Black Market Brewing Co. Seek & Destroy Smoked Quadruple IPA
Brewed by: Black Market Brewing Co.
Beer Classification and Specs
- Style: IPA
- Variation: Quadruple, Smoked
- Limited: February
- ABV: 12.7%
- IBU: 111
Brewer’s Notes and Ingredients
This quadruple, smoked IPA is just the ticket to do the job. The smokey flavor and aromatics are from American hardwood smoked malts, and adds just the right qualities to stand up to our piney and resinous experimental hops. The 12.7% ABV packs a punch, so try pouring into a brandy snifter and slowly enjoying it as it warms.
Hops: 2 Experimental, Citra, Columbus
Malts: Pale, Mesquite Smoked, Cherry Smoked, Dark Munich
More Seek & Destroy Images
Artwork: Prohibition-era Black Market mascot is loading cases of beer into his robot secret agents.
Color: Hazy amber. It looks just like a red ale.
Aroma: Smoked chipotle peppers.
Arrived in: 22oz. Bottle
Served in: Snifter
We had Black Market’s Holiday Triple Black Rye IPA during Christmas, and fell in love with it. Once we saw they brewed a quadruple IPA, we could not wait for Seek & Destroy’s February release.
But after learning this quadruple IPA was smoked, Mike had some reservations that it would interfere with the extreme hop-forwardness he was anticipating. Seek & Destroy’s increased hop bitterness needed to blow our minds, not be detracted from with smokiness.
How quickly pre-conceived notions can change…
After our first sip, this ale just worked — in its own quirky way. The taste bud pounding we were expecting did not come from extreme hop overload, but rather a smoldering of deep mesquite.
This is one of the best smoked beers we have ever had, but we can cover that further in a minute…
Seek & Destroy poured a hazy amber color, with an un-even, minimalistic head. There were a few clusters of extra bubbles in places on top, but not much lasting froth from its slow carbonation.
It was a very full-bodied India Pale Ale, and a gut bomb from all the malt required to brew it. Seek & Destroy featured a creamy mouthfeel, paired with its satisfying density, which bordered on a barleywine.
Up front we got a quick hit of piney hops, followed by mesquite and sweet barbecue. The finish was drying, with more intense smokiness, like Chipotle peppers.
Seek & Destroy didn’t have the burning spice of pepper, just that deep, satisfying, smoky goodness. The smoke did cut into the hop intensity a bit, but there was still plenty of hoppy punch to go around.
We followed Black Market’s directions, and served Seek & Destroy in a snifter. As the ale warmed, its profiles definitely became intensified: more chipotle on the nose, more mesquite on the palate.
It was hard to keep our noses out of the snifter, and just wanted to keep sipping that resiny smokiness. And sip slowly, since its ABV truly did “seek and destroy.”
Although it was amply hopped, Seek & Destroy was a very non-traditional India Pale Ale (in an amazing way), right down to its smoked quadruple billing. This was the first IPA we have allowed to slowly warm, with the consistency of a barleywine, and the power of a stout.
Final Score: 4/5
Seek & Destroy was its own unique, awesome ale that blurred many lines of beer styles. If you like strong ales, smoked beer, and powerful hop presence give this one a shot. If you’re still cruising around on your craft beer training wheels, do not bother.