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Dark Starr Stout - Starr Hill Brewery

Not Rated.
Dark Starr StoutDark Starr Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

392 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 392
Reviews: 196
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 13.92%
Wants: 6
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Starr Hill Brewery visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: karst on 04-17-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 392 | Reviews: 196 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of KidsDoc


3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into snifter

A: weak. A couple shades from completely black. Opaque. No real head to speak of aside from a thin beige collar that did check up and leave some pleasant lace down the sides

S: hard to detect much here but what's there certainly smells nice Dark roast, faint coffee, ?tobacco?

T: light bready malt; roasted grains; bittering middle; a good clean stout

M: certainly thin as it should be, to its credit for a Irish dry, but the carbonation was way too much. The remainder was pretty smooth

D: a good beer overall and one I could certainly have a couple-few in a sitting because of the mellow ABV. However the carbonation and appearance make this one unappealing to me, and this will not make its way into any regular lineup for me.

**wanted to really like this beer as it is brewed in Crozet, VA where I used to run with rescue squad (Western Albemarle) back in the college days at UVA

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2011 03:14:54 | More by KidsDoc
Photo of rivalrome


2.88/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I bought a sixer of this at a random ABC because I was on the hunt for a good stout. Poured into a pint glass at 52ºF. The head seemed form a lot quicker than other stouts that I've poured for myself even before I started to raise the glass upright. Dark brown with hints of Amber make it difficult to see through; only small flecks of light will be visible at best. Mocha tan head makes the glass look extremely appetizing; lacing is very mouthwatering as well.

Smells pretty damn good, chocolate malts and has a refreshing roast scent to it.

A mouthful of this beer almost tastes like water, which is strange considering it's thick and delicious appearance. I'm almost immediately barraged by carbonation that kills most of the flavor that the beer has. Any chocolate flavors fade quickly and is overtaken quickly by bitterness. There was virtually no chew to this beer; I'm pretty disappointed.

These are somewhat drinkable, but the lack of prominent flavor makes you want to venture to other darker beers. After one of these I can't imagine wanting to stick with them; I'd leave it in pursuit of a thicker and tastier stout.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2011 23:54:14 | More by rivalrome
Photo of woosterbill


4.05/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Nashville Flying Saucer into a shaker pint.

A: Black body with reddish highlights and a small layer of tan foam that has clearly receded on the trip from the bar to the table. Lacing is lovely, though. Nice looking beer.

S: Very clean aroma of roasted malts (plenty of coffee) and some light hops. Well-balanced.

T: Much like the aroma, with roasted malts and hops combining to make this a very crisp, clean stout. Just enough malt sweetness midway through to keep it from being too bitter, as can happen with some stouts of the style; a touch of sweetness is a good thing, if you ask me.

M: Just as there's enough sweetness to avoid astringency, there's just enough body here to avoid the wateriness that plagues Irish-style stouts. Good carbonation, as well. Excellent.

D: Solid here, as well. Perhaps not as easy to chug as some drier and waterier examples of the style, but much more pleasant to drink in general.

Notes: Highly enjoyable beer. I'm not often a big fan of an Irish Dry Stout, but this one really straddles the line between Irish and American interpretations, managing to be both crisp and substantial. Underrated, in my opinion.


Serving type: on-tap

01-04-2011 02:38:18 | More by woosterbill
Photo of GeoJ


1.93/5  rDev -45.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Hmmmm ... upon pouring, looked like a decent stout. Aroma was promising, for the most part.

Hard to review the taste because I found the carbonation was so totally overwhelming, it just eradicated any kind of flavors. The fizz simply battered my taste buds into submission.

Did not enjoy this, at all. With so many truly great stouts out there, I would not even think about drinking another one of these.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2011 01:33:03 | More by GeoJ
Photo of djamieson

New Jersey

2.5/5  rDev -29%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I liked the label being a DeadHead and all. And that its Virginia brewery...wanted to try this during our summer tour of the Virginia/North Carolina region. So my wife and I gave it a shot. Poured out nice with a dense tan head. Not bad considering it should have a low ABV (as consitent with the style). Aroma was roasty with some dark chocolate overtones. Taste was frankly disappointing, very tart upfront and not much else going on in the finish to smooth that out. Mouthfeel was rather thin and the sourness made me not want to continue drinking multiple rounds. I would try this again on tap at the brewery...but I won't be actively seeking this one out in any other parts of the States.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2010 18:38:25 | More by djamieson
Photo of darthpeepee


3.05/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Dark brown / black with a tan head.

S - Smell was of a burnt/chalky smell that comes with stouts. Piney hop aroma

T - This beer was average in flavor. Roasty, coffee type tones from the grain.

M - Light to Medium body

D - This was a decent beer. It wasnt the best stout i've ever tasted however it did the job. I think it could use a little more flavor.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 18:10:14 | More by darthpeepee
Photo of Invisoclam


3.05/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Overall just okay. Nothing terrible about this one, however nothing spectacular either. On the plus side it was in no way bitter. Drank this while eating some bacon, tasty Neuske's bacon that is salty, so perhaps the saltiness of the Bacon cut away any bitterness that may have been present - or perhaps not.
A solid good dark stout , but nothing that makes you ( or me) want to go out and get one.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2010 20:27:28 | More by Invisoclam
Photo of AdamBear


3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Only bought this because the price was $2.99 for a 6-pack!!

A-black, with a nice thick tan head

S-really dark roasted malts and a lot of chocolate...smells tasty!

T- I once had a bar of Vogue Bacon Chocolate...for some reason this taste reminds me exactly of that...very interesting. There's a matching after-taste. It is quite watery however. There is no bitterness.

M- Medium to heavy carbonation with a watery finish

D-eh it goes down easily but its not something I'll be getting again. The taste stays fairly well. I think i'll be giving the 5 other bottles to other people.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2010 21:27:27 | More by AdamBear
Photo of jsdunlop

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice lookin stout, full of off white head, pitch black, nice lacing, couldn't ask for more. Smells good too, chocolatey, coffee notes, grainy and slightly sweet. Has a real balanced taste, nutty at first, slight bitterness, classic roasted malty flavour, some chocolate and coffee notes make their way through just slightly. Has a bit of a chalky and dry mouthfeel, nice full body with good carbonation. Overall, a recommended, easy drinking stout that is fully balanced in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2010 00:07:47 | More by jsdunlop
Photo of ramseye4


3.8/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Starr Hill's brewery is located a quarter of a mile from where I grew up. Finally getting around to reviewing a beer of theirs. I have had only a few, including their Lucy, which was absolutely terrible. I hope this is better. Pours...hah...wow. A perfectly opaque black color,2 finger head, phenomenal lacing. A great looking beer. Freshness date on the bottle, with a proudly brewed in Crozet (represent!) label. I'm going to be unbiased in this review, I swear. Aroma is of dark roasted malts, burned cocoa, and definitely some coffee. Tastes of smokey, roased malt, atypical but refreshing, unfortunately it is very simple and ends there. A bit of hop bitterness serves it well, saving it from mediocrity. A tad thin feeling in the mouth, but it somehow serves to compliment the taste, and the bitterness is wonderful. The low ABV, mellow, above average taste and medium body makes the drinkability out of this world for a stout.

Good, about what I was expecting. This is one of the best things to come out of Crozet since the 2003 Western Albemarle HS football season

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2010 03:19:46 | More by ramseye4
Photo of tchenery


2.98/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Nice thin tan head on the beer, very very dark. Pretty much opaque.

It smells of roasted malts, bittersweet dark chocolate, and nuts.

It is definitely dry which helps lift the flavor and keep it from 'sticking'. Bitter chocolate is the main flavor I'm picking up. It does taste kind of thin and I'm very very surprised to see the low ABV on this one after tasting it. It tastes much thicker than that.

Very big mouthfeel, very full flavored but very thick and almost chewy except for the dry flavor and carbonation on it.

For the ABV, not overly drinkable. Those numbers you would think it was a session beer, but I don't think I could have more than a few of these in one night.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2010 02:45:13 | More by tchenery
Photo of bgildea


3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice dark black/brown color with a thick tan head that leaves some nice lacing.

S: Not much smell comes across. Slight roasted malts and maybe some caramel. There's also a slight coppery smell.

T: Very bitter taste. Roasted malts and bittersweet chocolate come across, but not much else.

M: Fairly thin beer, I was hoping for some more chew to it.

D: It's drinkable, but there are better stouts out there.

Overall: Overall the beer was OK. Not much in the flavor department. I was a little disapointed because I usually enjoy Starr Hill beers.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2010 01:50:41 | More by bgildea
Photo of EgadBananas


4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black, medium tan finger of head, nice lacing.

Smell is great, with lots of roasted malts, and a sweet chocolate backing. Doesn't smell like your typical Irish Dry Stout...

There's the Irish Stout! Roasted malts, slight bitterness, and a hint of cocoa. It's good. Actual flavor compared to most.

Thin mouthfeel for a stout, but for a dry stout, it's adequate. Slightly creamy.

Overall, drinkability is good and this is a better than average irish dry stout. I'm somewhat impressed.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2010 02:02:22 | More by EgadBananas
Photo of kingcrowing


4.15/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

Pours a dark inky black with a very small light brown head nose is malty and smokey, nice.

Taste is a bit watery, but crisp and sharp. It's fairly smokey and sharp very creamy and nice. Mouthfeel is really light and smooth.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2010 01:33:36 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of klikger


3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a Duvel tulip

A - Dark, dark red - almost totally black. Small brown head, good lacing.

S - Milk, roasted malt, small amount of milk chocolate

T - Twice roasted malt - burnt & kinda smoky --> not sweet, which is refreshing --> citrus hops on the end - the finish is kind of bitter. Not overly complex, but pretty tasty.

M - Light for a stout, good carbonation

D - Lack of sweetness + decent hopping + low ABV = drinkable

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2010 22:25:23 | More by klikger
Photo of DanThomas


3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Good beer, excellent representation of the style.

A- opaque, black, nice thick head that stays on throughout, considerable lacing on glass.

S- Rich aromas of roasted barley/malt, dark roasted coffee, and chocolate.

T- The roasted flavor is the most noticeable, though it's dialed back considerably from the nose. Also a lot of coffee, and very little sweetness. Nice finish.

M- This is where this beer could use some work. Carbonation is okay, but the beer quickly moves to watery in the mouth, and I was expecting a little more there.

D- Excellent. Flavor is pleasing but it doesn't overwhelm or overstay its welcome. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2010 23:08:14 | More by DanThomas
Photo of John_M


3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Judge's Bench the other day.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is likewise attractive, showcasing considerable licorise, coffee, dark chocolate and cola. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely, though the licorise tended to dominate a bit more than I would normally like. The beer also has something of a roasty malt sweetness, but that quickly dries out on the finish. Mouthfeel is light and fairly smooth. Drinkabilty is not bad.... you can definitely tell the alcohol is dialed down in this one.

Nothing extraordinairy, but I thought this beer otherwise nice enough. Not sure it's something I'd ever want to order again though.

Serving type: on-tap

09-23-2010 15:39:40 | More by John_M
Photo of droomyster


3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours black as night with a creamy brown head with excellent retention. Aromas are predominantly roasty but also has a good amount of dark chocolate and a faint whiff of scorched earth. I like it, just as I like the flavors, which follow the nose and then some, adding espresso flavors. This is perhaps the driest dry stout I've had. Better than most of the popular mass-produced Irish stouts out there. Body is a bit more watery than I'd like, but overall this is a delicious beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2010 05:55:33 | More by droomyster
Photo of Haybeerman


3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Deep, dark brown color. Poured almost a 3 finger beige head with good retention. Some lazy bubbles rise to the surface. Thin rings and sheets of lace.

S: Dark chocolate and bitter coffee. Toasted grains, molassas and honey. Very little hop character.

T: Consistent with smell but not as prominent; mostly muted. More earthy and mellow dryness in the finish.

M: Light to medium body. Moderate carbonation. Smooth and dry.

D: Easily drinkable. Could go for a little more flavor and heftier feel.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2010 22:24:03 | More by Haybeerman
Photo of Hopfenpeter


4.45/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer being pured into a glass appears nice and dark. The foam builds nice and brown and the beer looks very inviting.

When you smell the top of the plume the rich aromas of sweet malt, maybe a hint of cinnamon under the cover of a little smokiness will make you take your first taste of this precious liquid.

As you let the beer warm in your mouth, those aromas become more dominant, and after swallowing the liquid and exhaling the hops will add a slight bitterness just enough for the want of more.

I love the feel in the mouth since the beer is not over carbonated.
It also does feel very smooth and this adds to the drinkability.

This will be my house-beer for a while, since I really felt in love with it, and I cannot wait to offer it to my guests.

great beer!

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2010 02:29:43 | More by Hopfenpeter
Photo of Mosstrooper


3.93/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into 16oz Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: Pours black with a large, yet thin and fizzy, brown head that dissipates fairly quickly, leaving behind small spots of lace.

Smell: Sweet molasses and roasted malt dominate, with a slight grassy note.

Taste: Begins with a sweet molasses flavor, which intensifies in the finish. The finish also has a roasted coffee flavor and just enough hop bitterness to keep the balance.

Mouthfeel: Relatively light-bodied with balanced carbonation and a dry finish.

Drinkability: This is a good, easily drinkable and sessionable stout. Not the best out there, but very enjoyable nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2010 17:36:11 | More by Mosstrooper
Photo of jlindros


3.73/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This would be my first Starr Hill beer thanks to tmoney2591.

A screw on top... The beer pours a nice almost 2 finger head that is darker in color but fades semi quickly with lots of big bubbles popping creating pot-marks all over. The beer is almost pitch black in color with basically no light getting through, but not thick. THe head leaves a little lacing as it fades.

My nose discovers some nice coffee and roast aromas, with caramel and dark malts, a little chocolate, seems to be somewhat dry. A little toffee finds its way in there.

The taste comes a little more subtle but has plenty more dark malts. More coffee and roasted malts, a little caramel malt and very light chocolate. It is actually somewhat juicy and a little Irish yeast fruit, but maintains mostly dry. A little toffee and hints of a spicy hop character. It has a slight bitterness.

The mouth is medium to lighter bodied with good carbonation.

It finishes pretty dry, but no drier than it started. It has a mouth smacking dry and sticky quality though. A little bit more of that fruit from the yeast coming out, with a slight lingering malty quality. Most of the dark malts are gone now, no roast or chocolate, but a little bitterness coming from a slight bit of the roasted malt and some more from some hidden spicy and grassy hops.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2010 00:13:57 | More by jlindros
Photo of kbutler1


3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Received as an extra. Pours a deep brown black color into my Kentucky Breakfast stout glass. Nice 1 finger tan head the color of mocha. The nose is rather subtle for me. Hints of coffee and chocolate. Very smooth taste with a bitterness in the end. Notes of coffee abound. Dry finish. Lighter mouthfeel than I would have expected.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2010 19:37:45 | More by kbutler1
Photo of ryanonline


3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is OK. Dark as balls with a tan head but it dissipates quickly. Leaves moderate lacing.

Coffee, and that's more or less it. Maybe some cocoa.

Very sweet and lightly frosted flavor with a dry finish.

Thin and bland.

Men drinkability.

I don't really understand his stout. Sweet and effervescent but not creamy...wtf?

Serving type: on-tap

07-31-2010 05:19:41 | More by ryanonline
Photo of mdwalsh


3.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wife brought this home from WV.

A: Poured a little brownish, but in the glass it's deep black with a pretty 2.5 finger head of deep beige. Lots of texture and a variety of bubble sizes. Can't see into the beer much but it looks like there's some active carbonation and it's pretty clear. The head might be a little too big.

S: The pour produced some immediate stoutly aromas like dark chocolate and coffee in a pleasant blend. There is some nice roasted grain and no hops. Maybe an underlying molasses or dark honey sweetness. It could be richer though, that's for sure.

T: Hmm, the taste I'm not feeling so much. It's dry and thin, like Guinness, but with no roast or anything to back it up. Noticing it's classified as a Dry Irish Stout saves some face, but still. There's an upfront metallic taste that really kills me, and absolutely nothing to finish on. Really nothing well rounded about this beer at all.

M: Thin and watery, which is what it's supposed to be, but I'd like a little bit more of a lingering finish feel.

D: Drinkable, yes, as in you could consume large quantities of it without being too full or drunk. But I wouldn't really want to to be honest.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2010 18:21:03 | More by mdwalsh
Dark Starr Stout from Starr Hill Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 392 ratings.