Black & Blue | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Black & BlueBlack & Blue
BA SCORE
3.68/5
Good
1,624 Ratings
Black & BlueBlack & Blue
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
dogfish.com

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
Ranking:
#33,437
Reviews:
530
Ratings:
1,624
pDev:
15.49%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
125
Gots:
295
Trade:
8
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,624 |  Reviews: 530
Photo of SLeffler27
3.2/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A thin head drops to a ring of lace over a hazy, maroon beer that leaves a film on the oversized wine glass. One definitely sees evidence of the addition of grapes.

Presents primarily with tart vinegar, followed by some peat, with grapes and cherry in the background.

Vinegar overwhelms the other flavors, but one can find evidence of grapes with the alcohol being second most prominent.

A slick texture coats the palate with fizzy carbonation and a cross between metal and moderate astringency.

My previous foray with this beer is remembered more fondly than this tasting. However, Black and Blue is worth a try, but the strong vinegar and high alcohol profile makes this one hard to finish.

date consumed: 5 Oct 2008

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Photo of swanfungus
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of vrbulldog22
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of randylangford
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of CreightonSM
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of VonZipper
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of DrStiffington
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Kramerwtmf
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of crossovert
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml capped bottle.

It pours a nice blueberry purple color. The head is fizzy and white but holds surprisingly well. It doesn't leave any lacing though.

It doesn't have too much smell, a faint hint of berries, but that is it.

The flavor is a bit more exciting. There is a nice tart berry flavor, not overwhelming, but enough to be interesting. The sweetness is at a nice subtle level, very nice considering the abv, I was expecting it to be sweeter. They have the sweetness level nailed but this one needed a bit more fruitiness.

Overall a solid fruit beer form Dogfish Head.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a champagne glass.

A: Poured a rose and orange colored amber with a nice, fluffy head of white foam atop the soft brew. A steady jet stream of carbonation rose from the center of the glass.

S: Smells floral and spicy, with hints of berry, wood and hop resins. A little zesty and funky yeast makes its way in as well.

T: Initially, this brew tastes like a Belgian abbey ale, sweet and zesty yet dry at first, with strong floral hop and sugary sweet fruit esters. The blackberry is more muted than the raspberry flavors, which are still soft and delicately sweeten the floral hop bitterness of the brew.

M: Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied and bursting with bubbles.

D: Very, very tasty for a higher ABV fruit beer. The berry combination drinks like pinot noir juice added to a well-crafted Belgian pale ale. Excellent on its own but it also went well with baked salmon in a lemon-tomato reduction. Preferred to the Red & White.

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Photo of bonbini26
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Wayne17
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of HopStoopid120
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of SHODriver
3.92/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from 2012

A: pours a deep red to light brown into a DFH snifter with a finger of white head that recedes to a small mat and collar
S: smells of pale malt and fruity esters along with some blackberries and blueberries
T: smooth malty sweetness yields to some big blueberry and raspberry flavors along with a bit of alcohol. aftertaste is more berry flavors
M: light to medium in body with slightly prickly carbonation and a non drying finish
O: pretty good, lets the fruit shine and packs a nice punch. the last time I had it it must have been older because it seemed to have the flavors blend a little better

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another aged bottle of DFH, see how this compared to the Red & White.

Pours a dark amber, I almost want to say there's some blue in there, but I don't think there is, good amount of carbonation but minimal lacing along the glass, seems a bit too fizzy for it to stick.

Smell is mostly malt with a slight tinge of berry aroma, not overwhelming like others and not picking up that artificial sweetness either.

Taste is mostly malty with a mild berry presence but obviously noticeable, blueberries are usually subdued anyway but the blackberries provide a slight tartness, not overkill on the fruit aspect and dodges the artificially sweet line and walks the natural goodness line instead.

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Photo of Ryan011235
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Delirium snifter on 12/4/12

Bottled in 2012B

The appearance of the beer is a sharp copper and rust with a two and a half finger head of fluffy, rose-hinted foam. The head dissipates slowly, leaving webs of lace along the way. Wispy retention and good lace overall.

The aroma has an abundance of the black raspberry; a lot more that the blueberry puree. I don't know if it's the fact that this has black raspberry instead of red raspberry, but this has a cleaner, more natural raspberry aroma than most beers I've come across that use the fruit. As it warms and opens up, blueberry adds a modest layer and the raspberry seems jammy in view of the dusty and toasted grains.

The flavor is a more compact representation of the aroma. It packs a fair amount of flavor, but it's more focused and less inclined to wander. Raspberry is at the fore, but is starts right off with a jam note, though it isn't nearly as sugary as I'd expect from a DFH beer of 10% abv. The grain center is well-proportioned with the fruit additions. Blueberry has a bit more at state here, mostly on the finish. Again, I'm shocked at how sweet this is not.

While the sweetness isn't out of control, this critter does not want for sugar. That said, the sugars inform the feel more than the flavor. The body is a heavy medium with some sticky sugars. Hints of alcohol are woven in as well, though it is impressive that this isn't overly boozy either. Carbonation is appropriately balanced with the body.

This is the first time trying this beer; this is a good thing because I likely would have spent a lot of money on it over the past several years.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours from the 750ml bottle into the glass a dark amber with purple and red. A small fizzy white head develops and falls quickly. Lots of particulate in the brew which I'm guessing is from the fruit. Aromas start off with dark berries and light toasted grains. A bit of yeast in the nose as well as just a touch of herbal hops. Much more mellow than I expected.

First sip brings a light, somewhat grainy malt met by berry flavors. I can taste both hints of blackberry and blueberry but it's quite mellow overall. Flows down with a nice spicy yeast twang and a touch of herbal hops on the finish. A nice mix between bitter and sweet...the spiciness adds a nice dimension.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth with a good carbonation. This one goes down really easily considering the abv and I could see it getting me in trouble if I drank too much. There's really no alcohol flavor at all in here. Overall, an interesting brew but it didn't really grab me enough to want to buy another bottle at the price point it sells for. There's many other things I would choose first.

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Photo of goblue3509
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orangish pink color like a late day sunnyset. There is a two finger soapy white head whiches recedes to skim and leaves some lacing on the sides. Very nice long very inviting. The aroma is of sweet blueberries and blackberries with a hint of graininess. The smell is very inviting. Not a complex smell but a very good smell. The taste follows the nose exactly. A big blueberry and blackberry taste with a hint of malt to balance out the flavors. Sweet and smooth taste very good, very nice. The mouthfeel is of moderate carbonation and is slightly dry, kinda wine like. Overall it is a very good beer, nice taste for a fruit beer, upper ratings there, but the smell is very nice. This is a beer I would seek out again and again.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Shared a bottle with the wifey this evening. Poured into a couple of champagne flutes...

This glows in the glass, a warm golden with a hint of ruby...

Very pleasant aroma of sweet roasted malts, the biting sweetness of the raspberries and blueberries, but not a hint of alcohol...sort of yeasty as well which reminds me of a Belgian....there are also quite a few vinous qualities present...as it warms a little, it gets much more vinous...

I wasn't quite sure about this after the first sip. It seemed way too malty and not fruity enough... However, the tart fruits soon appeared and this became very Belgian and wine-like...it is a very tasty brew that both the wife and I liked quite a bit..not nearly as tart as the Raspberry Tart but reminds me a lot of it...

The 11% will spank that ass if you aren't careful. Its nowhere to be found in the aroma or taste and before I knew it, I was singing along to Stayin Alive on the TV set... Well done, DFH!

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Photo of peabody
2.55/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours out a really clear reddish amber with three fingers of tan suds. Lots of lacing though
Not a lot of smell here. I get a dark bready aroma. No fruit here.
Taste is not good. Dirty sugar and nasty water.
The Red and White was better. This black and blue is gross and nasty.
Stay with the Red and White!

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Photo of BeerSox
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle into 8oz snifter.

Strawberry red hue with a light tan head that fizzles to a thin rim along the glass.

Light grain with an abundance of alcohol. Some blueberry is in there. Mild phenols.

The blueberries and raspberries don't make it in much. Most of the flavor to me is the high alcohol. Some phenols are in there too. The flavor reminds me of a Belgian Ale, not sure if that was the intent or not. The finish is the lingering alcohol and berry flavors.

This beer would make a good crossover for anybody who likes wine. Fruit flavors with the right amount of alcohol to make it familiar. I think the phenols may throw them off a little. I felt this one was a bit acerbic for my tastes.

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Photo of Drew966
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black & Blue pours an orange color with a white head from a brown 750 ml bottle. The aroma is quite muted, perhaps some berry, but mostly just malt. The taste is mostly malt, no hops to be found. And surprisingly little fruit to be found either. There is a hint of berry, which mostly was noticeable in the aftertaste, but it's not nearly as bold as I would hope from this brewer. It's not bad, but it's not what I had expected or hoped for from them either. Worth trying.

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Photo of garuda
3.89/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a 2012 vintage at the brewpub.

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Photo of GJ40
4.12/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 750ml bottle in a Dogfish Head snifter glass.

A - Red with a haze and particles floating throughout. A thick head with a reddish tint.

S - Fruity and sweet. A bit like a Flemish red but not as tart.

T - Slightly sweet with a mild sourness / tartness and some alcohol presence. I love Flemish reds ands this has a hint of that but also adds a sweetness to balance that aspect. I liked this beer more and more as it went on.

M - Good consistency with a moderate carbonation.

D - Good, smooth and easy to drink.

I've loved DFH for some time now but I've hesitated to try their more creative brews. This was a step in that direction. And while I prefer hops to anything else, they really show some depth in their beers.

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Photo of RoryOMoore
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Black & Blue from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 3.68 out of 5 with 1,624 ratings