Either | Cigar City Brewing

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Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CampusCrew on 11-12-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 112 | Ratings: 165
Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nearly shit a house when I saw how much these were for each bottle. I took a deep breathe and hoped to God these would be very good, if not excellent. Either poured out as a black looking liquid with a nice tannish brown head on it. The lacing was pretty good on the glass. The smell was hoppy and roasted, smelled like a Black IPA should. The taste was hoppy and had a bitter roasted flavor in the back end of the mouth. The mouthfeel wasn't too heavy but it was probably around medium. Good carbonation. Overall this brew was pretty good but not worth the price per bottle.

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Photo of LiquidBread219
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pitch black body with a creamy dark head and good lacing with the head dissipating to a little cap

S- Sweet floral smell, some woodiness, some hops

T- Wood and sweet fruits hit up front. Some coffee bitterness finish. No real balance, goes from big sweet to big bitter finish with no in between

M- Full-bodied and sweet stickiness

D- Looking forward to "Or" but this one is good

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Photo of vapodge
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 Oz Bottle poured into a pint glass (side-by-side tasting with Or)
[served 3-15-11]

A - black with moderate head; nice dark tan lacing

S - sweet and hoppy with some malt present; no roastiness as with Or

T - roasted malt is there, but it waits until the aftertaste -- it's preceded by honey-sweetened hops and a touch of caramel

M - fairly creamy at first, but thins quickly; moderate carbonation

D - this and its companion Or are to be reckoned with -- Either is the boozier of the two in flavor, but quite drinkable; super-solid, sweet black IPA

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Photo of hdelavega
3.94/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 6oz from a 12oz bottle to a delirium snifter split with a non-BA who is enjoying it.

Pitch black with a thin beige head.

The nose is rich with toffe and malt, there are also some bready notes. There is a strange sweetness that reminds me of the smell of cat food.

The taste is surprisingly mild for the color and nose. Side note this is my first america black ale. There is a nice honey flavor, and a slight taste of bitter hops.

The mouthefeel is realy smooth, with a slight creaminess. The carbonation is light and the finish is warming with a tinge of bitterness.

Overall I like it, I don't really know much about American black ales, I have part two "Or" in the fridge now so I will try it next.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.35/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip.

A - Almost black in color with a nice tan head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Chocolate, malts, and roasted barley.

T - Bitter Chocolate and malts.

D - Chewy and thick in the mouth. Medium carbonation.

O - Overall, not impressed.

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Photo of dlmccabe1
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Holy darkness. This beer pours a dark dark dark black with a thin lacing and tan head. The head dissipated really quickly and we're left with a pitch black, viscous and delicious liquid.

Lots of roasty aromas with hints of chocolate and coffee. You can also get some hints of woodiness from the cedar. I found this to be an interesting beer. It has a lot of hops, you can tell, but hops don't dominate the palate. I think I expected more of a lighter bodied hoppy black ale, but this feels and tastes like a hoppy stout aged in oak, similar to a Yeti from Great Divide.

One thing I must say, is that although this is a delicious beer, it was quite pricey and I'm not sure the $10 price tag for a 12 oz bottle (granted, I grabbed it out of market where it isn't available, so I paid a premium) is too steep for it.

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Photo of dstc
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle into a Cigar City pint glass. Pours very dark with a small head the color of sun kissed chocolate. What does that mean? Tan/brown with hints of orange. Head falls to about nothing. Thinnest of lace.

Aroma is of a roasted quality with whiffs of coffee and even more so of chocolate. Bit of hop in the nose as well as mild hints of cedar.

Strong flavor. Roasted malts and bitter hops battle it out. Chocolate and coffee flavors dance around and mild sweet honey struggles against a hoppy, bitter finish. Alcohol is very noticable and quite warming. Lingering hints of cedar stay on the tongue in the finish.

Mouthfeel is slick, rich and full. Oily and chewy ending with a strong alcohol bite.

Not bad. Big, powerful and interesting. Worth trying if you can find it.

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Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
3.82/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pour into my perfect pint is fairly lackluster, but a revisited vigorous swirl yields a nice, fluffy tan colored head, with lacing that doesnt stick very well. The legs give in fairly quickly and leave almost no lasting impression. The body is deep purple black and is certainly inviting.
I was a little underwhelmed initially by what i was (or wasnt) picking up on the nose, but as it warms it steps up a bit. Some
piney hops, with grapefruit and citrus rind mingle with a bit of alcohol heat that sits in the background, but not nearly as aggressive as it could be for an 11ish ABV. The cedar shows a bit as well, but moreso after the first sip.
A few gulps into this, the cedar and alcohol become increasingly evident and prominent. I rather enjoy the heat and brute strength i get out of it, as i feel it breaks the mold a little bit. I only get a bit of the "copious amounts of hops" up front, but they show on the lasting bitterness on the finish. This certainly gets more and more interesting as it warms, and now only wish i had the "Or" to have side by side. By the end, i realize ive enjoyed it so much that my face is flush from having crushed an 11% so quickly.

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Photo of OakedCanuck
3.73/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into shaker

A - Dark brown to black, light tan head. Decent sticky lacing

S - Roasted barley, wood, grassy hops

T - Muted grassy hops, nice roasty coffee and chocolate malts, some vanilla (not expecting this), caramel and toffee sweetness

M - A touch creamier than I was expecting, medium to light heavy. Tacky

O - A decent example of the style, I could easily drink a couple as the ABV was dangerously hidden.

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Photo of dgfair
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into Jolly Pumpkin tulip.

The beer pours thick motor oil black. I had to pour pretty aggressively to get the light brown creamy head to appear on top of the shiny, slick body. Lacing is left all over the glass. The smell is a hit of grassy hops at first followed by a chocolate roasted malt smell that has a similar smell to super sweet unfermented wort. Decent balance between the sweet chocolate smell and the dry grassy hop. The taste is very aggressive with a punch of bitter hops on the tongue that coats the mouth while the beer is in. However, at the swallow, the beer leaves delicious dark chocolate and coffee notes that really finish the sip well. Fairly sweet and pungent with the hops, but overall pretty well balanced. The mouth is thick and oily, but it really suits the beer. Overall, a very nice sipper that gets considerably better as it warms.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The pour was wonderful, black as night with a light colored head that rose up about an inch and a half before settling down into a nice broken crown that stayed throughout the session. The aroma was very bright, lots of citrus here, orange and tangerine mostly and a wonderfully bright lemon like aroma that rose up, not at all what you would have expected from something that looked so fark. Nice medium body with a smooth and mellow carbonation and a lightness to it that again was outside what I was expecting. Smooth flavor, clean, crisp, loaded with bitter citrus hops. Lots of grapefruit and pineapple here. Such a tight and very hoppy big IPA. I was very pleased with this one for sure. The alcohol was very well hidden I have to say and I was quite impressed with how smooth it came across.

Overall a really, really good beer.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled February 2011
A vigorous pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces a four-finger thick, nicely brown stained, dark tan colored head. The head leaves lots of layered lacing on the sides of my glass as it slowly subsides. The beer is a concentrated, dark-chocolate brown color that is quite opaque when held up to the light. The aroma smells of slightly dirty, tangelo zest, lychee and sweet ruby-red grapefruit juice; I say dirty because a backdrop of roasted malt contributes a burnt edge as well as an earthy quality to what would otherwise be a bright hop fruitiness. The hops also seem to contribute a woodiness that reminds me a bit of pine, but a bit more spicy and I realize that this is likely accentuated by the cedar used in this brew. The cedar is actually fairly subtle and from the nose I wouldn't have guessed it was here if I didn't already know about it as it melds quite well with the hop notes. Touches of cocoa are found here and, in combination with the hops, remind me of orange flavored truffles; at times the chocolate aromatics can be quite prominent, but usually the hops are the clear dominant note in the nose.

This has a rich creamy texture to it as it first hits my tongue; this accentuates a rich chocolate flavor found in the middle of this beer, but this morphs into a bitter roast character in the finish. The hop character contributes the bulk of the bitterness in this beer, but the roast malt definitely contributes as well. Lingering herbal and pine notes also linger in the finish and are actually found through out the flavor profile of this beer (though it is more noticeable towards the finish of a sip than at the beginning). The bright hop fruitiness of the nose is not nearly so prominent in the flavor; the roast in combination with the hop character contributes notes of lightly burnt fruit (tangelo zest, orange zest, grapefruit towards the middle and finish, and some lychee / tropical fruit notes that seem to get muted quite a bit by the roasted character) . Some spicy, warming alcohol is noticeable towards the finish and seems to mix in with a spicy, woody note that must be contributed by the cedar. There is quite a bit of roast character to this beer; it contributes a rich toasted whole grain note, a toasted spicy rye note (which is likely quite influenced by the cedar), some full city roast coffee bean notes that lean towards earthy, and some bitter roast coffee notes towards the finish. The body of this beer is actually fairly rich, it seems to have a lot more texture than the Or and is most definitely a beer to be savored and sipped; it perhaps drinks a little lighter than its actual strength, but not by a whole lot.

Definitely a tasty beer, it seems a bit less hop focused (at least in the flavor), or you could say more malt balanced, than the Or. I am not quite too sure which one I have enjoyed more. As in the Or, the roast malt, alcohol, cedar and hops can combine to be a touch harsh, though not overly so.

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Photo of koopa
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased at Capone's in Norristown PA.

Appeearance: Appearance: Pours an extremely dark brown black that is absolutely opaque. Small almost non-existent beige crown that displays no retention and moderate lace.

Smell: Chocolate malt and deep dark roast malt really shine on this one. Definitely not as much hop presence or spanish cedar presence as the beers counter part.

Taste: Same as the nose but the hops and cedar make a tasteful appearance in the finish.

Mouthfeel: A touch thick but enjoyable indeed!

Overall: Mouthfeel and ABV make you limit your intake but it goes down smooth.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

10oz pour from the bottle given at Church Key DC into a tumbler.

Small head was created with and off tan color sitting on a dark walnut body. It looked good and had staying power, that's about unfortunately all I can say.

Smell though is very impressive. Cola sweets, and sweet clove spices with roasts. Woah this is really unusual for a black ale this feels like a stout or something, but bursting with sweetness. Almost very confusing, but boy do I dig it.

Taste at first is a big fascinating silky sensation that punches you in the face. I can describe this as cola roast, and then faint hints of citrus grapefruit oil that is tolerable on the finish. No carbonation, and this borderline silky feel between and IPA and a stout.

This is like some crazy stout IPA hybrid or something it is really fascinating drinking here. Really impressed by this and very abv masked.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black beer with brown on the edges, bit of lace that sticks around for a good bit and throughout consumption.

S - There is a good bit of wood in this, like cedar. Given what I've drank of the other CC releases I feel like they got stuck with a bunch of cedar and have just had to find something to do with it. Interesting. Little booze and brown sugar sweetness with some hops.

T - Sweet with some toasted malt and a dose of cedar. Little bit of honey with some earthy hops.

M - Smooth and full bodied, nice carbonation.

O - Not bad for a big beer, decently easy to get down, and the cedar is interesting. Wouldn't necessarily seek it out, but wouldn't mind having it again.

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Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to G311 for this brew.

Poured into a chalice a nice black color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tan head, with some little islands left behind. The nose is malty, with some chocolate/toffee notes, licorice. The taste is malty, sweet, nice dark stuff, nice touch of licorice. Medium Body, slightly hot on this brew, needs some age. Drinkable, a nice tasty brew, would recommend.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Got this in a trade with fogdog. Thanks Kevin!

Poured into a Cigar City snifter.

Appearance: Pitch black throughout with brown coming appearing only at glass's horizons. A creamy tan crown resides on top for the entire session. Stringy legs and spots of lace follow the beer all the way down. Looks pretty fantastic!

Smell: Tobacco, semisweet chocolate, leather, pine resin, molasses, tar, and booze. Rough and bold. If there were a beer-inspired cologne, it'd smell like this.

Taste: Molasses, heavy roast, tobacco, leather, earth, and pine. This is a huge beer! Roast, molasses, and dark chocolate meld in a rich, fairly dry finish. I'd like to give this a 4, but I think it's just a bit too intense.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, balanced, and very smooth for such a big beer. The ABV is hidden exceptionally well, and though the flavors and aromas may be coarse, the mouthfeel is certainly easy. Well done!

Drinkability: Intense and jumbled. Another 6-12 months would probably do this one good, but right now it's a slow, careful sipper.

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Photo of Gtreid
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. Bottle poured into my cigar city tulip.

A: black, with some very light reddish hues. Almost stout like. A light brown head appears and recedes to a thin rim.

A: Sweet booze. Big time notes of honey and toasted malt. An earthy hop presence shows up, but the sweet molasses scent overpowers the brew.

T: very sweet from the Ty Ty honey. I actually think this tastes very simmer to black Albert. Dark roasted malts and earthy hops. Finishes sweet, big surprise.

M: this is where the beer shines for me. Big body and smooth. Just the right amount of carbonation.

D and overall impression: drinkability is on the lower side here. Just too sweet, well balanced but to sweet. Overall, a little disappointed with this one. Hope or is better. Skal.

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Photo of jsanford
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

120z bottle poured into a Cigar City snifter. Brewed with Ty Ty Honey and aged on toasted Spanish Cedar. Drank right before Or.

A - Pours black with brown highlights and a thin khaki-colored head that dissipates to a slight haze and thin ring.
S - Honey, hops, and dark chocolate with a definite Cedar quality to it. CC never ceases to amaze me with their use of Cedar, it's such an unusual aroma/flavor in a beer. Slight wafts of booze in the finish. Very Stout-y.
T - Incredibly roasty, huge flavors of dark malt, chocolate, and coffee beans. The cedar is not as prevalent as I'd hoped, but the honey makes a big splash in the finish, can definitely taste the added sweetness. Hops are fairly noticeable, but the malt overshadows it a bit. Pretty smooth, still just a hint of alcohol burn in the finish.
M - Again, very Stout-like. Full-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel and low carbonation.
D - Wow, I'm surprised to see this is 11+% ABV, quite smooth and drinkable for what it is and I'm having no problem with the 12oz bottle.

Glad to have gotten to try this, the last few CC beers I had (110K Batch 3 & Cedar Jai Alai) were huge disappointments, so I was worried I'd never dig their "hoppy" beers. This one goes a long way to restore my faith. Cheers!

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I honestly don't know why people are rating this beer so low. I think it's awesome and I might trade for more.

Pours a deep heavy stout black. Very thin head. Dissipated to a ring. Little bit of lacing.

Aroma smells oaky and hoppy and sticky sweet roast stout. I think is smells great. Could use a little more aroma though.

Taste is great. I think it's similar to night stalker. Little less hoppy though. It's nice and roasty. Little bit of sweetness with caramel and toasted sugars. Slight hint of dark fruits. The oak is nice. The hops work well in this beer.

Mouthfeel is slightly too thick but it's actually pretty drinkable.

Again I don't know what all the hate here is but this beer is great. Either and Or seem to be the same beer to me. I'll have to open Or right now too and compare them. I'll be trading for more of this.

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Photo of zoolzoo
2.85/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours just a shade lighter than "stout black". Looks viscous and oily, a milk chocolate head rises and quickly disappears into only a slight ring, no cap.

S: Smells like a sweet boozy stout. Chocolate is pretty big, and the sweetness is rooted in thick honey or molasses. Alcohol is sharp.

T: Um, again sort of like a sweet boozy stout. Vodka spiked milkshake or something, terribly sweet. The finish is actually pretty interesting as the glass warms though. At lower temps the finish was plainly bitter, now honey really speaks and the cedar adds some marked woodiness. Some juicy hoppage in the finish, which seems out of place to me.

M/D: Mouthfeel is also...imperial stout like. Viscous, low carbonation. Drinkability suffers from sweetness, actual and perceived ABV, and imbalance (I never like alot of hoppage in beers like this).

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Photo of TCHopCraver
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted on 2/18/11 in a back-to-back with Or. I believe zoso1967 supplied Either and TCGoalie supplied Or. Cheers, as always, boys!

Either appears awfully dark and awfully wet out of the bottle. Seriously, the color is a dark brown, almost fully black and is opaque. Some red tints show through at the edges. The head is a light brown and does not reach much of a height as the bottle was split three ways. Lacing left behind is dainty and dotty.

The aroma of Either is quite woody and sweet. I detect scents of caramel and brown sugar, along with a small influence of cinnamon. The more I smell, the spicier it seems. I also pick up some notes of milk chocolate in the bouquet, but those are pretty far in the background. The smell is also a little roasty, but the overriding factor is sweet, spicy wood.

The flavor is very intriguing. The cedar wood is prominent throughout and really shows its mettle at the finish. However, the overall character is that of sweet, thick malt. There is also a little roastiness in the flavor, which is complemented by spicy notes of cinnamon and clove.

The feel in mouth is medium-bodied, but with a lot of bite from the cedar and hop combination. The body is a bit too syrupy and sticky for me. The carbonation fits the body and flavor nicely.

Well, I only had four ounces of Either and it was probably just enough for me. It was a good one-time novelty drink, but I don't think I would return to this over time. I thought the cedar influence was a little too aggressive and that the beer was a tad too sweet. I'm not sure just how fresh this bottle was... I might have been more impressed if it was just a tad fresher.

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Photo of zoso1967
3.43/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Either pours a dark brown black that is very stout like in appearance, though a bit more transparent. The head is light tan in color with decent retention and lacing.

The aroma is fairly complex with a mix of sweet dark fruit, roasty malts and citrus hops. The big X factor is the spicy cedar that makes its presence felt right up front. The rich dark fruits help add depth and sweetness to the bitter chocolaty malt.

The flavor is sweet overall with plenty of the spicy cedar. The hops seem weaker than in the aroma and may have faded some, which I bet makes the wood more powerful. There is a lot of toffee and dried dark fruity sweetness as well as a good measure of astringency. I am not picking up too much coffee or chocolate like I got whiffs of in the aroma. In its current state this beer is really dominated by sweet dark fruits, cedar and a bit more boozy character than I would care for.

The mouthfeel is medium and has a fairly nice smoothness to it. Unfortunately this beer finishes a bit on the sticky side, but leaves some nice spice and bitterness in my mouth.

Either would be more drinkable if it was a bit less boozy and had less cedar in the flavor. This was first up in a dual tasting with Or, and I ended up liking Or a bit more, though I have to say I think I am not a really big fan of the cedar aging in either of the beers. It was definitely a very interesting tasting experience though and I am glad I got to try them back to back.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle 

A- Sampled alongside "Or". Poured into a Cigar City snifter. Pours a dark black color with a light tan head. Not as much head and lacing as "Or".

S- The aroma is pretty similar to a black IPA. Dark malts with some roastiness and hops. Compared to "Or", "Either" is a little more sweet and malty with less of a hop presence in the nose.

T- The taste starts out with delicious roasted malts  up front. Quickly, the hops make their presence and linger well into the finish. The finish is rounded out with a lingering warmth from the alcohol.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Spot on.

D- Overall, I really enjoyed sampling Either/Or in the same sitting. They are very similar but the hop profile is the main difference. I have to give the nod to "Or" as my favorite of the two.

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Photo of billyshears
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

side by side with Or.

a: black with tan head that dissipates.
s: some hops, but kinda second fiddle to the chocolate malts and dark fruits; cedar present a bit and a sweetness which I assume is from the honey.
t: more balanced, less hop driven than or. nice chocolate malt and additional sweetness, which cigar city always does well, followed by a bit of piney hop linger.
m: nice medium/full mouthfeel and high carbonation. works cause its more malt focused than or
d: I could drink a few of these.

it's a judgment call, but i think i might like this one more.. i like the malt hop interplay more on this. if you want a much more hop forward black ale, go with Or.

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Either from Cigar City Brewing
3.95 out of 5 based on 165 ratings.
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