This is my third review of the beers in the Sierra Nevada Box of Hops mixed 12 pack and it is of their Black IPA, Blindfold. I have had my notes for this beer done for a while now just haven’t gotten around to writing out the review. Blindfold is bittered with Summit and Chinook while it is finished with Summit, Mosaic and of course Cascade. Black IPA’s were a really huge fad in craft beer about a year or two ago and pretty much everyone was doing their own take on the style. I was not a huge fan of the abundance of Black IPAs on the market as I do not think this style is really that impressive. You know Sierra will get involved with any variation of an IPA so they took Blindfold which was originally from their Beer Camp 12 pack and ended up brewing it again for this box of hops. Blindfold comes in at 6.8% ABV and 70 IBUs.
Appearance: Very dark black color and produced a small 1/2 finger head and not very much lacing.
Nose: Coffee grinds, chocolate, dark chocolate, some earthy and piney hop notes and espresso. Also a little bit of smokiness in the back. Basically smells like a stout with a little bit of hoppiness in the middle.
Taste: You get chocolate and coffee carrying over from the nose right out front. Nice bite from the hop bitterness and carbonation. It has a pretty thin mouth before the bitterness hits and it finishes dry and bitter.
Availability/Price: As mentioned in the previous Box of Hops I paid about $18 for the variety 12 pack and I have seen it at a bunch of places. Don’t know if they will be producing this at all going forward or what the plan is.
Overall: This was a decent beer. Find it hard to call it an IPA, sure it had hop bitterness but it really has more characteristics of a stout than and IPA. I wouldn’t seek it out in the future but I also wouldn’t refuse one if it was offered. No brewery can nail down the Black IPA quite like Stone does with the Sublimely Self Righteous, regardless this was one of the better ones I have had.