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Outblack - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
OutblackOutblack

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

187 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 187
Reviews: 127
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.59%
Wants: 9
Gots: 40 | 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:
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: 187 | Reviews: 127 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by twelvsies:
Photo of twelvsies
twelvsies

Maine

3.7/5  rDev -6.8%

Collab beer from Struise and Stillwater?! Sign me up.

Pours a deep stout-y brown, almost black (as advertised) with an impressive pillowy head. Aroma is strong - I can't tell if it's an interesting mix of hops and Belgian yeast, or something else, perhaps a secret ingredient? Smells almost medicinal, or faint juniper, slightly off-putting or distracting actually, but underneath a robust maltiness comes through. At first sip however, I will retract my stance... The flavors seem to meld together pretty well. There is a nice hop profile battling the chocolaty malt base, and everything seems to come together. Smooth and velvety, a perfect balance to the richness of this beer. Has an edge to it for sure, a nice bitter kick, but not hot at all, impressive considering this is 10%. This is definitely a hybrid beer - not your average stout, and not really a black ipa. Pretty interesting and I guess what else would you expect other than a curveball from Struise / Stillwater. Worth noting, I'm enjoying this much more than a draught version I had a while back. I picked up a couple and put them in the cellar and after 6+ months I can only guess this would age really really well, and mellow out to be a unique and complex stout. Still curious as to what exactly I am smelling in the aroma... But I'll be content just to sip and enjoy this one.

12-05-2011 01:24:30 | More by twelvsies
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -9.8%

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.

07-16-2011 23:02:57 | More by oberon
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.4/5  rDev -14.4%

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.

05-08-2011 19:04:08 | More by Mora2000
Photo of GreenMountainBoy
GreenMountainBoy

Vermont

4/5  rDev +0.8%

05-03-2012 23:55:43 | More by GreenMountainBoy
Photo of ricoch3t
ricoch3t

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

01-01-2013 04:54:46 | More by ricoch3t
Photo of bpfrush
bpfrush

Wisconsin

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

11-15-2011 21:25:20 | More by bpfrush
Photo of ehammond1
ehammond1


4.08/5  rDev +2.8%

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.

02-06-2013 04:55:09 | More by ehammond1
Photo of jazzyjeff13
jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

3.65/5  rDev -8.1%

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.

09-16-2012 02:40:45 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of simoen
simoen

Belgium

4/5  rDev +0.8%

09-01-2013 08:52:33 | More by simoen
Photo of Fulkrum78
Fulkrum78

Tennessee

4.47/5  rDev +12.6%

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.

09-13-2011 03:47:44 | More by Fulkrum78
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.53/5  rDev -11.1%

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.

05-02-2013 20:54:44 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of acurtis
acurtis

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -11.8%

07-02-2013 01:36:28 | More by acurtis
Photo of 05Harley
05Harley

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev +0.8%

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.

04-07-2011 23:14:39 | More by 05Harley
Photo of Metalmonk
Metalmonk

North Carolina

4.3/5  rDev +8.3%

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.

07-16-2011 19:00:28 | More by Metalmonk
Photo of Mar02x
Mar02x

Netherlands

4.03/5  rDev +1.5%

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.

11-19-2011 22:11:23 | More by Mar02x
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.65/5  rDev -8.1%

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.

07-23-2011 00:39:21 | More by Sammy
Photo of Ciocanelu
Ciocanelu

Romania

3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

11-03-2013 21:26:43 | More by Ciocanelu
Photo of hooliganlife
hooliganlife

Missouri

4.08/5  rDev +2.8%

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.

02-10-2012 02:03:55 | More by hooliganlife
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

4.23/5  rDev +6.5%

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.

08-29-2012 00:42:12 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of rhong187
rhong187

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev -0.5%

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.

10-03-2011 17:48:45 | More by rhong187
Photo of zonker17
zonker17

Texas

4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

06-12-2012 00:31:18 | More by zonker17
Photo of ComposerZero
ComposerZero

Massachusetts

4.2/5  rDev +5.8%

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.

08-20-2011 23:46:49 | More by ComposerZero
Photo of GRG1313
GRG1313

California

2.6/5  rDev -34.5%

Lot: 01/01/2011/bottled 02/FF

Pours black with a thick, rich and firm khaki tan head. Lovely to look at and the head holds nicely.

Nose has an initial assertive camphor and mint character that, while interesting and pleasant, not nice on a beer. The mint mellows a bit with some air but the camphor "Vicks" nose persists, with undertones of mint chocolate. Some of the "sweet" character in the nose is the assertive alcohol which may be confused with fruit or esters.

Mouthfeel is medium full, with a nice rich feel but is overwhelmed by the mint/camphor nose that carries over into the flavors. Mint, camphor, bitter pine and undertones of purple plum and mint chocolate prevail in the flavor profile. The alcohol is evident and not well hidden and not helped by the camphor character which seems to highlight the assertive alcohol.

The chocolate and cooked stone fruit undertone teases but never comes forward to overpower the camphor/mint. Flavor profile is very herbal and medicinal.

I can't think of a food with which I'd drink this beer. Not terrible as perhaps a sipper or an appertiff perhaps. Flavor profile is simply too strange for me to consider drinking alone for pleasure or with a meal. Also a bit strange for even after dinner cigars. Perhaps I just "don't get" this one.

Having now "lived with it" in the glass for a while, I can only imagine it as an appertif. Final bitter pine finish saves it for me.

08-21-2011 21:05:50 | More by GRG1313
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev -1.8%

A: Otterbrown pour appears a deep black while sitting in the vessel. A light walnut brown head dominates the glass with a towering presence and soapy large voids along the glass walls. Retention is good while leaving whispy lashes of lace with spacious proximity.

S: Boozy sweet licorice and fresh prunes for first impressions on the nose. Alcohol is even toned at 10%. Burnt caramel raisins with a touch of bready yeastiness.

T: Flavor of sweet roastiness and chocolate, sugary figs with some dark fruit of prunes. Boozy licorice tones combine with raisins and a soft burbon presence and sweet dark malts. Dates, sweet plums, with a roasty fade closes things out with a good fresh bready yeastiness touch.

M: Syrupy slick mouthful, quiet carbonation nice resistance on the tongue.

O: Nice complexity of dark fruit and sweetness with a well mannered abv. Very easy to consume and enjoyable, smooth and polished.

02-18-2013 17:47:38 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +0.8%

On-tap at Pizzeria Paradiso.

A: The BSDA is dark, a deep brown color that doesn't quite verge on black. A thin white head comes with the pour.

S: The nose has chocolate, anise, raisins and hops, more or less in that order. Very rich, it lacks the telltale sage aroma that has defined many Stillwater collaborations. Very warming and roasted, but not scorched.

T: Sweet and dark, the ale capitalizes on its Belgian constitution, bringing candi sugars, raisons, anise and chocolate to the forefront. The ale, while dark, is not roasted, so there are not burnt off flavors to contend with. Several other reviews mention cherries, sorry but they missed me. The dark flavors are well at home amongst the caramel and biscuit malts. Hops aren't a key contributor. The like how cardamom-like flavors gradually work their way out, adding spicy depth to the ale.

M: The mouthfeel is spicy, but unlike all of Stillwater's previous offerings. This one doesn't rely on roasted malts or sage to make its mark, allowing the molasses and raisins to come to the forefront. I'd never guess that it is a 10% beer.

O: The intense strength drags the overall down a bit.

05-09-2011 22:41:08 | More by akorsak
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Outblack from De Struise Brouwers
89 out of 100 based on 187 ratings.