Black | Allagash Brewing Company

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2,717 Ratings

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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Ratings: 2,717 |  Reviews: 737
Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a frothy, initially three-finger thick, dirty, brown-tinged, tan colored head that slowly collapses into a dense, varied surface terrain. The beer is a deep, burnt, concentrated amber color (almost, but not quite black color). While mostly opaque, if held up to the light, flashes of ruby can be seen at times. The aroma is quite roast dominated; aromatic notes of chocolate, charcoal, deeply toasted malt and even blackened whole-grain bread crust aromas. A deep inspection of the nose yields notes of phenolic driven peat-smoke, burnt prunes and burnt wine notes too. An interesting aroma, mostly roast dominated, but one gets hints of yeast character (fruit & phenolic notes), though these are fairly subtle at times. After my second pour the nose starts to pick up some spicy aromatic notes that remind me faintly of cardamom & ginger.

Sweeter than I was expecting up front, though not overly so; this accentuates a flavor of sweet plums up front just before the roast character kicks in and washes over the palate. The beer finishes with roast driven flavors of salty-smoky peat, a roasted acidity, flavors of burnt cocoa, a roasted bitterness and a substantial, darkly toasted grain not that lingers on in the palate. The long finish also gets a touch phenolic with just a hint of warming alcohol to it as well. Up front flavors of cocoa combine with the fruit flavors (raisin notes are here too). The body is on the light side for a beer of this strength, though it is not down right thin like some super-attenuated Belgian beers are, instead this has a mild heft to it that seems to allow the smoky, cocoa & toasted notes to cling to the palate.

As the beer warms up (60+°F / 15.6°C) the fruit notes become a touch more noticeable, though not any sweeter, and the roast character becomes much more rounded and rich tasting. It really starts to open up and the yeast character becomes much more evident; there is nothing quite new, but the plum notes begin to pick up a bit of tartness and spicy notes of pepper & clove are added to the previously noticed, but now accented spice flavors. The spice & phenolic notes begin to mix quite interestingly with the roast character towards the end of my second glass.

An interesting beer, the dark malt at times can overwhelm the softer yeast character, but I have a feeling that it contributes more than one might expect (probably adds to the smokiness of this brew). On the other hand I was feeling like a roasty stout this evening, and this most definitely fits the bill (with a little added complexity & lighter body than one would typically find in one). As the beer warmed it becomes more complex, which definitely helps my enjoyment.

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4/5  rDev -1%

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Photo of BeerResearcher
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in an Allagash goblet. Pours a blackened cola color with medium-sized khaki head and plenty of sticky lacing.

Smells of burnt roasted malts with notes of chocolate, coffee and toffee and some peppery spices.

Tastes like it smells with deeply roasted malt and mingling flavors of chocolate, resiny hop, spices and a slightly astringent yeasty background, followed a taste of dark rum.

A spritzy effervescence fades quickly and a fuller body is revealed. A bit more of the malty sweetness is noticed as it warms.

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4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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Photo of ArnoldBlumenthal
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black from Allagash Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.04 out of 5 with 2,717 ratings