Alaskan Black IPA | Alaskan Brewing Co.

113 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Alaskan Black IPAAlaskan Black IPA

Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by pdoran10 on 12-31-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 113 | Ratings: 385
Photo of beertunes
2.6/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a lightly opaque black with 1/4 inch of tan head that had no retention or lacing. The aroma had solid roast notes upfront, some malt backing that up and subtle hopping in the far background.

The taste was definitely malt dominant, with the roast feature placing second and some barely noticeable hops in the background. The body was fairly typical for the style, in the medium range, and had the roast lingering on the finish.

Drinkability was OK, but the lack of outstanding features makes me wonder why you'd want more than one. Overall, a below average example of what I generally find to a bastard of a style. If you like Cascadia Dark Ales, you'll probably be OK with this beer. Even if the lack of bold hop presence makes me wonder where the "IPA" is in this Black IPA.

 815 characters

Photo of mothman
2.61/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

3rd time reviewing this beer tonight.

Beige head. Sticky lace. Color is dark brown.

Aroma: Chocolate and caramel. Sticky hop resin hop profile. Floral and grassy hops. Orange and grapefruit citrus.

Taste: Follows nose, but more hoppy.

Mouthfeel: Sticky and bitter. Roasty. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends sticky.

Overall, a decent beer, but not for me. Too much malts and hops going on at the same time.

 432 characters

Photo of Frankcost
2.88/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a single bottle from Top Ten Wine & Spirits poured into a stone pint glass

A- black can't see thru it, with a mocha colored head that dissipates real quick

S- right away piny hops citrus and a little coffee aromas

T- piny citrusy hops lemon zestyness pretty mild bitterness finish with some milk chocolate

M- medium bodied some creaminess

O- good beer but not my favorite style of beer love the Alaskan brewery but there our others I would prefer If I had to drink a bipa

 488 characters

Photo of Efeswasmy1st
2.89/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle, dark brown with 1/4" tan head that mostly stayed with.

Aroma is faint with some coffee and spruce.

Taste --Some coffee initially that is overtaken by the bitterness of the hops

Mouthfeel-- Bitterness stays with you, too long for my taste.

 261 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
2.92/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a deep brown with a moderate dark tan head. Good climbing lace.

S: Charcoal and roast, but fairly AC, a light smell.

T: Roasted malt, some dark chocolate, still a lot of greeness/mossy. Has some good flavour components, but they don't coalesce that well. It's OK.

M: Medium-bodied, frothy, some biting carbonation at the end. Medium aftertaste.

O: A well intentioned effort, but it's just middle of the road at best. At least it wasn't a new Black IPA that was priced through the roof which was refreshing.

 535 characters

Photo of mactrail
2.96/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown with a golden hint. Pleasant carbonation in the mouth. Smell is not as hoppy as one would hope. Slight herbaceous nose, but musty. Maybe this stuff is a little old. Hops seem plentiful but lack in the aromatics. I don't get much pleasure out of the bitterness. Malt seems scorched and anemic. Still, it's quite beery and fills the mouth nicely.

Light bodied. Seems like a lighter version of the over-hopped Schwartzbier that has become the must-brew recipe for everyone. They should have stuck to the spruce buds.

From the 12 oz twist-cap bottle.

 559 characters

Photo of Reidrover
2.98/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz single from Roth’s Vista Market. S.Salem. $1.75 Mahogany coloured beer with a small wispy tan head.Degenerates into lace within seconds. Almost no aroma..what there is is dusty chocolate malts vestiges of herbal hop Taste is also very a watered down porter..again just vestiges of any sort of hop. I guess its OK on the palate..just weak Overall one of the WORST CDAs i have had..come on Alaskan you can do much much better!!

 444 characters

Photo of Rizalini
3.05/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Deschutes tulip glass...

A - Pours dark brown with a 1 finger light brown head. Not too much head retention at all.

S - Has a slightly above average apricot and pineapple hop aroma.

T/M - Where did the hops go?? Just a mildly roasty ale, with a hint of hoppiness. Light mouthfeel, average carbonation.

O - Falls short of a black IPA, let alone a regular IPA for sure. Maybe I'm spoiled by more expensive beers, but this one just didn't do it for me.

 489 characters

Photo of MADhombrewer
3.06/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a HOTD tulip. Looks like there is a date of 4/5/12 on it.

Appearance- Black with brown/red highlights if held up to the light. Tan head that ends in a film. 4/5

Smell- Small, but very floral and tropical hop notes. Not much else unfortunately. 3/5

Taste- Chocolate and grassy hops. Good bitterness. Some alcohol notes. That is about it. 3/5

Mouthfeel- Good mouthfeel. Thin to medium. 3/5

Overall- This is a decent Black IPA. I would like a little more depth to it. Maybe more coffee and chocolate notes. Maybe more of a hop presence. I know they can do it because their Double Black IPA (pilot series) is still one of my favorite Black IPAs to date. 3/5

 683 characters

Photo of hopwave
3.12/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a sixer of this the other day... pours a cola dark brown colour with a big three finger head... nice little hoppy aroma with mixed with malty roast. has almost a rootbeer/bubblegum taste to it.. slight roasty balance at the end. overall a nice black ipa I will be sure too try more of this style in the future.

 320 characters

Photo of texasnomad
3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A: Looks like a dark brown ale. Thin head quickly disappeared. Lively, but quick vanishing lacing.

S: Basic hop aroma (Cascade? Chinook?) with slight mineral notes. Not much roastiness.

T: Taste follows the nose with nice hop bitterness that lingers at the finish. A slight maltiness adds some dimensionality.

M: Light to medium body and carbonation.

O: A decent beer, but would like a little roasted barley presence. For those that like a good hop character but have grown bored with obnoxiously hopped beers ("oh wow how original") might give this one a shake.

 567 characters

Photo of BarrytheBear
3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip. Dark brown with decent head retention. Lacing is slight.

Smells light...mostly Smarties candies and faint cocoa powder

Very light on the tongue. Mild bitterness, touch of coffee, and a pinch of hops.

Really inoffensive and mild. Not a bad beer by any stretch, but there's just not much going on here.

 330 characters

Photo of rawfish
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours cola brown with off white head that peaks at 3 fingers with average retention and thin wisps of lacing.

Heavy roasted malt aroma and toasted bread with a hint of licorice and a backing of earthy hops and apricot sweetness. The roast smells a bit burnt.

More roasted malt with some caramel sweetness then some acidic tart and smoke followed by a slight bitterness that comes in late with some earthy and herbaceous tones.

Average body with a rather thin feel over the palate and minimal carbonation, very flat at the tail end. Alcohol hides better when warmer. Slick and sticky finish.

Where were the hops? There's no way this passes at an ipa glad it is not catergorized as such. Interesting melody in the aroma but not much hop backing, very roasty but malt heavy and thin. Not bad but not memorable either.

 820 characters

Photo of Gatch
3.16/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pitch black with an off-white, bubbly, frothy head that fades quickly into a bit of lace and no retention.

S: Watered down, roasted malt. A bit of smoke.

T: Smoky, earthy, peaty, with a bit of roasted malt in the finish. The flavor is weak. There was better hop presence in the first five bottles of the six pack. I'm hoping the glass I used didn't taint this one.

M: Has a lingering lactose sugar taste. Easy to drink. A good, middle-of-the-pack Black IPA.

O: I remember it being much better out of the bottle. I pulled the glass straight out of the dishwasher, which is a rookie move, so I'm thinking that affected the taste. This is a good beer, just not good enough to buy another six pack to prove my theory incorrect. I'd try it again on draft, though.

 765 characters

Photo of hoser
3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Part of gift six pack from Presario and a recent trip to Montana. Much like their regular IPA is not a assertive beer but like all Alaskan products is well made. Doesn't taste that much different than a stout and a little disappointing but easily could revisit this.

 266 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.2/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are moderately high given the brewery, which I've grown increasingly fond of.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of khaki colour, nice cream and thickness, and good retention for the above average ABV. Colour is a dark black with hues of caramel. Opaque. Nontransparent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Mocha, roast, caramel, pleasant indistinct hopping, dark clean malts, and cream. A mild strength aroma.

T: Dark malts with background roast and even a hint of mocha . Cream. Pleasant complementary hopping; the bitterness is tame and the floral character suits the balance impressively well. I like it. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Not particularly bold in flavour, but notable enough. Features some depth and impressive balancing, but comparatively little subtlety or complexity - though I wouldn't dare call it simple.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with nice cream and pleasant thickness. Near perfect carbonation. Some coarseness from the hops helps bring out the flavour.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but lacking the complexity and subtlety needed to make it truly of note. This Black IPA may get lost in the mix, but it's worth picking up if you're a fan of the style. A solid offering from Alaskan, but not their best. I'd definitely try this on draught, but I wouldn't buy it in bottled form again.


 1,672 characters

Photo of womencantsail
3.26/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very dark brown in color, nearly black, with a light tan head. Nose is a bit sweet with licorice, dark chocolate, roasted malt, and very light hoppiness. There’s some caramel and molasses in there, maybe a bit of an earthy hop note. The flavor is quite sweet with lots of molasses and toffee. Decently roasty with a light hop bitterness on the finish as well as some chocolate. Not a huge fan of this kind of Black IPA.

 421 characters

Photo of yamar68
3.27/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep coffee hue with bits of burgundy. Finger of mocha head and very average lacing. On the nose I get some nuts, subtle chocolate, toasted grains, hops are pretty understated. The hops take on a stronger character on the tongue but lack direction - they fade into abstract bitterness before taking on much shape. The dark malts are nice though. I could be fooled into thinking that there’s a bit of coffee in this one. A decent brew.

 444 characters

Photo of Beaver13
3.38/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Pours dark brown with a big fluffy light tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is roasted malts, a little chocolate and dark fruit, and piney floral hops.

The flavor is roasted, slightly acidic, malts and sweet dark fruit with some decent piney bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is fairly light bodied and watery.

Overall, a decent Black IPA. Kind of reserved, but balanced.

 416 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured almost a finger of tan head on a black body.
The aroma is citrus with a note of roasted malt.
It has a solid flavor profile: lemon, grapefruit and slight roasted malt.
It has a crisp texture, a bit high on the carbonation.
A worthy and flavorful BIPA.

 259 characters

Photo of doughanson78
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Very dark brown. A little light gets through giving a reddish brown glow. One and a half finger light tan head with good retention and lacing.

S: Floral and citrus hops. Dark malts, faint chocolate, very faint roast. Overall a light aroma.

T: Light chocolate and nuttiness upfront. Floral hops, faint bitterness. Finishes with a touch of citrus hops.

M: Medium light body. Medium carbonation. Slightly creamy. Faintly dry.

O: It's a decent beer. Black IPA's, IMO, are hard to pull off. This sort of works. Easy drinking.

 566 characters

Photo of JackieTH
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured cola brown with a nice cap of tan foam that laced up decently. Smell is pleasantly roasty, citric and a bit of pine resin. Taste is acerbic bitterness in a background of roasted malt. Once the initial hit of hop fades, the malt portion of the brew is quite nice and roasty with hints of coffee however the hop profile is a little discordant, especially on the first few sips. Mouthfeel is decently slick, medium bodied. The pith bitterness shows up again during the finish. Overall this one improves marginally About half way through the glass once the buds get accustomed ie desensitized to the hop profile.

 615 characters

Photo of kawilliams81
3.46/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a pint glass.

A- pours a near black with a 2" tan head. Lacing nearly coats the top 2" of the glass.

S- roasted malts and some citrus.

T- roasts malts, some chocolate, citrus and pine hops.

M- medium body and carbonation. Easy to drink with slight creaminess.

O- lacks complexity and could use more roast and chocolate malts. Also hops could come through a bit more.

 381 characters

Photo of Jparker37
3.46/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours very dark in color but not opaque when held to the light. Head is a little bit lighter than tan but nonetheless off-white which soon receeds into a small cap of foam that barely clings to the glass

S - Nice resiny pine nose. A bit of chocolate character comes into play also. The beer comes across as a little on the malty side

T - The creamy/roasty malts blend nicely with the pine hop flavors. Finishes with a light bitterness that leaves be suprised but is also dry and crisp.

M - Light to Medium bodied with light carbonation and again a nice drying effect.

O - Not my favorite IBA so far but still good. I prefer this style to have loud hop presence with quite and gentle chocolate flavors. It just seemed a little to balanced for my liking.

 760 characters

Photo of ocelot2500
3.48/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep brown, almost black with a tan head that leaves large chunks of lacing.

Smells of roasted coffee notes and some grassy hops.

Tastes of the hops upfront melded with the roasted malts. Hops lead off with pine, herbal, and tea leaf notes. Roasted notes then come through with bitter chocolate and coffee notes. Light on sweetness with a moderate bitterness. I do also pick up a slight alcohol note as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth feel, but the small amount of carbonation that makes it feel watery.

Overall, this is a solid attempt at a black ale. The flavors are all there, but could maybe cleaned up a little.

 646 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Alaskan Black IPA from Alaskan Brewing Co.
3.71 out of 5 based on 385 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.