Samuel Adams Black & Brew Coffee Stout | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

333 Reviews
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Samuel Adams Black & Brew Coffee StoutSamuel Adams Black & Brew Coffee Stout

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Vixie on 10-22-2011

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Reviews: 333 | Ratings: 1,018
Photo of Thickfreakness
2.17/5  rDev -42%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Pours a very nice near black into my Bruery Tulip. Nice tan head that fades pretty quickly but leaves a ton of sticky kahki lacing all over the glass.

S- Three day old Iced Coffee from a deli on the wrong side of town. Some faint roasted chocolate malts want to come thru, but the coffee smell is so harsh and overpowering. No other notes of anything... just really bad coffee.

T- Roasted coffee, Chocolate Twizzlers, and thats about it. Really bitter on the tongue with a horrible taste that just wont quit. Tastes like Manhatten Coffee Soda without the carbonation.

M- Very bitter and feels gritty on my teeth. Some carbonation, but just really acrid. not digging this at all. One of the thinnest stouts I've ever had.

O- I was really looking forward to this when I heard about it... but now I just wish I could forget about it. Maybe I'll use the other bottle when I make my 24hr coffee rubbed pork shoulder. I sure ain't gonna drink it!

 950 characters

Photo of TroopScoop
2.38/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

A: dark chocolate brown, deep red when held to the light. Creamy brown head. Hmm, it kinda looks like a brown ale

S: coffee, nutty, oaky. it invites me for a sip

T: Coffee taste is present, but short for my liking. Some nutty tones overtake the rest of my pallete's journey - which was a short one.

M: I never knew what people meant when they said a beer was overcarbonated. Well, now I know. It really genuinely ruins this experience.

O: honestly, if you photoshopped a label and stuck "Coffee Brown Ale" on this beer, I very well might have rated it better. To call it a stout really surprised me, and frankly, it disappointed me. Its worth a try if you bought the winterpack it comes with, but don't expect it to replace your favorite stouts

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Photo of jtierney89
2.5/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a super deep brown with very good clarity. Thin mocha colored head.

Bitter black coffee on the nose with some underlying phenolic scents. Some alcohol presence there as well and minute amounts of grape.

Thick and chewy mouthfeel with lots of bitter coffe flavor. Tasting notes printed on the side of the bottle are pretty accurate. Flavors blend well together but the coffee is very overpowering at first. Some dark fruit comes forward as the beer warms which actually takes away from the beer a bit. Starts to fall apart a little bit.

Could be decent as a dessert beer I guess If you wanted a dessert beer with a very low abv (but who does?)

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Photo of TheWhiskerReview
2.79/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A black pour with a 2-finger tan head, leaving a thick ring and dense lacing. Nose is coffee- old and oily coffee at that- pretty one dimensional with some hints of roasted malt and maybe some dark-fruit esters. Palate's mouthfeel is pretty decent- nice weight with a roasty sweetness and moderate bitterness, but has an odd twang and again with the one-dimensional coffee vibe. Overall, I sought out the 2011 Sam Adams Winter Classics pack because I read a thread here saying how good it was. Guess it was the limited availability that people were hyped about cuz the Porter and Winter Lager are the only ones worth a damn.

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Photo of alpinebryant
2.81/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a coffee dark brown with a large light brown head. strong and sticky lacing.

S: Creamy chocolate with coffee , toffee, roasted malts and a bit of sweetness.

T: Espresso roast, a stale cardboard coffee flavor with roasted malts and a milk stout like lactose sweetness on the finish. A bit of chocolate flavor, but under the pin of the coffee, it barely peeks its head out.

M: Mouthfeel is exceptionally thin for the style. I have noticed coffee stouts to be thinner, but this is watery. The carbonation is very high

O: Its a nice tasting beer in the mixed winter pack. Better than the Cranberry Lambic and slightly better than the winter lager , but not as drinkable. Everything else in the mixer is better IMHO.

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Photo of Bendurgin
2.83/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip. Pours a dark brown with about an inch of frothy light tan head. Nice retention here here, this leaves a solid cap for the majority of the drink.

Pretty standard aroma. This one has a bit of a sweet artificial chocolate aroma with a heavy coffee aroma. A little too much on the coffee a little bit overpowering. Really lame on the pallet. Weak coffee flavors with a little bit of artificial sweetness rounding this out. Weak and unimpressive here.

The body is light with lots of carbonation. This one is drinkable, but it's underwhelming. Weak flavors with that are just a bit off. Clearly not the star of the variety pack.

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Photo of intensify
2.88/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a dark black color with a one finger caramel colored head which disappeared quickly. Smell of dark coffee roasted malts and a kiss of vanilla. Medium carbonation which fizzles in the palate. The body is a bit thin for this style of beer. Tastes of strong coffee grains and light chocolates. Sweet and bitter which balances out okay.. but leaves the palate feeling a bit slimey. Overall this is not bad.. but it is not great. Probably wont buy again.

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Photo of olfolxholme
2.98/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle into Deschutes tulip snifter

A - Not much head, retention, or lacing - but some. Beer is a very dark brown/ruby with bits of khaki foam.

S - Slighty burnt coffee grind character, bits of sweet dark malt. Nothing that offensive, really, but not much to write about.

T - The coffee flavor is dominant, but it has that same kind of wet coffee grind character. Tastes a lot like carbonated coffee, but not particularly good coffee.

M - Not as oily as I'd like, but not bad. Carbonation is a little off - closer to a cola than an American Stout. It's ok.

O - Drinkable but not impressive. Concept is ok, but they need a better coffee component if they do it again. As is... Next, please!


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Photo of larryarms847
3/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours heavy brown, almost black with a caramel kissed lathery head of foam.

Chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and toffee.

Much more coffee in the mouthful, some chocolate, ton of roasted character, not too shabby!

Heavy bodied, medium carbonation, sweet start, bitter in the middle, dry finish.

Overall, I was rather surprised with this one, very good.

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Photo of sauron681
3/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours black with a very small tan head. Aroma of coffee, toffee, and nothing else that i could tell. Low carbonation. Very smooth, with a roasty coffee flavor that finish a tad sour.
I could not pick up any roasted malt, patent, chocolate malt, or anything..just coffee coffee coffee

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Photo of BierStein711
3.01/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into pint glass

Three finger head.

Jet black beer has an overpowering coffee smell, I love coffee and I love beer, but what happened here? I think the problem was the Sumatran roast they claim to use. If they used a more mellow blend perhaps it would be better. I liked the mouthfeel, smooth and gentle. I could not stand the taste though. My girlfriend is French-Polish. She cried " Its horrible!" I wouldn't say that, but I would say it needs tweaking.

I probably would not have this beer ever again.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.02/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a nearly opaque black with a creamy, compact tan head.

S: Aromas of coffee, roasted grain, and dark fruits fill the nose.

T: Opens with notes of coffee, minerals, cream, vanilla bean, bitter chocolate, black currants, and roasted grain. The finish is bitter and toasty with chocolate, coffee, and vanilla bean notes.

M: Dry and oddly thin for the style. Carbonation is way too forceful. To me, this beer comes off as being completely off-kilter.

O: I tend to be a defender of the Boston Beer Company's efforts, but this one does not do a thing for me. The best part of it is the smell. If the body were a bit thicker and the carbonation less forceful, I might be inclined to give this beer a better review.

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Photo of thebfg
3.05/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

From the Winter Classics variety pack.
Poured from bottle into glass.

Very dark, coffee-like color. Looks thick with little head.

The smell is the best part of this beer. Chocolate, coffee, hints of vanilla.

Tastes like it smells. Malty with a dry coffee taste.

Syrupy and thick. Too syrupy, really.

Overall, a decent beer in this variety pack. I wouldn't buy a six pack of it, but two of them are fine.

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Photo of Celt44
3.06/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked this one up in the 2011 Holiday 12 Pack at the local...

Appearance is a nice dark brown with a lighter foamy brown head that lasts a minute or two. Slight lacing lasts throughout. Nice looking beer.

Aroma - hints of roasted coffee - not as much as I thought there would be. Picking up chocolate and malt too...

Taste - Flavors do not burst forth - slight coffee and chocolate once again. Not bad but nothing noteworthy either.

Mouthfeel - Smooth....very little carbonation or burn.

Overall a slightly less than average coffee stout. The flavors and aroma don't shout out like they should. Still haven't found anything better than Boston Lager from Sam.

 666 characters

Photo of Kromes
3.06/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pitch black with a thick tan colored head.

S: Roasted malt, coffee, and faint aroma of alcohol.

T: The roasted malt mixes with roasted coffee and a touch of alcohol sweetness in the background. No noticeable hop bitterness or flavor.

M: Medium body and low carbonation.

O: Just average. I was really hoping this would be better. It has a good base, but there are some off flavors that I didn't care for.

 410 characters

Photo of emyers
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Pours dark brown, almost black, with a very thin beige head dissipating quickly.

Smell: Caramel, cocoa, roasted malt. Some coffee, but it is very faint. Smells like a solid dry Irish stout, but not a coffee stout.

Taste: Again - caramel and cocoa are the most prominent flavors, with toasted biscuit and bittering hops, and just a hint of coffee. Coffee flavor is not particularly developed, and comes off a bit stale.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light bodied, which is further brougt out by a high carbonation level for the style. Could use more body and less carbonation.

Overall: Comes off as a very average stout that is really lacking in the coffee department.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured chilled in ale glass

A: solid black, nice head
S: sweet smell of caramel, roasted grains
T: ok, first of all, this beer is for me an argument that coffee and beer shouldn't be mixed together. But if they were, would you want it like this? The coffee tastes like a Dunkin Donuts brand (which is not a compliment); the stout is well spiced, slightly hoppy

I'll pass, overall, but someone who likes the genre better won't mind.

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Photo of siege06nd
3.09/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A. Pours a coffee black with a massive two and a half finger, super creamy light brown head. Wonderful lacing absolutely coats the glass. The frothy head lingers for the duration. A fantastic looking stout.

S. Milk chocolate, slightly burnt coffee grounds, an fresh cream. It smells good but lacks complexity and depth. Not much malt presence. A little one note.

T. Lots of roasted coffee, almost overpowering. Not much else outside of that. Just a trace of chocolate. Thin malt bill. And a watery, sweet finish. Decidedly average, but not bad.

M. The coffee notes are there, but they lack robustness. Where is the chocolate and roasted malt typical of this style? Drinks more like a porter. A thin, watery finish really hurts Black & Brew.

O. I'm happy to see Sam Adams continuing to experiment with their seasonal cases and putting in interesting styles. That being said, this drinks like a light, introductory coffee stout/porter. I love the idea of giving this to a person just getting into craft as it is a good intro to the style, but for the initiated who have sampled the likes of FBS and Wake 'n Bake, this brew will do nothing for you.

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Photo of fostah
3.1/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From a 12 ounce bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass.

Pours night black, with two fingers of nice tan/off-brown head that lasts quite a while. Initial aroma is of strong black coffee, roasty and warm, with some chocolate malt in the back. Mouthfeel is adequate, coating but not thick. Tastes like a cold glass of coffee, backed by chocolate (from the malt, I assume). Low levels of a nondescript hop bitterness, with some coffee bite shoring it up. The overall picture is kind of weak. It meets its requirements, but there's something missing... All things considered, it's average, and I'll drink the second in the mix pack if the wife doesn't... She'll have plenty of time to get around to it, though, since I'm not in a rush to refill the glass...

 749 characters

Photo of jadpsu
3.1/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours pitch black with a brown head with light laceing.
Aroma: Strong coffee along with some dark chocolate. More of a stale coffee smell than a fresh coffee smell.
Taste: Very strong coffee. I know it is a stout and the smell and taste here is quite strong and stout.
I am not a real stout fan but have found some Oatmeals that I like.
This one had the complexities but some of the flavors were just not to my liking.

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Photo of Khazadum
3.11/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very nice creamy lacing. Tight, pharmaceutically graded. Good retention, good lacing, nice collar you are left with eventually.

S-Bit of light sweetness, some cardboard nature, faded coffee grounds, roasty, not toasty.

T-Standard stout nature. Opens faint roasted coffee, not so much toasted anything. Some bitter barley and grain nature. Finishes off bittered coffee ground and burnt grain lingering in the middle. Not so much acrid, just strong in flavor.

Crisp, lots of carbonation, too much carbonation to be honest. This still doesn't stop it from being full bodied and nigh creamy. That makes it halfway delightful to feel. Interesting beer, not worth buying the winter classics pack just to try this.

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Photo of MaximalC
3.11/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours dark chestnut bordering on ebony. A decent sized mocha head was achieved with a vigorous pour and left appreciable lacing. The aroma is primarily coffee with perhaps a hint of chocolate. The flavor matches the smell, though I find it to be very one-dimensional. The coffee flavor is closer to your generic cup of joe as opposed to any fancy artisinal brew. This lends an ascerbic element to the coffee that I don't particularly enjoy, yet appears all too common in coffee themed beers. This wouldn't be too much of a problem if there were stronger supporting flavors to shoulder the load, but unfortunately bitter black coffee is the only prominent taste. Maybe if you look hard you can find some milk chocolate in there, and a meager dose of hops, but on the whole there is a surprising lack of substance for the style. This isn't a terrible brew in that it is technically drinkable, but there's not much to relish in a thin, bitter, one-dimensional stout.

 963 characters

Photo of phichifiji00
3.11/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Black, pours 1 inch of thich tan head that fades slowly. Lots of lacing.

Smell: Tons of coffee, roasted malt, hint of chocolate, smells like folgers in a beer bottle.

Taste: coffee, chocolate, toffee, a bit astringent, bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: full bodied, moderate carbonation, astringent.

Overall: Not my favorite coffee beer. Not very complex. The coffee is overpowering and very astringent. The chocolate is very subdued. Tastes like cold diner coffee in a bottle.

 511 characters

Photo of Innocentexile
3.12/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. poured into pint glass

A-pours almost a pitch black color with a finger of tan head. laces well throughout process

S-smells like a coffee stout (what a shocker). smell the roasted coffee up front with a slight chocolate malt i think

T/M-eh, it does its job well, it tastes like it should. coffee up front as well as a roasted aftertaste. i guess im not a coffee fan. weird consistency in the mouthfeel too. not sure how to explain it

O-its ok. again, im not really a coffee guy. people who enjoy coffee will definately enjoy it IMO

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Photo of Willytee3
3.13/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle was given to me after it was left undrunk from the mixer 12 pack.

Pours a dark brown-black, dense. Creamy latte colored 1 finger head reduces to a thick film. small bubbles streaming up the side of the glass. Sticky lacing.

Smells of medium roasted malt with sweet coffee and cream, a hint of liquorish. Deep and rich but not that complex.

Tastes of dark roast coffee with a much lighter body than a traditional stout, a tad watery. Roasted malt and chocolate flavors with a touch of liquorish bordering on pool water. Burnt malts and slight bitter on the finish.

Overall was surprised by the watery consistency of this brew. Although the coffee is not overdone it is a bit out of balance with the consistency. Drinkable and may be a good introduction to the style but I will not have another.

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Samuel Adams Black & Brew Coffee Stout from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.74 out of 5 based on 1,018 ratings.
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