Allagash Black | Allagash Brewing Company

720 Reviews
Allagash BlackAllagash Black

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Allagash Black is a Belgian style stout brewed with 2 Row barley, torrified wheat, oats, both roasted and chocolate malt and a generous portion of dark caramelized candi sugar. The silky mouth feel is a great balance to the roasted character, coffee and dark chocolate notes expressed throughout this beer.

Added by Bassetdawg on 12-14-2007

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Reviews: 720 | Ratings: 2,626
Photo of keith712
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber purchased at a Spec's, batch 21, rated at 7.5% abv. Poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Dark, but translucent deep brown/mahogany. Creamy head that sticks a bit then fades away to nothing as it warms.

Nose: Unusual to me, less sweet than I expected. Roasted grains (coffee?), a slight hint of bitter chocolate. Some bitterness apparent in the nose but not objectionable.

Taste: Stout for sure, another charred flavor in there but not quite dominant. Malts assert themselves in lieu of hops, some mild bitter chocolate. The yeasts are obvious and to my limited palate of this style, I assume this is the Belgian yeast influence. Certainly a bit less sweetness (almost none) than I expected.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is medium low to low, initial swallow is thinner than I expected. It finished dry as well. Alcohol is NOT apparent. No chewiness nor a heavy feel left over.

Drinkability: Smooth, easy on the palate and I finished the 22oz in ~ 1 hour. It gets better as it warms up after a half hour. Next time I have this I'll leave it on the counter longer before serving.

Overall, I'll give this a B+. Not my favorite style but interesting nonetheless.

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Photo of TKEbeerman
3.79/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Tulip

A: Decided to go out on a limb and pour this dark brew into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip. Definitely the darkest beer ever poured into this glass. Allagash Black pours black (duh), but not an RIS, light extinguishing black, with a beautifully thick sandy brown head. The head dissipates rather fast and leaves little evidence behind.

S: The nose of this beer falls way, way short of it's appearance. No hop prescience at all, the aroma is relevant to that of a brown ale. Nutty, and light roasted notes are present.

T: Not much Belgium in the taste. The taste resembles a porter rather then a stout. Light roasted malt, a little smokiness in the finish, and light hints of cappuccino. Delightful, yet not very bold.

M: Just about the only thing Belgium about this brew is the mouth feel. Excellently crafted, supremely smooth, and very full and ample. Would have liked a bit more carbonation, however this is a mouth feel that compliments the beer's flavor profile and aroma.

D: Smooth and easy on the pallet. This is a great beer to start the night off with, or to just wind down after a long day at work.

Over all I would re-label this beer as Allagash Black Belgium feeling American Porter. This beer is worth the try, but a $14.99 for a 750mL, I'm gonna shy away from buying this one again for a while.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.79/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 FL OZ bottle
Served in a tulip glass

A - It is a ruddy brown color with amber highlights. It has about an inch of tan head.

S - I smell some cocoa and chocolate. I get an off scent too. It's a little skunk and alcohol.

T - The taste is of milk chocolate and cocoa. I get an off taste, too.

M - Moderate

O - I wanted to love this beer. I have liked Allagash since I discovered them in Portland, ME a few years ago on vacation. This beer is okay, but I don't love it.

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Photo of Blaise
3.79/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

When I first opened the bottle I could immediately smell coffee and cocoa. Not being a huge fan of coffee I was a little hesitant. Once I tried it I was hit with much more chocolate and toffee flavors. This was a nice surprise since I wasn't looking foward too much to the coffee. It felt creamy on the tongue with a bit of that stouty bitterness. The coffee came up strong on the finish, but wasn't overpowering. All in all I was pretty impressed with Allagash Black and would drink it again for sure.

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Photo of scottg
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on cask at the Real Ale Regalia at American Flatbread in Burlington, VT.
Served in a pint glass.

Has a dark black color with a one finger tan creamy head with great retention leaving significant lacing. Roasted malts, chocolate, and alcohol are the main aromas. The up front taste is light smoke, dark chocolate and alcohol which leads to a bitter hop finish and a chocolate aftertaste. Full bodied, light carbonation, starts with a creamy mouthfeel and ends with a chalky one. Not as complex as a Belgian Strong Dark Ale should be, but good drinkability anyway.

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Photo of minterro
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%

Got as a gift from NYC. Poured in a snifter.

A&S: Jet black coloration, lively looking beer with a big creamy light brown head. Fantastic looking beer. Dark fruits in the aroma along with mild chocolate tones, and some higher phenols.

T&M: Spices come through in this one as it warms. I would like to see more chocolate. Alcohol is well hidden. Very creamy and smooth texture. If anything a little thick on the palate.

Overall: Initially I was going to give this beer a lower rating, but as I drank it, it grew on me. Very drinkable for the style. For sure on the low end ABV for this style, but still pulled off well. At almost 4 bucks a bottle I wouldn't recommend it, because there are other options that are, I believe, better.

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Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Finally got around to tasting some good brews. Let's give this one a shot.

A-Head retention is decent. The bubbles are slightly too large which may be attributed to the yeast strain and the hop additions. The color is a pitch black. Looks devilishly appetizing.

S-Estery. Grainy, but more estery. Thank you Belgian Yeast.

T- Tastes of a balanced coffee and plum-like flavor. Some hops are certainly present and offer an earthy/piney taste. Certainly a pleasant combination of ingredients.

M-Medium heavy to heavy. A nice stout.

O- If you love Belgian beer and black stouts, this beer is for you. I could sip it or swig it. I'll swig to get to the next one.

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Photo of NODAK
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aroma here is rather muted...both out of the bottle and when in the glass. There's a roasted, coffee or dark chocolate aroma a light stout more than anything. I don't really get the sweetness from the candied sugar on the nose. It really smells a lot like a light stout. I'm sure it won't TASTE that way....that's just my deviated septum nose here.

Pours jet black in the glass, as expected...head is rather thin. Nothing to write home about. Is what it is.

The taste is pretty interesting. It's actually what I wish most "sweet stouts" would taste like. The roasted note is there, though reserved (as it was on the nose). Light chocolate malts as well...a note of coffee perhaps. But there's also a definite candied sugar presence there that's side by side with the malts and is every bit as pronounced.

This isn't a bad beer at's certainly different. Basically a light stout with the infusion of candied sugar. Goes down pretty easily.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very dark copper in color with an off-white head. Sweet caramel and toffee notes with a bit more in the way of roast and chocolate than I usually expect in a quad. Still, decently sweet. The roast and slight coffee flavors are a bit strange, but they work, I suppose. A touch of chocolate along with dark fruit and the usual toffee, caramel, and brown sugar notes.

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Photo of mtnbikerpa
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked this brew up at The Belfast Co-Op in Maine. Poured from the caged and corked bottle into 2 small snifters. (One for myself and one for my wife.) Poured a dark black color with a burnt tan color head. An amazing array of scents the Belgian yeast, and some burnt charcoal smells and minor dark fruits. Smooth mouthfeel, very easy to drink. First to hit the tip of my tongue is the malt, then a fruity dark bitter chocolate flavor. I am comfortable sipping on this sniffer. having split the 750 ml bottle.

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Photo of thegodfather2701
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is a dark beer, but no nearly as dark and thick as other stouts. It has a nice off white head that leaves some nice lacing. There is not much going on in the nose; mostly clove, some Belgian spiciness and a hint of chocolate. There is not much going on in the flavor department either. Mostly spicy with some chocolate and a touch of coffee and the slightest hint of dark fruits. The flavors come through as it gets warmer. It seems over carbonated. It is drinkable beer, though I doubt I will ever purchase it again. This is my second beer that blurs the line between being a Belgian beer and a stout and its the second time I've been disappointed. I think I will just stick to drinking either a RIS or a standard Belgian beer, not something attempting to be both.

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Photo of Retsinis
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap last night at Instant replay.

A: The beer was served in a Chimay glass. The beer pours a near black with a earthy brown hue. The head is a light tan colored, with a creamy head rose about a half inch, and stuck around for a while. Slowly receding head, but it lasted pretty much throughout. Nice full bubbly coating lacing.

S: I get whiffs of mild milk chocolate, some mild roasted malts, coffee, light Belgian yeast ,and a touch of orange peel.

T: Interesting. It it not dry, like a dry Irish stout, or overly sweet like some Russian Imperial stout, but has a bit of the best of both styles in this Belgian stout. (or Belgian Strong Dark Ale apparently) flavors of chocolate, roasted malts, milky espresso, and mild yeast. Alcohol is well melded with the flavors too.

M: Medium mouth, but it is silky smooth, and creamy, with just the right amount of medium carbonation.

O: A bit surprising. I've passed on bottles of this in the store a few times, but glad I tried this on draft. It has all the right flavors, just mellowed out, but I liked that for the occasion.

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber bottle into tulip glass.

A: Pours a deep, dark black color. Good carbonation and head that sticks around. Lacing is nice.

S: The nose isn't has pronounced as I would have thought from the appearance. There are hints of coffee/chocolate, but it is not overpowering at any point.

T: I got the dark malts, mild coffee, and extremely mild chocolate notes. Not as major as in other stouts that fall into this same price point.

M: Doesn't coat the mouth as much as others do. Actually felt like a watered down stout to me after trying others recently. Wasn't a bad thing, but different.

D: Really easy drinking and the 7.2 ABV wasn't killer for your evening. I wouldn't slam 3 of these bombers but I could definitely enjoy more than one glass.

Overall a good stout. Another solid product from Allagash...seems to be a trend.

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Photo of TheViolator666
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750 ml. caged and corked bottle poured into pint glass.

A: Nearly opaque, dark brown with a nice 2 finger head. Left some slight lacing on the way down.

S: Pretty good, some chocolate notes as well as a ton of malt. Earthy hops as well as a bit of yeast.

T: Chocolate was the most up front, roasted malt and a certain earthy character made this one pretty complex. A hint of dark fruit was trying to fight its way into the taste as well. The Belgian yeast left a very dry aftertaste paired with some roasted malt.

M/D: The bottle conditioning gave this one a ton of carbonation. Medium-full body and hid the alcohol well.

Overall, not a bad experience.

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Photo of jjboesen
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Begins with an explosion of billowy beige foam that dissipates quickly - quicker than I expected. There is neither lacing nor perceptable clingage. There is a deep, dark body that is impervious to any natural light.

Heavy notes of cocoa powder compliment the extreme alcoholic aroma. The palate detects an initial, and lingering, bitterness complimented by malty notes of biscuit; yet it possesse a surprisingly underwhelming mouthfeel.

Something different here, but nothing to seek out.

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Photo of stbfan
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer pours dark brown with a nice two finger tan head. lots of fizzing.(doesn't retain ead very long.) smells like malts, chocolate, hops. Tastes dark chocolate, bitter, woody, roasted coffee. decnt mouthfeel with a bitter finish. nice delayed alcohol effect. a pretty good offering.

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Photo of katan
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz into a goblet

A - Pours a deep dark black with some mahogany highlights. Head formation is light, mocha in color. Breaks down to a film. Very opaque looking.

S - Chocolate, light amounts of vanilla and caramel, even a hint of a wooden scent. Yeast is very hidden with only a small whiff of some fruity esters.

T - Starts off with a light roasted malty flavor, chocolate mainly. Mid-stream gets more roasted, some bitterness, but overall a malt forward beer. Finishes with a more fruity note, perhaps of grapefruit - indicating a good belgian yeast production.

M - Solid beer body, somewhat understated carbonation. Seems heavy on the palette. Finishes with a sticky sugary film. No alcohol warmth.

O/D - Moderately easy drinking ale, a little bit too americanized I feel for the style - although the hopping isn't extreme either. Just seems to straddle the line. ABV is managable.

A good black ale.

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Photo of abuliarose
3.76/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice pop. Poured into a wide-mouthed goblet to the tune of a clear but solid dark brown body, no head. What smell there is comes off as a little metallic, a little earthy and a little roasty.

Tastes bitter, acidic and well-roasted. The earthiness is pervasive and carbonation immediate, but rounded enough not to pierce. Ending notes include raw cacao and slight nuttiness. Overall mouthfeel matches taste: medium-bodied with a little grainy dryness. Fairly smooth. I happen to find this beer pretty drinkable, but I'm not gonna finish a bomber alone.

I haven't had many Belgian strong darks, but this fits the bill enough for me. A solid offering.

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Photo of q33jeff
3.76/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

AROMA: Toast. Char.
LOOK: Black Pour. A bit of cloudy dark brown at the bottom. Bottle fermentation left some sediment.
TASTE: Toast, Oatmeal. A hint of belgian yeast, but not too much Wang. Foamy Head, lasts.
FEEL: Smooth. Full.
Similar, but smoother than Fin Du Monde. A good beer.

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Photo of AdamBear
3.76/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-dark brown, almost black with a thin tan head.

S-smokiness, Belgian spices, somewhat funky. All extremely faint. Can almost barely smell anything at all really.

T-comes in with a decent taste of dark spices, dark roasted cocoa, and a good smokiness. It even has somewhat of an underlying chocolate flavor to it as well. It has a good matching and long lastit after-taste.

M-medium dry carbonation with a dry finish

O-pretty good stout/dark Belgian. I'd say this is definitely more of a Belgian stout than a BSDA. The flavors aren't very strong. They're subtle and complex. A really decent beer. Something I recommend to go out and try

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Photo of sisuspeed
3.76/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this into a wide mouthed wine glass. Allagash Black is almost black in appearance. I guess I would say that it is a very, very dark brown. A slightly off-white head thinly floats across the top of the beer, leaving some sudsy lacing down the sides.

The nose on the beer consists mainly of dark, roasty, malts and very small bit of hop aromatics. As it warms up though, I do get some sweet wine like aroma. Grapes dipped in honey.

The taste is very much like the aroma. Dark, roasted malts. Almost a bittersweet chocolate flavor. Slightly sour grapes mingle in the background, otherwise there isn't much of any fruitiness to the beer. The flavor is very dominated by the roasted malts.

Mouthfeel is fairly smooth with a bit of prickly carbonation, but not too much. Just about right. The body is pretty good, but I was expecting it to be a little thicker. The drinkability is good. Some malt bitterness, but you don't even notice the ABV, so this one goes down pretty easily.

Overall, I find this to be an enjoyable beer. Allagash has managed to put a nice spin on the typical stout by giving it some Belgian like qualities. Make sure you let this one warm up a bit, because it does become somewhat more complex.

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Photo of DNICE555
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Chalice of this interesting beer at the B. Never had a Belgian style stout before. Was almost like a porter. Not my favorite but was happy I got to try it.

A - Deep dark brown to black in color.

S - Belgian yeast, chocolate, roasted malts.

T - A yeasty roasted malt with notes of chocolate.

M - Pretty well balanced. More carbonation that most stouts I've had.

D - A bit light and on the thin side for me. When I want a stout I want something with body and a thick mouth feel. I feel like this would be a nice beginner stout

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Photo of tronester
3.74/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown, almost black in color. Creamy, but somewhat thin tan head. Smells of cocoa powder. Taste begins with some sweet caramel, followed by some tart, herbal flavor, then some coffee, and finishing with a smokey, resiny finish. Mouthfeel is rich. Overall a good beer, though a bit pricey for my liking considering how much i liked it.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle (bottled on 04/15/15) served in a snifter glass. Slow pour to keep the sediment in the bottle.

Appearance: Mostly black with a hint of color coming through at the edges - a bit of dark clear mahogany when held up to the light. Thin off-white ring of foam with some persistent lacing.

Smell: Cocoa powder, char, espresso beans, a hint of something metallic.

Taste: Bitter - black coffee, espresso, leafy, burnt/roasted malt, some bittersweet chocolate, but again overly bitter from start to finish. Some of the bitterness at the finish reminds me of bitter leafy greens (kale, chard) that were cooked down in a pan. As it warms up to near room temp. some of the candi sugars and other sweetness finally start to come out and the bitterness subsides a bit, but it is still there.

Mouthfeel: Brisk carbonation, quite spicy on the tongue. Sticky on the teeth. I'm not getting the silky in the description at all.

Overall / Drinkability: I'm wondering if something happened to this bottle, as I'm not getting the love others have expressed for this beer. I feel the Belgian character is lost with this beer, but it is a nicely bitter stout, but not one that I would see out again. That being said, because the Belgian character is missing with this beer, I think it is at best an American Stout, not a Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Well it's not a very deep stout but a fairly deep shade of brown. Head is a full inch of opaque colored sticky with some great sticky lacing.
S - Well I can smell the Belgium yeast its very fruity but not very much else maybe some plum or raisin or chocolate malt. Hope it taste balanced.
T - Well it's a pretty smooth Belgium strong ale, mild chocolate malts and dry yeast aside it has some fruity plum, raisin, and figs.
M - Well it drinks with a medium body as expected for the style not much ABV flavor which is great.

Overall a very drinkable Belgium ale but not the stout I expected. Still they do make great ales but I am not sure this is worth 4 dollars a pop.

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Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 2,626 ratings.
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