Outblack - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
OutblackOutblack

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BA SCORE
89
very good

197 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 197
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: 197 | Reviews: 128 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of vfgccp
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
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.

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.

Photo of roblund
4/5  rDev +1%

Photo of ms11781
3.25/5  rDev -17.9%

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

Hazy dark brown color with a billowing, light tan head. Decent head retention.

Unique herbal, spicy aroma. Nice sweetness. Slightly honeyed. Eucalyptus. A little strange but it works.

Sweet malt flavor with some spicy yeast character and interesting herbal hop flavor. Lightly fruity with some echinacea and anise notes.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good.

A solid beer and truly unique. Curious flavor profile but I quite like the way the whole thing comes together.

Photo of zonker17
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

Photo of zeledonia
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first beer from De Struise, finally. Have a few others waiting to drink, but this one is calling my name.

Pours very dark brown, essentially black in the glass. Despite that, I could tell from the pour that it was clear, and light behind it shows deep reddish hints at the edges. Two big fingers of dense medium coffee-tan head. Fantastic retention - come on, I want to drink the beer! And big clumps of foam sticking up the sides of the glass. Wow.

Smell... I'm not really sure what to expect. Candy sugar, some light herbal hops. Smells fuzzy. It's faint, but I like it.

Where the smell was a little bump, the taste is a big strong punch in the mouth. Bold and rich, with tons of dark fruits, followed by an alcohol burst that carries some a mild hop bitterness with it. I've heard people describe a leather taste in beer before, but never experienced it until now. Interesting. Prunes are the predominant fruit. It's rich, malty, and quite varied. I like it. Aside from that initial punch I felt, the alcohol is quite well hidden.

Mouthfeel is silky smooth. Mouth-filling, with tons of tiny little bubbles generating a soft foam in my mouth. Finish fades away like I'm chewing foam.

A very tasty beer. Not sure what I'd call it, but BSDA seems close enough. Big and malty, with a medley of interesting flavors all blending together well. Yum.

Photo of BWHD
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Photo of Falcon91Wolvrn03
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance – Very dark brown, but translucent enough to see considerable sediment in the beer. A very thick head, and good lacing.

Smell – Malt, honey, and some crazy spice. Hard to place exactly, but maybe wintergreen. Sounds bad, but it’s actually nice.

Taste – A nice, sweet maltiness and some wintergreen.

Mouthfeel – Silky smooth with a nice sweet spice that masks the alcohol.

Drinkability – This is a very drinkable beer. Goes down easy for 10%abv.

Photo of ILiveOffHops
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of Bubba83
2.23/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottle is dated 1/1/2011. Poured into a small tulip.

The appearance is quite nice indeed. Very black body topped by a nice two finger widths of light tan head. The head is comprised of very small bubbles. Lacing and retention are both great.

Smells like a lot of candi sugar was used, has that kind of quadrupel type smell to it, but it is too heavy on that artificial cherry cough syrup smell. There's some other dark fruits too, like raspberry and black currant, but it's mostly that artificial cherry. Minty herbal/medicinal to the max.

Tastes much like it smells, but there's a little more going on. It is definitely loaded with residual sugar and has a big artificial cherry flavor like cough syrup. Underneath that is a bit of char and oxidization, along with some earthy, minty, herbal hop flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium, and the head texture feels fine.

Overall I am very unimpressed. I'm not sure if this is a bad bottle or if it was kept improperly before it got into my hands. I'd find it hard to believe the beer is intended to be this way.

Photo of yamar68
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 330ml to Duvel tulip:

Pours with very minimal clarity and an excited medium brown head. Milky, stubborn consistency with decent lacing. Head is incredibly dense, like insulation.

The nose is scattered with caramelized sugars. Honey, oats, milk duds, not much of an alcohol presence, cocoa, brown sugar, hot chocolate bits.

Taste is extremely unique. The nose suggested something run of the mill but this is far from it. Grapes and booze up front... all those various chocolate hints don't show themselves as clearly on the tongue. Some Belgian yeast surfaces after a bit of warmth. Very interesting.

Overall, this is exactly what I want from a pricey brew - not a textbook example of the style, but an adventurous take on a genre that you thought you knew. Very good.

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Photo of hoppymcgee
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

Photo of TMath524
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of mavbrew
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
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.

Photo of bmur112
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of John_M
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap (as I recall) during the Belgian event at Max's.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is pretty attractive in this one, as I pick up chocolate, malt balls and vanilla. The beer smells fairly sweet, and my first sip confirms that it is. Otherwise, this beer is really pretty tasty on the palate, and I appreciate the rich, full, smooth mouthfeel. It seemed to enhance the chocolate, vanilla and light coffee all the more. There's a hint of heat on the finish, but it's not excessive, and really isn't too bad considering the abv. in this beer.

Very easy to take, despite the high alcohol.

Photo of Damian
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 330 ml e. bottle
Lot 01/01/2011 goed tot, a consomer avant 01/02/2016
Served in a tulip
Thanks to Douglasjamjak for including this as an extra in our trade.

The beer poured super deep and dark brown/black and was topped by a billowing, three-finger head of bubbly, tan colored foam. Streaky rings of lacing trickled down the sides of the glass. The head slowly faded to a persistent ring of froth.

The nose was rather tame. Chocolate malts were noticeable, as was a dry, powdery yeastiness. Slightly roasty. A touch of piney hops came through as well. There was also an interesting herbal (perhaps sage?) component. Some booziness became noticeable as beer warmed. The aroma also turned much sweeter and fruitier.

The flavor profile was dark, roasty and quite hoppy, yet it also contained some Belgian-like characteristics. A dry, powdery, Belgian yeastiness appeared on the front end. Chocolate and roasted malts were also noticeable. Slightly fruity and spicy in the center with discernible raisins notes. The finish was dry and hoppy and had a moderate alcohol bite. The hops were quite piney and bitter and they resonated on my palate after each sip. The hoppiness also intensified as the beer warmed.

The mouthfeel was fairly average. Medium bodied with a crisp, bubbly, lively effervescence. The liquid could have been smoother and creamier.

De Struise's Outblack is a unique but forgettable beer. Furthermore, it is a bit rough around the edges. I was expecting this to be a nice melding of a Belgian strong dark ale and an American black ale, but the flavor profile seemed to lean much further toward the latter.

Photo of rinhaak
4.23/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

11 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a thick, dark black with faint hints of red. There is a very thick and foamy browned head.

The nose is intense with smoked malts, chipotle, coffee grounds, spearmint, prunes,

The taste is wild with an absolute collision of flavor. At first the tongue tastes a sort of postage stamp flavor, which matures into a smokey mint. Strong herbal notes with wild roots (sarsaparilla? burdock? dandelion?). The hops are present, though generally covered by a dark caramel/coffee/ash combination. A strong booziness throughout, it finishes with a bit of campfire smoke.

The beer has a velvet mouthfeel and coats your tongue with its silky goodness.

Overall, this is not a beer for the faint of heart. It just might be the most unique beer I have ever tasted, and I give De Struise props for thinking well outside the box. The ABV notwithstanding, it's far from a session ale; I almost recommending splitting a bottle with a friend. It is so intense it can almost be too much.

Photo of theghost3
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours deep dark brown, almost black. Head is 2-fingers, popping bubbly, somewhat soda-like and beige. Little lacing.

Smell is subtle coffee & caramel malts with a hint of burnt toast. The taste is dark cocoa but there is also an interesting citrus and herbal hop component that adds some sassafras flavor to it. Mouthfeel is carbonated and biting at first, but then ends thick and smooth; a lot like a root beer float.

This is unique and delicious. The taste and mouthfeel really have root beer float qualities.

Photo of John11486
4/5  rDev +1%

Photo of Patrickbrusil
4/5  rDev +1%

Outblack from De Struise Brouwers
89 out of 100 based on 197 ratings.