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Outblack - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
OutblackOutblack

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

195 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 195
Reviews: 128
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.62%
Wants: 11
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Collaboration brew with Stillwater Artisanal Ales (USA).

This Belgian Strong Ale was married to a still young but powerful style, the Black IPA.

You take a chocolate sweet strong ale together with the high & strong hop shedule of an IPA, and you get a fantastic result.

(Beer added by: beerpirates on 02-23-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 | Reviews: 128 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by VWBuggirl:
Photo of VWBuggirl
3.64/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This pours a nice dark brown that is quite cloudy. You can hardly see light through it. There is a small creamy tan head that doesn't last long, but leaves a nice lacing on the glass.

This has the expected sweet scent to it for such a high abv brew. I get hints of licorice and maple syrup. This is about what I expect from this beer.

There is not as much sweetness as I would expect from the scent. It has a fair amount of plum to it that is quite enjoyable.

There is a nice sharpness to the carb that helps break through the thick sweetness and helps to balance out the overall feel.

Overall, this is a very nice, balanced beer.

VWBuggirl, Mar 28, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet a deep garnet infused black with a one finger sticky beige head that left broken lace as it settles.Phenols and candied sugar in the nose,no black ipa element wich I was hoping for.Candied sugar and sweet cakey flavors at the onset,some clove-like phenols come in the rather dry finish.Well I dont see any black ipa in this beer but its a pretty good Belgian dark,I would buy again...I think.

oberon, Jul 17, 2011
Photo of Mora2000
3.4/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a tan head. I really like the aroma. I get a lot of brown sugar, molasses and dark cherry notes. There is also some candy sugar in the aroma. The flavor is a mix of candy sugar and toffee. There is also a strong ginger ale quality to the flavor with is unexpected. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Not bad, but not as good as I hoped it would be.

Mora2000, May 08, 2011
Photo of ricoch3t
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

ricoch3t, Jan 01, 2013
Photo of bpfrush
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

bpfrush, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Texas Wine
Carlsbad, CA

(Aged for 1+ year)

Nearly black in color with a huge, quickly forming, very persistent dark brown head of very large bubbles. Once this recedes, it leaves messy splotches of big, sticky bubbles all the way down the glass. Pretty, though perhaps some excessive carbonation.

A very interesting, complex, and unique aroma: initially, there's good amounts of earth, mint, tobacco, and faded hop character, but as the beer warms some roast, earthy yeast, clove, and dried leaves come to the forefront. There's perhaps some pepper and floral notes as well. Like I said, this is quite complex.

Lots of dark roasted dark malt, toast, some clove, anise?, dried leaves, and tobacco in the flavor, with incredibly well hidden alcohol. I probably wouldn't have aged this one on purpose if I had been aware they used the term "black IPA," in the bottle description, but it has aged incredibly well, turning into something quite complex: a Belgian, hoppy, black saison, if you will.

Medium bodied with moderate/high carbonation, though not at all prickly. Long, lingering roasty finish. A joy to tip.

With very few expectations, I came away loving this beer.

ehammond1, Feb 06, 2013
Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 330ml bottle with a BB of Feb 2016. Bottled on 1/1/11 (?) - New Year's day? Acquired from a Belgian webshop and cellared in my garage for quite a long time. A collaboration brew between De Struise and Stillwater - a blend of Belgian strong dark ale and US black ale. Not sure what the bizarre eclipse picture on the label is supposed to represent.

Poured into a Duvel tulip. A thick layer of yeast sediment clings to the bottom of the bottle. Dark brown; appears totally black in the glass. Produces a huge head of creamy tan foam with great retention; this slowly reduces to a thick surface layer. Aroma of sweet, faintly fruity malt with a herbal character. Notes of brown sugar, dried fruit, mild liquorice and hints of coriander, peel, bay leaves, eucalyptus, rosemary/thyme and earthy yeast. A warming whiff of booze in the background, though this blends nicely with the other aromas.

Tastes of rich dark malt with a fruity, herbal character and a dry, bitter finish. Notes of molasses, brown sugar, roasted malt, coffee/cocoa, coriander, orange peel, herbs and earthy yeast. A warming, solventy hint of alcohol in the background. Pretty dry, with a restrained bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is thick and smooth, with a spicy quality. Feels somewhat flat and undercarbonated. Rather astringent, with an aftertaste of sweet malt and a herbal bitterness.

Unusual - rather hard to place this beer. To be honest I have a hard time even picturing the style that this is categorised as, which doesn't help. It's big and well crafted, just odd. The herbal notes are the mystery, as the ingredient list only mentions grains and hops. I was expecting more of a black IPA character, but perhaps the hop aromas have faded and left a herbal flavour behind. Sweet, fruity and boozy, but dry and herb-like. I'm surprised there isn't more of a yeast ester presence. Overall, it's charismatic but weird. Worth trying once, though I'm not sure I'd revisit this.

jazzyjeff13, Sep 16, 2012
Photo of simoen
4/5  rDev +1%

simoen, Sep 01, 2013
Photo of Fulkrum78
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle I picked up at Bruisin Ales. Pours pitch black out of the bottle with a thick tan head that hangs around. Smell is complex, and very interesting. Somewhat piney, kinda reminds me of something I can't put my finger on. Taste is thick and rich, almost syrupy in the mouthfeel. Very full bodied. More of those pine notes. Interesting, lots of complexity.

Fulkrum78, Sep 13, 2011
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lot 01/01/2011 bottles 02/FF
(Served in a snifter)
A- This beer pours a opaque black body with a sea of microbubbles that support a thick meniscus of beige cream.

S- The clean dry earthy black molasses hint has some dark raisins and tannin hints come through as it opens.

T- The soft dark roasted toffee flavor has as slight chewy oats taste with some soft tartness mixed in and a dark dry candy note in the finish. There is some woody molasses flavor that takes on more of a black licorice aftertaste. Some vinous sherry hints grow in the finish as it warms aswell.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with no alcohol heat till it is pretty warm.

O- The flavor is very light with lots mysterious qualities. There are lots of hints and nice flavors but it is all very soft and a bit underwhelming. Some dark sugar and different grains are pleasant but just too soft to get much character.

rhoadsrage, May 02, 2013
Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

acurtis, Jul 02, 2013
Photo of RobertH50
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

RobertH50, Aug 29, 2014
Photo of 05Harley
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 1/1/2011

Purchased through Struise Yeast Shop, Belgium

Price - $12.87 U.S. including shipping/bottle.

The appearance is a deep burgandy color with a 1 inch creamy tan head. Lacing tries to stick around but struggles. Fairly clean with no sediment or floatables evident.

An intense aroma of ginger hits the nose, wow. Banana, brown sugar, dark fruits, hops and a fair amount of spice follow it up. The smell is very different from anything I've ever experienced. It reminds me of incense.

Full flavored and closely resembles the aroma. Ginger, spices, raisin, hops, alcohol, all there.

The mouthfeel starts off smooth and with very little heat considering the alcohol content. The carbonation is lite and near perfect for the style. The finish is slitely bitter and dry.

Overall this was a unique beer. Not what I expected but good. Having said that it did quickly vanish from my glass. I have several more and will revisit it through out the summer.

05Harley, Apr 08, 2011
Photo of Metalmonk
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks a beaut! Maybe not black, but an incredibly deep dark brown for sure, with a firm, foamy, filthy-white (as in Peanuts' Pigpen "white") head that leaves bits of lace as it lessens.

Whoa...didn't expect such a minty vibe in the aroma, but there it is...spearmint and peppermint, with a kind of medicinal and/or intensely herbal edge. Not sure what to think, and certainly no idea what to expect, taste-wise.

The peculiar but pleasing minty vibe hangs around in the taste, and I guess this is the hop character. It transforms on the tongue into a more black licorice sort of vibe than I'm picking up in the smell. Yet another example of a Belgian brewer taking the hop-centric inclinations of younger, cutting-edge US brewers and incorporating that into their own unique approach (I do realize this was a collaboration with Nevada's Stillwater brewery). But there's more, much more: something like chili pepper-infused chocolate is a major component of the flavor, and there's a sweeter, gooier chocolate/fudge vibe as well, and also bittersweet baking chocolate. So, yeah, there's a chocolaty thing going on here. Seriously bright herbal notes take up their share of space, and wow, despite the uniqueness and peculiarities of this beer, it remains totally balanced, totally drinkable.

Texturally this is just terrific. Super-smooth, ultra-silky, it glides across the tongue and down the throat like liquid velvet. I wonder if the use of four different malts (barley, oat, wheat, rye) is a huge part of why this feels the way it does. And come to think of it, those are probably adding to the exotic taste of the beer just as much as the hops and yeast.

Drinking Outblack, you feel you're experiencing something rare and special, something worth taking slow, taking care to contemplate each sip but not think too hard about it and just enjoy it. Another totally unique and special Belgian ale. Oh yeah, I dig. This is just great. Highly recommended.

Metalmonk, Jul 16, 2011
Photo of Mar02x
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A pitch brown beer with a missive beige colored head. The retention is very nice to watch because it goes so slowly.

S - A strong fruit like smell mixed with pinely hops, very inviting. I could be a black IPA.

T - A strong taste of what? I can't really bring it home. I taste spices & hops. Who matters anyway is tastes great and the 10% ABV is nowhere to be seen. I would say there is some red pepper in there as well.

M - Medium bodied with prickly carbonation that fits the taste nicely.

O - A good beer and surprisingly different.

Mar02x, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of mattfancett
2.5/5  rDev -36.9%

mattfancett, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A black beer really, with a bit more complexity. A little horse smell. Big oapy head. average mouthfeel. Some licorice, cinammon, nutmeg, roast. Decent drinkability.
Not one of the best Struise, Liam's bottle, hopefully this one not too expensive as the others.

Sammy, Jul 23, 2011
Photo of Ciocanelu
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Ciocanelu, Nov 03, 2013
Photo of hooliganlife
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a dark thick black with 2+ inches of slow dissipating head. took a good 5 minutes just to start drinking this. great retention and lacing.

sweet dark fruit, slightly funk yeast and candy like malt.

very spicy through out, mainly up front. hints of black licorice. spice and berry carry through out and finish with a hint of mint and charred coal.

velvet like with a mild to moderate carbonation.

very nice, a bit of a slow sipper but perfect for a cold evening.

hooliganlife, Feb 10, 2012
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.23/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 mL bottle poured into a De Struise chalice. I love it when I coordinate. Bottle dated 1/1/2011, maybe?

Appearance - Dark brown with a huge khaki head. Settles quickly, but never vanishes. Contiguous layer of foam on top that climbs the sides of the glass.

Smell - Whoah. I don't even know what I'm smelling. Like a fruity coffee aroma with strong herbal tea notes. Remarkable.

Taste - More along the lines of a BSDA, I suppose, but still way out there in terms of flavors. Coffee is strong. Herbal hops are also strong. Hefty fruit presence, but hell if I can identify what it is. This is a very interesting. Maybe cola? I think that's what it reminds me of.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy body. Medium carbonation. Delicously creamy.

Overall - I'm impressed. Struise never ceases to amaze me the way they flip styles around. I expected a standard BSDA, but this is truly fascinating. Herbal, cola, tea, and coffee all at once with a nice earthiness. I'd love to have this again.

Alieniloquium, Aug 29, 2012
Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Kegatron, Nov 20, 2014
Photo of rhong187
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served in a tulip glass

A - fairly aggressive pour without much head rentention. very black (as the name implies)

S - Smells very nice, with light notes of chocolate and slight vanilla. I read that this is a hyrid of a stout and black IPA, but I don't detect any hop cdharacter whatsoever

T - you get hit with roasted malts and chocolate right away, but again, not much hoppiness.

M- medium bodied, light carbonation.

Nice collab, and I hope to see more in the future.

rhong187, Oct 03, 2011
Photo of zonker17
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

zonker17, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of ComposerZero
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark and brooding. . . a beer to be reckoned with - if you don't dive in and figure this beast out, this beer will be lost on you. But those with the fortitude will be amply rewarded.

Thick pour of espresso color with a head like you would expect from a double-shot. Big malty molasses on the nose with wonderful scents of smokey hops, honeysuckle, herbs (thyme, oregano, and a bit of lavender), and ash. The palate is intensely dark, dry, and slightly bitter with tons of ashy molasses flavor. The nuances are where the beer really excels with notes of cacao bean, smoke, Christmas spices, and butterscotch all framed by a nice lift everything so things don't get too heavy. The malts continue all the way through the finish as smoke and ash linger on the back end.

At first taste this beer is a tad overwhelming. But once you sit and break this motha done, it is complex enough to keep your attention. That being said. . . it needs your attention.

ComposerZero, Aug 21, 2011
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Outblack from De Struise Brouwers
89 out of 100 based on 195 ratings.