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Black Sun Stout - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Not Rated.
Black Sun StoutBlack Sun Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

814 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 814
Reviews: 462
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.41%
Wants: 193
Gots: 85 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
6.5% ABV, 50 IBUs - Black Sun has a nose of coffee, roasted malts and piney hops. This medium bodied stout has a broad depth of maltiness and a clean dry finish. December release.

(Beer added by: zerk on 12-16-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 814 | Reviews: 462 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark black with a bubbly head, and lace. Very hoppy, with bittersweet chocolate. Significant burnt coffee and sour characteristics, all caramel malted down.
Bottle courtesy of Shintriad. A bold Irish dry stout, and certainly good regular American stout.
Had another bottle 2.5 years later, jason's, and it was a little oily side hampered drinkability.

Sammy, Jul 19, 2007
Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

t0rin0, Mar 03, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.78/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ehammond1 for sharing this one at MrHirschybar's place!

Pours a semi-clear dark brown-black with a tan head that settles to a film on the top of the beer. Small dots of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, slight cocoa, and some slight fruity aromas. Taste is of the same. There is a mild roasty bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly flat mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good stout but the mouthfeel slightly kills the overall enjoyment in my opinion.

UCLABrewN84, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -0.7%

djrn2, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

zestar, Aug 01, 2014
Photo of spycow
5/5  rDev +24.1%

spycow, Dec 13, 2011
Photo of Thorpe429
3.93/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this bottle up over Christmas back in the Midwest. Served in a wine glass.

Pours near black with a big tan-mocha head. Quite creamy and sticks around for a good period of time before falling into a nice cap and leaving some spotty lacing. The nose is pretty underwhelming with some roasted notes and a bit of coffee. The taste amps things up a bit with some stronger roast and espresso notes plus a bit of dark chocolate. Body is medium without any noticeable alcohol and has a fairly-dry finish. Pretty drinkable and one of the better versions of this style that I've had, but nothing earth-shattering.

Thorpe429, Jan 24, 2011
Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -0.7%

acurtis, Jan 02, 2012
Photo of Texasfan549
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Texasfan549, Apr 02, 2014
Photo of brentk56
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a tar black color with a big brown head that firms up nicely and leaves all matter of splotchy lace behind

Smell: Dark chocolate and grapefruit pith; plenty of char

Taste: Opens with a mouthful of char and chocolate that grows progressively fruity by mid-palate, with bitter, citrusy flavors developing as well: after the swallow, the chocolate and citrus flavors take over the stage and provide and nicely balanced and long-lasting finish; licorice at the end, as well

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: With the Floyds, I should have known this would have a hoppy kick and this one has plenty of fruit to boot

Thanks, Wadsey, for the second chance (with a fresh bottle, this time)

brentk56, Jul 06, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Onyx with a glimmer of garnet at the margins. Black Sun may be the darkest Irish dry stout in existence. Atop the beer sits a two finger cap of tight-bubbled foam that is golden sandstone in color. The minutely pocked surface isn't the least bit rocky as it falls (it's too creamy for that) and deposits a fair amount of lace as it does so.

This is what a beer of this style should smell like... period. Roasted malt leads the way, with bittersweet chocolate and coffee following willingly in its wake. The thing that sets it apart, however, is the hops... still kickin' after several months (at least) in the bottle. This brewery doesn't usually disappoint when it comes to hops, and if the nose is any guide, they haven't done so here. Perhaps I should have added 'if you're a hophead' to the first sentence of this paragraph.

Leave it to Three Floyds to brew a relatively low-ABV, relatively light-bodied stout that is so chock full of fantastic flavor that it doesn't seem possible given the laws of... hell, I don't know... alchemy? Sometimes I wonder if these guys aren't more mad genius brew wizards than simply crafters of fine ales. Their not so secret ingredient is hops, so if you think too many brewers overuse hops in an attempt to cover up... yadda, yadda, yadda... shut the hell up and drink something else.

As far as I'm concerned, Black Sun is a near perfect marriage of roasted malt and citric, pine sap-soaked hops. It isn't the completely insane, hopped-to-within-an-inch-of-its-life beer that fresh Alpha Klaus is, but it shares the same basic blueprint. This beer has a charred black malt flavor that all Irish Drys should emulate and that should be considered the new benchmark for the style.

How on earth Three Floyds is able get their beer to taste so freshly, greenly, hop leaf hoppy without losing the basic Stout, Porter, American Wheat, etc. character is a head scratcher. I don't really care, I'm just glad that they're able to pull it off and that I'm able to enjoy the fruits of their labors. Warming brings about no real improvements, but the beer was hella good to begin with.

The flavor lingers as long as possible given the fact that the beer is pretty intensely dry. Hops easily outlast everything malt-related. No surprise there. I much prefer bigger bodies on my stouts, but I've come around over the years to a grudging acceptance of the lighter bodies on Irish dry stouts. This one was surprisingly light to begin with, but has firmed up considerably in the second half of the bomber.

Black Sun Stout hits every one its marks and is, therefore, the best version of this style that I can imagine. If you don't love hops above all else, you're unlikely to feel the same. There can't be too many beers of any style that combine this amount of taste bud saturating flavor with this degree of sessionability. Three Floyds hits another one out of the park. So what else is new?

BuckeyeNation, Apr 04, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Yep, it's dry all right. Upon the first few sips, I began caughing up suit. But that does not mean that it's bad. In fact, it's an amazing Dry Stout. The look is an expected nearly-opaques burned amber brown with a light and airy foamstand, slightly tan in nature. Smells strongly roasted (coffee-like) without any burned or ashy aromas. Sweetness is light and a fermentation yeastiness persists in the nose. Tastes boldly of roasted grains, cocoa, and campfire-like. Sweetness really takes a back seat to the rosted grains and offers only a balance to the roastedness. Hop detection is nil, relying majorily on the roasted grain for bittering. Lightened in body for an easy drinking beer. Could handle a bit more creaminess. The finish is very dry and powdery (charcoal-ish). Quite clean despite the roasted grain bitterness. A huge success for FFF.

BEERchitect, Apr 29, 2006
Photo of kjkinsey
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

kjkinsey, Apr 02, 2014
Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Hogtownharry: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a small foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of medium bitter hops with some roasted malt. Texture is quite oily with some medium carbonation. Taste is a complex mix between some bitter roasted malt, some light chocolate notes as well as vanilla with some light bitter hops at the end. I very much enjoyed that one and I was glad that they didn’t rely only on hops.

Phyl21ca, Aug 14, 2007
Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -0.7%

GRG1313, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of mikesgroove
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired this one in a BIF earlier in the year and had been sitting on it waiting for a while. A 2006 vintage bottle, I decided to crack this one open last night for a nice cap. Served at cellar temperature and poured into a snifter. This was consumed on 09/03/2008.

Poured this one out into the glass, and the impenetrable black abyss was formed. Huge tan head, maybe three inches high capped the top of it and only gradually settled down, leaving behind a thin veil across the top and loads of sticky brown lace. Very day, essentially black with no light shining through at all.

The aroma was loaded with roasted malts, though not as heavy as one would expect given the big look of it. Light hope notes were also noticed in here, with a small plum or raisin like note, almost like some dark Belgian yeast was used. As it warmed some light cocoa started to show as well. The flavor was more of the same. Started out with a nice bit of roasted malts, which then careened off into a slightly hoppy finish. Lots of cocoa and light licorice hints swirling around in the background, giving it some nice depth. Very nice feel, rich, full bodied, with good carbonation that led to never a dull moment, and something that would be best categorized as not very dry at all. Easy sipper, but at the same time with such a rich taste, and low ABV it was an easy drinking nightcap for sure.

Overall not a bad stout here I have to admit. A smooth drinking, nice session able beer from them, which was a welcome treat. Not sure what the age has done to it as it was still mighty fresh in flavor and vibrant in life. Overall I thought this was excellent and would go here again for sure.

mikesgroove, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

ygtbsm94, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for sharing this one, Gabriel.

A: The beer pours a dark brown color with some reddish highlights and a creamy tan head.

S: A really surprising amount of hops on the nose. Lots of pine and probably even more grapefruit. A little bit of rubber, but otherwise a nice roasted malt aroma and perhaps some dark fruits.

T: The grapefruit flavor is bountiful and the pine provides a light bitterness. Toffee and roasted malts give this beer some feeling of a stout. However, the flavor seems a bit watered down.

M: Sort of watery on the tongue with a moderate carbonation.

D: Not like any Irish stout I've had before. Quite hoppy, which was nice, but the watery nature of the flavor and mouthfeel was a let down.

womencantsail, Mar 01, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
3.68/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was another brew send to me from Billakowski, thanks again man! This brew poured out as a deep looking black color with a brown colored head on top. The smell of the beer is hopped and has some coffee and roasted malt aromas on the nose. The taste of the beer is bitter with the chocolate, coffee and hops all working together to make a fairly nice complex brew. The mouthfeel of the beer was smooth with a lighter body than I expected it to have. Overall it's a another good brew from a great brewery.

Knapp85, Mar 13, 2012
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a black-brown body with a tan-colored head.

Smell: Rich chocolate malt aroma with notes of light, roasted coffee and smoke. The nose has an intense floral hoppiness to it, too. That much I assure you.

Taste: Flavors of dark chocolate and vanilla creme upfront that are quickly overcome bitterness. Hmm. Well, this beer certainly took an (unexpected?) detour into rather bitter territories. Herbaceous, piney bitterness continues to last through the dry, chalky finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but this beer has a remarkabe viscousness to it.

Drinkability: Pretty good beer, all things considered. It could've used more chocolatiness, though.

ChainGangGuy, Nov 04, 2006
Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured nitro at Cole's yesterday,a beautiful pour to this ink black with a cascading mocha colored head that settled into a two finger creamy top giving off a creamy mustache after every drink.Light earthy,leafy tones in the nose along with some dark roast coffee with a hint of smoke,this is a dry stout I could quaff all day with the nitro giving it the creamy texture man its dangerously drinkable.Healthy dose of hops to this dry stout earthy and herbal with hints of toasted nuts and strong coffee with a lingering lightly smoked woody elemant in the finish.My new favorite dry stout this would be dangerous on ST. Pattys day,man that is good stuff.

oberon, Apr 02, 2007
Photo of TMoney2591
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Big thanks to VDubb86 for sharing this bottle!

I almost had a Soundgarden song stuck in my head thanks to this beer. It pours a sleek black-brown topped by over a finger of light tan foam. The nose comprises chocolate, kinda light roasted malts, barley husks, and toffee. Honestly, it's as though I'm sniffing my malt bag on the way home from the homebrew store, en route to my own sweet stout. Delightful! The taste holds notes of light chocolate, roasted malts, toasted oats, and a light bit of anise in the back. The body is a svelte medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a smooth feel. Overall, a damn fine Irish stout. Straight up. Get some!

TMoney2591, Jan 15, 2011
Photo of zeff80
4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured out an opaque, dark black color with no head. It looked like a port and left some soapy residue.

S - It smelled of dark chocolate, molasses, and toffee.

T - This was an excellent tasting stout. It was chocolately and malty sweet with a fruity/cherry flavor. It was sweet and delicious with a mild grassy bitterness.

M - It was soft, smooth and creamy with a surprisingly dry finish. A medium bodied beer.

D - Quite possibly the best Irish Dry Stout that I've had. Great flavors!

zeff80, Dec 18, 2008
Photo of nickfl
4.6/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with almost no foam just a tiny ring clinging to the wall of the glass, less than I have seen on any other beer (including really high alcohol brews from Dogfish and Avery). Dark, opaque black; I could see just a hint of brown when I was pouring it.

S - Coffee, caramel, toffee, and a roasty, charcoal like smell. Dark fruit: Rasins, tangarenes, dates, plums. Some cinnamon and oddly coconut, I think. There are hops there, but they blend in very well with the other smells. I know the label says 5%, but I swear I can smell some alcohol. Spectacular aroma, spicy, perfumey, like incense.

T - Begins smooth and malty (which surprised me), followed by chocolate notes and light, fruity flavor that I have a hard time naming. Finishes with a roasty, lingering bitterness.

M - Quite light and smooth. Really nailed the Irish stout style here.

D - I was very impressed with this beer overall. Hits the style perfectly, tastes great, and the aroma characteristics were stunning. I have only been able to try a couple of 3F beers before, and based on those I expected them to go way too far and crush this style with hops and alcohol, but I was totally wrong. Great, great beer, and at 5.25% easy to take down a few of them.

nickfl, Mar 28, 2007
Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev -0.7%

WVbeergeek, Oct 05, 2013
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Black Sun Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
90 out of 100 based on 814 ratings.