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Outblack - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
OutblackOutblack

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

129 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 129
Hads: 201
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 11%
Wants: 11
Gots: 43 | FT: 0
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:
Beer added by: beerpirates on 02-23-2011

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 129 | Hads: 201
Photo of jsh420
3.61/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours dark dark brown almost black with a a 1+ finger tan head that had great retention and left some spotted lacing

smells of dark sugary fruit with lots of xmas spice

taste dark fruit dark chocolate but again i get a spice that reminds me of xmas ales - i think maybe its allspice?

mouthfeel is light medium body with low carbonation - very smooth and creamy

overall - very different then the normal BSD - crazy drinkability @ 10% abv - maybe this one just threw me for a loop (482 characters)

Photo of VWBuggirl
3.61/5  rDev -7.7%
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. (636 characters)

Photo of impending
3.62/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

B

33cl into a wine glass. Pours a deep black walnut, dense light tan head retains nicely as a cap, ok lacing.

Aroma is yeasty, cocoa with a bit of citrus hops, burnt coffee and rye.

Taste includes dark fruits that were absent in the scent. Earthy with bitter chocolate and an underlying roastyness. A mild bitter in the finish but more of singed coffee than hops. Aftertaste fades fairly rapid. Medium bodied creamy mouthfeel.
No conclusion that this has the breeding of an ipa, seems more stoutish.
cheers
jd (514 characters)

Photo of sitarist
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another blind review via the blind bif. Thanks to Brez07.

Pours a deep brownish color, almost opaque. A finger of khaki colored head. The head falls to a top coating that leaves a few spots of lacing. A fairly mild smelling beer, it still has a lot going on. I smell raisin bran, plum wine, plastic, damp earthy forest, and root-beer. Sweet, and earthy...It tickles my nose. Root Beer, dark dry wine, herbs, raisins, and Asian sauce(star anise?). It has a lingering, earthy bitterness. Light to medium body, dry, low carbonation, slightly sticky, and mildly astringent. A well made beer with some good quality's; It just had a war with my taste-buds.

No idea what Im drinking, maybe a black IPA?

The reveal is an Outblack, a collaboration between De Struise, & Stillwater.

-- (779 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Creamy tan head with fantastic retention and nice lace. Cherry cola body.

S - Surprisingly bright, tart and tangy sour cherry.

T - Wow, just like the nose the taste is exceptionally bright. Concentrated cherry cola, brown sugar, and pop rocks. Aggressive sweetness. Lightly tart backend.

M - Lively carbonation and a medium frame. Thick sweetness.

O - A really interesting flavor profile, I can't say I've had a beer like this before, but overly sweet. (460 characters)

Photo of andrewinski1
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. Large light tan head looks very creamy and leaves behind lots of sticky lacing. The body is very dark brown with slight amber notes.

I got a bit of the hoppiness when I was pouring the beer but once it got in the glass this was quad all the way with lots of figs and raisins and brown sugar sweetness.

The taste is again very much quadlike but the hops do add a unique angle to the presentation in the start of the taste; adding slight vegetal qualities. The finish is mostly sweet with plum and raisin flavors; the fruitiness dominates. There is a slight minty flavor in the finish. Very unique.

Nice medium mouthfeel, this is pretty easy to drink with the crisp carbonation to go with it.

Not bad, I could see myself drinking this again and enjoying it if it weren't for the myriad other options available from De Struise. Still, a fun take on the style worth trying at least once. (908 characters)

Photo of twelvsies
3.66/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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. (1,349 characters)

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
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. (1,961 characters)

Photo of beerpirates
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cl bottel poured into my struise glass

Pours an almost black color, really dark brown - almost can't see through it. Some ruby highlights under the ample tan/off-white head. Head fades pretty quickly and leaves no lacing.
Smells of coriander and an almost heather aroma. Picking up a slight alcohol nose.
Alcohol bite upon first tasting it, but it is mellowed out quickly with the sweetness from the malt. Faint chocolate taste and a very faint hop presence.
Overall a decent tasting beer, but not too complex. Well at least not as much as I thought it would be. (569 characters)

Photo of cbutova
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been meaning to review this for a while.

A- Black ale into a pint glass with a massive mocha head with great retention. Tons of legs and a good coat of Belgian lace.

S- Pine and lemon lime up front and a dark roast malt background. Very strong and unique. Mint.

T- Like nothing I have ever tasted. An insane lemon lime presence with a massive pine hop flavor as well. Roast malt somehow takes a backseat to the pine needles lemons. Lemon zest, slight spice and raisin.

MF- Foamy moderately thick body with good carbonation. Fairly bitter after taste.

Intense lemon lime pine flavor on top of a solid dark beer. Slight Belgian flavor but this insane hop flavor dominates with lemon lime pine straight up. (708 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I really need a Struise glass.

Beer served in a New Belgium tulip. Beer is black and aggressively carbonated with a tan head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass.

Aroma is sweet but has a tea like bitterness to it.

Beer is medium in body with a mildly dry finish, the bitterness at the back is tea like with only a mild hop presence. The entire beer has this ashy roastiness sort of bitter throughout. It is interesting but not great. I've had a lot of better beers from both Stillwater and Struise. (507 characters)

Photo of UnDeadly
3.69/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, Glass stein

Appearance - Strong black, though put up to a light I can see about halfway through to the underside of the foam. Very strong head, about 4 fingers. Persistent throughout the beer, though minimal lacing.

Smell - A little bit of alcohol, an interesting burnt toffee and black licorice smell. Minor oak/woody notes. Not overly impressive.

Taste - OK, the notes I got in the smell come together quite nicely. Not much in the front, then a nice creamy, oat-y middle that finishes with light toffee, dark chocolate, and black licorice notes. I don't like black licorice, but this is well executed. No real coffee bitterness that seems to be common in Black IPAs. Generalized bitterness I would guess from hops, but sorta hard to pick out any nuances there.

Mouth Feel - The best part of the beer in my opinion. Though well-carbonated, no sting. Quite creamy, moderate body. No alcohol burn at all, despite being 10%

Overall - A very nice, fun beer that was a great drink. I can appreciate it's execution, a very interesting take on the style. Still, I would like to see more hop notes come through, which is a flaw I find generally in the style...the dark malt notes seem to kill a lot of nice hop notes. Would drink again for sure, but not my favorite iteration of the style. (1,302 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 4/16/2011 at Armsby Abbey in Worcester served in an over-sized wine glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish brown color, short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains sour cherries, roasted malts, dark fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts off with a burst of tart cherries. Then some sweet flavors of chocolate and other dark fruits come in next. There are touches of hops and Belgian yeast in the background. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. The after-taste is tart but slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, strong kick, not the best representation of two styles that they crossed, it’s a decent beer and it’s something a bit different but not something I would want to drink regularly. (887 characters)

Photo of jlindros
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Somehow never reviewed this beer, and this one has been there a while. Lot 01/01/2011, bottled 02/FF.

Pours an off white fizzy slight fluffy 1 finger head that fades pretty slowly, nice soapy lacing as well, pitch black beer with no light getting through.

Nose is interesting and different than I remember, maybe a bit too aged although this was supposed to age well... I get fresh sweet bread, toasty grainy malts, hint of biscuit a bit of a raisiny fruit, mild cinnamon and baking spices as well, mild toasted cinnamon raisin bread interestingly, some caramel, hint of cocoa, and little phenolic booze.

Taste brings more dark malts, creamy and a little roasty, mild acrid roast and burnt flavors, caramel, burnt coffee, etc. Then more toasted malts, little sweet bread again but not nearly like the nose, toasty, biscuity, etc. There is a fairly strong warming tingly phenolic booze still which is surprising after all those years on it, a little chemically booze and quite hot. A mild fruity raisiny flavor too, boozy raisin and very light baking spices. Hint of cocoa and mild bitter acrid roast round off the flavors. Finish is dry-ish, quite hot and boozy, bit more bitterness lingering too and some dark roasty malts.

Mouth is med to a bit fuller bod, tons of carbonation, tons of hot booze too.

Overall not like I remember, not sure if this was a bad batch, or the aging didn't do it well. Gotta re-review when I find fresher version or on tap hopefully sometime. (1,477 characters)

Photo of mavbrew
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep dark brown, once in the glass looks black. The head is nice and full, light tan in color and slowly dissipates.

S: Roasted malts are coming through, with some piney hop scents and some Belgian yeast as well.

T: Very interesting taste, sweet and boozy up front with hints of caramel malts coming through, followed by the hops and yeast.

M: Light to medium in body with average carbonation.

D: This beer is very different, has a lot of interesting characteristics. It's very malty, but also has some hoppy tastes as well. Not my favorite but it was pretty solid overall. (584 characters)

Photo of oline73
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Max's, continuing my string of B+ beers.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with some light coming through at the edges. There is a very thin layer of head.

Smell: Some mildly roasty malt with herbal hops. A bit spicy, very faint.

Taste: Some caramel and roast hit the tongue first. There are some herbal hops in there, but this was described as an IPA of sorts, so I thought there would be a little bit more. There is a spice from the yeast and a hint of molasses. Can't taste the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with very little carbonation. Mildly dry finish.

Overall: Was expecting some more hops. Lots of malt sweetness and herbal notes. Still very good and I would have more. (708 characters)

Photo of petacutlasaurus
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just had a glass from this super solid collaboration on draft at ChurchKey. I was pretty bummed when I missed it at Paradiso-Georgetown's taps, so it was great to see it on the menu somewhere else. Can't wait to find a bottle, as well.

Overall, this beer had a lot of similarities to Stillwater's Existent - one of my faves among Strumke's beers. Very spicy, dark fruit, but where Existent has that thin farmhouse body and carbonation, the outblack is much creamier and softer. (478 characters)

Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, lot 01/01/2011. Pours cloudy fairly pitch black color with a nice 2 finger fairly dense dark khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big raisin, chocolate, roasted malt, light char, brown sugar, cinnamon, clove, pepper, herbal, earth, and yeast spiciness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity; very unique. Taste of dark chocolate, roasted malt, cocoa, light char, raisin, prune, caramel, toast, coffee, brown sugar, pepper, clove, herbal, earth, and yeast spiciness. Lingering notes of chocolate, roasted malt, cocoa, light char, raisin, prune, caramel, toast, coffee, brown sugar, clove, pepper, earth, herbal, and yeast spiciness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice flavor balance and complexity; with a nice malt/spiciness balance; and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy and lightly chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is extremely well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a very good Belgian dark ale. Nicely complex with unique flavor and nice balance; and very smooth to sip on. I enjoyed this quite a bit. (1,262 characters)

Photo of mrand01
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330mL bottle poured into a generic Crate & Barrel tulip.

A: Pours with about 3/4" tan head. Body is dark brown, almost black. Lots of head retention a couple minutes after the pour. Pretty sticky, decent lacing.

S: A mix of dark fruit and citrus hops. This is a bit of a "hybrid" belgian black IPA, and it smells as such.

T: Malty with big dark fruit tones. Fades into a fairly hoppy aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied with prickly carbonation.

O: This is pretty good...not as hoppy as I would have liked, however, it could be that this beer sat for too long, losing some of it's hop character in the process. What I'm left with is a mildly hoppy dark ale. (655 characters)

Photo of crusian
3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from one of the store in Brussels...
Pours a nice blackness with about 3 fingers if head that stick around for quite a while.
Nose is rather light, with some spices... nutmeg, allspice
Taste is a creaminess that is unique. A nice Belgian yeast infused light stout flavor with some coffee, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon...
This is incredibly hard to describe, because it is so damn complex. Bottles have zero cherry tartness, wondering about the taps out there... as this doesn't seem to be any kind of a sour. The abv on this is nowhere to be found, at all... nicely done.
Glad I picked some of these up... definitely worth looking for one. (645 characters)

Photo of billab914
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle into a Redhook glass. It poured close to black in color with a huge, foamy and fizzy tan head filling 2/3 of the glass.

The aroma has a lot of toffee, licorice, caramel and candi sugar sweetness to it. I get good dose of pine coming from the hops, as well a little bit of a mint flavor coming through as well.

The taste shows more of the toffee and pine like hoppiness to it up front. midway I start to get more of a chocolaty, caramel, sweet flavor to it that lingers into the finish. Moderate amount of Belgian yeast spice is present as well as a bit of the minty flavors I got in the aroma.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a pretty good beer, but not an amazing one. They brought all the flavors together pretty well in it which was nice. Very interesting and unique flavors to it. (849 characters)

Photo of beerthulhu
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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. (919 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin off white head that left some lacing on the surface and a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass; the lacing never completely faded away.
S: There are light aromas of dark fruits in the nose. Hops are not detectable.
T: The taste tastes like a pure hybrid between a Belgian Ale and an American IPA because there are flavors of dark fruits with notes of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and slightly smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is a good hybrid between the two styles and is very easy to drink. (650 characters)

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

De Struise and Stillwater my intrest is piqued.

Pours a sold super brown (almost black) with a quarter inch of head. Decent lace for a 10%.

I can't really say the smell does much for me (and this is my second bottle). Band-aid, crest toothpaste not for me.

The taste does not follow suit (which is great). Solid dark, fruity malts, slight chocolate, candy sugar, roasted coffee, citrus and herbal hops are all pretty noticable. This beer packs in a buttload of flavors. Very smooth going down.

Stinky (gross) but tasty (not gross). A very interesting beer that I was very glad to try. I know they have another collaboration coming out soon and I can't wait. (661 characters)

Photo of pixieskid
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured into my De Struise "Cervoise" glass.

Deep brown color, almost black with a foamy light beige head.

Nose: Notes of spice and dark, ripe fruits dominate (raisins & black currant) a touch of chocolate; don't pick up on any hop aroma...probably due to the fact this bottle has been around for a while.

Taste: Mellow milk chocolate upfront, dark fruits, a touch piny resign and citrus hops balanced with a brown sugar sweetness and mild bitteness. Finishes with some roasted malts, brown sugar, and lingering burnt toast/ bakers chocolate...some warming alcohol as well.

Mouthfeel: insanely creamy and smooth; just amazing.

Overall: as it warms up, the complexities really come out but the real draw to this beer is it's ridiculously creamy/milky mouthfeel that makes it quite memorable. (794 characters)

Outblack from De Struise Brouwers
88 out of 100 based on 129 ratings.