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Black Damnation V - Double Black - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
Black Damnation V - Double BlackBlack Damnation V - Double Black

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

112 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 112
Hads: 333
Avg: 4.37
pDev: 19.68%
Wants: 627
Gots: 60 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers
Belgium | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout | 26.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: alcstradamus on 03-14-2010

100% of Cuvée Delphine was used that was ice distilled to 26% of alcohol volume.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 112 | Hads: 333
Reviews by jampics2:
Photo of jampics2
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

About 1.5oz pour from a 750ml bottle, courtesy of Eric. You’re the man, buddy, thanks for busting out this amazing brew for Dark Lord Day.

As I stare at the liquid in the glass in front of me, I’m somewhat confused. I thought beer was a liquid, but this has as much in common with oil or Jello as it does water. A swirl literally leaves a halo of beer, not lace, beer on the glass. This is one thick, chunky looking brew – pitch black as if all the damnation of the world collapsed upon itself. There’s not really any head or lace, just thinner and thicker levels of beer. Simply put, this is a sight to behold. As someone standing around with the sample said “I wish I was Gene Simmons so I could use my tongue to get every drop out of the glass”.

So, I debated on how to rate this. I’m still not 100% sure, but I think I’m doing the right thing here. I’m not going to compare Double Black to a 12% American Double Stout. I’m not even going to compare it to something like Black Tuesday or World Wide Stout. Those beers are for sunny afternoons sitting by the pool – this is the stuff real men drink before they joust or pillage.

Here’s what I concluded – since I really can't defer to the style guides and generally accepted best examples of an American Double Stout, I’m just going to rate this on how it smelled, tasted, looked, and how it made me feel. So, to start, the smell isn’t actually as abrasive as I would have thought – there are some wonderful notes of molasses, burned souls, chocolate, ashes of the departed, and coffee. Just a touch of booze is present but is remarkably well-concealed considering some beers one third of its strength can’t pull together like this. So, an ice-distilled beer doesn’t need to have solvent, fusel notes of ethanol and road salt? Take note, you penguin-fuckers at Brewdog.

As I take my first sip, I’m really quite taken with this beer. An army of bitter chocolate, coffee, dark fruit and booze hits my tongue like storming a battlefield. This is more of a char/roast focused beer than a sweet booze bomb. There are several layers of roast – coffee beans, burned wood, ash – that somehow all work together to give this depth and keep my interest from swaying. The barrel notes from Cuvee Delphine seem to be lost apart from a stray note of vanillin or oak, but the beer is dead-set on staying focused on the dark malts. A hint of cherry and some noticeable warmth round out each sip.

To experience the mouthfeel of this beer without actually drinking it, I would recommend having your mouth and throat coated in tar. This is beyond cough syrup, with just a touch of carbonation to break-up the stickiness. It literally feels like it’s holding on for dear life, each sip making me thirstier instead of quenching my thirst. But that’s OK. The remarkable thing here is how this beer pulls off the 26% without batting an eye. I’ve never had a high ABV brew like this – so intricate and focused on everything but the booze.

In conclusion, this is a new standard for big ABV beers with actual flavor. Double Black made Black Tuesday look like Light-Grey Tuesday. It made World Wide Stout taste like local porter. It made Sink the Bismarck practically worthless (or maybe that was Brewdog). Thanks again to Eric for the pour and to Urbain and the Struise crew for making what is certainly truly special beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of mythaeus
4.74/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured a thick viscous stream. Used the 8cl stem taster made for the beer so couldn't be too aggressive on the pour, resulted in very little head. Doesn't have much leg like a lot of high ABV beers such as Bruery or Utopias. Smell sweet with increase alcohol presence in the aroma as it got warm. Doesn't taste sweet at all though. Dry bitter chocolate, roasty, ever increasing alcohol presence with warmer temperature, but definitely well-hidden for 26% ABV. Mouthfeel follows the pour.

Couldn't drink a lot of but it is a beautifully done beautiful imperial stout. Definitely great for a big share. Will be looking to get another bottle.

 641 characters

Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of farundrpar
5/5  rDev +14.4%

Photo of Callmecoon
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of bishopdc0
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First I must say I got to taste this on Zwanze day at Novare Res. I was there early with my wife and was told by a friend to ask about the imperial stout. I asked the manager/bartender about it he said if you like imp. stout your gonna want to try this. Before he finished I ordered and a few minute later he presented us the beer and only told me after i had tasted it that it was Damnation V.

This beer is beautiful black one of the darkest I've come across. The head is thick dark brown color and is very creamy

The aroma is all over the place, in a good way, roasted malts, chocolate, coffee with dashes of raisin and anise.

First wow, I must say the taste is excellent. I told my wife if we didn't get to try Zwanze I would leave happy. The taste is creamy, big roasted flavor, but not burnt, perfect. The other flavors of sweet chocolate and anise round in with a hint of smoke round out this beer.

WOW at 26% hard to tell this is one of the if not the best beer I've ever had had

 991 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4.12/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Cavie for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an inky black color with a dark brown head. The aroma is very strong with a lot of chocolate and roasted malt notes. There is also a lot of oak and some bourbon notes in the aroma. Alcohol is also a big player in the smell of the beer, as can be expected from a beer this strong.

The flavor is similar. The two most prominent flavors are heavily roasted malt and chocolate. I also get some strong bourbon notes and some oak. The alcohol is also very present. I also can't quite put my finger on it, but there is something in the flavor that doesn't quite sit right with me.

The mouthfeel is about as thick as I have ever come across in a beer and the carbonation is low.

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Photo of olradetbalder
3.75/5  rDev -14.2%

Photo of ehammond1
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2008)

Thanks for opening this one with me, nakalakaboom!

(Aged for 3+ years)

Black on black with a surprisingly large (for the style and ABV) dark brown head that leaves the glass oily and spotted with stick. Very impressive looking beer.

The aroma is quite incredible and expressive, and better at the cooler temperatures. The aroma is a fantastic combination of coffee, dark chocolate, dark fruits, roast, a hint of smoke, and some definite alcohol. Zero complaints.

The flavor is very nice too, though it does somewhat fall apart as the beer warms up closer and closer to room temperature. The flavor is full of chocolate, dark fruits, roasted malt, barrel, and a hint of smoke. The alcohol becomes more and more dominant as the beer warms, which is to be expected.

Full bodied, slightly oily, with moderate carbonation.

So pleased to have been able to try this. It's fantastically drinkable for the ABV, and quite the accomplishment.

 952 characters

Photo of Soonami
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of simoen
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of jmadrigal2
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of acurtis
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of JonnyBeers
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of azorie
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of ggaughan
4.32/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75cl bottle I picked up at the Alvinne bottle shop in Belgium and shared with friends at TJ's on 29.12.08. The beer poured a black so black and dense with a deep tan head but no real carbonation. The aroma had has some dark chocolate notes, wood as well. The taste is dried fruit and chocolate up front with some high abv notes although this is a pretty drinkable beer but best shared with friends. Definitely pick it up if you can.

 432 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Tmappin
3.69/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of twowheelssoar
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Mar02x
4.68/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I got this beer with thanks to the Brabander. Thanks again man for getting this massive one for me. Last friday I had a good opportunity with my wife, my friend Ed and his wife Astrid to open one bottle.

A - A pitch black beer with a brown head. You can just see that this is a heavy beer! - This is motor oil!

S - What a wonderful smell of chocolate, cherries and spices such as cinnamon and cardamom and don't forget the booze.

T - Wow! A powerful sweet taste of chocolate and booze with hints of dark fruit, herbs / spices (like in a gingerbread kind of way)

M - A low carbonation that fits perfectly with a sipper beer like this. Sticky in the mouth, such as syrup, and spicy due to the herbs. This is excellent beer syrup!!!

O - A great beer, nice spiciness and sticky. Worth buying but far too expensive compared to the experience. We all loved it though!

I had another opportunity to taste this beer again on the 11th of December 2011 at a perfect beer tasting at Erik's place. With thanks to Jeff too. I am altering my review after this session; appearance, mouth feel and overall should be a half point more than before.

 1,136 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.43/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours oily black with virtually no head. Reddish brown highlights in the colour as we sip it.A Bitterness that gets worse not better as you drink it. It becomes altogether not such a great bitterness and that limits the drinkability as does the extremely high abv. An OK smell. In a word,Unbalanced. Liam's bomber straight from the brewery this year.

 350 characters

Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.75/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A huge thanks to Mikey711 (Mikey) for this one. 2oz. pour from a capped and foiled 750ml bottle into a stemless wine glass. Had at a tasting on 6/4/11. Reviewed from notes.

A: Standard pour yields a .25 dark mocha head with great retention. Beer is a dark, opaque, motor oil black. Lacing is spotty and stringy with decent cling and thick, oily legs. A masterpiece considering how heavy it looks.

S: Nose is straight booze that covers almost everything else. Some chocolate and molasses make its way out little by little but the alcohol covers everything else. Not a fan.

T: Opens sweet soy sauce, chocolate, raisins, booze, mocha and molasses throughout. Sharp booze lingers in the background. Chocolate and molasses in the finish with an added touch of cocoa in the aftertaste. Nice but not much above average.

M: Full to super-full bodied. Sludgy and thick in the mouth almost like a protein shake. No carbonation. Oily and filmy going down. Messy finish with a lingering aftertaste. Way over the top here. Too much body.

O: This is a meal in a glass. Again, I'm not sure I'm drinking the same beer as those that say this beer hides its abv well.I could barely choke down 2oz. of this monster. In a world of over-the-top beer, this one is king. It's not for me though.

 1,280 characters

Photo of fthegiants
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Photekut
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

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Black Damnation V - Double Black from De Struise Brouwers
96 out of 100 based on 112 ratings.