Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Black & Blue | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
83
good
522 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Black & BlueBlack & Blue
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States | website

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Black & Blue is a Belgian-style golden ale fermented with blackberries and blueberries. Because we dose Black & Blue with real berries -- rather than artificial flavoring -- the fruit comes through in the flavor, not just the aroma.

The pureed berries are added as the beer leaves the brewhouse. In fermentation, the yeast -- the same one we use in Red & White and Pangaea -- feeds on sugars from the barley and the berries, giving Black & Blue a unique complexity and a high ABV.

25 IBU

Added by ggaughan on 08-23-2006

BEER STATS
Reviews:
522
Ratings:
1,607
Avg:
3.68
pDev:
27.17%
 
 
Wants:
120
Gots:
292
For Trade:
10
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 522 | Ratings: 1,607
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - pours an orange/mauve with a very flat white head of almost a finger. Receding rapidly, it leaves no lace behind and has only a thin collar and single circle of foam in the center of the Belgian glass. I like the color though.

Aroma - an indistinct fruitiness, faint yeast, and a rumbling of alcohol beneath it all. With some worthwhile effort, I can identify the raspberry.

Taste - an initial burst of yeast, quickly swept over by the fruit flavors. No definite flavor there, and then that is washed away by warm and enveloping alcohol. On the aftertaste, after some delay, the raspberry makes a nice statement, lingering past the booziness. With warming I get more of the blueberry. It took some time but eventually everything plays out on the palate nicely.

Mouthfeel - very bubbly, a bit of fruit/alcohol slickness and a medium to medium-full body.

Drinkability - a sort of Imperial Fruit Beer, this is tasty and potent like Genesis 10:10, yet more elegant like Quelque Chose. Though an expensive bottle, I'd purchase it again.

 1,048 characters

Photo of aerozeppl
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Bottled on 2-13-07 sampled 1-13-07 during the Giant's game.

A: Looks like someone mixed beer and merlot. Minimal head with a purplish tinge to what head there was.

S: Wine, grapes and a slightly musty smell.

T: Sweet grapes, very wine like. I was trying to figure out what else there was then it hit me. Grape flavored bonkers. One of the best candies of the 80s. I should give it a 5 just for that.

M: Med body with a slightly syrupy feel. Minimum carbonation.

D: For 10% it goes down easy. I had a bottle last summer and I drank it too quickly. Learned my lesson and took my time with this one. Despite all the grapes it was not overly sweet. Dogfish strikes again. They keep pushing the envelope.

 719 characters

Photo of Gusler
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer sluices from the 750ml bottle a slightly chill hazed golden amber color with a bright white creamy two fingered head that settles quickly leaving a thin blanket of lace to seal off the glass. Nose has a sweet and sour note, spicy with a modest hint of the berries, hints of fusel alcohol, and at 11 percent ABV, no wonder. Start is ambrosial, fair to middling malt presence, and a mild tartness from the black raspberries, but not overly so, top is light to medium in feel. Finish carries on the sweet and tart duo, hops understated, and the alcohol present but well hidden, acidity benign and the aftertaste dry and tart. I’ve learned to like this style, and “Dogfish Head” has been the reason why, a “Marvelous” brewery.

 736 characters

Photo of BabySnakes
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Red orange hue with a quickly disappearing head

smells like black raspberry and blueberry, even blueberry pie. go figure. Sweet Malts come thru, couldnt say which malts. Also a boozy aroma

warm boozyness hits along with the aforementioned fruits. Sweet maltiness (honey?) maybe even a mead-ish character.

Boozy, tingly mouthfeel, but heavy.

Overall, a really nice unique fruit beer. It reminds me of a light bodied mead. I was expecting something insane from DFH, but you pretty much get what you read on the label, which is nice. Just unexpected from my point of view.

 575 characters

Photo of seanpachefddfa
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance-poured a light copper color with pink tone to it. A thin light fluffy head that faded quick.

Smell- very nice aroma of sour blueberries and black raspberries. Also getting some nice earth notes as well.

Taste- Blue and raspberries up front. The berries are bit on the tart side but in a good way. Also getting some earthy spice flavors as well. All the flavors are very subtle but well balanced.

mouth feel-a medium body beer with a very high carbonation level. But I think that the high carbonation level works in this beer. Very clean and refreshing

Drink ability- a very good beer. the only bad thing about this one is the price @ $15 it is a little out of my price range.

 690 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - Clear amber body with a large foamy offwhite head.

S - A big bouquet of raspberries and blueberries. Fresh, sweet, tangy fruit aromas. Floral hop notes.

T - Tangy fruit with a buttery back note. Sweet splash of soft fruit liquor and tangy hops. Fruit-like acidity, akin to apple skin. Blueberry and dark fruit present here. Tangy starches and spiced alcohol bring depth to this beers flavors.

M - Warming, drying medium body. Clean on the palate and the carbonation buzzes the tongue.

O - Plenty of fruit in the nose and mouth. The starchy, buttery flavors add a different dimension here.

 596 characters

Photo of vandemonian
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dogfish Head Black & Blue is a tasty berry-flavoured beer. A lot of people hate on fruit beers, so if you're a fan of them then you'll like this.

A: Orange-pink colour and a 1 cm head that fades to decent lacing. 4

S: The smell is blueberries and some yeast. 4

T: The taste is all blueberries and yeast into a blueberry and alcohol aftertaste. Tasty. 4

M: Thick and foamy. 4.5

O: Fruity and enjoyable. 4

 408 characters

Photo of CFHMagnet
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Marked "Bottled in 2011"

A. Poured a finger of creamy, off white head. Body is a nice amber color. Head retention is a decent frosting on top. Lacing is nice as well.

S. Maltiness starts off the nose, and quickly gives way to a cocktail of fruit flavors. I smell grape and mixed berry aromas. Floral undertones emerge near the end.

T. Floral tones start her off, and then it's all about the fruit. I taste blueberry and blackberry, but still taste a slight haunting grapiness in there.

M. Medium bodied, well carbonated, this beer is refreshing. It's my first beer home after working a 12-hour day, and it hits the spot.

O. Didn't know what to expect going into this, DFH is phenomenal, but blueberry beer? But it works, it tastes good, and it's definitely refreshing. Good stuff!

 786 characters

Photo of cleeze
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've yet to be disappointed by a DFH brew...

This baby poured a nice mahogany color with a hint of purple. Decent head that disappeared rather quickly to show some bad ass lacing.

Smell was as fruity as they come. As soon as I opened the brew a whiff of berries is very strong. Also after a second whiff, I picked up on some malty alcohol goodness.

Yummmy... Tart berry goodness at first. Warms my belly too on this cold winter day. The yeasty taste contrasts great with the sweet berry taste. the 10% is amazingly masked.

Great drinkability for a fruit beer.

 563 characters

Photo of BMoney575
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on 1-13-09
Bottled on 2-10-07

Pours much lighter than expected, a super cloudy orange/red. A fizzy head starts, but fades quickly. Lacing is thin and short-lasting.

Smell is very fruity, thick and sweet. Very wine-like and complex as it settles, strong grape and apple juice comes through. A little aged, in a good, caramelized sugar way.

Taste is super sour at first, very, very grape-y, followed by a slight blueberry and lots of light malt. The alcohol adds a warming, wine-y finish, with a very dry and tart aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very thick, yet highly carbonated. A great combo.

Drinkability is surprisingly good, considering the abv.

Overall, I'm not sure if age has done this one well, but it's still a tasty beer and a very pleasant change.

 765 characters

Photo of phiberoptik
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into white wine glasses because unfortunately we do not have any better glassware to sip this wonderful brew. Pours a cran-apple color, almost a pink amber with a light thin head.

I get a lot of red raspberries in the nose along with the maltiness and of course you can smell the alcohol as well.

The taste to me is all red raspberries. I eat red and black raspberries quite often and I dont get as much black raspberry in the taste, despite them being in the beer. Maybe my palate is just not that strong at differentiating. I might say there is some blueberry but it definitely doesnt come off as fresh blueberries. What do I know though. There is malt, yeast, and almost a tart cherry to it, faintly like a Belgian-style ale. Lots of alcohol in the throat, but of course this is a 10% ABV brew.

Mouthfeel is watery but tingles across the tongue from a lot of carbonation, almost like a champagne.

I could drink this for a lot of different reasons but its not highly drinkable due to the carbonation and alcohol level. It makes me burp, but it doesnt bother me.

For the price I wont buy up the store but if I see another bottle, I am most likely going to snag it.

 1,195 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured unto a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber, head is thin roughly a 1/2" white head.

Smell: Just smelling it before I drink it, it comes off sweetthe blueberry is obviously apparent.

Taste: It tastes exactly how it is described, seriously I can't give it any higher because it comes off little sweet and it's just not my cup of tea.

Mouth: Light-medium carbonation easy down and not hard to drink the ful 25oz on your own.

Overall: I have had a couple of blueberry beers before this one is definitely at the the top of the food chain. Not super sweet but just RIGHT...you will definitely like this beer on a warm summer night and appreciate it's purpose. Hope you all enjoy and cheers!!!!

 710 characters

Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I found some bottles of this upstairs at the liquor store I work at. So when I had this on-tap before (unreviewed), I found it to be alright.

But this was really good. Probably because it was aged. There the taste wasn't very complex upfront, but it had a nice sourness towards the end of the taste. It was pretty darn tasty.

I then poured some more from the fridge a little later. I can definitely pick out some blueberry taste.

I agree with one of the previous reviewers. This beer needs more fruit. I think the underlying ale doesn't seem to complex though. But with the sourness/whatever at the end of the sip, I was tempted to give it a 4.5 on taste.

 658 characters

Photo of adamette
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap an hour ago at Winking Lizard in Mentor, Ohio, an "on tap limited availability" offering. Cost of $6.25, poured into a 10 ounce snifter. Thanks to my father in law for buying me this one as we are celebrating the recent birth of my twin daughters (born April 8th).

A Little head over a cloudy copper body. Good look. I did not expect a big head with the high ABV and the fact that it is a fruit beer. 4.0

S Nice, gentle blueberry smell without the heat of alcohol that I expected. 4.0

T The rather high ABV presented itself well in the taste, however, but it was welcomed along with that continued gentle blueberry taste. 4.0

M Pleasingly syrupy, big. 4.5

D Good for the high ABV, I finished every last drop. 4.0

Notes: A treat to find this one on tap. Thanks again Mr. P!

 789 characters

Photo of farrago
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hardly any head at all, even with a somewhat aggressive pour, gone quickly with no lacing to be seen. Murky orange rust color with some brownish orange brick hues too, brightens a touch around the rims. The berry scents come through clearly in the nose, however, these are nowhere near being dominant, grapefruit and tangerine citrus there, raw brown sugar, peat moss, lighter yeasty bread dough, sweeter maltiness more apparent as it warms. Full-bodied, dry, sour and borderline acidic, really gives your palate a nice twist. As in the nose the berry flavors knit into the whole and not clumsily obvious, not a "dumb" fruit beer. More herbaceous qualities here, match up nicely with the sour grapefruit and lemon component. Presents sufficient apple, apricot, pear fruit as well as honey and yeast to keep the sourness in check. Carbonation is light but contributes when it has to in order to continue forward progress. Given its genre there's a limit to its inherent complexity, that accounted for, sticks to the script well and can't fault the execution.

 1,057 characters

Photo of Boto
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle: this one pours a hazy Ruby tinged Amber color. Just a wisp of an off White head. Good nose. A bit musty. Red wine grape notes. Light Candi sugar, other fruits, malts. The taste is very good. Malty, a slight funkiness, touch of red wine flavors. Some blackberry also. Unique and good.

 297 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle that was purchased god knows when by me. I have had it in the cellar forever and just got around to it tonight. Served at cellar temperature in a snifter. Consumed on 08/18/2008.

The pour was nice with a very hazy, reddish tinted liquid coming through almost immediatly. Small whispy heado f white crashed down quick and left nothing in its wake. Subtle side glass lace, but unremarkable.

The aroma was loaded down with fruit. Berries of all sorts, Blueberries and blackberries dominant, with a touch of light grassy hops and some light grain. The flavor was all about fruit though. Staright up berry juice here, rich and very sweet, but nowhere near overpowering. This was extremely good, easily drinkable with a light body, good carbonation and very well hidden alcohol. Long drawn out fruit finish, lightly dry and easily pleaseant,

Overall one of the better fruit beers i have had. I was really shocked by how good this one was. I would have no objection to having this again at any time. Really very solid and one of the good ones from DFH.

 1,061 characters

Photo of bonkers
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

split a 26 ounce bottle with a friend, split into pint glasses
A-pours a light red color with a thin head
S-very sweet with fruit notes
t-sweet right from the start, but it is well balanced with hints of berries
m&d-very drinkable, not overly sweet, nice carbonation, not very filling
Overall-A very good fruit beer. This is well balanced and a fun beer.

 354 characters

Photo of trankin6
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Found in a discount bin of bombers at local store and was delighted to find this nice fruit beer! pours a beautiful reddish-peachy color with thin pinkish head. the blackberries come in heavy on smell with tinges of that sourish belgian yeast. nice strong flavor of the golden ale base plays under those real berries and extra notes of dates, licorice, granny smith apple on the back. as other reviews note, all the layers mask some of the booziness nicely!

 457 characters

Photo of Pencible
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This poured a slightly hazy copper with moderate white head.
S: It smelled like sweet blueberries and wild Belgian yeast, with some slightly tart blackberries and candi sugar and fresh wheat.
T: It tasted like tart blackberries and sweet blueberries, with sour yeast and spicy saison hops and a bit of fresh wheat. It had a light and clean aftertaste that was a bit dry.
M: It was slightly thick and viscous with lots of carbonation. Decent.
D: This was a very nice beer with good balance of sweet and tart. It could maybe be a bit more bold, but the alcohol was very well hidden so it was dangerously easy to drink. Great beer for any season, and could be really fun with food pairing. I enjoyed this better than Red & White.

 729 characters

Photo of NCSUdo
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle, bottled 2008

A: Deep copper, ruby hued, under a slightly small head. No blue, which was a good surprise. Some OK lace and retention.

S: Smells sweet, fruity, a little bit of blueberry and raspberry comes through, malt backbone is there as well. Could be a little bigger.

T: Very sweet, a little sour, malty, fruity, fruit really comes out in the taste. A bit of warming and drying alcohol. Juicy. Maybe the tad bit too sweet, but I enjoy some sweetness.

M/D: Medium to full bodied, high carbonation, a bit sticky. Pretty good drinkability. A good dessert beer for sure.

 588 characters

Photo of chefhatt
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this beer from a 750ml bottle into a pint glass. It has a nice rich auburn color body with just a small white head that leaves a nice lace down the glass. The smell has a nice berry aroma to it. The taste is a little tart to start then the berries come in on the middle of the tongue and gives it a nice like sweet flavor. I get like a white wine finish on the back of the tongue. Very nice mouth feel, very little after taste. Overall this is very different and i really like this beer.

 496 characters

Photo of magine
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a DFH goblet.

Pours a clear dark cherry amber, with a pint tinted thick fluffy head with tons of tight bubbles. Lots of grate lace remains, surrounded by a patch thick layer. Good looking brew.

Brew smells of tons of berries, dark fruits, Belgian flare for sure; yeasts. Sweet malts. Good nose.

Brew tastes creamy smooth; spicy heat in the middle and the finish. High abv lingers. Dark fruits, yeasty malts thicken it up. Semi dry finish. Good full body and flavors.

The best fruit beer I have had so far; full body, great flavors and has lots of kick to it. Never been the biggest fans of these type of brews, but this one is great. Great fruit brew here, another stud from DFH.

 695 characters

Photo of Rutager
4.09/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours a lightly hazy, deep amber-red with a hint of blue. Thin bubbly white head.

Smell. Blackberry, floral hops and a little caramel and toasty grain. Smells good.

Taste: Sweet blueberries and tart blackberries. Some toasty grain creeps up and finishes pretty nicely with lots of fruit and a little booze.

Mouthfeel. Medium body with lively medium carbonation.

Overall. Nice berry flavours with great body and nice level of sweetness for what's going on in this one. Just a little boozy, but it's forgivable ;-)

 528 characters

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.09/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled In: 2011

A: Pours a very nice dark copper-red color with dark red tinges throughout

S: Smells like ripe berries, specifically blueberries and blackberries. Expected, of course. Not much else aside from the berries, which is nice for a fruit beer

T: Same as the smell, along with a nice peppery alcohol towards the back end that helps to make this not too sweet of a beer. Fairly simplistic, but that’s how fruit beers should be (at least in my opinion)

M: Medium-heavy body with a nice amount of carbonation that washes over the taste buds and cleanses them for the next sip

D/O: Pretty much nothing but fruit throughout this one, which is ideal. Nothing fancy, just a nice mix of berries and beer. Yum

 717 characters

Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 522 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.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe