Black's Nocturne | Cismontane Brewing Company

94 Ratings
no score
Send samples
Black's NocturneBlack's Nocturne

Brewed by:
Cismontane Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We took everyone’s favorite Imperial Stout (sans coffee) and aged it for nearly a year in fresh Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels, which we then blended in an attempt to tame the bourbon beastliness. Creamy vanilla and smooth oak on the nose complement and round out the roasted, bitter chocolate characteristics. A kiss of bourbon booziness on the palate provides the perfect finish for this rich and decadent tribute to the dark months ahead. Be prepared…winter is coming.

Added by UCLABrewN84 on 09-23-2012

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 94 |  Reviews: 20
Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jaydoc
3.74/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Better Weather Fest at Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, cookie dough, wood, and bourbon. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick on the finish. There is a mild roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a really nice barrel aged presence.

 575 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of kojevergas
3.95/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Uinta pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average; this is me first beer from this brewery. 12% ABV confirmed. 50 IBU. 30 SRM.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger rich tan colour head of gorgeous frothy cream, great thickness, and impressive retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a solid black. No yeast particles are visible; it's nontransparent. Opaque. So far, so good. I'm excited to try it.

Sm: Heavy oak, vanilla, some roast, alcohol, dark malts, marvelous bourbon, and cocoa nibs. Some caramel. Oats when I look for them. I don't get brown sugar. A very pleasant, inviting aroma. No yeast is detectable. I'm excited for this one.

T: Vanilla, cacao nibs, caramel, dark malts, bourbon, and oak. An eclectic, fantastic, flavour. Very well balanced and enjoyable. The vanilla and bourbon coalesce nicely, generating an excellent effect. Satisfying. It has a reserved subtlety that really suits it well. Rich and decadent. I really like it. Complex and intriguing. I'm quite impressed. No yeast comes through. The alcohol is very well hidden. Hopping is minimal and backgrounded, functioning mainly as a preservative. The dark malt foundation is a bit caramelized and features some chocolate malt, but doesn't intrude, holding the beer together nicely. I barely get brown sugar. A bit of oaty sweetness is detectable only when I actively search for it. It certainly doesn't lack body. A delightful finish.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but dry and coarse enough to coax out the flavours. Perfect thickness. Suits the flavour profile excellently. Perfect carbonation. Oats were used optimally here, lending an otherwise dry and coarse style some credible smoothness. Nicely creamy.

Dr: Drinkable and very enjoyable. Hides the ABV incredibly well. I really like it. I'd definitely have this again, preferably either aged or on draught. It might be too smooth on nitro. Fans of the style will no doubt enjoy this one. I'm excited to try more beers from Cismontane. A stellar brew. I'd recommend this to friends. It does come off a bit too smooth for the style, though. If I accept it as an "Imperial Oatmeal Stout", I feel better about it. The warming bourbon is really wonderful here; I'd be curious to learn which bourbon barrels they used.


 2,553 characters

Photo of oline73
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of oberon
3.99/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of nickfl
3.95/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mactrail
3.87/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A gigantic blow torch of an Imperial Stout. Very dark mahogany color in the New Belgium snifter. Quite dark head, it's beyond beige. Spritzy in the mouth with a prickly sharpness that accentuates the booze. Actually not a heavy-bodied brew, for all the massive ingredients. Great aroma of woody vanilla and caramel.

Sweet like a liqueur from the start. A pleasant drying trend takes hold so the sugar doesn't stay on the tongue for long. The sweetness does make a nice introduction as your taste buds are assaulted. Seriously hot with alcohol. The syrupy intensity and vast flavors do distract you while this is sliding down your throat, but I wouldn't say the alcohol is hidden. Dark and charry malt is the big flavor, enlivened by a very smooth bourbon taste.

Satisfying for a small glass after dinner, say. A little too much of a good thing, but I'll be interested in what the barrel fanatics say about this. From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Best Damn in San Diego.

 973 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of drewone
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of mdfb79
4.26/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 04/20/13 notes. Thanks to Nugganooch for sending me this one; thanks Dane! 22 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

a - Pours a dark brown, almost black color, with one finger of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of milk chocolate, sweet bourbon, roasted malts, dark chocolate, toasted malts, vanilla, some oak and coconut. Very nice nose. Sweet, with nice bourbon and chocolate mixing together. Not very hot at all.

t - Tastes of milk chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, roasted malts, toffee, caramel, some dark fruits, oak, coconut, burnt and toasted malts. More vanilla here than the nose, not quite as sweet. A little better than the nose in my opinion.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Body is pretty smooth and not very hot. A little bit thicker and the body would be great.

o - Overall my second beer and stout from Cismontane and I have been impressed with both of them; they were know their stouts. This one is a big stout that has barrel notes, but tastes like it is 8% ABV; really nice. Loads of sweet bourbon and chocolate throughout, and easy to drink. Would really like to have it again.

 1,130 characters

Photo of dvmin98
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Duff27
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of Gonzoillini
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of beernads
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of ShanePB
3.96/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, opened by Greenplastic615. Thanks for the share!

A: Dark black body, thin tan that settled nice and quick into a filmy retention cap. Minor lacing.

S: Rich dark chocolate, sweet bourbon, oak, dark fruits, molasses.

T: Wonderful bourbon and chocolate blended on first sip. Notes of oak, brown sugar, vanilla and some slightly roasted caramel malts.

M: Higher end of medium-bodied, not as full, lush and thick as some others in the style. An easy drinker at 12% ABV.

This was a nice surprise from a little brewery I've never even heard of. Good first impression.

 580 characters

Photo of brandoman63
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of DoubleJ
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the source, on to the beer:

Served in a short shaker, this imperial stout is too black to describe and topped with a splash of tanned foam. You smell it, and the first thing to hit your mind is bourbon. A few splashes of sweet and roasty imperial stout lay underneath the layer of said spirit.

A chocolate laced bourbon treat is what you get here. Incredibly, the 11% alcohol does not show itself. The bourbon yields a fruity flavor from itself, and with time the bourbon seems to mellow. It comes out as a somewhat chewy beer and full bodied, and very smooth.

For a cool night like tonight, Black's Nocturne will keep you feeling warm.

 650 characters

Photo of yourefragile
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of Hohnbaum
4.06/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of egrace84
4.25/5  rDev 0%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Black's Nocturne from Cismontane Brewing Company
4.25 out of 5 based on 94 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.