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Black Damnation XI - Special Kay - De Struise Brouwers

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

59 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 59
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 9.59%
Wants: 191
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:
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 added by: brewandbbq on 08-29-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 59 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ncaudle
ncaudle

Virginia

4.25/5  rDev -3%

12-01-2013 00:00:54 | More by ncaudle
Photo of DrinkSlurm
DrinkSlurm

Connecticut

4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

09-13-2012 22:07:55 | More by DrinkSlurm
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo

Netherlands

4.2/5  rDev -4.1%
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!

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2012 15:27:58 | More by Jeffo
Photo of Phelps
Phelps

Arizona

4.1/5  rDev -6.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2012 19:08:19 | More by Phelps
Photo of brewandbbq
brewandbbq

New Hampshire

4.65/5  rDev +6.2%
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.

Serving type: growler

08-29-2008 19:33:13 | More by brewandbbq
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Satchboogie

New Hampshire

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

04-22-2012 12:29:28 | More by Satchboogie
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cadaugherty

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -3%

04-12-2013 03:48:27 | More by cadaugherty
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klipper

Michigan

4/5  rDev -8.7%

05-13-2012 21:25:38 | More by klipper
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pixieskid

Germany

3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

05-30-2012 15:36:54 | More by pixieskid
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BAsbill

California

4.25/5  rDev -3%

03-30-2013 04:13:13 | More by BAsbill
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samEBC

Belgium

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

08-25-2012 16:40:59 | More by samEBC
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Brabander

Netherlands

4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

03-29-2014 19:02:36 | More by Brabander
Photo of Etan
Etan

Wisconsin

3.95/5  rDev -9.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2012 05:41:30 | More by Etan
Photo of monitorpop
monitorpop

Michigan

4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

01-29-2012 23:37:57 | More by monitorpop
Photo of mtbdonn
mtbdonn

Colorado

4.63/5  rDev +5.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2012 20:28:13 | More by mtbdonn
Photo of rvdoorn
rvdoorn

Netherlands

4.58/5  rDev +4.6%
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!

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2012 13:44:47 | More by rvdoorn
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leschkie

California

4.25/5  rDev -3%

03-10-2013 07:55:51 | More by leschkie
Photo of phingdong
phingdong

New Hampshire

4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

04-22-2012 18:32:48 | More by phingdong
Photo of Thehuntmaster
Thehuntmaster

South Africa

4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle 22% ABV.
Served lightly chilled in an over sized wine glass.
Best Before: 29/12/2016

I cannot thank Thijs enough for getting this bottle for me! I absolutely adore gargantuan imperial stouts and if the previous beers in the Black Damnation series are anything to go by, this should be a pretty damn good brew!

Appearance: After about half an hour trying to open the bottle (the wax broke my bottle opener!!!), I can finally get the beer poured. A pitch black, oily liquid gloops out of the bottle, with a two finger creamy, mocha coloured head forming in what appears to be slow motion. The head retention is pretty good for 22% and there are even a few small chunks of lace left behind as the head recedes. A swirl yields a thick, sticky, brown tinted residue on the glass and some of the thickest alcohol legs I have ever seen.

Smell: Mmmmm, this smells absolutely delicious. Notes include: Raisins, plums, dates, black cherries, sticky brown sugar, light molasses, port, brandy, underlying dark chocolate, light oak and an odd hint of cinnamon. The overall nose reminds me a lot of a super rich fruit cake. As the beer warms the port notes become more pronounced and a hint of the 22% is noted.

Taste: Wow, just WOW! The flavour combines all the notes from the nose in perfect balance and with double the power! While dark fruits still dominate the flavour, the chocolate and molasses are more pronounced than in the nose. Roasted malt, dark brown sugar, charred wood, dark caramel, port, oak, brandy, liquorice, toasted nuts and chocolate liqueur are just a few of the other notes appreciated. Special Kay is quite sweet, but a light bitterness in the finish stops it from becoming to much and keeps everything perfectly balanced.
The alcohol cover is absolutely phenomenal, if someone told me that this was 12% I would not doubt them!

Mouthfeel: Hmmm, there is only one word for this mouthfeel - perfect! Thick, heavy and oily with a medium level of ultra creamy carbonation.

Overall: De Struise does it again - this is a phenomenal brew and one I wish I had not shared, I could have happily crushed the full 750! Highly recommended for any lover of massive stouts!

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2012 20:25:16 | More by Thehuntmaster
Photo of claaark13
claaark13

Indiana

4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Jeffo does it again. I was afraid he'd send BA Stella, but I got this instead.

A - Pours black with a medium dark-tan head. The head slowly turns into some nice lacing. Sticks to the glass well. Looks very appealing, head returns upon sifting.

S - Strong dark fruits, breadiness, booze. The aroma is potent and certainly provides some booziness. There is a little bit of the port barrel coming through, but I can't tell if that is mostly due to the ABV% instead of the actual barrel aging process. Faint licorice in the finish.

T - Very similar to the aroma. Strong dark fruits, then some licorice, then some mild booziness with more dark fruits. Breadiness comes through somewhere in the middle and follows to the end. Very strong, very complex. As it stands, I think this could benefit from some age. No question.

M - Not really sure how much more you could ask for. Thick, thick, just enough carbonation, thick.

O - The flavor could develop a little more. The rest is damn good. The booze needs to fall off and the time it would take for that to occur would likely provide for some of the other flavors to come together. Good as it stands, probably great in two years. I'm a little let down by the flavor. I expected perfection, but didn't find it. I guess Double Black spoiled me. Claaark13 : 1, Special Kay : 0.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2012 05:25:37 | More by claaark13
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teddyarrowhead

Oregon

4/5  rDev -8.7%

12-16-2012 06:40:30 | More by teddyarrowhead
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imperiallibations

California

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

01-30-2013 22:55:52 | More by imperiallibations
Photo of ejyoung
ejyoung

Arizona

4.25/5  rDev -3%

07-12-2013 05:03:31 | More by ejyoung
Photo of digita7693
digita7693

Germany

3/5  rDev -31.5%

01-20-2014 12:12:05 | More by digita7693
Photo of 4thelvofbeer
4thelvofbeer

Virginia

4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

08-23-2013 07:32:05 | More by 4thelvofbeer
Black Damnation XI - Special Kay from De Struise Brouwers
95 out of 100 based on 59 ratings.