IBA | Lakefront Brewery, Inc.

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272 Ratings

Brewed by:
Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerFMAndy on 01-06-2011

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 272 |  Reviews: 94
Reviews by vitrael:
Photo of vitrael
3.51/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

New offering from Lakefront!

A: Black coffee color, slightly transluscent, with a cream-colored head with moderate retention and lots of lacing.

S: Sweet malts and strong hop nose, a little musty or yeasty.

T: Very smooth coffee and chocolate flavors counterpointed by the strong bitter hop character of the beer. Cannot accentuate enough the smoothness, which is belied by the smell. Weird, different, enjoyable. This is my first IBA. I enjoy the palate on the whole, but at the end of the draught I'm thinking "Hop bitterness and chocolate malts--are these two flavors we really want to fight for dominance?" Maybe this just isn't my style, but it's hard to imagine a "great" IBA right now.

M: Smooth and creamy, perhaps slightly undercarbed. Similar to the Guinness stout.

I'm a big fan of Lakefront and the beers don't come any fresher than here in Milwaukee, but this one leaves something to be desired. I'll say again that by no means is IBA a style I'm an expert in--on the contrary this is my first--but it seems to me to be a little counterproductive. Maybe it's an aquired taste? I'll just have one more bottle...

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #55 (August 2011):

Perhaps the fastest-growing beer style to date, the American Black Ale. Lakefront did not play around—black as black, with a killer lacing. Slight roast in the nose with a thick blanket of soft hop resin and faint ripe fruit. Minty and tobacco aroma. Moderate-sized body, more than enough smoothness to go around. Smacks of hops, but with a smat- tering of roasted grain and ripe fruit, this beer is more complex than just darkness and hops. The hops do, however, provide a pretty intense trail for the taste buds to follow. Minty hop finish with some lingering roastiness. The brewer definitely has a firm grasp on this style.

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Photo of iemailjack
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Photo of westcott
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of bpfrush
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.75

Poured bomber into 34oz mug. Jet black in the mug, showing dark brown in light. Thick, tight fluffy white head that isn't huge but is really beautiful. Smells of lighter roasted malts and piney hops. Taste is big on roasted malts, sweet caramel and bittersweet chocolate, with hops coming in towards the end for a bitter and dryer than expected finish, but it's still wet and a bit sticky at the end. A great black ale, although I'd like it hoppier. Mouthfeel is amazing though, creamy perfection.

 497 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle served in a Sam Adams lager glass. Label provides simple indicators for brewed on date, but no marking is found.

Pours near near black in color; clear with ruby-orange highlights under light. Durable tan foam leaves exceptional lacing.

M: Very smooth, medium body.

S&T: Result is exactly as planned, or as I would hope: This is a well-crafted IPA with a carefully calibrated addition of dark roasted malts. Plenty of hoppiness remains, especially in the aroma, as well a good dose of dark roasted malts. Particularly fine and long-lasting finish and aftertaste, as the malts and hops mingle together in a very well proportioned mix.

O: one of the best black IPAs I've had. Highly recommended.

 712 characters

Photo of TimMack
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of LXIXME
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DerekQXQX
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of wmtxbb
4.44/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into pint glass

Appearance: thick sticky head on top of a coal black brew.

Smell: Chewy dark malts that mesh with pine hops, ends with a clean cream scent.

Taste: Medium, to low body. Hits upfront with a wave of pine/spicy hops; follows with a burnt malt character, bitterness, an interesting popcorn flavor, and ends dry with a lingering spicy character from the hops.

Drinkability: 50 IBUs, a medium body, and tons of hops make this brew a great way to end the night.

 489 characters

Photo of InVinoVeritas
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of UWBadgerFan4Life
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

Photo of GilGarp
4.42/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber (part of the '88' four pack) served cold into a goblet.

IBA is porter-like dark brown color on the pour but looks black in the glass. The head is thick and slow to settle leaving a nice sheet of lace.

The aroma is evident from a distance and has a wonderfully fresh hoppy quality to it. Lots of great floral and citrus hops, it's very much like opening a bag of pellets while brewing at home.

Flavor is also impressive. Sweet stout up front leads to hoppy bitter IPA in the middle. A little smokey on the finish which is interesting. Great balance of flavors.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated. Very balanced, like I said.

Another impressive beer from Lakefront. In fact, this is one of the few black IPAs to successfully marry the elements of a good porter and a good IPA together. Well done.

 820 characters

Photo of cokes
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark, translucent mahogany brown with a thick rise of khaki suds that only slowly recedes, leaving the glass dirtied with lace.
Woody and resinous pine aromas, with bitter herbal and floral flourishes. Malt adds burnt toast, and cocoa powder, which materializes further towards dark chocolate as the beer warms.
Malt lays down chocolate and roast as it hits the tongue. Backed with roasted nuts, and small, sweet nuances of caramel and vanilla. The hops carry it home from here. Curiously, pine, so large in the nose, is only a role player here(though progressively builds as it warms). Lime peel and dried flowers stand up taller in the mouth. Overall, hop flavor seems a bit muted, but the bitterness is relatively high.
The mouthfeel has an overall airiness, but gains enough traction in the mouth to give itself substance and definition. It's on the low side, alcohol-wise, of the style, and drinkability is, without a doubt, its strong suit. It's assertive in its flavor, but not aggressive. Hoppy, but balanced. Basically its a hopped-up brown ale even though that's not the trendy way to label it. Regardless, it's got some charm and it's damn drinkable. I'd like to see this in sixpacks, as it demands that sort of mass consumption.

 1,241 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Spot on Black IPA good aroma, the ast, the hops. Cascadian. Above average mouthfeel. Black body with foamy bubly white had. Orange and hoppy an roast flavours. Citus, malty, chocolate. Bit burnt, bit acidic.Very kosher inspected beer.Thanks for sharing Ken.

 257 characters

Photo of rossracing
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Snow81
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark hazy Brown almost black

Smell: malty, sweet pine, and caramel

Head: Dark Tan, two finger, lace hangs on the sides of my glass

Taste: Bitter hop but the maltyness is sweet like earthy, bark or mossy

Weight: Medium to Heavy

Finish: Malty hops stick around for a bit

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.44/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours brilliantly clear very dark brown with a mahogany glow when held to a light and a sticky, thick off-white head. The aroma is highly hoppy -- mainly citrus, pine, and floral. The flavor is much like the aroma, strong hop flavor--pine and citrus zest with solid hop bitterness. The malt presence is detectable, mainly bittersweet and very subtle roast, but certainly is second fiddle to the hops. The mouthfeel is quite smooth and the beer finishes with lingering nutty malt and citrusy/piny hop flavor, especially as it warms. The carbonation and body are both moderate. Overall a solid offering, could there be tweaks to make it incredible, like a tad more body, sure, but I won't complain!

 706 characters

Photo of tempest
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bomber from Abe's for $4.50 and split it with a fellow hophead. Gotta say, while this is a fine example of the style, it doesn't stand out. I feel like I've had this beer before from other brewers. The beer is dominated by a dry, spicy cocoa malt and citrus hops mixture that's satisfying, but could be deeper. It comes in a big flavor hit instead of slowly developing from start to finish.

 402 characters

Photo of MichaelEllis
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is the first "Black IPA" I've tried. It is also the first beer I've had from Lakefront. It came from a 22 oz. bottle, bottled in January, 2011.
The ale had a very pleasant balance of malt and hops and I really enjoyed it, but it was nothing like and IPA. There was some nice hop aroma and flavor, but not to the degree that I normally expect from an IPA.
Still, a very nice beer that I would recommend.

 415 characters

Photo of bdub32689
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of eliz108
5/5  rDev +29.5%

Photo of mjstacker
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

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IBA from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 272 ratings