Blackheart | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

379 Reviews
no score
Send samples

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
A throwback historical ale brewed when English IPA's were hopped up to last the long voyage from England to Colonial troops in India, using English malts, English hops, English yeast and aged slightly on toasted oak for a 19th century taste.

78 IBU

Added by philberinghele on 03-21-2008

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 379 | Ratings: 1,346
Photo of wisrarebeer
2.05/5  rDev -49.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

OK. I've been to the UK numerous times, drunk dozens and dozens of UK real ales, and visited numerous breweries. I'm always leery of a brewery that states that their beer is a specific style. With that being said I'm going to rate this as a true UK IPA and not an American IPA.

Right off the bat, the ABV is too high - should be nearly half.

A: great, orange/light brown color - clear
S: nose is way off for an English IPA, where's the malt?, where's the balance of malt and hops?, way too much hops, not to style
T: I must have an off bottle, it tastes very medicinal and extremely, extremely bitter, way too piney, even for an American IPA there is something wrong
M: pucker factor big time
D: not

 701 characters

Photo of Jesse13713
2.07/5  rDev -49%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bomber into a Samuel Smith pint glass. Newer bottle with renamed 'Blackbeard' logo.

Appearance - A frothy half finger of head that rapidly turns to a soapy texture. Very nice lacing. The beer itself is a deep, delicious looking amber that shows signs of nice carbonation. Faint orange and brown hues that look alive and fresh.

Smell - Smells quite alcoholic with hints of spiced floral notes. Nothing special to note.

Taste - Definitely not as unique as other Three Floyds I've had, but definitely a tasty beer. A highly carbonated brew brimming with malt. High alcoholic spice with a heavy caramel crash. Rich english malt and faint floral spice. Light citrus.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability - Honestly, this is my least favorite Three Floyds offering that I've had. There is a heavy alcohol taste that seems quite unbalanced. The malt is rich and heavy. A bit of a roasted taste in the finish. A bit of a letdown.

 929 characters

Photo of bashiba
2.83/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a slightly cloudy bright copper color with a thin white head that was quickly a light soap ring.

The smell was very sweet and bready with some light earthy hops.

The flavor is very sweet and malty with a heavy piney bitterness, a ton of lingering sweetness, the hops are lacking in flavor just packing a lot of bitter. The flavors do not mesh well.

The mouthfeel is thick and chewy with a lot of resin.

This is just a mess of a beer, lacking in all subtleties and balance.

 483 characters

Photo of benjathelion
2.9/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a brandy snifter.

A: Pleasing amber with some haze and decent creamy head that doesn't last forever.

S: Grapefruit. Tangerine. Caramel. Sweet bread. Piney hops.

T: Caramel. Honey. Grapefruit. Extremely sweet, heavy, syrupy malts and an overstated, citrus-and-pine hop presence. The usual suspects. I dislike the corn-syrupy intensity of the malt sweetness, I feel that it conflicts and clashes with the hop bitterness rather than counterbalancing or contrasting.

M: Flabby, sticky and syrupy, with enough effervescence to make it tolerable.

D: Quaffable enough to me, but to the average beer drinker it would be a bit overwhelming.

Overall: This tasted so much like so many others of the IPA style that I found it forgettable. It seems like the syrupy malt/citrus-pine hop combination is becoming very common among American craft breweries that produce stronger IPA styles. What I'd like to see in this beer, as a supposedly English-inspired style, would be a leaner body; not necessarily lighter, just drier, not so excessively sugary and sticky. A drier body combined with a more earthy, herbal or spicy choice of hop flavors rather than the commonly used pine/citrus would, to me, taste closer to an English style and wouldn't eclipse the barrel aging so much. While this was an affable enough beer for someone with a taste for IPAs, the been-there-drank-that experience wasn't worth the high price to me (roughly twice that of nearly all other bombers at the store, including those of comparable style).

 1,546 characters

Photo of HopHead84
3.08/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


Enjoyed at Clusterfork #7 in a snifter.

A: Gold with an orange hue and a frothy white head.

S: Aroma has bread and orange with a little caramel and evident oak. Hops aren't expressive.

T: Bread in the flavor as well, with a stronger than expected malt foundation and a bit of oak. Citrus is light, with notes of orange flesh and grapefruit rind. Lower moderate bitterness.

M: Lower medium body with upper moderate carbonation.

Overall: This was underwhelming.

 475 characters

Photo of morimech
3.09/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

An English IPA at 9% ABV? Alrighty then. The pour results in a orange, slightly hazy fluid with two fingers of white head. The head has good retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy spotty lacing is left on the glass. The claim is all English ingredients. Three Floyds must of used the English ingredients I do not like. Where are the floral and herbal hops I adore? Instead we get sickly sweet aroma and taste that is overly sweet and citric. Tangerine, pineapple, sweet malt, honey, all via for attention from the senses. Has alcohol warming in the finish. The aging on oak does add some interesting components if you can get by the sweetness. Adds a slight wood and vanilla flavor. The body is medium with a slick, oily texture. More like a barley wine than a pale ale. I did not enjoy this beer. I love English style ales but this is went into a direction I did not like.

 882 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

English IPA. Bottle bought at Hop Leaf in Chicago and served into a pilsner glass. Reviewed from notes. Cost was $20.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of white colour. Decent thickness. Okay cream. Good retention. Body colour is a semitransparent pale yellow-copper. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Somewhat murky. Semitranslucent.

Sm: Clean floral hops, pale malts, and light soapy character. Bright fruit. Timid. A light to mild strength aroma. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

T: Floral hops, pale malts, and soapy character. Imbalanced. Somewhat mediocre for the style. I like it generally, but there's not much complexity or subtlety here. A bit too sweet. Weird tropical fruit notes turn me off to it. Not a balanced IPA by any means. I expect more from Three Floyds. No yeast character comes through. Some alcohol. Some candi sugar. Soapiness really holds this one back; it spent too long in primary.

Mf: Smooth and wet, suiting the style. Adequate carbonation. Decent presence on the palate. Suits the flavour profile alright.

Dr: Drinkable and pleasant, but unimpressive. Horribly priced - but then fuck me for buying it at a bar. I wouldn't bother with it again. ABV does come through a bit. I expected more given Three Floyds' reputation.


 1,286 characters

Photo of blackearth
3.17/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Received in a trade for some Hopslam; thanks, Drew! Poured into a pint glass, this beer had a nice golden body with a thin white head. Aroma is of hops, sugar and vanilla. Full bodied creamy and syrupy mouthfeel. This beer is mostly sweet and overly oaky with an almost cloying finish that has very little hop bitterness. I appreciate the brewer's intent with the oak and low bitterness to make this taste more authentic as if the barrel had sailed for months, however it just wasn't my cup of tea. I don't think I'll be having this one again soon.

 548 characters

Photo of Brent
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A bit odd - they hit the mark for an English IPA hops flavor profile - big smack of bitterning hops up front. Then - well, not much follow-up. The high abv certainly gives the beer a sense of horsepower, but nothing else really steps up after the first hops onslaught. Not bad by any means, but not as complex as 3F's usually pulls off.

 336 characters

Photo of BB1313
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.25

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a very hazy burnt orange; fluffy eggshell white head that sticks around and leaves great retention and very sticky lacing. The aromas are full of caramel and chocolate malts. There are also hints of orange zest, lemon zest, pine needles. The flavors seem to matchup with the nose. This beer is very malt forward and the hops take a backseat, although they are obviously there. There are hints of wood/oak. I will say that the flavors are very crisp and refreshing, despite the malts. More cocoa in the mix. Finishes pretty dry. The mouthfeel is wonderful. It's very creamy and thick; full-bodied, moderate carbonation. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Since everything seems lack depth, everything becomes redundant. It makes a solid sipper.

Not bad, but nothing impressive. The aromas and flavors are forgettable, in my opinion. Three Floyds nailed the appearance and mouthfeel, as usual. It's clear that the craftsmanship is there, but it just doesn't pop like most of their beers.

 1,014 characters

Photo of beagle75
3.24/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, brassy golden color with less than one finger of diminishing off-white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Toast is faint in the nose, with mild herbaceous hops that carry a fine thread of attendant citrus. Mineral qualities are suggested, but otherwise this beer's smell is very clean. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins off-dry, with mild bready malt and understated earthy hop aromatics. Acidity is unobtrusive as this beer transitions to more husky flavors of toasted grain in the middle. Bitterness is moderate in the finish, herbaceous and still husky. No alcohol is detected.

M: Medium viscosity, generally balanced on the palate but showing slight acidity, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: Well-crafted but unremarkable, this beer shows ale qualities that, while certainly not West Coast, are still more American than English. It is most in need of a more aggressive English yeast character that could lend some estery complexity.

 1,013 characters

Photo of magictacosinus
3.27/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Thanks, Todd. Purchased at a store in Fort Wayne, Indiana in late August. Stored in my fridge until today. Poured out of a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass. Let's pray that it's held up well at this point.

Pours a lightened amber pale color - exactly the kind you expect from this brewery after having so many of their offerings. Contains a modest but good off-white creamy, one inch tall head that coats the top, yet doesn't leave too much lacing in its wake. No residue sticks to the glass, and it overall looks pretty unimposing. On the other hand, what struck me the most about it at this point was the enormous presence of sediment in the glass. Lots of floaties at first, but a secondary pour closer to the dregs produced some massive globs of malty or yeasty sediment at the bottom. Pretty gnarly, especially for a brewery that usually wins in terms of presenting clean, well atoned beers.

If this was ever an IPA prior to opening, I fail to see how it ever tasted like fresh. This is a premier English IPA in style, but the aroma indicates some aspects otherwise. Notes of pine, citrus, and pineapple meld with honey. Tons of honey, in fact. I realize that is a sign of an older beer, but it's not like it's bad for what it is - only slightly one-dimensional. There's many signs that there was any oak churned through this beer, but the slightly vanilla, butterscotch forward notes might indicate its presence. There's not much else going on here - only sweetness, faded citrus, and a honey, tropical yeast stew in its wake.

The aroma seemed to promise a honey bomb, and, by golly, did I get a honey bomb. Tons of caramelized honey notes immediately reach the palate, followed by toffee, butterscotch, and (finally) a bit of orange peel, pine, and pineapple to ease out the flavor a little bit. As this is an English IPA, it's on the maltier side, but if I've learned anything about FFF beers thus far, they're not the best at producing malt-forward beers (in spite of their usually incredible work in producing solid malt backbones for their hop experiments). This falls into the pit of their decent yet failed experiments this late in the game, and I'd imagine this would be much better fresh on tap. Nevertheless, despite its faded hop qualities, it's quite thick and juicy to drink, and has the same qualities as a decent Chardonnay that's gone through some malolactic fermentation. FFF have never produced a bad feeling beer, to be honest (except for, maybe, DL).

A solid offering, but really not worth the $13 price tag, as far as I'm concerned. This does not hold up well and I can't really see where the oak plays a part in adding on to the beer, to be honest. I realize that it's a "historical" experiment but these guys already make great enough beers to convince us that a lot of their experiments are as unique as they perhaps truly are. (However, I ALWAYS welcome experimentation in brewing.) Nevertheless, I would gladly revisit this in a fresher condition - it's comforting to drink and has a unique malt profile that shines above the hops. Worth trying if you want a FFF fix for something new.

 3,119 characters

Photo of Jishguy
3.28/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured a golden body with a two finger head. Great retention and lacing.

S- Produces a musky, earthy, hop aroma with a bread-like malt character in the background.

T- Caramel malts up front with a lingering earthy hop bitterness in the aftertaste. Nothing too complex.

M- Slightly creamy and slightly watery at the same time. Could be a bit more carbonated.

D- I could put down a few.

 391 characters

Photo of EddieTheTrooper
3.3/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not sure what happened with this beer. The first bottle I bought was clearly not a pale ale of any sort. It poured thick and black (that's what she said) and tested woefully of salt and venom. My frost guess would be that a stout was put in by mistake but being that A: this is three floods and they do not half- ass or fuck up, B: their stout option is Dark Lord (show caps where respect is due) and C: I haven't ruled out that the ghetto- ass liquor store where i got it might have skunked it, I am willing to overlook my first bad experience with a three floods beer. It smells and tastes like an ipa, but a more refined one (guess that's where the "English" thing comes into play). Better than average, though not great. The best part about this veer is it's potency. Granted, 9% isn't quite barley wine but it's still a strong friggin ale. Would i buy it again? Yes, soon? Eh...

 883 characters

Photo of JLeege
3.33/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours a clear golden orange color with a large frothy white head. Great head retention, and a little lace.

Smell- Floral and earthy, with distinct orange peel. A little woody, with some notes of oak and light vanilla. Smells solid.

Taste- Juicy citrus up front, turning sweet in the middle with the oaky notes popping up again, though not as much as the nose would suggest. Pretty earthy and floral towards the finish, even some peat and a little honey. Has a strange lingering aftertaste, maybe aspirin.

Mouthfeel- Medium body and carbonation, and a definite alcohol bite.

Overall- This has got to be my least favorite from FFF seasonal lineup. They make much better IPAs, and I am not particularly fond of most English IPAs, and for whatever reason wood and IPAs dont really mesh for me.

 805 characters

Photo of hwwty4
3.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my buddy Brett for bringing this one back for me. Stored in my fridge since he gave it to me.

Poured a 22oz bomber into my Brother Thelonious goblet. This beer pours a crystal clear orangey red with a big 2 inch head that quickly disappeared and leaving, surprisingly, no lacing. I imagine this bottle is a little old, but you wouldn't expect so from the nose. It's a full frontal attack to the nose. It's straight grassy hops, with a little spiciness coming from some noble hops and really raw oak. Wow, the flavor reminds me of hop-laced ethanol. Up front, its big hops, on the tail it's straight booze. You would think that this beer would have somewhat of a malty flavor, just because of how much alcohol is in it but nope, I don't taste any malty sweetness. The mouthfeel is a tad thin for how big this beer is. Wow, with as hoppy as this beer is with a bit of age, I can't imagine how it was really fresh.

 922 characters

Photo of z3niMAGiNE
3.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy orange without noticeable sediment. Big tan head which quickly dissipates and laces.

Smells strongly of orange, alcohol, and minor smell of herbs.

Taste is overpowered by the alcohol but I'm getting more malt than expected along with the citrus and herbal notes.

Mouthfeel is okay but the aftertaste is too strong of alcohol for me.

I probably couldn't drink more than a bomber and am not especially eager to get another one of these. The alcohol is just too strong. Not my favorite Three Floyds (not even close) but it was good to try.

 553 characters

Photo of mjryan
3.4/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

What a bizzare beer. Pours a dark orange with a big, big head. Lots and lots of lace. Smell is citrusy and funky. A touch of breadiness in there as well. Flavour is indescribable, but I will try. Its like pumpkin pie spices, mixed with cedar wood and lemon zest, I think. Bitterness is very aggressive. There is also a kind of funky twang to it. I would attribute that to the oak, but who knows. I think I like this beer. I just found it really off the wall. Glad I tried it.

 475 characters

Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured a clear glowing orange/copper into a tulip with a creamy head and nice lacing. nose was woody, minty, floral, and earthy with biscuity/cracker-like malts. some alcohol noted. sweet malts are overtaken by the minty/sprucey hop bitterness. long, spicy, minty/sprucey finish with some warming alcohol. medium to full in body with prickly carbonation. maybe i'm spoiled by american dipa's but this was not one of my favorite 3F's offerings.

 443 characters

Photo of Gtreid
3.44/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I got this one in a recent trade, but I can't remember who sent it, so sorry. Poured into a CCB tulip.

A: Super clear burnt orange color. The pour dropped a nice 2 finger cream head that receeded and left great lace. This is one seriouly good looking beer.

A: Big caramel and pale malt. The hops are somewhat subdued, but I guess that is to be expected from the english style. Caramel, orange, and light pine, with bready malt.

T: Good, not great. Caramel and bready malts dominate the flavor. I do get notes of orange and grapefruit, with slight notes of pine sap, but the malt profile is where this one's at. Finishes rather sweet and dry with some alcohol heat.

M: Medium body, good amount of carbonation.

D and overall impression: Drinkability is a bit lower for me, it's the style, not this particular brew. Overall, I thought this was a good example of an English IPA, it just not my bag. Skal.

 905 characters

Photo of kbutler1
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours a slightly hazed orange brown color with an off white head. Malty with some oak notes int he nose. Very minimal hops presence in the taste, more malts than anything. Medium mouthfeel. Matly upfront with some citrus rind notes in the end. Some lemon tastes as well. To me it has an odd lingering taste.

 315 characters

3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is my 1000th beer! Although I have not rated Nearly that many here on BA, most of those were done before I started using the BA method of reviewing. Fitting it is a Three Floyds brew as they are one of my most loved breweries.

A big bubble rocky two inch head is light tan in color and leaves a bit of doted lace. Body is a orange amber glass like body. Nose has a musky sweet hop character including tones of citrus peel, pine, paprika and resin like marmalade. Enters the mouth with that same citrus based resiny feel with first sip. It then turns to a mineral based piney feel on the back of the tongue and that hangs on the the buds strong. A mixture of musky malt , dry spices and orange peel make up an odd mouthfeel. Drinkability is hampered by this a bit for me.

 776 characters

Photo of rmcnealy
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served chilled in a traditional pint glass.

Poured a medium/light amber with an off white head that fleeted to a meer thin layer and ring around the glass. The initial aromas are of malt, slight hop and pine. The taste include the formentioned along with slight citrus. The malts definitely outweigh the hops in this one. I believe that's more of a English trait than an American IPA which would be more hoppy, floral. Ends with a nice bitterness bite and is reminiscint of a tea. Good brew, very drinkable.


 516 characters

Photo of SierraFlight
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Bomber poured into plastic cup. Hazy orange with a finger of white head that settles to a cap. Great lacing. Aroma is citrus (mostly orange), leafy hops, bread, and caramel maltiness. Taste starts with caramel sweetness then is cut by grassy/leafy hop bitterness before mellowing to a citrus hop bitter finish. Medium bodied, slick and creamy, moderate carbonation.

 365 characters

Photo of AgentZero
3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Very dark amber color, clear, with a white head that left some lacing.

S - A big floral presense, with some dark malts and a bit of spice. A little bit fruity, but it's muted.

T - I have never preferred the English style of beers, and this one is not changing my mind. That said, it is not bad and almost an almost enjoyable take on the style. The hops come through with a touch of bitterness on the end, and it is a bit of dark bready malts and some interesting citrusy fruits like pineapple or mango.

M - A little flat, but might have been from the cask. Medium bodied, and felt lighter than it looked.

D - Not too bad, something about the taste leaves me not necessarily wanting tons of this beer.

 710 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Blackheart from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 1,346 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

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