Lubrication | Clown Shoes

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314 Ratings

Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 314 |  Reviews: 158
Reviews by kkipple:
Photo of kkipple
3.9/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, July 2011, goes into a New Belgium tulip.

S. Since the smell jumps from the glass, it comes first. And this smells like... well, let's just say The Dude and Cheech would be very fond of this beer. Mellow & green, mildly sticky, herbal, if you get my drift... yeah man, pass it over... can't keep that all to yourself. Delicious, if you partake in that sorta thing... ahh... yeah bro, there is some milk chocolate in there too, and, you know, some... those green cone bud things, yeah that's them.

A. Opaque dark chocolate. Good head retention, tan lace sticks to the glass, relaxed

T. Not as promising as the nose, sadly... pretty dry stuff here, stiff and green, tons of bitterness, cocoa, hops, pine. Thin bodied, but heavy carbonation. Somewhat creamy... really rather odd. Isn't trying to be a session beer, it's too bracing for that. Short, immediate finish of IBUs and the sticky icky as you exhale.

Lubrication is interesting stuff. Fills a niche, I guess, for the highly attenuated, mary jane smelling dark ale. Recommended if you roll thataway.

 1,073 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep cola color with a off white head that never really fully subsided.Roast and fruity esters in the nose,not much hop presence to speak of.Roasted with a little char on the palate with that candied orange peel element coming thru in the finish.A pretty good beer,not much hop presence for the style, and not overly complex but its not bad.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.41/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In a pint glass this beer was a black color with a thick tan head. There was a good deal of lace.

Aroma was very tepid. Roasted malt and herbal hops, but muted.

Improvement in the taste. Coffee, a little chocolate, and piney hops.

Another so-so black ale. Not bad, but not that good.

 286 characters

Photo of Magister_Beav
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Billolick
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle. Bottled on dated notched onto the side of the label.

Pours a super dark shade of brown, approaching black, luxorious dark mocha head, goes to a coating thicker film, and leaves plenty of low sheeting and nicley developed patterns of lace.

Roasty malts and chocolate in the nose.

Lots more chocolate on the palate, dry and dusty with dark malt notes tossed in. Resinous hops bring the bitterness late and in the finish.

Ehh, this one doesn't do much for me, nothing too special...

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Photo of Homebrew35
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a half fingers worth of a mocha colored head. A thin ring of head remains and a good bit of lacing. Body is black, a hint of brown is around the edges.

Smells of roasted malts, floral resinous dank hops. I gets lots of roast on this one. A hint of bready yeast.

Tastes like a stout with out the heavy mouthfeel. A firm bitterness comes with the earthy, dank oily hops presence. The roasted malts sit on your tongue and coat your mouth like sucking on some camp fire ashes.

Mouthfeel is medium thin, medium low carbonation. The finish is firmly bitter with a piney, earthy and tobacco coating oiliness.

I think this one does embody what i think a black IPA is. Roasty, not very sweet in any way, a firm lingering bitterness and medium thin body. Bravo to Clown shoes for this one.

 792 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Glad to finally have Clown Shoes distributed in Texas. Always a fan of Black IPAs and Clown Shoes brought three new ones into the state.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with an off-white head. The aroma is full of chocolate and roasted malt with some strong pine notes from the hops.

The flavor has a strong resinous pine component that really cuts through the chocolate malt. The beer is very dry and the bitterness is a little higher than I expected it to be. The beer is fairly easy to drink.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 550 characters

Photo of Moo5152
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of PretzelsNBeer
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of wo87810
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.18/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out straight black, small head to it, closest to a light beige/mocha type color. Mildly hoppy aroma, a little bit citrus, but barely.

Taste, some bitterness, the usual type of bitterness you get in black ales and the dehusked whatnot. Left with a chalky mouthfeel at times and that peculiar bitterness you get in this style of beer where the hop profile fails to jive with the bitterness. Needs more citrus and tropical hop mouthfeel with these. Frankly, black ales are difficult to make when they're intended to be hoppy, black ipas if you will.

This one just wasn't all that enjoyable the back half, not bad, but not worth the purchase. Still had some minor stout qualities, didn't play up the ipa qualities.

 720 characters

Photo of SPRichard
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of lewis3180
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of jALEson
4.5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of KenC
2.98/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Poured jet black. An aggressive pour left three fingers of tan head. Great retention to the bottom of the glass with spotty lacing.

S-Citrus, coffee, pine, and burnt malt. Very complex!

T-Heavy burnt malt and coffee at the end. Some citrus and pine in the middle. Bitterness throughout.

M-A very light body and bitter bite. Nothing I want more of, really.

O-I picked this up on a vacation to Cape Cod. I’m glad I tried one of the brews I can’t get in NJ, but I wouldn’t bother with it again.

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Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh from Premiere Gourmet. Opaque black bodied Average mouthfeel, aggressive carbonated. Average mouthfeel. The roast without significant hops compared to a black IPA.Was not getting much citrus, more is better. One dimensional. Rough, yet still very good drinkability.WOrth a try.

 283 characters

Photo of whatname
2.5/5  rDev -30.7%

Photo of tdm168
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black with a mountain of thick, dense head that has great retention. The nose reveals piny, citrusy hop aromas and some chocolate and roasted malts. There is also a faint coffee aroma. The flavor is exactly like the nose. There is some chocolate and roasted malts up front with laid back coffee notes followed by faint pine and citrus hops. The body is thin but smooth and has light carbonation.

This is a little disappointing. The hop character is a little subdued and the mouthfeel is very thin. It's easy to drink and the malt character is good though it's not very complex. I would go for one of Clown Shoes other Black IPAs before this one.

 658 characters

Photo of mhenson42
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of WoodBrew
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a pitch black with a ecru head that has great retention and is leaving some lace. The nose reveals slight piny, citrusy hop aromas and robust chocolate, coffee and roasted malts. The flavor is exactly like the nose. There is some chocolate and roasted malts up front with laid back coffee notes followed by faint pine and citrus hops. The body is light to medium but smooth and has light carbonation. Overall a decent beer almost a porter in my opinion.

 469 characters

Photo of cjgator3
3.71/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle

A- Pours a dark black color with a large light tan head with great retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is dark and roasted malts with a good dose of hops in the nose as well.

T- The taste like the aroma is roasty up front with a lot of bitterness in the finish from the hops.

M- The mouthfeel is between light and medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, Lubrication is a pretty solid black ale that is definitely worth a try.

 462 characters

Photo of let8it8grow
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of avisong
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of blknikon
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Kegatron
3.55/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a dark clear ruby, with a couple fingers of light mocha head. This retains with a big creamy dollop of foam in the middle of the glass, leaving back thick creamy lacing that sticks to the sides in a sticky latticework. The aroma smells of leafy hops and green citrus with a good bit of peppery spice mixed in that gives this a forceful airiness up front of the nose. Things get a little darker along the back as roasted coffee and chocolate flavors emerge but it’s those fresh hops that mostly control this.

Green citric bitterness is at the forefront of the taste, spreading green pith and zippy spice notes out through the profile and into the finish. The malts have much more of a presence this time around, with a smooth chocolate sweetness and crunchy roasted (but a not overly burnt) character mixed in. Like the nose though, the hops bring most of the aggressiveness, leaving this dry and bitter on the finish with just a touch of a lingering burnt feel. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a smooth and silky feel up front that then gets much more firm and crisp as this moves along the back of the profile. The ABV doesn’t seem like much of a factor here.

This was a solid Black Ale but didn’t do a whole lot to distinguish itself from what has started to become a glut of new takes on the style that are out on the market right now. Hops and dark malt could be a bit more in unison here but the body at least had a smooth crispness to it that helped keep this drinking easy.

 1,535 characters

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Lubrication from Clown Shoes
Beer rating: 3.61 out of 5 with 314 ratings