Black Oak Ten Bitter Years | Black Oak Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
91
outstanding
184 Ratings
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Black Oak Ten Bitter YearsBlack Oak Ten Bitter Years
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Black Oak Brewing Co.
Ontario, Canada
blackoakbeer.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
To celebrate our 10th Year Anniversary in 2009, Ken wanted to put out a hoppy, bitter brew as a witty way to commemorate a decade of survival in the craft brewing industry. The result? Our 10 Bitter Years Imperial IPA. This strong brew pours a burnt orange colour and has a fresh, bright citrus and tropical fruit aroma. This beer is double dry hopped using three different varieties of North American hops leading to a full flavour of bitter pine and citrus. Although it packs a good hoppy punch, it finishes as smooth as possible for the style, with just enough alcohol warmth to enhance the flavour.

Added by Sammy on 11-26-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
184
Reviews:
78
Avg:
4.16
pDev:
10.1%
 
 
Wants:
14
Gots:
23
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 184 |  Reviews: 78
Photo of kwjd
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep copper-orange colour with a nice cloudy white head. Tons of lacing and nice head retention. The smell was just coming at me before I even poured it into the glass. Tons of citrusy and piny hops, with some melon maybe. Taste is a load of hops and bitterness. There is also a lot of fruity sweetness in here, but it isn't like the some of the east coast DIPA's that I find the sweetness overpowers the hops. It has a little bit oily mouthfeel. I only bought one case of 24 and I wish I bought more.

I absolutely love this beer in bottle, on cask and on tap. It is my favourite Ontario beer. A note to Black Oak, if you read this: Please keep brewing this beer! We need this in Ontario on a regular basis.

 716 characters

Photo of peensteen
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

How have I not ticked this yet?

Hazy pale orange colour, ring of white head with lots of white lace all over the glass. Smell is bursting with piney hops, some citrus and grapefruit, some toasty malt and biscuit present as well. Taste is full of bitter hops, more pine and some orange flavours, pineapple, sopme malt in the finsih as well, lightly sweet witha a dry finish. Light, dry carbonation, medium full body, fairly oily. Great stuff and a consistant DIPA from Ontario, something I would gladly drink on any ocassion.

 525 characters

Photo of canucklehead
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Meisterburger for this one:

Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. This is on the darker side for a DIPA. Nose has a heap of hops coming off it ( especially for an Ontario beer). Beer is smooth and well rounded with notes of vanilla showing up with the hops. Would never know that this is a 8% beer as it drinks very well. Not as hoppy as some West coast DIPAs ( even double Hophead is bigger in the hop department ) but still a fantastic beer that ranks among the best I have had from Ontario

 509 characters

Photo of DaPan
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of patre_tim
3.77/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Copper filtered with little carbonation, topped with 3 fingers of off white head.

Smells of pine, citrus, dank onion, and malt.

Tastes of malt, pine, citrus, onion, and a big solid bitterness that endures to palatial all-encompassing bitterness.

Medium thick body, syrupy, with little carbonation.

Got at LCBO, drank Oct 12th, 2016 in New Hamburg, ON. Bitter, yes! Sort of really bitter in a slightly ugly way that grows on you with each sip.

 449 characters

Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ZachT
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of joemcgrath27
4.26/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - hazy red copper hue, tall off white head held steady, decent spot lacing
S - peppery and earthy notes with hints of butterscotch and mild pine
T - earthy and peppery hops up front, light grains and caramel, touch of piney hops on the late finish along with alcohol sweetness, nicely balanced for a DIPA
M - almost drinks too easy for a beer of this stature, nice bitterness throughout, crisp dry through the finish
O - this is so well balanced without sacrificing the best aspects of a good DIPA, big flavours and very drinkable, a must try if you are an IPA fan

 566 characters

Photo of thehyperduck
4.49/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

650 mL bottle picked up at the LCBO; served slightly chilled and poured into a tulip.

Pours a hazy orange-amber colour, topped with one finger of dense, creamy off-white coloured head. It recedes fairly rapidly over the next minute or two, settling into a generous collar and thin cap, but not before depositing a generous ring of lacing. I am loving the aroma on this one - lots of grapefruit citrus and pine, with additional notes of apricot, mango and lemon. Toffee or butterscotch is also detectable, but the hops steal the show here (and I'm completely ok with that).

Very tasty stuff, and fairly well-balanced for a DIPA. The malt backbone provides some toffee sweetness, but hopheads need not worry because the focus here is definitely the complex hop profile. Fruit dominates right off the bat, mostly of the tropical persuasion - pink grapefruit pith, mandarin orange, mango, apricot and even a hint of strawberry. It becomes increasingly bitter toward the finish, with earthy notes that intensify into a pine resin flavour. Lingering, bitter aftertaste with pithy undertones - almost as if it's begging me to take another sip, or at least have a snack on hand to help scrub the palate. On the heftier side of medium-bodied, with a slick, juicy feel in the mouth and mild carbonation levels. Very smooth-drinking; the 8% abv is not really detectable, easily lost in the wonderful astringency of the finish.

Final Grade: 4.49, an A grade. Ten Bitter Years is an awesome Imperial IPA that Black Oak should be exceedingly proud of. It is packed with bold citrus and tropical fruit flavour that will delight hardcore hopheads, yet it remains surprisingly balanced and drinkable for a brew of such significant intensity. 10 Bitter Years is quite possibly my favourite example of this style to date, and is one of the finest Ontario craft beers I've had the pleasure of trying in my 6+ years on BA. Absolutely worth a try, and something that I hope becomes a year-round offering some day.

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Photo of Beervana
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bobsy
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Volo.

Pours a clean orange, with a large thick white head, that left some good lacing and had nice retention. Lots of hop in the aroma, with an emphasis on grapefruit and pine, but with a light malty base underneath. This is a surprisingly hoppy beer for Ontario, and there's a nice focus on grapefruit, pine, floral and herbal notes. You really don't see this much hops in this province, and its nice to see them take centre stage here. That said, at no point does this beer lose its balance, and there's some nice caramel malt to help even things out and prevent it from becoming one-dimensional along with some delightful vanilla. Doesn't really drink like an 8% beer. Mouthfeel is medium with moderate carbonation that helped pick up the bitterness a little.

An excellent effort, which only really suffers in comparison because I'm drinking it side-by-side with a Hopsickle, which adds a percentage point, a bucket more hops, and hand Black Oak its ass on a plate. Nonetheless, a damn good beer and a nice way to celebrate one of our best breweries. Cheers to Ken, Adrian and all the staff down the years!

Re-review: Tried again from the bottled run, and the appearance and aroma are both improved, so I upped them a notch. I've also drastically upped the mouthfeel, which is now wonderfully creamy. Really nice stuff, and a great price at $2.50!

 1,363 characters

Photo of JohnK17
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of yancot
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I first had this a few years back at an Ontario beer festival. It was the last sample i tasted and it easily outshone everything else available. The hop expression is gloriously aggressive and the malt body served it's role to perfection. (8/8/15)

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Viggo via CanBIF6. From a 341 ml brown bottle, says "Ken's Bitter" on the back of the label. Pours out a bright clear copper hue, tall frothy off-white head that eventually settles to a thin creamy cap with a thick frothy ring.

Mostly citrus hops on the nose, leaning more towards bright tangerine and mandarin, some pine, spicy, some dry earth, some alcohol warmth.

No real discernable malt in the flavour, all hops. Citrus rind, earthy, spicy notes, more pine and herbal on the finish, some warmth in the aftertaste with lingering dandelion greens. Dry, bready malt comes out in the middle as it reaches room temperature.

Medium-full mouthfeel, assertive carbonation, quenching.

One-dimensional leaning towards the hops, however the hops have a variety of character to keep things interesting. If you're looking for bitter then this one delivers with several facets, with a good quenching mouthfeel. Yet in the end it didn't leave me craving more.

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Photo of grub
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

sampled on cask at volo nov 29/09.

pours hazy orangey amber with a small off-white head. the head drops fairly fast but leaves lots of spotty lace behind.

aroma is good. big juicy citrus - tangerine, mandarin orange, bit of blood orange, bit of grapefruit. light alcohol. white bread and cracker. touch of toasty and woody character.

taste is great. again the big juicy citrus hits - mandarin orange, tangerine, blood orange, light grapefruit. bit of pine. just over medium bitterness level with a nice lingering but pleasant finish. slightly toasted white bread. bit of cracker and biscuit. touch of caramel. bit of tropical fruit in the background too - pineapple and mango mostly.

mouthfeel is great. just over medium body. silky smooth medium-low carbonation level. semi-dry finish.

drinkability is great. 8%? drinks more like 4 or 5%. great balance. nice malt presence. excellent hop character and depth. although the brewery refuses to classify this in any particular style, i'd probably call it an american imperial ipa - ontario's first commercial iipa too! i wish this was a regular offering!

 1,106 characters

Photo of chickenm
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of TerryW
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of cfalovo97
3/5  rDev -27.9%

Photo of SebD
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It has a nice cloudy orange/amber color to it. It has a nice thick head that dies down moderately and leaves nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of citrus and grapefruit, (tropical smell), with some piney hops, and light caramelly malts in the back.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a nice juicy hop character bringing out citrus, grapefruit, mango and more. Piney hops balance it out nicely and the malts, although hiding in the back, give it a light caramelly note.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with great flavors and aromas. Definitely one of the best beers i've had from Ontario.

 722 characters

Photo of schnarr84
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of DenisKolkin
4.11/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

650ml bottle purchased from LCBO for $6.50 CDN. Served chilled intoa pint glass.

Appearance - Mostly clear, but slight haze in this copper and amber hued brew. 3 fingers of decadent and dense white foam rest on top, taking its time in dissipating. After some time the rocky head reminds me of massive cumulus clouds. Great lacing left on the glass. A great looking beer.

Smell - Floral presence with a moderate tropical bill hit. Definitely more citrus then pine (namely some grapefruit melded with sweeter tropical fruits), but at the same time there is a slight piney aroma underneath the fruit. Well executed and rather complex. Low on the malty side compared with some other IPA's / DIPA's.

Taste - Fairly bitter, but its in moderation. Some sweet fruit and maybe even a caramel note shine through up front giving it a sweeter than expected feel. The dry more earthy finish, makes this not a quintessential West Coast Hop Bomb, but rather something a little more subdued. The malts come through a bit more than in the nose, but well balanced and very drinkable.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth and rich, feels well carbonated despite minimal observation of a large bubbling presence. Dryish finish and medium bodied. Could probably be even fuller bodied, but the taste and the finish restrict it to a fine balanced moderate body. Very easy drinking for an 8% ABV beer.

Overall - An excellent DIPA, that was worth the purchase. Look forward to trying this one again, as it has vaulted up near the top of Canadian IPA's just behind Red Racer with a couple of others from across Canada. Definitely worth a try.

 1,608 characters

Photo of polloenfuego
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 650 ml bottle into a tulip.

A: amber/copper in color with a two finger head that stays solid eventually breaking to a thin film.

S: Pine and citrus hops with a fruity background.

T: follows the nose, with a burst of pine and bitter hops with a sweet finish.

M: medium body and carbonation.

O: a nice DIPA. I enjoyed this beer, but wish I would have had it a little fresher. The hoppy taste is not overwhelming, and the sweetness that comes in on the end is quite nice. A solid beer.

 498 characters

Photo of Corson
3.96/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of RedAleMan
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of pootz
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Decants a turbid orange-amber color with a frothy white cap. Decent lacing.

Aroma Is big on citrus and pine resins, some exotic fruit tones and a whaft of malt.

Mouthfeel is oily,

Flavor gives a big blast of hop mixture throughout the profile; piney resinous, leafy, citrus rind...very bitter but without a sharp delivery ...just enough malting to keep the bitterness from becoming overly astringent. Semi-dry finish alcohol shows...long lingering metallic bitterness.

Sure is a hop bomb but if it were a tad better balanced it would be a great DIPA.

UPDATE: On tap Second batch: Taps a clouded gold-amber with a billowy puffy 3 finger cap which rides out the drink. Massive aroma of citrus, passion fruit rich toffee lalts. Tastes about how it smells with a long drying finish with fruity esters and citrus-pine hops battling it out on the palate. Best West coast styled DIPA I've sampled in this market. Bottled version doesn'r do it justice

 960 characters

Black Oak Ten Bitter Years from Black Oak Brewing Co.
4.16 out of 5 based on 184 ratings.
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