Beer of the Week: Surly's BLAKKR

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Loren Green

This week's beer of the week is BLAKKR from Surly. It's a new imperial black ale that comes from a three-way, cross-state collaboration between Todd Haug at Surly and the brewers at Real Ale (Texas) and Three Floyds (Indiana).

See also:
Surly teams with Three Floyds and Real Ale to release BLAKKR Ale
Surly founder Omar Ansari on the MN brewing scene and "what makes a Surly"

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BLAKKR is big, bold, and imposing. It's got a three-headed monster on the label, but the beer itself is two-headed, with its first impression carrying all the weight of a heady and powerful imperial stout, and hoppy, bitter black ale characteristics to complement that complexity. It's a real accomplishment, balancing the two different styles without losing either one's notable traits in the mix.

The hops presence befits the Surly name (85 IBU) and the overall punch that it brings is in keeping with the brewery's well-established style. There are chocolate hints, some dark fruits, and a smooth and creamy finish that counters the strong alcoholic zing. Still, it's definitely not made for those who don't like to taste the alcohol in their beer: While carrying an already robust 9.99% ABV, it actually tastes and feels a few percentage points higher.

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