Allagash Black | Allagash Brewing Company

721 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: 721 | Ratings: 2,632
Photo of nick76
3.26/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is almost salty with chocolate, coffee and toasted malt. The appearance is dark brown with a nice large head. The flavor is like the aroma and bitter. The palate is smooth. Overall interesting but not great considering the brewer. I would drink again but still not what I was expecting.

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Photo of Douglas88
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle thanks to hopscotch. Pours a mostly black color with some red edges. A thick light brown head. The aroma is very nice; a sweet and rich fruity malt. Also some yeast, coffee and light milk chocolates. The flavor was excellent; toasted malts, rich chocolates, some sweet dark fruits, a bit of yeast, and a slight bitter coffee bean and hops. A excellent mouthfeel; rich and creamy. Just a great beer. I drank the 750 with ease, and wanted more.

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Photo of pwoods
3.31/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml corked and caged brown bottle, purchased at The Root Cellar, poured into a Chimay chalice. No dating.

A: Pours a nearly solid black with just a scratch of light on the edges when backlit. 1ish finger worth of khaki colored head forms somewhat creamy but a bit frothy at the same time. Decent retention and lacing.

S: Soft notes of deeply roasted malts... odd that such a robust aroma can be soft. Definitely a bit of char. Some sweetness from either burnt caramel sugar or burn molasses. Some light alcohol accompanied by light Euro hops. A touch of spicy yeast rounds things out.

T/M: Alcohol is pretty assertive for only 7.5% especially through the finish where it's pushing a flat out raw feel. Lots of deeply roasted or burnt malts... plenty of char and soot, maybe even a wisp of smoke. Very controlled sweetness in the back, burnt black strap. Hops are a bit more present and lend some oily resins to the alcohol and brings out some bitterness to a very soft super dark chocolate prick in the back. The Belgian yeast is tasty and nearly a saving grace. Body is nearly full and lightly cut by the tiny carbonation bubbles.

D: Not bad but it definitely pales in comparison to other great Belgian Strong Stouts like Black Albert and Bolshoi. 7.5% isn't extremely high, especially for the style but the alcohol is quite present and makes this drink like a much stronger beer.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.11/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sold to me by Peanut at the Dilly Deli. I'm toasting him tonight with hopes for his speedy recovery from a recent spill on the ol' two-wheeler.

Appearance - after unwiring the cage, one twist of the cork was all the encouragement it needed to pop off. Whew, one of the few corked bottles I've had where the cage was actually necessary. Pours a dark cola red. It has two fingers of mocha foam which fade back quickly but have a smooth semi-creamy appearance. The head maintains a thin but full cover and puts some occasional but thick pieces of lacing on the glass.

Aroma - powdery grain smell, some Belgian yeast/farmy bit, but really not much of that.

Taste - good roasted grains on the Black, the sweetness is well done, reminding me of thin chocolate milk. Coffee notes on the swallow, good stuff! Just a touch of the Belgian yeast, some vague fruitiness happening generally towards the front of the palate. The swallow has just a touch of finishing hops, it could just as easily be a bit of char from the malt too. Finishes warm with more coffee and chocolate syrup notes, an occasional estery burp in there.

Mouthfeel - average weight I think. Pretty crisp, does the beer well.

Drinkability - one of the more drinkable Belgians I've had, that it's fashioned into a stout-like style certainly helps. Thanks for the recommendation, Peanut, here's to your quickly restored good health my friend.

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Photo of AltBock
3.81/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Corked and caged 750ml bottle that has a simple black label with "Allagash" in gray letters and everything else in white letters. To the far left of the label is the barcode and Government warning. To the far right is a 1-800 number, deposit prices, pouring instructions, proper glassware, and a batch #. Mine was batch #4 which means that it's from early 2008.

Appearance: The label said it should be poured into a wide mouth glass, so I poured it into a Chimay Chailse. It can't get any more wider than that. This 'black" Belgian stout actually poured a black color. It wasn't as thick and black like crude oil, but it did pour a solid midnight black color. Sitting on top of this black brew was a fluffy 3/4 of an inch head of foam. The color of this head wasn't tan or mocha. It was little bit of both. This multi colored head of foam had great retention that left behind a small film, spotty rings, and few spots of lace around the glass.

Smell: It wasn't overflowing with aromas, but it was still pretty good and interesting. The aroma was lightly chocolately with Belgian milk chocolate, a subtle hint of roasted malts, a few roasted coffee beans, and then this chocolately aroma finishes up with a small whiff of sweet and dried yeast. I thought it was interesting because the chocolate had sweet and dried yeast backing it up. You don't encounter that very often.

Taste: I like my Stouts chewy, roasted, robust, and with a ton of dark roasted flavors. This Stout had some of those qualities. It was still chocolately with roasted coffee beans, like it was in the aroma, but it was in the taste where they increased the roasted coffee and kept the chocolate where it was. Behind the roasted coffee beans and Belgian milk chocolate was a small hint of dark roasted malts, a quick splash of plum, a drop of sweet yeast, and then ends on a slightly hoppy finish with bitter citrus hops. There was a very little hop profile like a good Stout should have. I have to give to Allagash for making an interesting and delicious chocolately beer.

Mouthfeel: This Stout was medium bodied with a low level of carbonation and features a light chocolately aftertaste of Belgian milk chocolate, a dab of roasted malts, a splash of sweet caramel, and plenty of roasted coffee beans.This chocolately aftertaste doesn't last too long. It comes in for a second and then it's gone in a flash.

Drinkability: A nice expensive chocolately unique Belgian Stout. I liked all the Belgian chocolates and roasted coffee beans in this beer, but I think the hefty price tag hurts the drinkability. Is it worth it? If you got the cash, then give it a try.

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Photo of markwise
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a dark brownish-black with a strong cocoa nib/ chocolate aroma. It has a tan head and a flavor of cocoa, earth, licorice, and some hop bitterness. Good Belgian-style stout with a nice lingering semi-hoppy, coffee bitterness in the finish.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.7/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the tap a deep opaque sable with a fairly thick tan head - very appetizing. Aroma is like well-roasted mocha and has just a hint of caramel. Flavor is rich and "stouty" - smoky with strong coffee and unsweetened chocolate components - and has just a touch of sweetness. Finish is smooth and very pleasing. A winner!

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Photo of Kendo
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #4, consumed on 9-13-08.

A: Poured into an Augustijn chalice, there's a .5-finger beige-ish/tan head over a black body. Head shrinks a little, but retains well as a foamy dollop in the middle.

S: Roasted malt is noticeable from 2 feet away. As I get closer it's roasted coffee beans and a decent waft of chocolate.

T: Follows the nose, more or less: roasted malt, roasted coffee -- hazelnut coffee, I think, with a bit of nuttiness in there somewhere -- roasted grains and a hint of chocolate. Finishes clean and dry, however, in spite of all those malt flavors in the profile. Got a taste of something metallic at first towards the back of the mouth, but after awhile either it went away or I got used to it and no longer noticed it.

M: Nice feel to this one -- smooth with a good fizziness on the palate that helped it to finish clean and dry. I'd call it medium in weight.

D: Very good. Nice flavors with a nice balance between roasted malt-type tastes and that dry finish.

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Photo of radshoesbro
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Somehow before I drank this I thought it was a stout. It's definitely not one!
Pours a nice dark with a creamy look head. Medium malts and hops with a twinge of alcohol sweetness to it. This isn't really something I'd go out of my way to get ahold of, but if offered it I'd be a little happier.

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Photo of evanackerman
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

beer pours a dark black with a big head, head retention is excellent.

aroma: beer is described on bottle as a Belgian style Stout and that is probably the best way to describe the aroma, Belgian characteristic aroma along with roasted malt.

taste is dry roasted malt and slight bittering hops, toasted malt dominates,

mouthfeel, this is where this beer differs greatly from american stouts, beer is highly effervescent similar to a Tripel, pretty interesting.

overall, an interesting if slightly underwhelming brew, nothing wrong with it at all but nothing worth seeking out again either.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from C&C .750L to a pint glass the liquid is close to black and nicely carbonated. The head is tall, light and tan, it fades fast leaving some lace.

The smell is ok, lightly roasty with a faint but noticeable Belgian yeast.

The taste follows, a nice roasty malt, mild hops try to bring balance and of coarse the Belgian yeast and a bit of light breadiness and some fruit notes.

The mouthfeel is ok, not thick but perhaps more carbonated then I would like.

The drinkability is ok, A fine brew and good example of the style, but not quite what I look for. Prosit MK

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Photo of nickd717
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black with a small tan head. Thick appearance.

S - Roasted malts (chocolate?), coffee, and Belgian yeast. Nice mix of typical stout and Belgian aromas.

T - Excellent. Roasted malts and coffee, mild dark fruits, and some Belgian yeast.

M - Not quite as thick as I expected, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Creamy and smooth.

D - Very drinkable for a stout. I could definitely down a few of these.

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Photo of gford217
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottles poured into a snifter.

Pours dark brown out of the bottle before settling in as a pitch black in the glass with a fluffy off-white head. Lacing was excellent. Roasted malts and hints of coffee in the nose. The taste is also dry and roasty with dark chocolate and a bit of roasted coffee in the taste. There is definitely a Belgian yeast presence in the background as well. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and highly carbonated with a very dry finish. This is a very nice and different stout from Allagash. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of joepais
3.67/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip glass produced a large tan head that trails off to a thin lace on top of a black body brew.

Entering my nose were aromas of roasted malts and some earthiness come thru as well. I would have thought the Belgian yeast would have been little stronger

Kind of a strange stout, flavors are sweet followed by the slight coffee bitter that comes from the roasted malts. I had this on cask as well and the flavors were a little more pronounced. This reminds me of an export stout, a lot lighter mouthfeel than I care for but the carbonation is spot on.

This is a good brew not exceptional in my book especially for the price. Drinkability is good on this but the cask was better than the bottle

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a chalice; batch #4

Pours almost a pitch black in color, and shows off some light ruby red highlights when held up to the sun. Thick, frothy mocha head rose a solid finger and left spotty, spider web lacing.

Smell is of roasted chocolate malts, dark fruits, mild anise, coffee, and clove. Smells like a typical stout only with a yeast strain indicative of the Belgian style.

Taste mimics the smell, only with the chocolate and coffee dominating. Fruity and sweet up front and finishes dry. There is a decent amount of warming left behind in its wake.

Smooth and light, adequately carbonated, but definitely not outstanding.

Relatively easy to drink, a definite sipper. A solid offering, but there is room for improvement. Definitely not a BSDA.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.56/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - A huge frothy eternal mocha brown head. Thick, billowy rings of lacing. Black brew with a ruby tint.

S - Moss, coffee, charcoal, pungent grasses and molasses.

T - Charcoal, moss, licorice, alcohol. Aftertaste has general dark flavors - charcoal, coffee and chocolate.

M - A little harsh, thin and a little refreshing.

D - Pretty good. A potent brew with a lot of flavor. Worth a try. I'll have again if found on tap. A nice stout. I wouldn't say it is a Belgian strong dark ale though.

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Photo of jeonseh
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chimay goblet and thanks to whoever sent this to me

A - dark chocolate brown and rather opaque. I see nothing in it at all except the reflective sheen of the glass. There is a nice mocha colored head that sits on top. It looks rather thick, frothy and creamy as it sits on top. Really nice looking beer.

S - Rather smokey with a hint of a dark plum flavor as well coming through. Hints of caramel waft up as well

T - First thing that I noticed is that the main taste is roasted cocoa and a bit of smokiness as well. There is a slight hint of caramel but nothing too much. Just enough sweetness on the front to prevent the roasted coffee flavor from being too strong. The same could be said for the hint of dark fruit ethers I noted as well. I actually expected there to be more dark fruit flavors given the beer's claim of a belgian stout. it does happen to be smokey and I like it which I usually don't.

MF - Oh now this is where the beer really shines. The mouthfeel is full and creamy. Velvety smooth as the beer just rolls out over the tongue and feels so nice while doing it

D - Overall this is an okay beer rolled out by Allagash. The flavors are good but nothing too complex. This is my first offering from them and it was above decent but nothing that blew me away. The MF was great but not enough to make me want to go out and find this beer.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this sucker on cask at the Sunset grill and tap in Allston, MA.

Dark black body with almost not head.

Smells like roasted malts with a hint of hops.

Taste is mostly roasted malt. Roasted chocolate and caramel. A little bit of dark fruits and hops in the background. I think I would guess this was an oatmeal stout in a blind taste test.

Slighty creamy mouthfeel, on cask so no carbonation.

A really drinkable beer. Smooth and tasty.

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Photo of Biggness
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I got a growler of this beer @ Bellport Beer. This beer pours a very dark brown with a 1 fingered tan head with hardly any lacing. The smell is of roasted malts. The taste is nice, tbh if I was doing a blind taste test I would say this was Bluepoint Oatmeal stout (MUCH CHEAPER). There is a slight hops flavor and a wonderful toasted malt base. The mouthfeel is very pleasant and the carbonation is nice. A rather drinkable brew, but I think I would go with BPBC OS, its nearly the same beer @ 1/3 of the price.

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Photo of tonistruth
3.42/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap @ Pizza Port in Carlsbad, CA

A- deep brown to black with a milky head that doesnt stick around very long, patchy lacing

S- malty, roasted and burnt malts, some alcohol

T- malty sweet overall with flavors that include toasted caramel and roasted chocolate malts, though nicely balanced. chocolate and roasted aftertaste

M- full, wel carbonated body

D- some complexing but nothing i find outstanding, an easy dark beer for people who are afraid of trying a stout. i do like this better than Ommegangs' because the alcohol is better hidden

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Photo of NoHipTee
4.31/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

What a nice surprise. Very drinkable dark smooth beer. I expected a much heavier beer but was pleasantly surprised to find this to be a very drinkable beer. Not too heavy for a stout.

Very frothy head that lasts and is very lacey in the glass. Not much of a bouquet even after sitting out and breathing for 15 minutes. Its light odor of sweet leather and a hint of smokeyness should have given away the drinkability but the color in a glass is very very dark. Pours very smooth. Drinks even smoother. No lingering alcohol after taste or bitterness on the back of your tongue. A hint of cofffee in the finish that is a pleasant surprise. The stout name belies the drinkable nature of this beer.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out of the bottle this brew is an opaque black with a thick foamy head of tan bubbles. Stubborn retention. Great nose of sweet malts, ripe fruits and rich soil. The taste is milk chocolate, roasted malt and some syrupy hints like fruit compote. Not as heavy as I was expecting, nor quite as deep. Still a great stout. 7 of 10 on the mouthfeel and 'weight' scale. Finishes a little sweet but not unpleasantly so. I like the White better personally, but this is still a fine beer.

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in tulip - Starbucks espresso-dark. Head is tight, rye/whole wheat in color but dissipates quickly.

Scent is loaded with coffee and hearty roasted chocolate malt. Good stuff - piney hops way is background - not a lot of alcohol here. All working well together.

This is hefty hefty hefty...loads of malt with slight vegetal hop presence and a hint of alcohol burn that keeps it from being too chewy.

Mouthfeel is a little disjointed - this one rolls a little heavy with an alcohol spike on the finish.

Definitely a sipper - maybe time will even this out. Good stuff - a little heavy with an independent alcohol burn though.

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Photo of illidurit
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Pours, well, black with a tan one-finger head. The bubbles are extremely fine and leave filmy lacing.

Aroma is cocoa powder, Whoppers chocolate malt balls, tobacco, and a distinct ferrous note.

Flavor is pretty simple: intense roasted malts with a bone dry bitter finish. There's a light smoked/peaty character to it as well. Alcohol is nearly invisible.

The fine carbonation washes over the tongue and ends with a great clean finish. The beer really vanishes from the palate. Body is just about medium, just enough thickness to satisfy but not too heavy that it loses its delicateness.

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Photo of JoeMayo
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a very dark brown, which looks black in the glass, except for the dark amber around the edges. The head recedes quickly, but leaves a couple spots of lacing down the glass.

S- So much comes through, but not all at once. The spicy smell of Belgian yeast is prevalent throughout the glass. Chocolate is very noticeable, but fades into a toffee aroma as the beer warms. Slight herbal tones are also noted.

T- So delicious! Belgian yeast and sweet Belgian chocolate flavors meld together with a fairly strong coffee presence and a hefty dose of malt. The hops assert their presence as well, but not through bitterness. The hops impart a spicy and slightly floral flavor. A truly unique flavor combining the delicious flavors of an Imperial Stout with the spiciness of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

M- Thick, creamy, rich and still very effervescent.

D- Goes down easier than most stouts.

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Allagash Black from Allagash Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 2,632 ratings.
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