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Black Damnation XI - Special Kay - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
Black Damnation XI - Special KayBlack Damnation XI - Special Kay

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

69 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 69
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 9.38%
Wants: 200
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  22.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brewandbbq on 08-29-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

A blend of Kate The Great (10.79% ABV) and Black Albert (13% ABV), brewed by master brewer Todd Mott of the Portsmouth Brewery in USA and Urbain Coutteau of Struise. This time our beer was fractionally frozen to -15 ° C over a period of 20 days. This method allows the water which is present in beer, slowly but surely to be separated from the alcohol, and allowing the volume % to rise. Another Eisbock process but modified a la Struise, still allows the result to be called beer. "Special K" has previously been aged 10 months in Noval Port barrels before undergoing the Eisbock process.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 69 | Reviews: 24
Photo of tom10101
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of cosmicevan
4.15/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

shared with one of the tasting crews on 8/15.

a - still. black. frightening.

s - BOOZE. black malts. some fruit ala kabert, port and green apples, but swallowed by the bigness of the booze.

t - really smooth. definitely a bit boozy on the flavor, but doesn't feel like the 22% that it carries. roasted malts and some port barrel. like kabert on steroids.

m - this is a BIG beer. smooth, but still big.

o - overall this is a really nice treat, but not mind blowing. mind blowing how easy it is to drink. i prefer double black and kabert to this one. a bit of a novelty. tasty on its own, but for what it is, definitely impressive to make such a tasty and drinkable beer at this ABV with a non syrupy body.

Photo of scottfrie
4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing, Nick!

A: Pours pitch black with a thin dark brown head that faded into a very long lasting collar. Spots of soapy lace were left down the glass.
S: Meaty and hearty smelling. This is a beast of a beer. For such a high ABV I’m surprised I don’t smell more alcohol. This smells pretty smooth actually. I get a few notes chocolate and fruit. Definitely boozy though.
T: Chocolate and booze. The finish is sharp and lingers forever and ever. The booze is pretty mellow, but this beer is crazy strong.
M: Super duper thick beer. This thing is like barrel aged chocolate syrup. Carbonation is low and thick.
O: For what it is this is awesome! I could only handle two or three ounces of this though. Like a chocolate milkshake with booze and fruit. Thanks a ton Nick.

Photo of Sean9689
3.82/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into tulip.

A - Pours black, looks like oil, light tan-colored head.

S - Booze, oak, dark fruits, light chocolate, some char, and roast. A bit too much booze for me, but for 22%, I guess it's pretty smooth when I think about it. Not quite as roasty as I'd prefer, and the char is a little too much.

T - Similar to the nose, but the charred bite on the finish is a little off-putting. Dark fruits, chocolate, oak, char, and big booze. Very sweet and rich, a sipper. The booze is there, but at 22%, I can't really say it's too much. Finish is dark fruits a char.

M - Full, rich and smooth (for 22%), light carbonation, creamy finish.

O - I think this is a good beer, but I'd rather just drink Kabert over and over again until I pass out rather then a glass of this. Struise continues to push the boundaries on ABV and inventiveness, and I think this beer turned out pretty good. That said, it's just such a huge monster, it's hard to enjoy much in one session (see Double Black). Good, not great.

Photo of birchstick
3.97/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - pours black with a chocolate head that forms around the glass

S - nose is nose is cinnamon, chocolate, port, and spicy fruits

T - opens up with soy booziness and chocolates. These move on to bourbony chocolates and a lot of milk chocolate. Wow, powerful beer here.

M - boozy as hell, really spicy and hot

D - overall, this is another intense beer out of the black damnation series. Lots of boozy complexity makes this a treat to try!

Photo of Satchboogie
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.67/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had from tap at the brewery...awesome!!!
First of all, Carlos apologized for this batch only being like 18% ... (how will I sleep?!)
This pours a thick oily black with thin tan head. Amazing chocolate malt, dried fruit, vanilla, and booze aromas. Taste is truly amazing. Chocolate, dried fruit and I suppose its port I taste...its fantastic!! I so wished to take a whole barrel home with me. Just an amazing brew.

Photo of koopa
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of ncaudle
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of Jeffo
4.22/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Why not? My mate Doopie pulled this new vintage of EisKabert out to pair along side Kabert on a random Friday night. It was fun to drink a full 16oz of this one (Doops is slow). Cheers man!

From a red cemented and corked 750 into a snifter
Best before 29 December 2016

APPEARANCE: Pours basically the same as its little brother. A black pour yeilds a one finger, medium looking, tan head with good retention. Body is black with medium levels of carbonation evident in the form of tiny, tiny bubbles. Head slowly fades to a half wisp and a thick, foamy ring. A good ring remains and swirly wisp remain until the end but leave no real lacing down the glass. Looks great for such a big beer.

SMELL: Roasted, burnt malts, some dark fruit, grapes mostly, and a strong port barrel. Dark chocolate, coffee and molasses, as well as some strong boozy notes. This is an iced version of Kabert for sure, though the booze is perhaps a tick too much for a perfect score.

TASTE: This is definitely a Kabert concentrate. Add water. Lots of port barrel and much boozier than the nose had indicated. Roasted and burnt malts, coal, and dark fruit flavors are there. Sweet molasses and caramel as well, with lots of port and alcohol everywhere. Big, bold and boozy aftertaste of port, bunt malts, dark chocolate and sweet caramel. Lots of port and booze linger on the palate.

PALATE: Full body with medium carbonation. Heavier and thicker than the original. Creamy and quite smooth, goes down fine and finishes rather sticky. No bite at the swallow, but a good amount of boozy heat lingers.

OVERALL: They call this beer "Special Kay." How retarted. That name reminds me of fat old ladies on their Buns Blaster 2000. The original name, EisKabert, is much more true to what this beer is all about. This is, in every sense of the word, an iced version of Kabert; a Kabert-concentrate if you will. The flavors are there ten fold, but unfortunately the booze is as well. The higher levels of alcohol and heat make this one a little rougher to drink, but with some time, this might mellow out into the master-craft brew it's destined to be. I'll stick to Kabert for now, but in a few years... Cheers for brewing this gents. We really enjoyed this!

Photo of BAsbill
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of brewandbbq
4.63/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A frozen version of Kabert. Three gallons reduced to one gallon via secret method of freezing.

Served very late night by De Struise at Ebenezer's Belgian Fest.

Black tar appearance with a surprisingly dense, rocky head of brown. Ripped lacework throughout the glass.

Charred chocolate, reduced espresso, roasted malt embers, and nougat in the nose. Warming alcohol steps forward along with intensifying Port.
Bits of rich earth, vanilla, and burnt brownie ends follow though.

Massively thick, chewy body. Tongue-wrapping and approaching an almost solid state.

A dense mix of dark chocolate, char, Kona grounds, and nougat lead off the pallet. Warming alcohol steps forward with a mildly intense oaky Port essence.
Fudge batter, blackened cake bottom, and Kahlua follow though.
The alcohol warms up a bit more but the richness of the brew hides it so well.

Finishes with lingering char-infused chocolate batter, drizzled with Port.

By far, the most massive stout I've ever had. The Port from the Kate brings a great complexity through the massive profile, and the 24% abv strength is incredibly subdued.

Big props to Chris Lively, Todd Mott, and De Struise for making this gem happen.

Photo of Phelps
4.12/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Special Kay begins life as Kabert, a blend of Kate the Great and Black Albert aged 10 months in Noval Port barrels. It then undergoes the Eisbock process, wherein the beer is fractionally frozen to -15 ° C over a period of 20 days, removing the water and increasing the ABV and flavor intensity. This bottle was very generously shared by ejyoung and poured into a tulip.

Inky is an appropriate descriptor for both color and thickness — this stuff is black, viscous and scary-looking. There isn’t much head, just a thin, cocoa-colored ring.

Yikes. A rich, syrupy aroma that sticks to the nostrils. Major coffee, notes — like fresh-roasted beans — with smoke, alcohol, dark chocolate and cognac. Just packed with rich, alcohol-laden fruits.

When I was but a beer noob, I remember being awestruck at the thickness and massive fruit flavor of the 2009 Dark Lord. My palate wasn’t right for days. This reminds of that first taste — it’s such a huge flavor. Alcohol is very noticeable, as are chocolate syrup and huge port, brandy and cognac flavors. Grapes, figs and prunes show up as well. The swallow brings a huge wave of booze, some earthy hop bitterness, soil, dark chocolate, smoke and seared steak. A beer for giants.

Very thick, viscous feel. The body’s medium-full and almost like syrup. Alcohol is spicy on the tongue — no getting around that alcohol content. I can feel myself getting dunker with each sip. Gentle prickles of carbonation are all that keep this from being dead flat.

A crazy beer. Rich, outrageously flavorful and boozy as all hell.

Photo of samEBC
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Brabander
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of cadaugherty
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of klipper
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of pixieskid
3.5/5  rDev -19.9%

Photo of Etan
4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Finally opening this. 750ml bottle into a snifter.

A: Pours a reddish dark brown with a small tan head. Surprising amount of lacing and retention for a 22% beer.

S: Cherry, raisins, thick chocolate, boozy oak. Very smooth.

T: Semi-sweet port, bitter roasted malts, dark chocolate, heavy smoky character, lots of oaky tannic bitterness and a wash of noticeable but pleasant alcohol. I can definitely make out the Kabert in this.

M: Slight carbonation, almost thick-bodied, silky.

O: The beer definitely kept it under control for 22%, but it tasted a bit too smoky and astringent. A unique experience, but not as amazing as it could have been.

Photo of monitorpop
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of mtbdonn
4.63/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I originally had the Special Kay from the keg at the Kerstbier festival in Essen, Belgium.
Opened a 75cl bottle from the cellar at approx 50 degrees F and served in my Struise tulip glass.

A-The beer is pitch black, with a nice, dark brown head. Light carbonation with nice lacing.

S-Heavy roast, chocolate, vanilla(?), coffee and malts.

T-The taste is very similar to smell, bitter coffee, chocolate, warming alcohol and spices. The bottled version was much milder, less alcohol than the draft version.

M-Tingly warm, silky, smooth.

O-Definite indications of Struise brewing!
This bottled version is a fantastic beer, but at 22%, it still has that alcolol punch. A nice sipping beer that finishes with a warming that melts down your throat.

Photo of Phobicsquirrel
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of rvdoorn
4.58/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up some bottles for myself and some fellow BAs in the struise shop in Brugge. Thanks again Bart for the nice customer service last week, and David for the nice talks and beers in the shop. Only between 300 and 400 bottles are made of this one. I wanted to wait a bit longer before tasting this one, but couldn’t resist the evening I came home from Brugge.
Look: the beer pours a deeep black color, with a dark espresso brown thick head.
Smell: coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate, dark fruits and fruity port notes.
Taste: Dark fruits, freshly roasted coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, oak port notes. A bit spicy, warming alcoholic aftertaste. There is incredibly much going on in this one.
Mouthfeel: Thick creamy body with low but perfect carbonation
Overall: This beer is extremely well made. Right now, still a bit sharp/spicy, however, age will do this one very well and will surely make it a true worldclass beer! Can wait to open one of my other bottles in the future!

Photo of leschkie
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of phingdong
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

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Black Damnation XI - Special Kay from De Struise Brouwers
95 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.