Hop Strike Black IPA | Tommyknocker Brewery

very good
192 Reviews
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Hop Strike Black IPAHop Strike Black IPA

Brewed by:
Tommyknocker Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Hop Strike is a dry hopped black rye IPA. The beer is characterized by an intermingling of spicy citrus hops and chocolate malt. Substantial 78 IBUs are balanced by roasted rye resulting in a nice depth of malt character and deep color.

Added by kirkpjr on 06-04-2010

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Reviews: 192 | Ratings: 464
Photo of RblWthACoz
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a nose on this one. Real citrus and pine hop tones that hit you when you first open it. Unfortunately, it drops to a lesser strength not long after the pour. The flavor profile is nice, but honestly, I was expecting a bit more punch after the initial whiff of the nose. It's still decent though. Nice enough black ale tones that keep it interesting enough. I bet this would be good on cask. Doubt I'll ever see that though. Worth trying.

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Photo of Mister_Falcon
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured an impenetrably dark red-brown with a inch and a half of head into a pint glass, the head sat there for a while.

Smelled of hops and a little bit of malt.

A very toasty, roasty flavor with a fair helping of hops and bitterness.

Not the best "Black IPA" I've ever had but it's alright, I don't think I would buy any real quantity of this beer if it came down to it. This beer looks and smells better than it tastes and feels, those are the wrong two if you ask me.

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Photo of TrappistJohnMD
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black into Teku glass. Nice cream colored head that lingers well with lots of lacing along sides of glass.

Smell is heavy with chocolate and toasted malts. Not very hoppy but there is a hint present. Little coffee as well.

Taste is heavy with toasted malt. Definitely not what I would call an IPA flavor. More in line with a stout. Lots of dark chocolate and malt. Good bitterness. Very tasty, but not what I was expecting.

Mouthfeel is creamy and medium bodied.

Overall this was good. Not really for the hop-heads. Would definitely buy again.

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Photo of donmonkey1
4.27/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours an opaque dark brown/black with a nice frothy tan head that has awesome lacing. The head could have been a little thicker and last a little longer.

Smell: Powdered malt used to brew your own beer. Sweet, burnt toast, brown sugar, roasted nuts, coffee.

Taste: Sweet hops, sugary pine tree bark, licorice (black and red), interesting bitterness and sweetness at the same time.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, lacks carbonation, boring.

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Photo of 57md
3.58/5  rDev -5.3%

Everything from the nose to the roast profile to the hops is pretty muted with this offering. Certainly drinkable but nothing here makes me want to try it again.

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Photo of suspect
3.25/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A: Dark brown pour. Aggressive pour leads to a thick 2 finger espresso foam colored head. Lacing sticks to the entire glass.

S: Lots of toasted malts with a pinch of hearty hops to go along with it. Not an amazing smell but good nonetheless.

T: Good enough mix of toasted malts and hops but there really isn't much else going on the flavor.

M: Okay, kind of thin. Plenty carbonated.

O: Pretty average black IPA. Not great, not terrible. Pretty easy drinker.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

A. Dark brown in color with a three finger head, retains for more than three minutes, leaves moderate levels of lacing behind. A real pretty beer!

S. The initial aroma upon cracking open the bottle was a brief burst of pine resin and nothing else, but thirty seconds later the entire nose blossomed into existence, presenting me with a lightly roasted chocolate malt / black peppercorn sort of aroma profile with the pine resin taking up the role of background support.

T,M. Medium resinous bitterness with a medium roasted character throughout and the chocolate / peppercorn combo from the nose as well. Nice bitter lingering finish. Medium body and carbonation levels keep things sharp, but not too sharp, on the tongue.

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Photo of drakkath
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

16 ounce bottle purchased from Whole Foods into 32 oz mug; can't find a freshness date on this one.

a: black, very dark brown in front of light, 1 finger head with some lacing

s: I love the smell of this beer. Very fruity, some citrus hop presence. Perhaps some roasted coffee beans

t: Taste like a very hoppy black ale. I know I'm stating the obvious, but that's what's here. Definitely taste the coffee and some chocolate. The hops seem to layer nicely over the coffee and chocolatey flavors here. Very interesting flavor.

m: This just feels a little under carbonated to me. It's not flat, but it's not as crisp as I feel like it should be. Medium body.

o: I am not a fan of black or brown ales. I actually hate them. I love IPAs, however. Picked this one up with low expectations (and only because it said IPA) but I'm really fond of this beer. It's a great marriage, to me, of the two styles. Although not as hoppy as most regluar IPAs, the flavors balance well. If I saw another 16 oz of this, I'd definitely grab one, but this one wouldn't be a session beer. Consider me pleasantly surprised.

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Photo of TheSarge
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this brew into a standard pint glass, and the brew forms a thin tan head of about a pinkie in thickness. The body is jet black, but shows off dark ruby red hues when held up to sunlight.

The aroma is copper metallic, toasted graininess, floral and citrusy hops.

The flavor has a kind of milky quality, a little cocoa, lemony hops, and finishes off bitter in the way of burnt toast.

Feels mildly carbonated, full in body, oily slick, and wets the palate in the end but has a mild warmth to it.

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Photo of Billolick
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, "Best By" dating on the side of the label

Pours very dark brown, frothy tan head, slow to settle, leaves a nice thick collar, fine sheeting and spots of lace.

Complex nose with hints of chocolate malts, and citric hops.

Sniff leads to the palate, with more chocolate and citrus picked up.
Carbonation is on point and I'd say this is on the slightly heavier side of the mouthfeel scale.
Better then average hoppy black ale (they call it a black IPA on the label). Worth a try.

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Photo of bnes09
4.07/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, brown, nearly black and opaque brew with good head retention and lacing.

Citrusy aroma of grapefruit and tangerines. Sweet and smooth with hints of roastiness in the mix.

Hop forward flavor with citric and pine flavors adding and acidic bite. Mild burnt malt flavor, toasty and rich. Well balanced with lingering hop flavor.

Light to medium bodied. Slick feel. Descent carbonation.

Good stuff. Like to complexity and balance.

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Photo of dlello2
3.24/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A - Nice. Black IPA color. Little head.

S - Not all that much going on. Very little hop presence. Malts come through and maybe a touch of caramel.

T - Decent. Average. The best thing I can say about it is that it tastes very refreshing. Not much hops and even the malts take a back seat. Not overly sweet. Nice.

M - This was the best part of the beer. Perfectly carbonated, perfect medium body. Very sessionable.

O - Maybe I should have had this beer fresher (this one spent a few months in the fridge) but for me it was as average as they come. Not that I wouldn't enjoy it again... just not one to seek out.

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Photo of duderus123
3.76/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance -DARK Brown, Bordering Black, it does have some clarity The head didn't hang around... who needs it with an ale.

Smell - It smells pretty dank. India's are always pretty hefty ... my nose is confused...

Taste - It's almost like a chocolaty licorice flavor comes out. Malt taste is very dark, hops are strong and dry but take a back seat to the kick you in the teeth roasted malt flavor. Very bitter, but very good.

Mouthfeel - Heavy. It leaves a syrupy feel in your palate

Overall - Not for the faint of heart are any IPA's. It smells hefty, it tastes hefty, it feels hefty, it looks hefty. I wish it was a bit hoppier, but its a good one

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Photo of NoLeafClover44
3.66/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into standard pint.

A - Nearly black with a ruby hue and a two finger beige head. Retains well and leaves a nice lacing.

S - Toasty malts combined with piney hops, wood, and some smoke. I don't get very much of the rye, but the other smells work nicely.

T - Slightly bitter up front but smooths out as it goes down. I now detect the rye that the nose was lacking. Wonderful balance of pine, toastiness, and a hint of chocolate. The aftertaste is burnt coffee.

M - It is pretty thick and velvety which supports the toasty flavors well. Carbonation is good as well. Finish is smooth and somewhere between dry and moist.

O - The flavors are exactly what I look for in a Black IPA. It is on the hoppy side but the toasted malts are robust enough to balance it out. I like the fact that they use rye malts because they add a unique character to the beer. I have had better black ales but this one is very good and I will probably get it again.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by March 5th, pours a nearly black color with amber ruby highlights shining through the glass, head is a light khaki tan color, forming fine even speckled lacing patterns. Aroma has an earthy spicy dankness going on with complementary rye character going on this beer smells pretty good. A mild black IPA with spicy rye notes in the finish, upfront herbal/citric hops catch my palate and the dark roasted malts carry everthing along until it finishes with that classic spicy rye character. My first black rye IPA, and it works pretty well. Great herbal hops, citric green fresh hop quality with the dark roasted malts profile offering a touch of dark chocolate roasted malt character. Mouthfeel has a nice rolling dry character with spiced rye edges, even flowing carbonation with slick hop oils. Overall very enjoyable beer that I need to try more of, I'm not a big Tommyknocker fan but this is fantastic black IPA.

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Photo of beergod1
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the better offerings form Tommyknocker. Pours a translucent dark Brown, with a decent tan head, some light lacing all the way down my Great Lakes Pilsener glass. Aroma is mixed with the Light roasted malt, but dominated by the Piney Hops...and some citrus too. Taste is Balanced, but on the hoppy side, just like the smell. Medium/Full bodied, Carbonated slightly. Maybe the rye is in there somewhere, on the finish. Pretty good. I would by again.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pretty good bottle of brew here. smells very hoppy and lightly roasty, nothing like some of the other more heavy black india pales. flavor is bold pine forest hops and a good dark chocolate finish, bittersweet. mouthfeel is nice, plenty of bubbles, and a nice drinkable medium body. love the aftertaste and hoppy finish of this one. worthy offering from tommyknocker, and fairly priced.

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Photo of rhartogsq
2.71/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I had a bottle with the new logo design, so it was relatively new and fresh.

A. kind of black/brown
S. A little hoppy, a touch of coffee, but nothing too strong on the nose.
T. I didn't pull anything resembling an IPA out of this. Was like the hops were left out. I am not sure if the bottle was bad, or this was how it usually is.
M. a little bubbly, otherwise, nothing stood out, but nothing was off putting with it.
O. If anyone can tell me that I had a bad bottle, I would be happy to try it again. I like black IPAs a lot, and was disappointing with it. I am just hoping it was a bad bottle, and not a bad recipe.

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Photo of hopfacebrew
2.11/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Picked up a bottle in the single section at Lukas. Undated. Poured to pint glass. The beer pours a deep murky brown almost black color with a 1 finger head with extremely limited retention and no lacing. In the light the edges appear a mahogany mocha color. The nose is set by a foundation of roasted malts from which a citrus hop character expands. However in the middle of the aroma a distinct raisin character begins to dominate. Not pleasant. Overall the nose is a bit muted. The taste starts out nicely with a strong roasted malt foundation again from which the citrus hop emerges. However, just like the nose the unpleasant raisin flavor emerges and dominates the palette. So much so that I can't detect other flavors. Medium bodied and relatively smooth but the flavor is overbearing and ruins this beer.
I must have had an old beer or mishandled beer based on the ratings other have posted, as this is not good. At all. My favorite style or beer, and a beer I likely won't return to.

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Photo of Swim424
3.58/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-dark dark amber with a nice white head

S-smells of some slightly roasted malt and lots of hops.

T-very hoppy flavor. a bit of malt overpowered by the hops. finishing with a decent hop kick

MF-medium body. pretty smooth

O-pretty good. not the best black ipa but pretty good. wouldn't mind havin again

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Photo of iabeerbaron
3.41/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black pour with a small white head; minimal lacing around the glass. Aroma of roasted malts, dark chocolate. Very good hop flavor up front with not as much bitterness as I anticipated. Nice roasted malt finish with the hop bitterness coming through at th end. A reall nice Black IPA.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. The beer has a nice black porter color with ruby/brown hue in the light. There's a beautiful foamy cream head with slow dissipation. Light rings of lacing. The beer smells of black pepper? The tastes a lot like a pepper-induced porter. I can taste the hops in the finish, but it's as if it's "roasted hops" ... never heard of that. The mouthfeel is light bodied with a dry hop finish.

Overall, I'll never try this again, but it was interesting. The beer tastes like liquid black pepper.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had a few other black's before, and this one might beat the others. It has the roastiness that should kick in and lots of body, but it also has loads of IPA hoppiness coming through.

It certainly has the appearance down pat. Beautiful dark lacing. The aroma is nice and complex too.

The aftertaste has the usual black ale bite and aftertaste. Interesting and not bad.

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Photo of WoodBrew
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried the Hop Strike whilst in Orlando at the House of Beer. The beer poured a nearly opaque dark brown color with very nice 1/2 finger thick off-white head that left a generous lace. The smell included sweet malt, roasted malt, hint of rye, and slight citrus hops. The taste was citrus hops, roasted malt, and sweet malt, essentially matching the smell. Mouth feel was a medium body with so so carbonation. Overall, not the best Black IPA I have had, but the lower abv made this B-IPA sessionable.

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Photo of TheCondor
4.18/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I scored this brew in a Tommyknocker smapler 12 pack from the local grocery store. Had their standard Pick Axe IPA last night and enjoyed it, so I thought I would give the black IPA a whirl tonight.

Appearance - Black as motor oil with an imposing, thick creamy two finger head that didn't quit until halfway down the glass. Lacing was so wicked it should be illegal.

Smell - Smell of dark, roasted notes with a touch of chocolate and even a hint of coffee or coffee beans.

Taste - This beer has an impressive taste. The front side is the chocolate/coffee notes, finishing with that strong hops bitterness that nails the style well. There are hints of roasted notes in the taste as well, leading to an incredibly well balanced brew.

Mouthfeel - I'd say a medium carbonation. It wasn't as heavy as you would think given it's appearance and properties.

Overall - I thoroughly enjoyed this beer, as did my guest who I served it to as a trial run to see if this sampler was going to be any good. I could easily recommend this beer to anyone who likes this kind of brew. Good flavor, nice bitterness, great appearance...really represents this brewery well. I'm impressed.

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Hop Strike Black IPA from Tommyknocker Brewery
3.78 out of 5 based on 464 ratings.
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