Onyx Black Ale | Stevens Point Brewery

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Onyx Black AleOnyx Black Ale

Brewed by:
Stevens Point Brewery
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by cdkrenz on 03-03-2010

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Reviews: 142 | Ratings: 371
Photo of matty
3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black colored beer with a rapidly fading head.Aroma is very faint chocolate.Taste is nuts and chocolate malts.Taste is kind of weak and watery..slightly above average.I guess I would recommend to try at least once.I'm 50/50 on whether I would purchase again.

 258 characters

Photo of schoolboy
3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This black ale has a slightly offensive aroma. It could be that it just doesn't go well with my neighbor's stinky mulch, but I think part of the nasty grassy smell is this.

It looks decent in the glass, though, and it has a characteristic for the style, if mild, taste and aftertaste. won't go out of my way for this, but it was worth a try. I think there are better examples of the style.

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Photo of htomsirveaux
3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle tried 22 Oct 2010. Served in the 0.5 L Adambrau becker.

Medium sized brown head. Well carbonated. Black, nearly opaque. Aroma is light, roasty and sweet. Lightly roasted and light chocolate to start. Touch of mocha. Becomes a bit more roasty towards the middle and finish. Some molasses and dried fruit in the aftertaste. Lingering roasty bitterness. Light body, light ethanol.

Not bad, but not clear exactly what style was the target.

 451 characters

Photo of jdhilt
3.36/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a three finger khaki head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Black color, no highlights. Light carbonation and light-medium bodied. Malty chocolate nose, flavor is roasted malt and caramel. $1.95 for a 12oz bottle from Bert’s Better Beers Hooksett, NH.

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Photo of CreamCity
3.36/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into 12oz pint glass.

S - Picking up chocolate, fruit, sour.

A - Very deep dark brown, dark tan head, little to no lacing.

T - Chocolate malts, a bit of a charred flavor. Pretty subtle flavors going on.

M - Very light body, surprisingly. Otherwise it is smooth with good carbonation.

O - Not a very memorable brew. Seemed rather typical or ordinary. Don’t think they were going for this.

 401 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.34/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mayan-inspired Schwarzbier?

Attractive pour, tons of lace and strong retention. Fluffy foam that rises above the rim of the glass with irregular crags and peaks. Black body, glowing red in the meniscus. Faint roast in the aroma, weak and grainy with traces of day old coffee. Not bad not good, a little bland.

Easy to drink and fairly light bodied like a Schwarzbier, hints of roast malt and coffee, flaccid and husky with slight diacetyl. Not particularly complex, but its not bad. Could drink 1-2 easily.

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Photo of auro0006
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I sampled this at a local liquor store and was pleasantly impressed.

Pours a dark, dark brown color; black. The head is a creamy, dark tan.

Aromas showcased are that of sweet, roasted malts and sweet chocolate.

The body is light, but brings out the most of the roasted malts along with caramel and hints of dark fruits. There isn't a lot to the mouthfeel, but it's pleasant and the malts are too cloying.

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Photo of nickthegun12
3.32/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

not the best beer on the planet...to say the least!

not impressed with the appearance....solid black...with a tan fading head....with splotchy lacing...

smell is ok... i smell some dark fruits....maybe a little plum and prunes...

taste is not impressive....taste a little cheap (corn sugar, adjuncts)

the feel is pretty ok i guess...slightly creamy....with a good carbonation feel...

the drink ability sucks not because a lot of alcohol but cause this beer is not that great!

this beer officially gets my worst rating of all time....

 539 characters

Photo of Soneast
3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a black color, growing a 2-finger thick, creamy, light brown colored head with great retention.

Aroma consists of a sweet malt character, caramels a touch of chocolate and even a little roastiness.

The flavor is pretty mild, definitely a bit of milk chocolate, mild coffee from the roast malt and bit of sweetish molasses character, finishing on a slightly bitter note.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery. The aroma and flavor isn't too bad, although, it doesn't really remind me of a brown ale. Although BA's style guideline for American Brown Ales claim 'This style also encompasses "Dark Ales",' so I guess that would cover this beer. Overall it wasn't a bad beer to drink, but I question it's style classification and it doesn't stand out in anyway (as is true of most Point beers)..

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Photo of BennyL1
3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Thorpe429 for the bottle. Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

Good looking beer, pours a very dark brown almost black with a little more than a fingers worth of mocha head.

Roasted malts up front in the nose. Maybe some bittersweet chocolate and black coffee in the background.

Some of that bittersweet chocolate comes through at first taste. Lots of roasted malt makes it pretty one dimensional. As some others have mentioned there is also a cola like aspect to this. Not bad but not really doing that much for me.

Light/Medium body with good carbonation. Maybe a tad watery.

Overall not a bad beer, has some redeeming qualities but not something I would probably drink to much of.

 700 characters

Photo of AleMan66
3.24/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I poured this from a bottle into a clear teardrop glass. It pours a pitch black with a one finger tan head. The tast is coffe and cherry. It's not bad but isn't one of my favorite styles in the first place.

 209 characters

Photo of whendeathsleeps
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a deep black, hence the name "Black Ale", Khaki colored one finger head.
S- Big on the malts, citrus aromas.
T- Dark Fruits, roasted, as mentioned by many reviewers very cola like.
M- A little watery, medium carbonation.

Just an okay beer.

 250 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Stevens Point's 2012 Black Ale shows a first impression of Brown Ales, primarily American, but also the more tame characteristics of Schwarzbiers and German Dunkels.

The pour of dark brown exhibits highlights of ruby and garnet while establishing a creamy but thin lightly tanned head that leaves behind spotted islands of lace and fair head retention. All is par for the course though a froathier and more verbose head character would have impressed more.

slightly scorched caramel, malted milk, light chocolate and coffee play into the savory but understated aroams. Slight apple yeasty notes emit but don't interfere with the malt focus. Only a mild grassy hop note balances the promise of caramel sweetness. Fresh and toasty, the beer carries an overall appealing scent.

Moderate malty sweetness of caramel and toffee- both in a semi-burnt kinda way set the stage while true malt gives a lightly starchy taste that provides the base flavor for specialty malt flavors of caramel, toast, coffee, chocolate, and wanlut. Again, grassy hop flavor starts in mild fashion at mid palate and morphs nicely into a mild earthy bitterness in finish. Only a grainy flavor outlasts the malt and leads to a somewhat unsettled flavor in finish.

Medium bodied throughout, the beer carries a malty/creamy early palate that holds its structure well into finish where lightly warming alcohol, mild grain astringency, and hop dryness rise but never really close the beer with much confidence.

Expected from American Brown Ales in a bolder hop presence of citrus, pine, and/or grass. But those lack, whereas the fairly neutral yeast character and moderate malt dryness come through nicely if not timid. Very drinkable and enjoyable- if now underwhelming.

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Photo of tsauce2
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

P: 12 fl oz bottle in to a globe glass

A: SRM is dark brown. Head is tan, 1 in, dissipates to line the rim of the glass. Medium/light carbonation. Light lacing.

S: I believe this is Vienna malt, 2-row? Very malt forward, sweet notes of honey. Mild hop notes are present.

T: Light malt, some honey notes, slightly watery. Light hops. Aftertaste is slightly sweet and slightly malty.

M: Light bodied. Malts give a decent texture. Sweetness coats the palate just a bit. Hops add just a bit of complexity. Crisp and dry finish.

O: Nice beer. Overall, not overly impressed with anything, but this is a good beer. Nice overall balance of flavors. Cool label. I probably would not buy this beer again though. Also, they say the beer is themed on the Mayan calander, yet an Aztec calender adorns the label.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.21/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. "Based on the Mayan calendar", 0680 on the neck, no info.

A - It pours more like a deep porter, clear and dark brown while pouring, almost opaque black in the glass. A densely packed two-finger head was fairly well-retained and left some good lace on the glass.

S - Dense roastd malts -amber, caramel, and maybe a touch of chocolate- with some dry cocoa and light wood notes. Not a whole lot of hops come through in this one. Mild, low-level aroma.

T - Very roasted amber malts with a little bit of toffee that's overlapped by charred cocoa and bakers chocolate with a little hint of nuttiness. Slight cardboard also pokes out. Minimal hop interaction in flavor although bittering is noticeable.

M - 2012 is extremely dry and both acrid bitter from the roasted malts and bitter from the hops. Smooth in texture with a medium body.

D - Something about it seems just a little off and I'm definitely unsure of the correlation between the beer and the 2012 name based on the Mayan calendar besides the "inspiration" word listed on the bottle. I do however remember it being released around the same time as the movie under the same name. Marketing ploy for sales? The beer is average.

 1,241 characters

Photo of soulgrowl
3.21/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Coffee-ish brown/black without much head. Black olives, licorice, Whoppers, Milk Duds... it smells dark, but not really black, if that makes sense. Weirdly like a milk stout or a mild when I was expecting more like a black IPA.

Pleasant and light, like a mild or a mix of milk stout and black lager. Cola-ish, with a touch of dark caramel and a little chocolate nougat. It's nice, but nothing more than that. Possibly a good partner for spicy Szechuan, Thai, or Indian food.

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Photo of TheSSG
3.2/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a nice, dense, tan head. Acidic, fruity, coffee-like aroma with toasted malt. Black. Starts with a bright, almost fruity, caramel/coffee acidity. Medium-low bitterness. Finish is toasted malt.

This isn't too bad. A bit more pronounced flavors of caramel than I remember. Not a bad combination of sweet and toasted.

 321 characters

Photo of jfmorey
3.16/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle
Very opaque black with a generous dark tan head that left good lacing, with the smell of roasted malts.

Too bad the taste did not measure up. The flavor was not unpleasant but weak and one-dimensional, and the mouthfeel rather watery. Not bad, but nothing to seek out.

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Photo of drpimento
3.16/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fleeting roasty, malty, cocoa aroma with a hint of molasses. Short lived brown head. Flavor's mainly sweet with just enough carbonation and bitterness to counter the sweet. A bit thin. Ok finish.

 195 characters

Photo of mothman
3.15/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into CCB snifter.

Pours a very light amount of fizzy tan head. Color is near black.

Aroma: Dark roasted malts with some espresso/coffee flavors. Reminds me a bit of Flat Earth Black Helicopter. Very malty. Some sweet caramel.

Taste: Again, coffee, but not the coffee I like to see in beer. Roasted malts. Some grassy hops. Very bland.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy and dry. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends very dry.

Overall, not the best beer in the world, but I didn't have high expectations. Not something I would buy again. Just didn't have it going on. Not to drinkable imo.

 601 characters

Photo of beerwolf77
3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into my pint glass thr beer is dark brown almost black. When held to light you can see some brownish red edges. About a finger of dark khaki head settles leaving a thick coating of lace.

The aroma is fairly roasty. Not super strong. Light coffee maybe a touch of chocolate. Mostly toasted caramel malt.

The flavor is simialr to the nose. Again not real strong. What is there is a definite roasted malt with hints of coffee and caramel. A slight metallic flavor haunts the finish.

Light thin body. Rather watery. Light carbonation.

Overall I'm less than impressed. Point makes some decent beers usually. How ever this one missed the mark for me.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Aroma is malty with a subtle undertone of molasses and a whisper of yeast. It pours a nice opaque sable with a fairly thick and fluffy beige head. Flavor is malty and a little sweet, having a hint of molasses, but not too strong. Texture is a little on the watery side and just a little fizzy.

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Photo of jmvecchio1
3.08/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer is dark brown with a light lacing that clings to the glass until the last sip.

At first it was hard to smell much off of this beer, but after letting the beer warm, a sweet raisin-y smell comes through.

The taste is very roasted and malty. Raisins and a very slight hint of chocolate comes off the taste and a semi-tart taste lingers - maybe from the raisins.

The beer is light in body - lighter than it looks like it would be.

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Photo of matjack85
3.06/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this single 12oz brown bottle at the Binny's store in Plainfield, IL for $1.99. No, the beer wasn't released a year early. The date on the label refers to the year the Mayans believed the world will end, so the brewery wants us to drink this stuff before it's too late.

The beer pours a very dark brown color with a 1½-finger light brown head. The head lasts awhile and leaves a ton of lacing behind.

Huge roasted malt aroma, even some burnt smell.

Burnt coffee and bittersweet chocolate flavor to go along with the roasted malt. Kind of one dimensional - just a lot of roastiness. At just 9 IBU's there's not much hop flavor to speak of.

Thin to medium body with fairly high carbonation.

It's OK I guess if you like burnt malt flavors but I would have preferred more flavors than that. Didn't care for it that much.

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Photo of Gavage
3.05/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a dark brown color with a short 1/4" head that falls apart quickly.

Smell: soft roasted malt sweetness and a hint of earthiness are very mild. A fruit sweetness is also there.

Taste: thin malt base with some toasted nuts, earthiness, ripe plums, and a mild bitterness are the main flavor components.

Mouthfeel: lighter side of a medium bodied beer. Crisp throughout. Aftertaste is short lived.

Drinkability: this is a so-so black ale that wants to really be a schwarzbier. Easy to drink but it grows tiring quickly.

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Onyx Black Ale from Stevens Point Brewery
3.56 out of 5 based on 371 ratings.
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