Damien - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Damien
No picture.
Have one? Upload it now.
BA SCORE
89
very good

254 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 254
Reviews: 36
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 10.78%
Wants: 17
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Ungertaker on 10-22-2011

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (50) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Ratings: 254 | Reviews: 36
Photo of DCon
2.85/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Enjoyed on-tap w/ BrewMaster Todd @ the Surly Brewing Company's Darkness Day 2011 in Brooklyn Center, MN for $5. Tapped from the black and plain handle into a 12oz Surly Cup.

Aroma- Tons of hop in the aroma and grain as well. Nothing huge in this aroma but it was nice to see such a big hop presence.

Appearance- Received with almost no head at all... I didn't care for this... Has the deepest brown aroma that could be available in a glass. Leaves no suds or any type of lacing at all.

Flavor- Has a ton of malt and roastiness but very watery and light... No hops found in here and goes down like nothing that should be classified as an English Brown Ale (btw, this one shouldn't say American Black Ale on top- talked and hung with Todd of Surly).

Mouthfeel- Very light bodied (which is okay), no carbonation, and a huge hop presence. Watery and very light on the palate at the finish and didn't mind.

Overall Impression- I'm sorry to do this but this beer went no where and did nothing for me. The left over grains from Darkness were used in this and I feel like this was all they used except for added hop. Sorry Surly but not a fan...

Photo of MidwestBA
3.05/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Had an odd taste that I did not like.

Photo of cambabeer
3.18/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I liked this somewhat. Had on tap at brewery. It was too sweet in the malt character and there was not much hops to speak of. The carbonation was also overpowering. It was a lot like drinking soda, both in the feel and sweetness. It was also served ice cold, which is normal but I feel this beer could do better a little warmer. That was the case as I let it warm up. There were some nice malt characteristics in there, nice and grainy in the finish, but overall just too sweet for me.

Photo of kojevergas
3.37/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served on-draught into a 12 oz stem-goblet at the Republic Bar in Minneapolis. Cost was $6.00. Reviewed from notes taken earlier this month.

A: Pours a half finger khaki-tan colour head of nice cream and thickness, but poor retention. Body colour is a solid black.

Sm: Chocolate, dark malts, roast, and hints of coffee. The pronounced roast is particularly inviting. A mild strength aroma.

T: Chocolate, a bit of coffee, dark malts, and hints of cream. Licorice. Balanced and decently built, but not complex or subtle. I do like it, but I expect better from Surly. Well layered. Pleasant.

Mf: Smooth and wet. A bit sharp. Good thickness and pretty good carbonation. Suits the flavours nicely.

Dr: Drinkable and flavorful, but Surly has far better beers. I doubt I'd get it again, but it was nice to try once. Hides its ABV well. Fairly priced.

B-

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.49/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this is a let down for me. the first one they poured was full of yeast chunks. i returned it and they apologized, so no worries there, but even the second pour looked really yeasty for the style, chunky too, just not all that good, even on that second pour. the head is short but persistent though. it smells like dark malts but very thin, like pale two row and a dash of roasted unmalted barley without much else. there are some hops too, but i expected a lot more on this. more body, more flavor, more layers, more hops, more bitterness, everything. maybe a double black ipa, or a hoppy big porter, but its thin and under flavored for what it is, very let down bu the overall vibe on this. thin in feel, unexciting. this was the least enjoyable beer i had at surly, not that its bad, but i hold these guys to a much higher standard. this is slightly substandard.

Photo of mothman
3.64/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a half finger of creamy tan head. Thick head. Color is a dark brown with a caramel hue on the edges.

Aroma: Very hoppy. Chocolate and caramel. Floral, piney, and grapefruit notes. A lot of flavor for a small beer.

Taste: Very floral. Pine with grapefruit. A lot of hops here. A light roast with caramel and chocolate. A little bit of orange. Very citrusy.

Mouthfeel: Bitter, but creamy and smooth. Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Ends a little sticky, but good.

Overall, this is a fantastic small beer. Super hoppy. Reminds me of an ipa. Still, it has a nice malt profile to it. Perfect blend. I could drink a lot of this.

Edit: the 2014 Damien isn't very good. Not very flavorful. Tastes watered down. Hard to drink a pint.

Photo of NilocRellim
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

We were told that this one was the "Son of Darkness." The ale was very dark in colour and had a cream coloured head which died quickly. Smokey, roasted grains in taste with a light body and finish; leaving a slight lingering palate. No forward malts or hops really detected.

Would I buy it again? Probably

Photo of pagriley
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Pretty damn good for left overs!

Photo of Sean9689
3.77/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at FFF XV into a tasting glass.

A - Pours black, cream-colored head, thin ring, wisps on top.

S - Roasted hops, nice level of bitterness, some nuttiness. The level of hops and roast are nicely balanced...neither overpower the other.

T - Similar to the nose. Hops, roast, some dark chocolate, slight pine. I think I enjoyed the nose a bit more with this one, but still, a solid beer.

M - Perhaps a bit too thin, good carbonation, oily roast finish.

O - I think I was expecting a bit more from this one, being Surly really can do a number of different styles well. That said, it's still a nice beer and it was good, just not great. I would drink again, but not seek out.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served from tap in a tumbler at Beer Market - Vernon Hills.

Insert Omen/South Park reference here. This stuff pours a straight black-brown topped by a finger or so of khaki foam. The nose comprises treacle, light cocoa powder, and dank greens. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some dark roast (nigh burnt) and a twang of dried maple syrup. The body is a light-leaning medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a generally fluid feel. Overall, this is exactly how I thought a second-runnings-from-Darkness black IPA would be. Not bad at all.

Photo of robwestcott
3.82/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

cold and black from the tap to a first class plastic cup at FFF XV party with no head.

big hop aroma and perhaps a bit of smoke in the wayback.

grassy hops forward, smoke a bit of roasty malts.

light bodied, medium carbonation, medium bitter.

nice black IPA.

Photo of iadler
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draft at town hall tap.

A- pours a deep black with a thin mocha head that dissipates in a thin cap. Some thin lines of lacing are left behind.

S- very grassy and piney with some grapefruit zest, coffee, unsweetened chocolate, and roasted malt.

T- coffee, unsweetened chocolate, and roasted malt with orange and grapefruit zest, grass and pine.

M- medium carbonation and a light to medium body. Finishes slightly bitter.

O- very flavorful and much more hoppy than darkness this year. Quite a light body as well as a low abv which makes it easy to have a few.

Photo of gatornation
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on tap in a surly pint glass

A- pours a solid black color with a tan head and a fresh collar a little thin lacing on the glass

S- is grapefruit hops with charcoal,roasted malts,some smoke and wood,lots of hops

T- nice citrus hops upfront, with roasted malts and seared meat on the grill tastes,malt finish

M- light carbonation a little thin

O- a nice offering on tap very tasty very easy to drink hops and malts with a smoke/charcoal taste

Photo of MasterSki
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the FFF 15th Anniversary Party. Served in a plastic cup.

A - Tan foam with good retention settles to a thick collar, leaving behind spotty lace. Dark brown body with some transparency when held to the light.

S - It's hoppy! Plenty of grapefruit, pine, and a bit of cat pee as well. There's a vague cheesy aroma that suggests the beta acids are starting to break down. Plenty of roasted malt character in the background. I know Todd at Surly says this isn't a Black IPA, but it sure as heck smells like one.

T - Taste has more chocolate and roast character, and less of the citrus hop flavors. There's some sugar cookie, and a bit of smoke and char as well. Medium hop bitterness, with a bit of black malt astringency.

M - Medium bodied, smooth texture, lower carbonation, and some residual hop oils and resins that linger through the finish and beyond.

D - A pretty enjoyable hoppy black ale. I suspect this was even better a few weeks ago. Hopefully this becomes a regular offering released alongside Darkness, as it satisfies some of my hop fix that isn't met by the most recent iterations of Darkness.

Photo of JackieTH
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured at Darkness Day 2011, into a plastic cup.

The beer is black with translucent crimson red highlights, capped with and inch of sisal foam.

I was surprised by the big hops in the nose. Citric orange pith and pine with faint chocolate and malt.

Taste is bitter enough to keep the beer from being sweet despite the chocolate and roasted caramelly brown sugary malts, nice chocolate framed against the citric and piney hop. It certainly seemed more bitter than its 35 IBUs.

Creamy medium-light body and moderate carbonation. I thought it was quite tasty, and seems right in classification.

Photo of Pintofbrown
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was served from a keg, waiting in line at Darkness Day. It was poured into a plastic Surly cup. This review is from my notes.

Appearance- The body is black with a finger of dark brown foamy head. I don't notice any lace on the cup at all.

Smell- That is a pretty good nose. There are definite citrus notes that make the caramel malt seem really tangy. There is also a distinct pine note in there. I like it well enough, but it certainly isn't my favorite type of beer.

Taste- The roasted malt is extremely tangy mixing with the orange and tangerine hop flavor. The finish presents more of the pine hops and dark malt notes. There's even a bit of chocolate in there.

Mouth feel- The mouth feel is a little light for the malt present here. It's just on the cusp of medium bodied. I wish it was a little smoother, but with the hop notes it finishes a little dry.

Overall- This beer was all right. It may just be the fact that black ales aren't my favorite style, because in Surly's defense, the beer is really balanced. If you ever see it, by all means try it.

Photo of Stevedore
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

10oz pour into a Darkness goblet at the Surly Tap Room today, 11/29/2013.

Looks like a fairly standard black ale; very pitch black and opaque. But it looks quite thin when swirled around, in comparison to Darkness right next to it. Nice 1cm white head, nothing much going in terms of lacing.

Smells phenomenal. Really smells like a Black IPA; they must hop this stuff up with the same stuff they hop Abrasive with. Lots of citrus, grapefruit, a bit of pineapple and some pine. It's a citrus bomb.

Flavour kind of falls flat. The citrus flavours come through fairly well, but I'm not so sure what to make of its interplay with the roasted malt backbone. Its there in some capacity but it doesn't mesh very well with the citrus. It's not a typical flavour profile for a black IPA either.

On the thin side, a bit watery but OK carbonation. Some bitter aftertaste from the hops.

Interesting, especially once you hear about the premise behind it, but definitely not something I'd recommend trying more than once. Its simply not that great.

Photo of ndolover
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

This Black IPAish beer was served at Darkness Eve at Stub Herbs.

A: Black with ruby highlights. No real head, with small bubbles

A: chocolate malts with black treacle. Citrus hops with spicy overtones. Plum and fig present after it warms

F: Classic Black IPA with a overt chocolate twist. A bit astrigent, but well balanced with the malts.

M: A bit thin for my taste. Low cabonation, and some electric fire from the roast.

Overall: This is a fun beer with some unique flavors. Small beer from Darkness makes for a not to style Surly signature item. However, I did not enjoy this beer like I thougt I would. It was a bit astrigent, perhaps from over sparging? I would drink it again, but I wouldn't go out of my way.

Photo of AgentZero
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - An almost black beer with a khaki head that left behind some decent lace.

S - Very hoppy. Some citrus, pine, and grapefuit over a roasted malt backbone.

T - Some roasted malts, bit of dark chocolate, and enough hop flavor to make it a hop beer without obliterating the rest of the flavors. Has an appropriate bitterness to it.

M - Medium bodied with lower carbonation.

O - Really packs a flavor kick for something that's only 5% ABV. Pretty easy drinking beer that I rather enjoyed and would like to have again.

Photo of Florida9
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: dark brown. Forms a thin but very stable ligh tan head. Some light lacing.

S: roasty malts and citrus hops

T: thinner than expected. Roasted malta, coffee, grapefruit. Coffee acidity.

M: on thinner side of medium. Mild bitterness. Appropriate carbonation.

O: a very nice, very drinkable small beer.

Photo of jera1350
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second runnings of Darkness grains? A "green" beer then perhaps.

On-tap at Darkness Day 2011.

A darker brown color with some clarity. A frothy cap of sandy foam with some nice lacing.

The herbal, earthy and floral dry hopping comes through immediately. In the background is a lighter dusty cocoa and coffee taste from the grains. A very tasty lighter beer.

Lighter feel and quite smooth and dry.

I was surprised at how hoppy this beer was. A nice beer, but I wouldn't consider it an American Black Ale. It lacks the body and roasty notes associated with the style. Probably fits in better as a mild/brown ale hybrid, but whatever. The beer is good, drink it.

Photo of jmarsh123
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Going through my backlog of notes.

Poured from the tap into a sample glass at FFF XV party.

Pours a deep black with a wispy tan head that fades almost into nothing.

Smells of roasted malts and some piney hops.

You can tell this is Darkness's little bro from the taste. Good roasty malts with a hint of chocolate although the hop bite still powers through to make its presence known.

Mouthfeel is a touch on the lighter side, but only for those who like black beers thick like me. Fairly oily finish.

Very solid beer by Surly, but not earth shattering. Still if they canned it, I'd probably seek it out.

Photo of Redrover
4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I had a couple of these while dinning at Haute Dish.

Served in a standard pint, the beer is black with a dark tan head. It has nice lacing.

Nose of roasted malts and lots of hops, just what the doctor ordered.

There is a hint of dark coco and chocolate from the malts. It was less hoppy than I expected (given the nose), but was still nicely balanced.

A nice medium mouth (lighter than I expected give the smell and appearance) added to the drinkability.

My waitress said it was a good choice when I ordered it, know what, she was right!

Photo of hardy008
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes from Darkness Day 2010.

Pours dark brown with a small tan head with decent retention and some lacing. Smells like grapefruit, pine, chocolate, and dark roasted malt. The grapefruit and pine aromas were stronger than the malt aromas.

The taste is just like the aroma with grapefruit, pine, chocolate and dark roasted malt. The hops are the star here, with the malt playing a supporting role.

Medium bodied with slightly below average carbonation. A nice flavorful beer, which I am glad I had a chance to try.

Photo of Mdog
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown with red highlights, good head.

Smell: Wow, this smells great, big citrus aroma. Without the visual I'd think it was an IPA.

Taste: Gives a touch of hops before going towards roasted flavor and finishing with hops. The middle kind of drops out of the beer, seems really light in body.

Drinkability: The light body makes it go down very easy. Session beer--a light stout/bitter mix is how I'd describe it.

A very interesting beer to try at the Hanger Room. It reminds me of the very light stouts like Guinness or Donnybrook from Victory, but with citrusy hops instead of a bitter roast finish. Very light body makes it easy to drink. Glad I got to try it!

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Damien from Surly Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 254 ratings.