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11 Best Black IPA Types, Characters and Brew Guide for You

What is black IPA? The black IPA is one of the earliest IPAs brewed from England to India. The style has different names. But what is necessary, the name or the content in the bottle? Anyway, what you need is to relax and enjoy the beer.

All that have had a glance and a taste of black IPA beer have a different view of it. Read on and see what you need to know about this beer.

The Types of Black IPA

There are different types of Black IPA. How will you know which is which? Below are some of them with their distinguishing features.

Hoppa Emeritus

Hoppa Emeritus

When you pour this IPA into your pint glass, you will notice an opaque black pouring. It then leaves a creamy white head on top of the glass.

Before it reaches your mouth, your smelling senses will enjoy scents full of citrus, pine, and slight toast bitterness.

If you do not like bitter IPAs, this one may not excite you. But if you love the bitterness in IPAs, then there you go, Hoppa Emeritus is yours. The unbalanced bitterness goes all the way until you finish the drink. The ABV IS 7.1%, and the IBU is 99.

The mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is good.

Hoppa Emeritus passes through dry hopping. This activity gives it sinister amounts of the equinox and Citra hops.

Midnight Moonlight IPA

Midnight Moonlight IPA

When you get a chance to serve yourself this beer, you will notice; the pouring is dark brown. It then releases a pleasant tan head that is about an inch thick. The head settles around the glass, forming some spotty and beautiful lacing.

Roasted malts and some hints of caramel give way to the black coffee bitterness. Chocolate, floral, and earthy hops then follow.

The smell is the same as the flavor. Whatever your nose smells is what your mouth enjoys. The sweetness of caramel starts then the bitterness of black coffee follows. Some hint of chocolate is then rounded out with resinous, dankly, earthy, and piney bitterness.

There is an excellent balance of all flavors. The aftertaste is a crispy, smooth, and clean, dry finish.

Carbonation is medium. The ABV is 8.6%, and IBU is 79.

Turmoil Black IPA

Turmoil Black IPA

Turmoil Black IPA is dark black. This color does not allow any light to pass through due to its thickness. It foams a finger size beige head with excellent retention.

The aroma is that of grapefruit, roasted malt, cocoa, and pine.

The taste is the same as the smell. It is drinkable since the malt balances pine bitterness. On swallowing, it leaves a bitter aftertaste.

The beer is medium body with medium carbonation.

The ABV is 7.8%, and IBU is 90. However, the beer is drinkable.

Blackwatch Black IPA

Blackwatch Black IPA

This IPA has a subtle black appearance on pouring. The head is foamy with the best creamy lacing retention.

On pouring, your nose will note the smell of roasted coffee, straw, and citrus orange. The malt aromas are also very inviting. These are nugget, Huell Melon, and cascade hops. They result in a significant balancing effect of the aromas and flavors.

The flavors are the best; without a doubt, they do not kick your teeth. The first flavor is large orange citrus, then resin bitterness. Then, all through the beer, you will drink coffee flavors.

Carbonation is average. This medium-bodied IPA leaves a smooth and dry finish. The ABV is 6.8%, and the bitterness level is 65. Can we say it is drinkable? Yes, it is.

Carlton Black IPA

Carlton Black IPA

This thick black IPA forms about a centimeter-thick tan head. The beige head has excellent retention.

If you are a fanatic of coffee and chocolate, then these aromas will excite you. This beer has a fair amount of these flavors too.

Carlton Black IPA tastes like overripe fruits and chocolate. But, the prominent flavor is burnt coffee. Coffee may be harsh, but the smooth chocolate taste replaces it at the end.

The mouthfeel is that of a lighter body. And, the carbonation is intense, but the beer is highly drinkable. ABV is 4.9%, and IBU is 75.

Mountain Standard Black IPA

Mountain Standard Black IPA

On pouring mountain standard black IPA, you will see a light black color. The color is light enough to allow light to pass through.

At the top of the glass, a small white soapy tan head. The bottom of the bottle forms a cloudy residue, which then disappears. This bottom cloud makes the beer hazy.

The beer from Odell Brewing company produces citrus and dry grass aromas. The hop aromas are also very vibrant.

The taste is that of bitter dry grass. The vibrant hop flavors are also very evident in the taste. The malt tastes of roasted barley, chocolate, char, anise, and coffee are also not far from your taste buds.

The mouthfeel is hollow and medium-bodied. The drink leaves your mouth dry with some astringent grapefruit finish.

Hop oils cover the palate with some spicy bitterness.

Back in Black IPA

Back in Black IPA

Back in Black IPA pours deep ebony somehow black. The edges are ruby, and the off-white, tan head is thick. The head retention lasts for a long time.

The smell is strong molasses, floral hops, citrus fruits, and cocoa.

This beer tastes enormously with peach hops and tropical notes. Roasted malts and dark chocolate combine excellently and give an inviting taste.

The mouthfeel is a lingering medium to light bitterness. Some good cocoa sweetness follows, leaving the mouth in a better position. Carbonation is moderate, and the ABV is 6.8%. The bitterness level is 65, and the beer is perfectly drinkable.

Sublimely Self Righteous Black IPA

Sublimely Self Righteous Black IPA

Stone brewing company founded this beer in 2007. And, the drinkers could not assume its presence in the market.

When it happens that you have it on your bar table, the truth is that you will serve yourself in a glass. And you will notice a deep dark brown pouring. The head is beige creamy and is very thick. The lacing holds non-lasting retention.

Your smelling senses will pick the notes of coffee, vanilla, chocolate, pine, resin, raspberries, dark fruit, caramel, and grapefruit.

The taste is adorable. You will enjoy the presence of chocolate, coffee, and hints of smoky flavor. The raspberries and dark fruits give the beer a sweet taste.

The mouthfeel is light-bodied. It then leaves a creamy, citrus, coffee, and grapefruit ground finish.

The IBU is 8, and the IBU is 90 though drinkable.

Hoppy Feet Black IPA

Hoppy Feet Black IPA

Hoppy feet black IPA pours a black-colored beer. The edges are dark brown. It forms a powerful tan head with persistent lacing.

The hops therein are Amarillo, Simcoe, and Columbus. These hops marry the black malts and deliver the best flavors and aromas.

The smell is mostly hoppy. You will also smell the presence of grapefruits, pine, and citrus.

The taste is incredible pine, citrusy, roasted malt, and chocolate. You will notice some sour orange zest and bitter-sweet chocolaty notes.

After taking this beer, the mouthfeel is fantastic. The thickness is outstanding, and the carbonation is smooth. The IBU is 80, and the ABV is 7.0%.

Frostbite Black IPA

Frostbite Black IPA

On pouring this IPA in your favorite glass, you will see a dark brown flow. It forms a creamy tan head with a light lacing.

It smells great. These aromas come from citrus, malts, and chocolate. Also, the grapefruit combine with intense hop aromas and give excellent aromas.

The taste is a powerful citrus and grapefruit combination. This taste then follows the nose leaving you rejuvenated. You will also note some roasty flavors.

This beer is medium-bodied, and the bitterness is long-lasting. IBU is 74, and ABV is 6.2%.

Wild Raven Black IPA

Wild Raven Black IPA

Wild Raven IPA has a dark black appearance on pouring. The head is medium white and forms excellent lasting retention.

You will note some chocolate, spicy, and generous pine aromas. If you are careful, some hints of citrusy aromas will not bypass your nose.

This IPA has a pleasant taste of caramel, grapefruit, chocolate, and hop presence. All these combine excellently with spicy ingredients and give a unique flavor.

It also has an excellent mouthfeel, and carbonation is on point. This carbonation puts the taste at the center stage.

The alcohol content is 6.6%, and the bitterness levels are relatively high. The IBU is 65, and the ABV is 6.6%.

Characteristics of black IPA

Black IPAs are of different types. Each type has its distinguishing characteristic. These features are to help you understand them and choose your favorite substyle.

However, below are the general characteristics that distinguish this black IPA from other IPAs.


Characteristics of black IPA color

You may quickly note a black IPA due to its color. It ranges from dark brown to opaque black. All black IPAs foam at the top of the glass. The tan head color ranges from light to mocha. These foams last for a fair amount of time.

If the ale is unfiltered, it becomes hazy and unclear. But, if filtered, it is always clear. Remember, it should not be murky.


Aroma of black IPA

The aromas range from medium to low. Malts give the IPA some caramel, a hint of chocolate, coffee, and toast aromas. Hop aromas can be high or medium. You will also note hints of pine, tropical fruit, resin, melon, citrus, and berries.

Dry hopping adds more aroma characteristics. If so, you will note some floral, grassy, and herbal aromas.

Also, fermentation may result in fruity smells.


Black IPA vary in malt flavors ranging from low to medium.  You can either taste caramel or toffee notes.

The intensity of dark malt taste is relatively low or maybe medium. Roast notes are never high. And, you will quickly note the difference between the hops and the malt aromas.

Besides, this IPA has some chocolate and coffee flavors. These flavors make the beer not to taste too bitter. They add some sweetness.

The bitterness is never harsh. The hop flavors cover the more biting bitterness, hence balancing the beer.

If the IPA has a more robust ABV, you will notice alcohol flavors.


This IPA has a mouthfeel ranging from light to medium body. Carbonation is medium and results in a smooth and creamy mouthfeel.

If the IPA is strong, you will feel some alcohol warmth. If the beer goes through dry hopping, then it becomes resiny. You may also note some astringency from roasted malts and hops.


black IPA IBU and ABV

Black IPAs have an IBU ranging from 65 to 90. The ABV is between 4.9% to around 8.6%. You may not notice the alcohol content in most of them. They are bitter but drinkable.

How to brew black IPA?

Here is how you can make a straightforward black IPA.



Pale malt, 10.8 oz

Flaked rye 12.8 0z

Crystal 60, 8.1 oz

Crystal 120 8.1 oz

Chocolate wheat 8.1 oz

Carafe 6.5 oz


Columbus 0.3 oz at 60 minutes

Centennial 0.5 oz at 45 minutes

Centennial 0.5 oz at 30 minutes

Cascade 0.5 oz at 15 minutes

Irish moss (whrlfloc) a single tablet at 15 minutes

Cascade 0.5 oz at 5 minutes




The water

Measure 30.7 liters or 8.1 gallons of water.

The grains

Weigh out all your grains. Then, crush the grains in a grinder.


Add the grains to the water. Mash at 66 degrees Celcius for an hour. Remember to stir your mixture to remove any clumps.

Hops schedule

Add your hops. Remember to follow the schedules. Add the hops to a rolling boil, but do not boil too vigorously.

Do a whirlpool to avoid making the beer too bitter. Or instead, you can also increase the aroma hops’ quantity.


Open your US-05 yeast and add it to your wort.  Pitch the beer and ferment at 19 degrees Celcius. Leave the beer for two weeks.


You can keg or bottle your beer. Enjoy while still fresh.

The result of this beer is a dark, chocolatey, and bitter taste. You will also sense some fruity smell.

Bottling of black IPA


I hope you now understand the black IPA. Feel free to try out this great beer. Its advantage is that it caters for every drinker.

If you are a mild drinker, there is a beer for you. And if you are bold enough, so also is yours available. Take a bottle and a glass of any of these I have listed and enjoy.