Back In Black | 21st Amendment Brewery

BA SCORE
83
good
708 Reviews
THE BROS
72
okay
Read the review
Back In BlackBack In Black
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery
California, United States
21st-amendment.com

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV varies around 7%.
65 IBU

Added by tpd975 on 11-23-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
708
Ratings:
2,380
Avg:
3.68
pDev:
13.32%
 
 
Wants:
54
Gots:
389
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 708 | Ratings: 2,380
Photo of HitokiriNate85
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Entirely black except for the slightest dark red tinge around the bottom of the glass. Frothy tan head that's breaking apart and starting to lace from the start.

S - Pithy herbal, orangey, citrus hop aroma with undertones of bread and chocolate. It's a really nice smell that's only lacking a bit in power. After taking a sip the smell reminds almost exactly of orange chocolates. Also, about halfway through the glass, it smells just like black patent grains.

T - Strong citrus rind, orangey, pithy hops lead the charge, but there's plenty of malt backbone to match. There's a breadiness to it, but chocolate really dominates. The finish is slightly roasty, but it doesn't dominate anything else. I thought bitterness might seem a little low at 65, but I think it hits the mark really well.

MF - Pretty standard for the style, leaning towards a lighter body.

D - I'm really enjoying this so far. I had sort of gotten the notion that black IPAs(or IBAs, whatever) weren't my favorite, as the grain bill and hops always seemed to clash. I love this combination, though, which is probably because it uses two of my absolute favorite hops(Columbus and Centennial).

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Photo of Kinger22
3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a rich, dark black color with a lasting tan head. Smells rich with hints of malts and hops. The taste is balanced between that of a dark lager and a black IPA. Very drinkable for a darker beer.

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Photo of WOTO97
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Just popped a can of this the other night; also had the pleasure of tasting it on tap at CBS. The nose is full of bright citrus hop qualities with lingering charcoal and cocoa bitterness in the background. This beer drink very well at cooler temps: the bright citrus hop flavors are there in the front to welcome you in while the roasted malts bring you home on the back of the palate, along with hints of caramel. Could use for a bit extra punch in the way of bittering hops. A bit thin in the body despite a nice initial creaminess. As the beer warms the big hop presence fades and gives way to burned coffee and roasted malts. All-in-all a very tasty drop and decent example of style (if you can call it that).

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Photo of bpw28
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Two finger off white shaving cream thick head, Deep Mahogany (about a 35 SRM), Very Nice Lacing

Nose: Heavy Roast, Big Citrus, Floral, Yeasty, A little funkyness (A very good thing, reminds me of belgian funk), Big Coffee, Fig, Bittersweet Chocolate

Taste: Hm. Well, it seems to hit in this order- Citrus-Floral-Pine ipa, Roasty-Coffee-Caramel-Bready dark malt, Spicy-Floral strong hop bite end. This one comes in layers, which of course is nice. A little light on the mouth fullness though.

Final Thoughts: I really like this one. I don't know if the lack of body is so it's more of a "session" if you so choose to have it that way. There's mouthfeel, but it isn't to what I would expect. It's my only qurk, and its pretty small really. Great beer (had the monk's blood from 21st, amazing.) certainly worth the buy and I'm glad that 21st has been kicking the can phobia alot of people have into to the gutter.

Food Pairing: Meat, Sausage, Grilled Items, Smoked Items, Medium Cheeses, Ham, Lamb.

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Photo of codfeast
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

can to pint.

A: Very dark brown, thick fluffy 1" tan head.

S: Malt, toffee, caramel, slight floral hops.

T: Sweet malt quickly replaced by a heavily toasted malt, coffee taste. a lingering bitter, burnt finish.

M: Nice carbination, oily, creamy feel.

O: It's not that I dislike it just has to much of the toasted (burnt) taste for me. Not something I would buy at the store, would give it another go on draft however.

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Photo of frenchblood21
3.82/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Light black with a tan head that quickly fades away.

Smell- Chocolate, orange zest and pine (in a good way)

Taste- Its absolutely an IPA, but Back in Black kicks it up a notch with the chocolate notes. I know its hoppy, but my brain says coffee stout too...I'm pleasantly confused.

Mouthfeel- A bit thin. I know IPAs aren't known for their ability to coat your mouth, but this one is especially thin.

Overall- Bottom line, this beer will not change your life, but for the price tag, you'd be an idiot not to grab a six.

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Photo of rwhitmore
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap in a shaker pint at Urban Tavern in San Francisco.

Nice off-white head, that left good lacing. Midnight black that let just a little dark burgundy light through.

Aroma is lot's of coffee roast, with orange and grapefruit peel. This aroma is a big reason I like black IPAs.

Smooth coffee and chocolate roast flavor, with the crisp bright citrus notes are up front. Hop bitterness builds into the pine of a northwest IPA. Again, this is a favorite style, and this beer hit all the marks.

Mouthfeel was caramel-ly in an IPA way, and the roast lingered in the finish.

Paired this with the spicy caggiano beer sausage and pretzel small plate, and it was just great.

I really like most black IPAa, and Black on Black is a great black IPA.

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Photo of Dubber55
3.55/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First black ipa. Here we go:

Dark brown/black. When held up to the light, its looks dark brown. 2 finger mocha head.

Smells hoppy, grassy, and a little metallic.

Flavor is hoppy but not really piney. Not really citrusy either. A little earthy/grassy. I taste some roast as well. Definitly a unique take on the style. I have never had an ipa with a flavor profile like this but, its pretty good. Its a little bitter but not too crazy. I guess I would have liked some more hops. Dry on the finish.

Mouthfeel is solidly medium. Carbonation is medium to high

Drinkability is good. The roasted flavor is bit drying but I think I could drink a few of these.

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Photo of BenjieK
3.43/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: dark brown, decent head, black highlights. Left some lacing.

S: Dark bread, coffee, light smell of hops. Not bad.

T: The taste was a let down for me. Have been drinking some great local ABAs. This was lackluster, with not so intense coffee and hops nots, but more sweetness.

M: Kind of light but well carbonated and refreshing.

D: Could definately drink a few of these under the right circumstances.

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Photo of ckornmannn
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From a can, into a tulip: dark mahogany, almost black color. Rye, leather, smoke on the nose. Taste follows: rye, tobacco, leather, toast, a bit of smoke, with a good hops aftertaste. The right amount of carbonation and a somewhat silky feel. I really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of VoiceOfTheSoul
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can into nonic pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark ruby brown with a one finger tan head that leaves good webbing but shrinks to a ring in a decent amount of time.

S: It has a sharp hop smell, citrus and pine (mostly pine), with undertones of roasted and chocolate malt. These come through more as it warms.

T: Sharp piney hops balanced with chocolate roasty malts. A great marriage. As it warms, both more roasty-ness and hop profile come through more, so it became more intense without one side winning over the other.

M: It's up front. Thin yet smooth.

D: It's really nice and easy. The hops and roasted malt are both great for the cooler temperatures as we head into fall/winter.

Notes: A really solid brew. It's got a great balance between the hops and the roasted malts that shows they really know what they're doing. Nothing was ever over-powering.

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

Poured from a 12-oz. can into my Terrapin pint glass.

Appearance: A dark, transparent, porter-like color. I poured this too hard, which resulted in a billowy two-finger, creamy head.

Smell: The style is evident in the smell, as both the malt and hop scents are very strong.

Taste: Surprisingly refreshing! This is not very bitter, but the hops are there; the real star is the sweet, pleasant maltiness. It's a little chocolatey, very like a porter.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. I don't normally pay much attention to this aspect of beer, but here it stands out.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink. This is the kind of beer I find myself gulping, however I try not to. This is the first beer I've had from 21st Amendment, and I'm impressed. Check it out.

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Photo of KM_Seahawk
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12oz can - pours a dark caramel/black color similar to cola, with 2 finger beige head with moderate lacing. The smell is roasted malt with slight coffee notes and faint earthy pine hops. The taste is like the nose, roasted malt upfront with small amount of coffee finished with mild bitter pith and semidry. Definitely hides the 6.8% alc well. Light to medium body and low to medium carbonation. Overall not bad but not mind blowing either. Nice to have if you want something a bit different and I like cans.

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Photo of TheSeeker61
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this brew @ the Porter beer bar in Atlanta.

Poured jet black into a pint glass. Nice one finger head which mellowed into a ring. Nice lacing.
Nose was kinda interesting. Citrus was noticible along with some hops & malt especially as it warms.

Begins with a citrus bitter, moves into a nice malt & not too hoppy.

The mouthfeel is nice & creamy. Will definitely drink this baby again. Gets better as it warms.

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Photo of Kranders
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

To go along with some MNF and NBA Jam, my cousin brought over a fantastic beer-in-a-can, Back in Black from 21st Amendment. I love black IPAs for many reasons, and this particular beer is no exception. A quick look and you'll expect a big robust stout, but as soon as you drink it's totally different. This beer has a great sweetness that's cut perfectly with a punch of hops, and it does so in a way where it's not overpowering.

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Photo of feylure
2.06/5  rDev -44%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Oh wow. This one didn't hit me quite so well.

Appearance is great. It pours such a dark brown that it becomes almost pitch black in the glass, and it has a nice amount of carbonation.

Smell is odd. I can sense a light bit of hops, but for the most part it's over-taken by a puckering-bitter smell.

At first taste, it's pretty good with dark notes and malts, then something happens that I don't enjoy. Like the smell, a wave of sweet-bitterness that makes me pucker hits. The tail is very dry and leaves that bitter taste lingering.

Personally I don't find the puckering taste that enjoyable, so I can't say I find this beer all that drinkable. All said and done, I have to give it a try!

Cheers

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Photo of Sky2625
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a glass mug/stein (this review is from notes taken 7/11/11).

A - Poured a medium dark brown, clear and with a light body, almost like a cola. 2 finger cream-colored, tiny-to-medium bubble head with good retention and thick lacing.

S - Citrus/pine hop nose for the duration, with a hint of molasses at the end. Easy on the nose, not pungent but pleasant.

T - Coffee note to start, followed by mild pine, underpinned by a hint of molasses. Transitions to simultaneous sweet and bitter with dark roasted malt notes. Finishes with a flush of spicy heat, bitterness, and a note of dark unsweetened chocolate.

M - Light medium body, with a flash of carbonation fizz to aid the transition from coffee to pine flavor, and which sets up the flash of spice.

D - This beer is great. Light enough in body, not too spicy or bitter to be a single-order beer, but flavorful enough to slow you down and make you appreciate it.

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Photo of dtreindl
4.63/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Surprisingly creamy smooth mouthfeel on this black IPA. Not too bitter. Nice roasted malt flavor is not overwhelmed by the hops. So well-balanced hops and malt, which I think is essential for a good black IPA. Easy drinking...I could drink several of these, despite the 6.8abv. Black IPAs seem to be trendy now and this example is a good one. I'll be drinking this long after any trend fades as long as 21st A is willing to brew it!

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Photo of gc4hokies
2.79/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A = pours an "almost" black color. Nice head and lacing.
S = Very malty with a slight dark chocolate and alcohol note
T = Black jelly bean malts is the best I can describe it. I'm not sure where the IPA came from on the can but I wouldn't use IPA in the title. Dark malts, sweet to start, dry finish

Overall, I wouldn't call this a Black IPA at all. The hops are there with some noticeable bitterness, but piney, citrus hop flavor and aromas that are associated with IPAs are nowhere to be found. Not a bad beer, but I wouldn't buy this again.

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Photo of TheAdamConners
5/5  rDev +35.9%

I always liked black IPA's, and this one solidified that. Just a great brew. Straight outta the can is quite nice. Good amount of hop flavor (65ibus) but great balance. This is one of the most drinkable black IPA's you'll find. Sits light on the stomach, and goes great with chicken and spicy peppers.

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Photo of ugaterrapin
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours and almost pure black color. When held up to the light there is a little transparency that reveals a deep coppery red color. The pour resulted in a two fingered billowy tan head. It recedes at a moderate pace to leave a little lacing.

S: The aroma is somewhat subdued. There is a hop and slightly roasted malt presence. There is also an aroma I can't place my finger on that I hope doesn't show up in the taste.

T: Luckily the off smell didn't make it into the taste. It has a straight forward Black IPA taste that I am used to in others I have tried. It has a nice dark malt presence on the front of the palate and then rolls into a nice balanced hop finish with very little bitterness. Overall a good example of this new style. The drinkability on this beer is great. I am about half way done with the first and feel like I could easily go through a six pack.

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Photo of Norica
1.42/5  rDev -61.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

So excited to try this beer and out of the gate it looks promising with a opaque black appearance and strong head. Aroma is of vending machine hot chocolate, very faint. From here the beer heads down very fast. Taste of sour milk from a metal canteen and virtually no hopfeel on the tongue. My cheapness prevents the drinkability of this one taking a ride out to the town sewer. Can't get over how bad this one is from a brewery that I've had some luck with. It's a huge step forward that craft beer is turning to cans but it's still what is inside that counts and this one fails miserably.

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Photo of notsoprobeer
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color was dark brown--not quite black. It had a tan colored head with good retention. Aroma was mostly hops, along the lines of grapefruit. After it warmed up, I could smell the malts. The first flavors I noticed were some roasted malts and coffee. Then the taste of the hops came through and left a slightly bitter aftertaste, which was pleasant. There was a touch of sweetness, that I could have done without. Body was light. Carbonation level was nice. Very drinkable.

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Photo of ajaxivan
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Great black color with massive light brown head

S: Citrus/piney with roasted malt.

T: I will differ with some reviews i have read, this beer is well balanced for me. I think some arent sure what to make of the style(to each his own) Citrus with a nice roasted flavor

M: Medium and carbonation is spot on

O: Slowly trying Amer. Black Ales and this is a good one. Probably not a beer id want to drink often but is a good change of pace.

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Photo of Torps
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grower fill from our friends at DeCicco's..

I have to say this tastes more like a stout with a hop backbone.. compared to Deschutes Hop in the Dark and Stone's black IPA(no clue was it's called as I got it on tap mysteriously @ a buffalo wild wings and the waitress was clueless other than that it was from Stone) which tasted more like a good, solid IPA with a heavy malt backbone. I'd liken this to Troegs Dead Reckoning Porter! Some sawdust aroma but predominately malt.. Heavy lacing. This is an alright IPA I guess but where are the hops?

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Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,380 ratings.
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