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
98
world-class

301 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 301
Reviews: 110
rAvg: 4.42
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 585
Gots: 57 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers visit their website
Belgium

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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 301 | Reviews: 110
Photo of mikey711
3.76/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Maltzilla for sending this bottle my way.

A: Black, and thick, I mean really thick. I have never seen this thick a beer before. It left impressive lacing behind that was incredibly difficult to wash off of the glass.

S: Very chocolately with some hints of bourbon and vanilla. Lots of roasty notes with a little bit of dark fruit as well

T: Heavy chocolate and roast with dark fruit notes as well. Big toffee molasses and brown sugar flavor as well

M: it is literally a milk shake. Each sip felt thicker than the last. The alcohol was present but was hidden more by the fact this beer was so thick

D: What a monster of a beer. I took one sip and felt it go straight to my head. Be advised that this beer needs to be shared with probably ten people.

Photo of megahurts4
4.82/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Struise Black Damnation V Double Black
Bought at the Struise store in Brugge, Belgium on 12-28-2011

Appearance: very dark brown, no bubbles in syrup-like lacing, and a small dark head.

Smell: roasted chocolate, malty cocoa, and faint hops.

Taste: roasted malty rich dark chocolate, vanilla, and faint sweet hops.

Mouthfeel: thick, slightly heavy, yet very smooth.

Overall:
This is fantastic. It has wonderful flavor and the alcohol is unnoticeable. It is a must try for stout fans. 26% ABV is no joke.

Photo of spicelab
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to bluebetty for teeing this up.

Thick tarry black with a decent half-finger brown head which surprises, given that I was expecting none. Leaves a yellowy slick when swirled against the sides.

Molasses, burnt tyres, peat, apple, scorched vegemite, 99% dark chocolate and soy sauce. Huge, but not 26% huge.

Tar, boozy raisins, smoke, molasses, apple, burnt caramel, burnt plastic and more miscellaneous burnt things. Surprisingly approachable, all things considered.

A f8cking behemoth in the mouth, but crazy smooth. Gets bigger, thicker, boozier and tougher to deal with over the course, but never overwhelms.

Like being pleasantly assaulted. Pretty outrageous brew that somehow manages a higher drinkability than many stouts half its strength.

Photo of auroracrisis
4.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at Holy Grale in Louisville, 5oz pour into a miniature snifter.

Surprisingly this pours with a full, chocolate mousse colored head that dissipates into a tinier head with plenty of bubbles. The body is opaque black, I am talking pitch black. Like black paint. I am very impressed with the appearance of this beer. It being 26% while retaining a head blows my mind.

The smell is rich coffee and toasty malts that give way into vanilla and confection sugar with a bit of earthiness as well. Some dark fruits like plum, figs, raisins, etc. can be detected but only once the beverage warms. Booze is also present of course but it is not offensive. Once everything is added up it kind of smells like a warm dark chocolate s'more.

Easily the most well masked, extremely high alcohol beer I've had. The booze is present but it really just drinks like a normal, fresh bourbon aged imperial stout. The flavor is much like a roasted marshmallow liqueur mixed in with a strong, fresh cup of coffee. A tiny bit of earthiness from the hops, but the predominate flavors here are sweet, roasty coffee and marshmallow. It's as if someone toasted a marshmallow and then covered it in 80% cocoa dark chocolate then poured a teaspoon of bourbon on it. Yummy and outstanding tasting for the ABV.

Mouthfeel is low carbonation and very heavy. Almost syrupy. Too much of this would make you sick just from the consistency and sweetness of the brew. But it is what it is. I don't see how else a beer like this could be made without it having a syrup like quality to it.

Overall, a fantastic beer from de Struise. From what I understand, it took Urbain and the guys 3 years to develop this beer to where they wanted it to be before they unleashed it. I am immensely impressed with it, to be honest. The alcohol is so well hidden you would think the brew would be 15% or 16% at the most. And the fact that it is so high in alcohol yet still maintains the qualities of an everyday beer (carbonation, a head, not so heavy alcohol flavor), when so many other high ABV beers have an offensive booze character to it with absolutely no carbonation and head, is probably the most impressive thing about this beer. Plus it actually tastes good! Just outstanding, it's a damn shame it's so rare because any stout lover would be all over this beer. A must try if you can find it.

Photo of Luk13
4.15/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle. Pours a thick oily black with a minimal tan head. Aroma is intense bourbon and vanilla, alcohol if definitly perceptible but maybe not thrice as much as your regular imperial stout. It also has a nice depth with chocolate melding with dark dried fruits. Lots of wood and sweetness, but remains more elegant than beers like Black Tuesday. Low carbed but not flat. I can see there is some similarities with Black Albert. A nice experiment but a little too "hot" to be enjoyable. After KRE and KBE, I’ve had more eisbocks that night than in the last year.

Photo of Mar02x
4.68/5  rDev +5.9%
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.

Photo of GRUUMSH
1.75/5  rDev -60.4%

Too much is too much:(

Photo of Brez07
4.33/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap over the weekend. 4oz served in a tasting glass

A: Dark. Pitch black. No other way to describe it really. Despite the size of the glass, still had a decent amount of tan colored head. Some spotted lace at the top of the glass

S: A little sweet, soy saucy. Mixed with dark chocolate and roasted malt. Surprisingly, booze was basically non-existent

T: Dark chocolate, booze soaked brownies, fig/dark fruit. As it warmed, the sweetness started to drift towards soy sauce. Very small amount of booze present

M: Full bodied. Thick and viscous. Light carbonation. Dark fruity roast aftertaste

D: De Struise did really well with this one. I think a good description would be a super imperial Black Albert. Ridiculously easy to drink at 26%. However, my small pour was probably all I would want in one sitting due to the beer becoming increasingly sweeter as it warmed

Photo of jamescain
4.29/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a sniffer, big thanks to xpimptastikx for bring this one to the bottle share!

Appearance: Super thick and viscous, black with no head only a thin brown ring around the side of the glass.

Aroma: If I didn't know how much alcohol was in here I wouldn't have been able to guess its 26%. Molasses, dark fruit, chocolate, roasted notes, raisins and even some leather.

Taste: Like I stated above, wouldn't be able to guess its 26%, lots of chocolate, some burnt sugar, raisins, and bourbon.

Mouthfeel: Thick and chewy with a minimal amount of carbonation and not really that boozy.

Overall: This is a very good beer and if I had the chance I would seek it out. Deceptively smooth, this is a monster of a beer.

Photo of readbaron
4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at Zwanze Day 2011 courtesy of West Lakeview Liquors. Thanks for the great event Kristina!

Pours out looking like extra viscous soy sauce - it's thick and smears itself around the glass leaving a brown haze upon everything it touches. Double Black indeed. There are hints of carbonation, but no foam.

Smell is intense. There's a strong honey sweetness, followed by a lot of herbal and earthy notes. Some chocolate and dark fruit as well. There's a subtle bourbon finish, but it in no way dominates the rest of the flavors. Similarly, the heat is subtle - surprisingly lacking, and only shows up as the beer warms.

Taste is delicious. Honey, molasses, roasted malts, chocolate, and a hint of smoke. There's alcohol there, but it isn't tasted so much as felt. It's a super smooth beer.

Feel is impressive. It's unbelievably thick, and works well even though there's very little carbination. The alcohol makes itself known here - it prickles the tongue and warms the mouth nicely. Unlike anything I've previously experienced in a beer.

Overall, a super intense and awesome drinking experience. As everyone says, it's hard to believe that this is a 26% beer.

Photo of spdyfire83
4.83/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

100th Review
Bottle to snifter/Westvletren 12 (small) chalice

Big beer for a milestone review!

From notes - I've enjoyed this twice now and combined my notes from each occasion. I first enjoyed this as part of a Black Damnation horizontal tasting (15 September 2011) that showcased the base beers + all the variants thru that date. Thank you RuckusDu for sharing this beauty...I will return the favor when the time is right! My second experience with it was as part of the Utrecht tasting (11 December 2011) as a result of Jeffo and doopiedoopiedoo's generosity. Thanks guys...can't wait to return the favor!

A: Opaque black. Viscosity of oil. Single (mocha) fingernail head on gentle pour. Looks like a proper - and perfect - American Double Imperial Stout.

S: WOW! Very complex...roasted malt, dark chocolate, fig, vanilla, and molasses. Slight hint of coffee, but that is very subtle. The booze is noticeable, but not as over-powering as I had anticipated.

T: This one warms the soul for sure! Like the smell, very complex and deep. Booze straight away followed by dark chocolate and raisins up-front. Quick burst of vanilla, molasses, and oak towards the middle and finished with a well-rounded, robust, and thoroughly enjoyed espresso/bitter finish. The alcohol is definitely present all throughout, but I would never suspect it to be so high.

M: Full bodied with medium carbonation. Dangerously drinkable and extremely thick.

O: This stuff is amazing! A beer well worth the "price of admission" in my opinion and it should be shared with a large group of folks. So complex, so smooth, and just so perfectly executed. The richness and distinct balance of this beer amazes me and I am very blessed to have enjoyed it on two different occasions. I think it will age beautifully and look forward to opening my bottle at some point in the next 5-10 years. Standing ovation to De Struise for this beautiful beer!

Photo of trappistlover
4.06/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(sampled at Dak’s Memorial Day tasting). Pours thick and black with a tan head. This just coats the glass. Aroma has alcohol and plenty of chocolate and bourbon. Taste is sweet with some roasty bitterness. Full bodied with a sticky texture. This is a really nice beer with a nice mix of sweetness, roasty bitterness and alcohol.

Photo of jale
4.55/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap for Zwanze day at West Lakeview in Chicago.

A: Pours a thick black used motor oil with little head.

S: Roasted malt, dark chocolate, brewed coffee and some raisins.

T: Sweet upfront with roasted, bitter cocoa and coffee. Dark fruits and maybe some burnt sugar. Amazing that I don't get 26 percent alcohol heat in this. Very well hidden.

M: Thick body. This is dessert beer for sure.

O: I really loved this beer and can't wait to have it again.

Photo of thepeter
4.43/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again to MlhopeTC for bringing this 250ml bottle that he labelled himself (at Decca) to our little tasting.
A - Motor Oil, small dense head.
S - Cocoa, rich malt, and dark fruits
T - Deep roasted rich malts, cocoa, some dark fruit and a hint of booze which was amazing considering the 26%. I don't know how the do it.
M - They are genius's!! I have rarely (if ever) given a Struise beer less than a 4.5 in mouth feel. Perfect as always. fuck that, BEYOND PERFECT!! So rich dense and viscous like a milkshake that was giving my uvula a blow job.
O - Wonderful Beer, drank like it was 15% which would be dangerous if it was not so expensive. Thanks again Matt.

Photo of 4thelvofbeer
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a really nice beer, but it has a big, big alcohol punch!! It really needs to be smoothed out a bit and with some aging could be the best thing since bread was sliced, since fire was lit. I have not tried any of the Black Damnations above 5 (with the exception of a taste of the Special K --I think it is Black 11 or something).

A: Super black, wow...really nice!
S: Deep, dark chocolate and coffee.
T: Bam!!..strong on the alcohol..in its current age, overshadows the chocolate, coffee and toasted malt undertones
M: Reeling a bit from the alcohol, but nicely smooth
O: Really nice, but takes a hit from the over-taste of alcohol. Nice for a few sips, a taste or two, but really needs some mellowing.

I have opened bottles of this and I recommend two things: If you are able to get your hands on a bottle of this, save it for a while. It will last 10 years or more...let it mellow for a few; and if you open a 750ml bottle of this, make sure you have about 10 people to share it with!

Photo of Gfunk720
4.43/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle shared with some friends.

A- pours like used motor oil, some seriously viscous stuff. Surprisingly it pours with a nice head of some very dark bubbles. The beer coats the glass with an odd sheen, looks intense.

S- Smells pungent. Tons of oak and dark fruit. There is a smokey char scent to it. There is also some considerable booziness in the nose as well.

T- wickedly smooth, some plum, finishing with all sorts of oaky roasted character. Drinks like a beer with half of the ABV. A little sweetness, with some nice smokey notes.

M- Pretty crazy how smooth this is. Still a bit hot, but the carbonation and body are wonderful.

O- met all of my high expectations. This beer is pretty stupedpous, and goes down way too easily. Paired wonderfully with some chocolate. I plan to sit on my other bottle for a few more years to see if it mellows out.

Photo of xpimptastikx
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Ink black mess of syrup with a small ring of bubbles that rise in the glass.

S - Molasses, coffee, dark fruits, oak, and a surprisingly small amount of alcohol.

T - Chocolate covered raisins and every other sugary sweet you could possibly imagine. A nice bourbon-y oak alcohol heat finishes out.

M/D - Thick and oily with just enough carbonation. This is a massive beer that I was unsure of before I opened it, but it's the real deal. I've had 13-15%abv barleywine and stouts that were noticeably hotter than this monster.

Photo of Doodler
4.75/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 bomber shared by Bryan at his Black Damnation party tonight. One word - Wow. Or maybe two - Nice Beer. Pours a crazy, tar black thickness into my snifter. Translucent rainbows of sheen float around the top of the body like a BP oil spill. Nose is all coffee and cocoa - and with 26% ABV, loads of alcohol to boot. To quote my friend Logan - this is the bomb. Taste is complex and decadent.... thick and rich like hershey’s syrup with sweet chocolate, vanilla bean and italian cream-sprinkled espresso all rolled into one. Slick and sweet finish. Offers up a nice buzz. Fantastic stuff..

Photo of gyllstromk
5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My buddy Scott and I took a trip up to Poperinge for some beer visits, and biked up from the train station to De Struise. We had a tour and tasting by (I believe) Carlo, one of the brewers. After some amazing beers, they let us try a cooled keg of Black Damnation V to be sold that day.

This beer was ridiculously delicious. 26% goes almost unnoticed. Its very, very thick with flavors of roasted malt, dark fruit/cherry notes, vanilla. Huge tan head tops a black body. But this does not do it justice.

Take a pint of the best stouts on beer advocate and concentrate their flavors into a single shot, then you're somewhere close to this beer. It is revolutionary, and may well change the standard.

Photo of JasonLovesBeer
4.45/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I can't believe how drinkable this beer is for 26%. I've had 10% stouts that have tasted boozier.

Huge roast character and enough barley malt that you almost need to chew. Slightly grainy texture. Nice anise flavour in there that isn't too strong. And again, alcohol is amazingly masked - the huge flavour is the only indication of the ABV.

Photo of PapaEugene
5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this at the borefts beer festival. Ron brought me a glass and I passed after he explained to me what it was... why... simply becuase most freeze/thaw concentrated beers are alcoholic and this puts me off. He guaranteed that this was not the case with this beer.

Wow, this dark, thick brew amazed me. Black fruits up front, hint of cherries, roasted malts and some wooden tones and I almost could not believen that this beer was 26%!!??

Great job Struise. Like it!

Photo of GabrielM
4.53/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a Darkness snifter.

A - probably the darkest beer I've ever seen, which pours like black lava. Dark espresso head on top.

S - vanilla, coffee, chocolate, and BOOZE.

T - holy shit... this beer is no joke. Chocolate, vanilla, oak, maybe some whiskey and a ton of heat. I feel it in my chest and nose as if I took a shot of bourbon.

M - creamy and hot.

O - this beer is a trip. Whoever called it a whiskey milkshake was dead on. I'm not sure if my wife and I will have the strength to knock this one out.

Photo of 77black_ships
3.73/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Mid. 2012 Rating. 75 cl. serious looking bottle served room temperature into Struise glasses and split by 4. The “wax” is murder getting of with a knife, it more melted plastic than wax – frankly I do not think that it is possible that this is actually wax – it is pure overkill much like the beer itself. If you keep hitting against the way, it will fracture which appears to work much, much better. On top of the plastic it has a synthetic cork as well – is this intended to withstand the apocalypse or what? The beer itself produces surprisingly enough some brief very dark mocha if you pour it vigorously enough. The head is very short lived, remains only around the side, swirling results in crazy big legs, yes this is indeed quite boozy. It is pitch, pitch black, even held up to the light, no light penetrates it and it remains black as the darkest night. This is highly Impressive as far the pure opaqueness of the blackness goes but an imperial stout without a head is still not particularly appealing to the eyes, especially with some remnants of the head remaining stuck to the side. The smell is pure booze, maybe the coldness could have eased it a bit if we had fridged it but as it stands now this smells like vodka, pure alcohol vapours dominate everything, it is frankly not enjoyable. Beer should never smell like vodka as far as I am concerned but that might be just me, it is hard to get passed the alcohol, I am not picking up much else here but there is also some raw espresso and burned coffee grounds to be found here. Above all this smells like vodka. The beer itself is in some ways more about structure than about flavour – this reminds me how DB XI was back when it was first released – the body on this is thick. Pancake syrup, engine oil, thick viscous, it coats the whole mouth, flows viscous, coat the inside of the glass, seriously crazy viscous for any beer. Flavour starts out with lightly vinous coffee, lots of burned coffee and espresso, thick coffee, syrup goo, there is a touch of alcohol but the thickness appears to be hiding it, it is surprisingly light, unlike the smell, black liquorice, molasses, black 95 % chocolate, thick dark sugar, getting into a huge burned and roasted finish, this is the beer that should be called ruination, we did a small vodka tasting before this one and this one obliterated even the feeling of vodka in your mount instantly, kills any other flavours, more interesting than per se good. It is a bit of a paradoxical beer because the booze is not very noticeable, the alcohol doesn’t take full hold of you, it is objectionably not that hard to drink but this is really hard to drink maybe the taste is too much or it’s the body but you almost have to force yourself to drink and my glass didn’t come easily to me – it is very hard to imagine drinking a full bottle of this & that was the general opinion as well. This is not a real a beer anymore for me in that respect – it is hard to drink even in tiny quantities. It is not like this a scotch that I can open this and drink it over a prolonged period – I have to drink at once in one sitting. It is a modern day tickers beer – great in small portions amongst many other beer but sitting down like this and drinking a glass of this like we did more or less… I would have probably been more exited if it was my first time trying something like this. It was more of an experience than a beer and as an experience I would rate it much higher than the beer. I am glad to have tried it – wouldn’t pay the money that people are asking for this one.

Photo of 6string
3.31/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.5

Pours like 15-year-old used motor oil! Black! Little head once poured in the glass, which is dark brown in itself. Whoa was it thick! My tastemates all said it looked mean! (Ended up tasting mean, too!)

It burned on the lips, and kicked my ass! Do I shoot it or sip it??? The tastes are there...chocolate, caramel, coffee, even notes of cinnamon. The history is quite clear...the barrels keep the taste very potent but not overbearing. The first beer to warm my chest like my whiskey, it was awesome going down! An outstanding beer, I was extremely excited to be able to say I've tasted it. As it warms in the glass, the bite grows stronger.

Maybe this brew would be better appreciated by some experienced brewmasters, I thought it was a good beer but I can't justify rating it an A+ or 5, because I wouldn't buy a bottle again. Good, heavy content. Like my trip to the Grand Canyon, it's cool at first, but in the end, it's just another attraction based on hype that I don't fully understand. I rate my beer based on whether or not I'd drink or buy again, and I simply wouldn't do neither on this one. The two beers that ultimately create this beast are exquisite, but this monster wasn't for me.

Photo of Cmack15
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

wow a 26% abv with a head on it, that is some amazing beer engineering. Thick dark black hole like color, strong roasted dark malt with coffee, hints of bourbon, and vanilla in the nose. Taste is all the greatness of the aroma and more, so much to dissect with this beer. High abv makes this a slow sipper and final beer of the night, but what a beer it is. So thankful that I ended the night at the Alvinne fest with this beer.
cheers
Cory

Black Damnation V - Double Black from De Struise Brouwers
98 out of 100 based on 301 ratings.