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Back In Black | 21st Amendment Brewery

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Back In BlackBack In Black
BA SCORE
3.7/5
Good
2,418 Ratings
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
Ranking:
#28,867
Reviews:
721
Ratings:
2,418
pDev:
13.24%
Bros Score:
3.1
 
 
Wants:
56
Gots:
405
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
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Ratings: 2,418 |  Reviews: 721
Photo of vdoz3
4.57/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

+1 for being named after a great song. A 32 oz growler in one night, all drank from a DFH pint glass (http://www.sudsgear.com/ProductImages/dogfish/DOGPT_dogfish-l.jpg)

A - Solid black body showing hints of reddish/brown borders at the edges. Head grows beautifully, before settling down and become sticky lacing trailing behind the level.

S - Hops. Tart, citrusy hops. There was also a slight metallic smell earlier on, but I've never noticed that before when I've had this beer before, willing to bet that was because I left it in the growler too long.

T - Citrus hops dominate, leaving a rich aftertaste, competing with the roasted malt aftertaste that creeps in.

M - Thick coating (willing to bet the roasted malt has something to do with this), and you can feel where the beer is hitting your tongue because the hops work at it instantly.

D - Amazing. I could drink this all night.

Up there with Stone's Sublimely Self Righteous (/11th Anniversary Ale), imho.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 11/21/2009. Growler from Big Z Beverage. Pours a dark dark brown with a thick tan head. Aroma of citrus, roasted malt.. Flavor is sweet initiaaly with orangey, citrus notes and a crackery malt finish. Very enjoyable! Not as roasty as some of the other black IPAs with a prominent hop presence. Well done!

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Photo of momolo
3.66/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The IPA was a very deep, warm black with almost an inch of tan head. Past the citrusy hops, the smell swirling out of the bottle was of a dark roast which dominated most of the flavor of the brew until it finished. The coffee and the chocolate malt are evident, but there wasn't an abnormal sweetness to it. It begins smooth and milky, but then there's the sourness of grapefruit.

My taste buds cringed at the finish, but I kept going back to relive the beginning. The flavors didn't seem to blend well, but they did mask the taste of the alcohol. It was also served too cold...human error.

Can't say I'd go back for more.

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Photo of John_M
3.56/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with very good head retention and lacing. I'll say this, the beer looks impressive. The nose, however, I'm not loving so much. Although I get some noticeable peppery hop aroma, there's also something of a ginger and roasty malt aspect to the aroma profile. I get some cola as well. Flavors replicate the nose quite well, which is OK, but is not wowing me. Mouthfeel is light and almost a bit watery. Drinkability is likewise not all that impressive. Although the alcohol is pretty well disguised, the slight ginger flavor with the roasty malt just isn't a good combination for me.

Mehhh... While certainly not wretched, can't see any reason why I'd want to try this again.

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Photo of Lunch
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at Fricso Grille in Columbia, MD (12/01/09) into a shaker pint glass at an appropriate temperature.

A: Pours a nice shade of blackish brown capped off with 1 finger of an off-white head that lingers for the duration of the beer and leaves thick lacing.

S: A pungent aroma of grapefruit and citrus, with a slight hop bittereness and hit of roasted malt.

T: The citrus theme continues onto the palate with a hefty dose of grapefruit and tropical citrus flavors. A layer of a roasty malt works it way in, but not to a great extent. For some reason both this beer and their IPA seem to have some sort of duck-sauce flavor according to my palate, that is certainly not off-putting, but rather unique and distinctive.

M: Creamy medium-body with a slight oiliness and smooth carbonation.

D: None of the 6.8% abv. shines through and frankly I was quite impressed with the overall balance of the flavors.

Overall this I find this to be a wonderful Black IPA and another strong offering from 21st Amendment. Recommended

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Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

These black IPAs are interesting.

Beer is black, lacing is high and carbonation is low. Head is thin and made up of brown bubbles (from the roasted malt).

The aroma smells like an IPA (mostly). Citrus hop aroma dominates. No detectable roast in the aroma at all.

Beer is a little thin IMO. And here is the roast. It mixes in the back of the mouth with the hop bitterness. Its not a terrible mix but it does seem a little out of place. Beer is a little harsh with all that back of the mouth bitterness with very little in the other parts of the palate to connect them. Drinkability and mouthfeel suffers.

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Photo of cynicgiraffe
4.07/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is my first black IPA for what it's worth. Pours opaque black. Overwhelming grapefruit in the aroma. So much so that I can't get anything else. Thin creamy head, disappears quickly but leaves lots of lacing. Taste: lots of grapefruit but some pine. Thick mouthfeel, almost like a Russian imperial. Bizarre (and has some palette dissonance) to have this palette with the hop profile. Back end has a peculiar combo of hop bitterness and stout bitterness. I love this beer. Well balanced. I would drink this any time. Awesome.

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Photo of lbkornlb14
3.98/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had this in growler, The color is really awesome for an IPA, it truly is black, and I have never seen a Black IPA before. I have been impressed with 21st AMDT Brewery since trying their Watermelon and Regular IPA. THis beer smells of dark roasted malt and some nice hops. It tastes excellent as it has a nice coffee and roasted taste which compliment that big hops very well, this beer is very drinkable as it doesnt have that "back of your throat dryness" that some IPAs tend to exhibit. You could drink this all night if you were an IPA fan. great job again to 21st amendment who is really establishing themselves as a top 10 brewer.

 637 characters

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

21st Amendment- Back in Black

A- Deep dark ruby red/ brown with a solid lacing head.
S- Sweet sugary dark roasted choc. malt with a dose of pine hops.
T- Sweet roasted choc. malt, molasses, charcoal, dark roast coffee beans and a mild oily pine hop presence.
M- Thick sweet malt with a mild bitter hop touch in the body. Finishes off with a nice chewy malt and bitter hop balanced finish.

Overall- Solid throughout. Sessionable and hopefully will become more plentiful in my area.

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Photo of Norfawkers
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black with minimal head; creamy head and lacing down the glass

Smell: Faint hops

Taste: It almost smells like a porter mixed with an IPA; coffee, chocolate, and hops

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and creamy with some hop bitterness

Drinkability: Very drinkable, it goes down smooth

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Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Pizzeria Paradiso in Dupont Circle in Washington DC.

Pours a dark brown color with a half-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of pine and citrus hops with good amounts of lightly roasted malts.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Lightly roasted malts with good amounts of caramel flavors up front are quickly overtaken by large amounts of pine and citrus hop flavors. The ending is solidly bitter.

Mouthfeel is good. There's a nice thickness with solid carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I finished my glass quickly and could have another.

Overall this is a very solid dark IPA and one that's well worth seeking out if you like the style.

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Photo of Gavage
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark brown in color with a short head that breaks apart quickly. No lacing develops.

Smell: little caramel sweetness and a hint of bitterness is barely detectable here.

Taste: light roasted malt flavor with some grapefruits, pine, and prune and brown sugar sweetness. Bitterness is nicely balancing here.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp throughout. Aftertaste is short-lived.

Drinkability: this beer had a nice overall flavor and qas considerably easy to quaff.

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Photo of Bubba83
4.32/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tumbler at 45 degrees.

A very dark brown body is topped with a light tan head which is frothy and sticks around a bit for some decent lacing.

Smell is quite awesome. Hops are really in your face, mostly a huge amount of pine, along with some citrus twang and roasty chocolate.

Tastes about the same as the smell. Nice and chocolatey, with some coffee and underlying roast that becomes more pronounced at the end of the sip. Doesn't take long for the hops to play a huge role either, very very fresh and hoppy, pine is the main flavor here. I'd love to put this next to a fresh Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale and compare, extremely similar and I'm not sure which I'd prefer.

Mouthfeel is about right, bubbles are small but prickly, it's not too thin or too thick.

Drinkability is usually an issue with this style for me, but this one doesn't come off too heavy. Alcohol plays no role in the flavor profile and this is a very tasty example of a great up and coming style.

 986 characters

Photo of ffejherb
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at 21st Amendment on 7/13/09.

A - Deep brown with burgundy highlights and half a finger of creamy beige head that settled to a thin ring and patchy film, leaving some thin lace around the glass. This is one dark-ass IPA!

S - Hint of grainy and chocolate malts amidst a hop bouquet suggesting piney and citrusy hops. Some sugary caramel sweetness also emerges.

T - Opens with a citrus hop character suggesting grapefruit with contrasting sticky piney notes. Malt is grainy with a subtle chocolate presence, albeit very nonchalant. Subtle hints of alcohol also creep into the mix.

M - Medium bodied with a syrupy texture and moderate, somewhat bristly carbonation. Finishes with a touch of metallic bitterness on the palate.

D - Very good dark IPA overall. Surprisingly, there's not a whole lot of malt character. The hops definitely dominate this IPA, though not in an overwhelming fashion. Good stuff!

Brewslut's Quote of the Day:
"... kind of a sinkwater smell."

 979 characters

Photo of willjschmidt
4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Monk's Kettle in SF on 5/30/09.

A: Pours a near black color with a light tan head.

S: Citrusy hops with a hint of roasted malt.

T: I love these dark IPA's and this one is no different. A big dose of grapefruit and piney hops overlaid over a nice roasted malt backbone.

M: Medium bodied, average carbonation.

D: An excellent beer. A great IPA kicked up a notch with some light roasted malt.

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Photo of popery
4.12/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap at City Beer Store in San Francisco.

It's not on the 21st Amendment website and I trust my fellow BAs, but I thought that I should mention that the abv was listed as 7.2% at the store, which would make sense as Back in Black is brewed along the same lines as the IPA (who cares, really). Anyway, the beer pours an opaque dark brown with purplish highlights and a good creamy mocha head that leaves excellent lacing. I'm not really sure how to rate the appearance of an intentionally dark IPA, which was certainly not to style, but I like how it looked. The aroma was very close to the IPA, strong, rich hop aromas of pine and spruce with a tinge of citrus and herbs. The flavor brings the dark malt into play with subtle roasted notes underlying the strong hop flavors. I've only had one other dark IPA that I can think of, Stone's 11th/Sublimely Self Righteous, and while they have different hop bills, they're similarly delicious. It's a great variant on the style but oddly rare among commercial brewers, although the homebrew community seems to have embraced it.

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Photo of ccrida
4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The placard at their brewpub stated "7.2% and 65 IBUS, same hops as 21A IPA but with a touch of dark malt for slight roast.

Served in a shaker pint, Back in Black is a dark brown with a tight khaki head that leaves pretty heavy lace.

Smell is a massive blast of American hops, huge cedar notes, minty as well, even a hint of watermelon.

Taste is also bright hops, a bit more resinous then the nose, really nice interplay of the roasted malt. This is the best Black IPA I've had, I really prefer the resin vs. grapefruit hop flavor with the roasted malts, which aren't too overwhelming anyways, just really a nice touch of depth.

Mouthfeel is slick, medium bodied, nice carbonation.

Drinkability is high, this is damn tasty. Really easy to loose the roast in the pungency of the hops, but it's there no doubt, and isn't overly chocolatey or sweet like of the other black IPAs I've had. Wow, super impressed with 21A, each beer is better then the next.

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Photo of tpd975
4.33/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice shade of brown with a nice solid tan colored head. The head dies down but nice sheet lace is left behind.

S: Nice citrus aromas with hints of pine. A nice roasty maltiness is there to provide a bit of balance.

T: This one is mostly about the hops, but the malt is there. Hints of roasted malt and darkened brown sugar stand out. The hops do push thru the malt though with grapefruit being the most dominate. A touch of piney sweetness can be detected though.

M: Medium in body, smooth and creamy with great carbonation.

D: Very, I really like the dark IPA's and this one is one of the better examples.

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Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
Beer rating: 3.7 out of 5 with 2,418 ratings
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