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Phillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPA | Phillips Brewing Company

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Phillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPAPhillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPA
52 Ratings
Phillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPAPhillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPA

Brewed by:
Phillips Brewing Company
British Columbia, Canada

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by canucklehead on 11-01-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 52 |  Reviews: 19
Photo of beerhunter13
2.5/5  rDev -38.3%

Photo of Howlader
3/5  rDev -25.9%

Photo of Cookeeman
3.25/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This may be the most appropriately named beer Phillips has ever produced. I was Puzzled by this beer. Why? Because a Black IPA, made with Belgian yeast, brewed in-part by a supposedly hop-crazy brewery (Phillips), should be extremely flavor-packed! Surprisingly though, I found this to be a very mildly flavoured beer. The Belgian yeast barely even shows up in the taste, mostly just in the aroma, along with some roasted malt. The body also has a hint of roasted malt, and a little cocoa/chocolate... but not much else. The biggest flavor is the hop finish, but even that isn't overpowering like Phillips tends to like to brew. The hops finish dry and slightly piney, but again, not in any appreciable amount. At 9.1% I definitely would have expected a boozy finish, but it is mysteriously missing as well. I hesitate to put this next statement on record given that this is a collab with Great Lakes, but my overall impression while drinking this beer was that it was... eerie. This is actually what I thought when I finished this beer, pun not intended. I went into this with expectations that were, perhaps, too lofty, but I have to say this beer let me down.

 1,162 characters

Photo of RYthebeerGUY
3.25/5  rDev -19.8%

Photo of Johnquisssssssy
3.46/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

More buttery than I remember in previous batches; the berries were lost. Disappointed from a normally solid black ipa

117 characters

Photo of 604growler
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of cbnz
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of schopenhauerale
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of CWVegas
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of maclean25
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of rodrigueZflyingf0x
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of StJamesGate
3.84/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Alibi Room, Vancouver.

Pours like an Irish Stout: ruby black with a tan collar than rings.
Roast and smoke on the nose.
Black rye bread, a whack of phenols, then orange oil hops.
Red berry finish and clovey linger.
Medium, chewy, smooth.

More stout than anything else. Way too phenolic. But it does hit all 3 notes named on the label.

 350 characters

Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed a bomber obtained from Co-op liquor store in Calgary, poured into a Belgian-style goblet. I probably should have used an IPA glass. A nearly pitch black brew with ample brown head and a rather unique aroma/taste profile. There's some Belgian influence in the form of yeast-derived (presumably) spice notes and a burlap sack-like dryness but this is not what grips the taste buds. Smells and tastes like pot resin, brown rye bread with caraway seed, pipe tobacco, burnt banana, weak clove oil, a hint of orchard fruit. Others taste citrus in this and I suppose I do as well, a generic citric rind somewhere in the mix, but truth be told I get more marijuana dankness and pine. These differences in palate add to the fun of beer tasting I suppose. Dry, woody, resinous, and spicy, with some ash helping to dry out the earthy bitter finish. A big ol' resin bomb with some dark malt character that is hard to locate amidst the hop assault. Middle of the road carbonation. This one will likely stand out in my memory for quite some time. Captures the aggressive resinous hopping that Phillips does so well, with some added spicy special effects. Did I mention its hoppy?

 1,173 characters

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.91/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - very dark cherry cola look, tall mocha head retained very well, plenty of random sticky lacing
S - nutty and earthy, mild fruity belgian funk, certainly a head scratcher at this point
T - roasty, earhty, leafy, nutty, not much Belgianishness other than a bit of funky strangeness, I must admit I am puzzled
M - full malty feel, touch of hop dryness and alcohol heat thin it slightly
O - don't know what to say other than I am puzzled, which I guess is a good thing ...?

 477 characters

Photo of 4ster
3.94/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

New 2014 Bottle. No longer claiming to be collaboration with GLB.

65 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh bottle from the brewery poured in to tulip glass. Stated IBU of 100.

A - Black with half a finger of light brown head

S - Bitter hop aroma up front with grapefruit, peach and pine notes. The malt bill adds roast, chocolate and some sweet molasses aromas.

T - A big bitterness up front with pine, grapefruit, orange peel and peach flavours. A fairly prominent malt backbone adds roast, chocolate, and sweet molasses flavours. There is a good bitterness but it doesn't appear to be anywhere near the stated IBU of 100. Good overall balance. Not getting much of a "Belgian" profile here at all.

M -Medium body; creamy. Light carbonation.

 646 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle. Another nice cross-Canada collaboration from Phillips, released concurrently with a fresh hop offering - nice!

This beer pours a clear, I think, very dark chestnut brown, with mahagony highlights, and two fingers of tightly foamy mocha head, which leaves a low rocky shoreline of lace around the glass as it genially ebbs away.

It smells of bitter grapefruit rind, roasted, somewhat meaty caramel malt, a bit of fleshy stone pit fruitiness, some earthy Belgian yeast, and floral, leafy hops. The taste is big bitter citrus and pine needles, toasted bread and caramel malt, a waning Belgo-yeast character, muted fallen orchard fruit, and a trailing leafy hoppiness. Little, if any warming from the hefty ABV.

The carbonation is on the reserved side, though hardly inert, the body a tremulous medium weight, and really quite smooth, none of the heavy hitters messing with this metric, which is rather nice to see. It finishes pretty dry, the roasted notes from the malt kind of dominating a depleted field of competition.

A tasty Cascadian Black Ale, with a subtle Belgian twist, which fades soon enough, leaving us with the hoppy, toasted goodness of the style, unencumbered, (or enhanced, depending on your outlook) by the still AWOL, and very well integrated, elevated booze.

 1,294 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.99/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep black color ale with a rather large brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of dry roasted malt with huge resin and green citrus hoppy notes. Taste is also a good mix between some dry and bitter roasted malt with a side of black chocolate and some aggressive green citrus hops notes with some resinous notes at the end. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well brewed for the style and something I could see myself having again in the future.

 528 characters

Photo of FadetoBock
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Ry-guy
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DamageCase76
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Kmat10
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of leaddog
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bottle. I missed out on last years batch but Phillips has brought it back. The ABV is 7.3% as opposed to the 9.1% of last year's collaboration batch.

Appearance- Pours a dark brown with two fingers of foamy mocha head.

Smell - Belgian yeast, roasted malts, piney hops, citrus.

Taste - A nice mix of the roasted malts, Belgian yeast, hops and citrus flavours. Good roasted flavours and bitter hop finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Overall - For my first go at a Belgian Black IPA, Phillips delivers a flavourful brew that has a nice mix of Belgian and North American ingredients. Perfect for the time of year in Calgary when the weather is changing.

 686 characters

Photo of Beervana
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Niceroad77
4/5  rDev -1.2%

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Phillips / GLB Puzzler Belgian Black IPA from Phillips Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 52 ratings
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