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Outblack - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
OutblackOutblack

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BA SCORE
89
very good

199 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 199
Reviews: 129
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.62%
Wants: 11
Gots: 42 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 199 | Reviews: 129
Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
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.

Photo of FreshHawk
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep brown, almost black with some sediment. Full, creamy, frothy, almost meringue like, light khaki colored head. Great retention leaving a nice lacing.

S - Starts with a great mix of dark fruit (raisin, fig and date) and grapefruit citrus. Slight fruit punch-like and a blueberry/pomegranate juice (maybe cranberry) aroma. Touches of coffee and chocolate along with a touch of roasted malt. Interesting.

T - Starts with an interesting fruitiness. Dark fruit (fig especially and a fair amount of raisin and date) along with citrus (grapefruit and orange). The combination of the two provides that blueberry/pomegranate/cranberry juice kind of flavor. I enjoy the mix. Mid sip and in the background throughout there is a nice earthy and sweet cocoa and coffee flavor. Sweet, tart and earthy mixture.

M - Light to medium body and above average carbonation. Slightly sticky finish but there is a prickley feel mid sip.

D - I throughly enjoyed the bottle and it went a little too fast. I liked the mix of flavors and thought it was well balanced and enjoyed how the flavors complimented each other.

Notes: Overall I quite enjoyed this and thought it was pretty unique. Two different styles mixed well (in my opinion) creating something unique. Not sure how often I'll get this (price) but I'm really glad I gave it a try.

Photo of notchucknorris
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nearly black dark brown color with a huge tan head that took almost 10 minutes to settle.

S: At first, a faint citrus hop aroma coupled with a lot of freshly baked whole wheat bread. As it warms, some darker quad-like aromas emerge. Dark fruit, chocolate, bananas, figs and a hint of booze.

T: Not getting a lot of the IPA here, but it's a tasty beer anyways. Lots of dark fruit, roasted malt, yeast, bread and some subdued hop resins and charred grain on the finish.

Photo of Casey10
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wicked beer nice intense head once poured into a tulip.

Frothy head and pitch black so light shines through.

Light smell some sugars as well as light chocolae notes.

Taste masks the alcohol way too well.

While it is a bit pricey another great brew from Destruise as well as a nie colab brew from stillwater.

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.

Photo of Philousa
4.87/5  rDev +23%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Inky black in the glass, with a hint of purple in the light, and with a lot of tiny bubbles. Let's just say it's well carbonated. First thing my nose says is mint. Kinda strange for a beer of any sort, but it's an interesting, inviting aroma. I also get chocolate, toast, vanilla and slight sugar, alcohol and, oddly enough, rosemary aromas. Creamy and toasty flavors fade to chocolate, caramel, and vanilla. I get some of the spices described earlier, but it's muddled and I'm not able to pick them out as easily. An alcoholic burn lingers on the palate, warmly reminding you of the nectar you just consumed.

This is one hell of a beer. It's categorized as a Belgian strong dark, but it reminds me more of an imperial porter because of the mouthfeel and lack of yeast flavors. It seems to me that the ingredients had more to do with the flavor of this beer than normal, which is not typical of a Belgian beer, but I ain't complaining. It's very complex and smooth. I can't say enough how smooth this is, and I guess that's where you can distinctly label this a Belgian, as the yeast has so much to do with the mouthfeel. I tried this on nitro tap at City Beer Store but didn't take notes. It's just as smooth from the bottle. I usually can tell that one thing or another offset a high ABV, but this beer conceals the alcohol on all fronts. It's careful to remind you of its potency in the lingering aftertaste, though. This is a beer with many levels and one which I hope to be enjoying many times in the future.

Photo of rudzud
3.41/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bottle of this at Julio's. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a deep, dark rich brown. It looks black with a nice clear deep brown along the edge. There was a two finger mocha almost rocky head that faded to leave nice clouding and minimal side lacing.

S - Dark sweet malts, chocolate, alcohol. No hop presence.

T - More of the sweet, almost candi malts, and rich belgian chocolate. Some light belgian yeasts. Again, no hops at all, and more ABV on the pallet.

M - Good amount of carbonation, slightly sticky. Mor eof the higher ABV. I've seen it hidden better.

O - Overall, this wasnt that bad of a beer. Just, for the price its not worth it. And of course, it didnt deliver on its promise of being a belgian strong dark black IPA. Pass.

Photo of Knapp85
3.96/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured out with a bit foamy tan colored head with a rich dark looking body. The lacing is light, nothing too impressive really. The smell of the beer has a little bit of roasted aromas and a light sweetness too. The taste of the beer actually impressed me. As I drank it there was a nice amount of chocolate upfront, with some big herbal rye flavors in the aftertaste. The aftertaste almost reminded me of anise or menthol. The mouthfeel of this beer had a good thickness to it. Overall the beer was smooth and and creamy, really pretty good in my opinion.

Photo of ptykozoon
2.94/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours the darkest brown with red bits here and there. Nice head, bits of lacing.

It's a De Struise, so basically nothing on the nose. Maybe some burnt sugar.

Subtle. Toffee, burnt raisin, prune, coffee. Lasting cloyingly sweet finish.

Medium bodied, medium carbonation.

Nicely done, but a tad boring.

Photo of jsh420
3.61/5  rDev -8.8%
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

Photo of ShanePB
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at Capone's in a 13 oz snifter glass.

A: Dark brown, borderline black body with a very light tan head. Some sporadic lacing is left behind and a thin retention ring lines the edges of the beer. As confusing as the style is, it's a nice appearance that defines both of its parts.

S: Spearmint, dark chocolate, spice, floral hops, spruce and pine all intertwine into a complex and delicious smelling beer. Again, an identity crisis seems to emerge but the beer does a fine job of blending everything together.

T: An initial spicy Belgian flair is evident with light yeasty notes. Some lightly toasted malts, mint, wood and a touch of sap all come through in the flavor. Rounding out the back end is a touch of sticky syrup. It's unique, complex and oddly very good in terms of flavor.

M: Prickly and bubbly, almost on the lighter end of a medium bodied beer. Although, the finish is really nice and clean, that almost has a certain crispness to it.

This was certainly an interesting beer and the cross between the styles really make this unique. I enjoyed the floral, piney and hoppy nature of the beer with the dark roasted malts. Some defining flavors that took this above my expectations.

Photo of Fulkrum78
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
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.

Photo of bbeane
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured into an oversized snifter... copper in color with a light brown head that appears and disappears quickly leaving little lacing. No light is visible through it when held up to the light

S- Malty aroma, with notes of dark fruits, plums and cherries and hints of boozy heat

T- Malty, but not as malty and sweet as other strong darks that I've had. Actually has a distinct amount of bitterness coming through along with a hint of booze

M- Light in carbonation with a medium body

O- I got this as a freebee from a buddy, and am glad I got to try it... that being said, I'm glad I didn't pay what places are asking for it. It was decent, but not worth the $$$ they were asking for it. I will say, it did grow on me a bit as I drank it thought

CHEERS!!

Photo of kiddynamite920
3.31/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Interesting idea for a collaboration beer. Not two styles I would expect to marry well.

A: Has the deep, red color of a BSDA with possibly a slightly darker appearance from the Black IPA. The head is a splotchy tan, with some effects of lacing on the glass.

S: Has a surprising tartness followed by a bit of roasted malts. You can really pick out each style of beer here. The slightly citrusy hops are taking this beer to a place it shouldn't be, way too strange on the nose. When you can focus on the BSDA part of the beer, it becomes quite enjoyable. The problem is that it's hard to do that. Definitely full of dark fruits and a lovely bready character from the yeast. Has some delicate apple and pear aromas that sneak through, just can't get over the Black IPA layered into it.

T: A bit sweet and almost cloying, the roasty malts don't really come through strongly here. A mouthful of dark fruits and some funky Belgian yeast qualities. Small amount of cherry tartness that fades into a chocolatey, dry cocoa bitterness. Since the BIPA doesn't show itself so much on the palate, the beer actually showcases the nice BSDA aromas that were found earlier.

M: Somehow light but syrupy at the same time. Finishes with a bit of prickle and leaves the lips sticky.

O: A bit too wild of an idea here. I don't necessarily find the flavors of either beer to shine or accommodate each other well. Flavors are all across the board, lacks cohesion.

Photo of GRG1313
2.61/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

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.

Photo of ComposerZero
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
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.

Photo of beerdrifter
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at my favorite beer store in Belgium, Dranken Geers. Deep dark brown, almost black pour with huge caramel colored three finger head with great retention and lacing. Very unique, spicy, complex nose dominated by licorice, cola, and raisins, with a hint of black cherries, pine, alcohol and chocolate. The taste is much the same, again dominated by the licorice and dark fruits. Also getting some cinnamon, nutmeg, cherries, pine, coffee and chocolate. It's a little thin in the mouthfeel, but the alcohol is well hidden and it's pretty drinkable for a 10% ABV. It's kind of a cross between a Black IPA and a Christmas beer. Very unique!

Photo of Thehuntmaster
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle 10,0% Abv.
Served lightly chilled in a tulip wine glass.
Batch 01/01/2011 BBE 01/02/2016

Appearance: Living up to its name, Outblack appears black in the glass, but transforms into a very dark red when backlight. As with all Struise beers the head is perfect. Massive, creamy light tan head that displays superb retention and leaves good lace.

Smell: Wow, not what I expected at all. Lots of chocolate, dark fruit (liqueur cherries, figs and plums), rum and tons of spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and cardamom). Smoke, licorice and piney hops are noted in smaller quantities.
This is really one of the stranger smells I have come across - but who is to say that’s a bad thing? I actually really like this. The combination of chocolate and pepper reminds me a little of Lindt's chili chocolate.

Taste: After the smell, I guess I shouldn't be surprised at how far off my expectations were on the taste. Bitter chocolate, roasted malt, molasses, touch of coffee, cherry, raisin, cardamom, nutmeg and a touch of hops in the finish. Great Abv. cover up, alcohol is not noted at all.

Mouthfeel: Just fuller than a medium body and quite sticky. Carbonation is typically Belgian, but a little too much for my taste.

Overall: Struise has yet to disappoint me - another great beer that I would like to have again.

Photo of wisrarebeer
4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

$6.99 for an 11.2 oz bottle. Lot 01/01/2011

A: black, opaque color with nice full rocky tan head that dissipated but kept it all the way
S: incredibly full and rich, intriguing with deep roasted malt, caramelization, EtOH, dense
T: very good beer - deep roasted malts up front that carries through with nice bitter finish but not overpowering, reminded me of a bitter chocolate pudding, EtOH is very noticeable in finish, this probably should age for a few years and will be amazing, drinks well beyond its age
M: chewy and creamy at the same time, very smooth
O: very good beer

To my taste this is not a black IPA as described. reminds me more of an aged old ale and a young American imperial stout.

Photo of cavedave
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown, light tan head, but a beautiful lather it is, thick and a couple inches tall. Slathery lace clings in sheets.

Nose is med. for style, full of raisins, candi, figs, light spicy alcohol, toffee/caramel, and floral hops wayyy in the background.

Med. strength taste, but delicious, starts candi and raisins, floral jumps the game, chocolate, even a hint of cofee. Luscious yeasty tart, a clean tart, yummy tart, adds just the right flavor to the mix. Heavenly.

Incredible start to our mini tasting of big beers. Get this if you can, it is not epic, but magnificent none the less.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

opaque dark black liquid coming forward. Very large three inch plus head of off white colored froth coming over the top and settling down after what seemed like forever into a nice little layer of about a half inch in height. Excellent side glass presentation as well.

The aroma was rich, big notes of coffee and chocolate in here for sure. Semi sweet with a notch of bitter hops underlying it and loaded with a smoked, almost peat like aroma as well. Notes of dark figs and prunes rattling around in here as well. The flavor was about as spot on as I could imagine. Rich notes of coffee, dark German chocolate and figs were the big players here. The warmer it got the more it seemed to pick up on that smoked like flavor. Notes of earthy hops, light but noticeable were swirling around in here, really taking hold and pushing this to the forefront. Luscious and creamy feel, dominating by an active carbonation profile that really never let this one become dull or boring in anyway

Photo of liamt07
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from a De Struise order I put a month or two back, shared with the group. Into a snifter. Lot 1, January 2011, best before Jan 2, 2016.

Poured a very dark brown, with some lighter highlights within. A light brown head, that leaves some retains quite well and has good lacing. Nose is full of spcie, licorice/anise, maybe some cinnamon and nutmeg as well? Warming notes of milk chocolate and dark bread come through as well. Taste is roasty chocolate, rich dark fruits, some alcohol and lesser brown sugar notes. Maybe a hint of dark roast coffee? Roastiness dominates the palate here, but nuances begin to reveal the complexity of this with warmth. Medium full body with a lingering flavour. A complex and flavourful offering, I'm glad that I've got a couple more to spare.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle at 't Wagstuuk in Antwerp.

Pours, as the name suggests, black and deep. It's a lovely colour, crisply brown at the edges. Head is foaming and frothy, a pleasant cookie brown. Lacing is maze-like and intricate. Body is heavy. Looks very good indeed.

Nose is sweet, but spicy, with big liquorice characters dominant. There's a hint of cherry to it and some dark high-cocoa chocolate. It's a lovely dark beer from Belgium—De Struise is one of the few places I'd expect to find these sort of characters; the Belgian establishment seems to shy away from them.

Taste is also good, but the feel is quite thin—maybe here the Belgian "light is better" influence is coming through. Liquorice, dark grain, a touch of charred malt, and some astringent booze again with a touch of the kriek to it—almost like kirsch. Booze is more prominent with the lighter body.

I'm starting to dislike the Belgian philosophy of putting sugar in beers to lighten the palate, which I can only assume is what happened here. A big beer like this needs weight behind it to balance the flavour.

This is still a good beer. But it went close to being a GREAT beer.

Photo of davey101
3.46/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle into a chimay goblet.

A - Dark cola brown, big foamy mocha head and tons of lacing and retention. Some mocha colored yeast sediment on the bottom of the glass, which I've come to expect from struise brews.

S - Hmmmm. Licorice, piney hops, chocolate, some roasted malt and herbs. Not that great to be honest.

T - Dark fruits , sweet malt, yeast and smooth licorice/anise. Then BAM, the aftertaste of an IPA. Bitter hops and some citrus notes. The mouthfeel is velvety and rich.

O - A bit of a letdown. Id rather spend my $7.99 on a pannepot. I'm not a fan of anise and licroice, and those were some of the flavors I was getting.

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
3.89/5  rDev -1.8%
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.

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Outblack from De Struise Brouwers
89 out of 100 based on 199 ratings.