing out here at all. Some lace but juts a light black liquid really. Smell was very very hoppy. Lots of citrus and pine flavors. A touch of some sweetness in the back. The taste was soo rediculously smooth, I cannot even begin to describe. There was absolutly no hint of any alcohol at all. I could have been drinking a soda. Really strange. Super hoppy and bitter, great dry finish. This one could be dangerous in that you could put down 5 or six without realizing it quite quickly. Overall this was superb.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Alex for sharing.

A - Black beer that turns reddish/brownish in the light. No haze, with a beige head that left some stick on the sides.

S - Citrus and grassy notes, slightly roasted, bit of chocolate and earth tones. Nice malts with some floral hoppy aroma.

T - Taste is really good. Mellow chocolate, citrus, grassy and floral hops, crystalized malt, earthtones. Very pleasant to drink without any offensive flavors.

M - Medium bodied, slightly dry finish, moderate carbonation.

O - Nice beer, very pleasant. For the style, one of the better ones I've had. Easy to drink, good tasting, would buy this regularly if it wasn't so damn far away.

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Photo of MasterSki
4/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

640ml bottle courtesy of mulder1010. Best before November 9th, 2011. Served in a pint glass.

A - A finger of tan foam settles to a thin cap, leaving behind splotchy lace. Body is a transparent mahogany dark brown when held to the light.

S - Citrus, herbal, piney, grassy, and earthy hop notes, a hint of soapiness, light chocolate, and mild roast character. I appreciate this Black IPA isn't to heavy on the "Black" side of things.

T - Again, it's a pleasant mix of citrus, pine, grass, sugar cookie, and cocoa. Moderate bitterness in the finish that mounts throughout.

M - Smooth, creamy, medium body, with a nice dry finish and some light residual resinous character to it. No alcohol is present.

D - It's a really sold Black IPA that I suspect was even better when it was fresh (this is nearly 3-4 months old I think, although it was refrigerated almost the whole time). I appreciate the lack of char and astringency and the light touch with the darker malts. Galaxy hops rule too.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on-tap recently at the Local Taphouse in Darlinghurst.

Pours a dark reddish-brown, beautifully rich and full like black cherries. Head is thick and very fine-bubbled. Lacing is sticky, web-like and taut. Good heft to the body. Looks really, really good.

Dark raspberries and cherry sweetness on the nose which is uncompromisingly pummelled with citric hops. This tasty combination is cushioned with a very soft brown bread and slightly toasted character, a little nutty, warm and smooth. Nice.

Taste is light, with tangerine coming through very strongly—definitely the biggest and most noticeable flavour. Hops are huge, giving sweet fruit with citric bite. The roastiness really only comes through on the back, and even the finish ends up with a green crushed leaf character.

A great beer. Very flavoursome, and a wonderful collaboration. It's almost a sensory overload after a while, and I love it. I really feel that the rest of the world has jumped into the next gear to catch up to the US craft industry, and when it catches it, it will sail way, way past.

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Photo of laituegonflable
4.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark umber with glints of red up to the light. Pour forms a gorgeous cascade of bubbles flying up to form a magestic, tightly-packed beige head that retains about a finger of nice, sticky lace. Something special is happening in this glass, as well as in my loins.

Nose is a big, meaty whiff of tropical hoppiness. There's an earthy, piney and resiny aroma at first, putting me in mind of freshly-lain floor and sawdust, with just a touch of honey and some milk chocolate as well. When that initial burst disperses it instead uncloaks a delectable mélange of tropical fruits, with kiwi, banana, pawpaw and pineapple streaming out. Just a touch of fresh cut grass at the back to bring us back to the bitterness path. A scintillating blend of earthy and airy aromas that is primeval in its magnificence.

Taste starts out with a rich, creamy sweetness, dark caramel malts with some early pine resin notes from the hops. Develops further into a mid-palate which is rich in nuttiness; almond meal and walnuts mainly. The dark malt comes through largely towards the finish, with a nicely tempered roastiness, some cocoa and toast. The hops seem conspicuously lacking; there's a nice taming of the roastiness with a fresher, almost grassy bitterness on the back, but as far as distinct hop notes go they're not nearly so abundant as they were on the nose. I can't help but call the lack of hop intensity a fault in a "black IPA", even though the palate, in its perfectly poised dark/fresh equilibrium provides a generous, harmonic profile of complex nuances. A delicious beer but I fear one that falls short on the "India" factor.

They've really got all the body out of that 6.8%, and the carbonation is at just the right level to dry the palate but not sizzle on the tongue. Insanely good texture.

There is something very, very special happening in this glass and one can only hope that this carries through into the brew-collaboration scene in Australia. Frankly this is the beer I had hoped Epic and Dogfish Head could make together, but where they fell short, Goat Beer and Thornbridge have picked up the gauntlet and run with it. It's tasty, balanced and even thirst-quenching for its 6.8% darkness. Falls slightly short on the big hop notes, but streaks ahead in every other field.

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Photo of shambeano
4.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A- pours a very dark black, which only lets the tiniest bit through when held up to the light. about an inch of fluffy head that sticks around for ages, leaving nice lacing. Looks Great.

S- Straight into the galaxy hops here, a touch herbal, but with a lot of citrus and guava style tropical fruit. fruity hops really dominate here.

T- whoah. the hops that were so prominent are definitely there, but they are not as powerful as on the nose. there is some nice malt in there. the hopping is a lot less floral and a lot more spicy and bitter here.

M- some slight carbonation in the feel, but is a little more tepid than i was expecting. mouthfilling, and the flavour really lasts for ages. a long dry finish.

O- this is a pretty damn nice beer. Looks spectacular, the taste and smell are both really nice, im a big fan of galaxy hops. one of those beers where the sum of its parts is a lot better than each by themselves.

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Photo of spicelab
4.32/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

As other reviewers have noted, this is labelled as 6.8% Anyways, thanks to [email protected]

Pours a tar-like, just barely brown black with a one finger rich head that reminds me of shaken-up iced coffee. Drops over a few minutes to leave an immovable sticky film. Solid.

Lifted and spicy herbal and piney notes, but without the typical aggressive earthy and resiny backing. Candied mandarin and sweet citrus merge well with a fair whack of doughy, cakey malts. There's an underlying dusky, ashy dark chocolate note that takes the whole kit and kaboodle to another level.

Taste profile is surprisingly different to the nose; the elements are mostly the same but they assert themselves differently. There's a nicely balanced trio of grapefruit and pine, undifferentiated roasted malts and strong brewed coffee. Bitter herbs like rocket, radicchio create further interest. High-cocoa dark chocolate and maple syrup creeps in as it warms.

Mouthfeel is sublime. Kind of like a benign dreamy tingling that coats the palate evenly. Carbonation and bitterness just spot on.

I was cautious that this beer seems to have gathered hype quicker than a new racehorse, but it's thoroughly deserved. Hard to pick any flaws or overbearing elements - well-balanced is a term that is bandied about to the point of meaninglessness, but it's perfectly apt in this case. A previous reviewer's suggestion that this should be held up as a definitive example of a Black IPA is on the money.

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Photo of danieelol
4.87/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black and reddish when held up to light. Head decent, like the froth on a cappuccino. Lacing is good too. 4.5

S: Nose is initially a pine assault. Later you get some really sweet caramel malt coming through. Starts to smell like an amazing ice cream or fruit cake. Really really delicious. You also get the roast, smoky characteristics poking through. There's also some organic, leafy (grape bunches) smells and what for me is a royal combination of grapefruit and malt. 5

T: You get the pine coming through first. Very rich and enlivened with grapefruit and its complex malt backdrop. Then there's the roast malt and the dry finish coming from the combination of hop and roasted malt bitterness. The malt and hops just integrate so well to deliver a rich and delicious tapestry of flavours and then there's some roast bitterness to finish you off. Alcohol is completely non-detectable. Even the roast elements have their own complexity, evoking oats and chocolate. 5

M: Thick, rich, creamy; seemingly perfectly carbed- just enough to move off your palate and leave you craving more. 5

O: A genuine Australian stunner of a beer. At last a world-class Australian beer that I'm truly thankful to have access to. This stuff is damn rich though. Does amazingly well to add a third dimension of roastiness to the standard hop/malt dichotomy of an IPA/DIPA. The malt dimensions in this beer are complex enough to perhaps even justify ageing.

Edit: my bottle also clearly stated 6.8%

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Photo of Stew41
3.76/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty flash. I haven’t drunk too many of the style but have been lucky enough to try Thornbridge’s and this is at least on par. Clearly has very strong links with the IPA (think medium weight new world hop resin) but the overlay of coffee and roast is very well integrated. Really good.

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Photo of juju7
4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The much discussed Thorny Goat. I'm starting to really come around to these Black IPAs. Quite dark with some ruby highlights. Smallish head but great lacing.

The nose is as expected, ripe with fresh fruity hops, with Galaxy seemingly leading the way. Really nice. However the dry roasty malty mouthfeel is a nice little mind-f**k. Plenty of bitterness filling this bad boy out very nicely.

Really well balanced and made with class. Haven't tried all of MG's stuff but definitely my favourite so far.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
4.07/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours ruby tinted dark brown with a small, lasting head.
Nose shows masses of hops: resinous, earthy, pinapple. Underneath is chocolate and caramel malt. Luscious!
First up in the flavours is chocolate and coffee followed by a huge resinous hoppy hit. Tastes like how freshly picked hops smell! Massively long finish with a strong, bold hoppy bitterness.
Carbonation could be a bit higher honestly.

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Photo of gulden
4.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A Jet black body with a nice creamy coloured ½ cm head. Dense looking, with a little carbonation. Some ruby in there as well if you look carefully.

S Smells very fruity, a lot of fresh hops in this one, no real roast coming though - very nice indeed.

T A ton of fruity hops again in here, with a bit of roast on the end. I couldn't ask for more from this one. Some of the darker malts as well, but this is all about the hops.

M Medium body, without being over-carbonated from being served on tap. I couldn't ask for more from this.

O A truly excellent beer - my favourite Mountain Goat offering by far - and that is saying something considering the rest of their line-up is excellent. I would say that this is quite an approachable beer - something to get your friends thinking that not all dark beers have to taste like stouts. The alcohol is well hidden in this, and it's definitely not the focus of the beer A refreshing beer and one I hope that they make more of in the future!

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Photo of jbowers56
4.47/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lovely. A nice black colour with ruby highlights. Light tan coloured head which laces well.

Smells ultra fresh. Christ, it smells awesome. Massive whallop of galaxy hops? Yes, galaxy for sure. Stone fruits, grass, passionfruit. All there. Eyes closed I'd guess this to be a feral seasonal IPA with the big dank smell of aussie hops. I read that there is motueka in there as well. Im not getting any hint that this beer is coloured the way it is from the smell. Every other black IPA I've had has made it very clear from first sniff that it was using roasted malts.

Christ that's a good drop. Impeccable drinkability. Super clean hop profile - no astringency. I get some slight charred/roasted notes from the malt and maybe a touch of chocolate. Some caramel sweetness, but finishes dry for sure. Hop flavour is just right, for me - stands out but doesnt overstate itself.

For a beer of this strength its super well put together. Full, but never close to heavy. Would be just as drinkable on a hot day. Drinks like a 5% IPA. Fucking wonderful.

Mountain goat, you have reentered my radar of good breweries to look out for. After that IIPA of yours I lost faith, but this is just wonderful.

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Photo of joecast
4.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Love it. These MG brewers are really pushing the boundaries and doing it bloody well. My bottle states 6.8%abv.

Quite dark but shines a crimson red when held to light. Thin tan head leaves good lacing. Low carbonation which suits this I think.

Aroma is spot on. Galaxy hops used to great effect with more than a hint of dark chocolate and coffee. As my manager said to me last week "half a mark off to leave room for improvement". And really all it could do really us have the hops a bit more in your face but that's nit picking.

Substantial coffee and dark malt flavors. That goes some way to minimizing the impact of the hop bitterness, but there is still enough there to be easily noticeable. Balance is more towards the dark malt than expected but it carries it very well and remains far from stout or porter territory. The hop contribution must be considerable to compete and it does it well enough to complement the malt in such a bold beer.

High expectations were well and truly met and exceeded. The influence of the dark malts here don't diminish the base ipa at all. And I'd go so far as to say this beer could define the BIPA (sorry, ABA) style like SNPA defines the APA.

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a Cola like colour with a nice two fingered tanned head that reduces to a decent film and laces. Very nice

S - Plenty of hops and grapefruit and pineappple present and quite pungent.Very IPA like.

T - Oh yeah thats what im talking about. Plenty of bitter hops, pineapple etc and very nice amounts of malt and fininishes with an very slight smokeyness. Top brew.

M - Medium body and carbonation,perhaps a little to much.

O - I'm so impressed with this brew, right up there with the best Australia has to offer.

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Photo of dgilks
4.23/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown colour with a moderate sized tan head. Average head retention.

Ripe, tropical fruit aroma with mild alcohol and toasty malt notes. Slightly resinous.

Malt and moderately-high bitterness. Dank, resinous hops. Some tropical fruit notes.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good but the carbonation is a touch artificial.

A decent Black IPA with lots of flavour and a nicely subdued dark malt note.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.03/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

640 ML bottle poured into a tulip

A-- Poured a dark cola color and settled black with just a couple of ruby hints on the bottom of the glass. Half finger of light brown head. On swirling the glass head stayed at the same height. A few streaks of lacing on the sides of the glass. Just a small bit of carbonation showing.

S-- Some pine and fresh cut grass, mixed in with some grapefruit. not big and aggressive smell but a well mixed smell of the hops.

T-- Chocolate, followed by hints of pine and grapefruit. Not massive by any stretch but very well balanced.

M-- Ripe orange, pine and grapefruit really creep up in this. gets a whole lot larger in the mouth. Starts as chocolate and then a lot of fruit just attack. Very crisp and clean finish with touches of bitter grapefruit and pine. Medium carbonation and medium feel

D-- Well done collaboration. Not a hop bomb but well balanced and the right amount of bitterness at the right places and the right chocolate at the right places. I hope this gets up to Sydney as this was well done. Have not had a bad black IPA in this country yet. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of Macca
4.3/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Maybe one of the most anticipated Australian beer releases for a while? A co-pro with the UK's Thornbridge Brewery.

It pours a very dark brown almost black with centimetre or two of beige head that is sticking around. It looks a lot like a certain product of Ireland. A solid looking beer.

Any similarities go out the window when you get the glass within a foot of your nose. This is one heavily hopped beer. According to the label they include Galaxy and Motueka. I certainly pick up a bit of the passionfruit commonly associated with Galaxy. There is also a big whack of pine resin. Underneath it all I do get a touch of chocolate malt. Geez it smells good.

It's got a mouthfeel that very few stouts in Australia but then the hops fruitiness kicks in and lets you know that you are drinking something very different.

It finishes dry, dry, dry.

A cracker of a beer. Simple as that.

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Photo of brendan13
4.37/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very, very dark brown with a 3cm tan hued head that slowly falls away leaving a bit of lace.
S - Close your eyes and it indeed does smell like a really well hopped IPA. Tropical fruitiness and resinous pine abounds.
T - The darker malts comes through in the taste; roasted and chocolate notes also with lots of fruity, piney hop character.
M - Medium bodied, lowish carbonation with an assertive bitterness.
D - Not something to knock back pint after pint of but a very tasty beer and I certainly hope they do it again. Possibly the best Mountain Goat beer I've had.

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Thorny Goat from Mountain Goat Beer Pty Ltd
Beer rating: 4.31 out of 5 with 23 ratings