Art Of Darkness - Brewery Ommegang

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Art Of DarknessArt Of Darkness

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BA SCORE
89
very good

656 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 656
Reviews: 134
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 38
Gots: 115 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Edwaka01 on 02-13-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 656 | Reviews: 134
Reviews by roblowther:
Photo of roblowther
4.31/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Big bottle, corked, dark, Belgian style. Life is good.. It looks more like a porter than anything Belgian, black with a dense tan head. Smells of carob, raisins, hay, and lemons. I think my mom made that as a soup once. The taste is very nice, leather, bread, a graininess, and then a dry finish. The mouthfeel is substantial, slick, and lightly carbonated. Overall, this is really a nice beer. It is dry, maybe a bit too much so but that just makes you want to drink some more, so good on ya!

More User Reviews:
Photo of MadScientist
4.84/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: A very dark brown beer with good clarity. The persistent, tan head is made of compact bubbles and leaves a fine lacing on the glass.

S: An initially wine/grape-like fruitiness that quickly gives way to rich fruity esters, notes of dried dark fruit, some spice and caramel with some cocoa in the background. Moderate malt sweetness and a low floral alcohol aroma.

T: Belgian yeast goodness dominate the flavor with fruit and spice r at a moderate being closely supported by dark malt flavors. There is a moderate sweetness that rounds out the flavor and helps give deep to the layers; it's not a dry beer but it's not cloying like some Dark Strongs can get. There is an almost juiciness to some of the dark fruit flavors ranging from plum to prune with some light orange character. The spice is black pepper and alcohol provide some of the balance against the malt sweetness along with a low hops bitterness but overall the it is a slightly sweet beer. It dries towards the end finish off-dry with an aftertaste of cocoa, pepper and a light hops bitterness.

M: A medium bodied beer with a very strong level of carbonation and a light alcohol warmth.

O: A love this beer, it's fruity, dark and spicy Belgium that goes down a little too smooth. I don't want it with dessert, I want it for dessert; that being said it would go great with a vanilla custard or berry tart.

Photo of mverity
4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from Proof Bottle Shop. Thick and pitch black with tan head that persisted fairly well. Collar hung until the end. Lots of dark malt, some sour cherry, some coffee, and a touch of grassy funk in the aroma. Taste is nearly identical to the smell, with a bit more of the sour cherry and grassy funk being prominent. Nice thick creamy mouthfeel. Very full bodied. Great after taste and a Guinness like mouthfeel.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Big Texas Beer Fest.

The beer pours a very dark brown to black color with a tan head. The aroma is has some roasted malt, as well as some dark fruit, chocolate and Belgian yeast notes. The flavor is similar, with the chocolate and dark fruit notes going very well with the yeast and roasted malt notes. Tastes a lot like a Belgian imperial stout. Medium to thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of mjtiernan
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

750 poured into a goblet

A: Light brown head....huge lacing....two fingers. Having a tough time getting a read on the body color, but it’s dark. Maybe with some reddish hues around the edge?

S: Smells amazing...very aromatic. Toffee, blackberry jam, raisin, candi sugar, slight clove, vanilla, just a touch of alcohol. Wow.

T: Raisin, dark fruit and Belgian yeasty esters up front. Transitions to acidic (almost salty) tart cherries and dries out quickly from there. Finishes alcoholic with some chocolate and a mild roasted malt aftertaste.

M: Full body with soft carbonation. Very dry finish with forward alcohol. Drinkability is moderate-to-low.

O: Terrific complexity on this one. The alcohol is a little harsh, but this is a really fine American take on a strong dark Belgian ale....especially the aroma.

Photo of MattyG85
4.42/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml corked bottle into a Duvel tulip glass. Bottled on 02/20/12.

Appearance: Pours a very dark blackish brown with a slight hint of ruby at the bottom. Moderate bubbles and a big four finger light tan head which slowly recedes into a thin patchy layer. Leaves a good amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Aroma leaps out from the glass with dark fruits and yeast. Belgian yeast with hints of clove and black pepper. Dark roasted malts with hints of burnt toast, biscuit, bitter dark chocolate, caramel, toffee, and coffee.A very lively and big mix of dark fruits including raisin, dark grapes, berries, fig, and prune. Light hints of anise and smoke. Subtle earthy hop presence. The dark grapes really stand out. Pretty nice smell.

Taste: As fruity, spicy, and complex as it smells. Belgian yeast along with a taste of cloves, black pepper, and other spices. Very roasty dark malts with a taste of dark chocolate, toast, biscuit, coffee, burnt caramel, and toffee. Big taste of dark fruits with notes of dark grapes, raisin, fig, prunes, and berries. A little burnt candied sugar and subtle notes of anise and smoke. Some earthy hops add a little drying bitterness towards the finish. A really nice taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Creamy, spicy, and drying. Alcohol heat is subdued.

Overall: A really good take on a dark Belgian ale. It has the fruit esters and spices of a Dubbel and the roasted characteristics of a Stout. Really nicely done.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep pitch black body this is the Art of Darkness, okay we get it, there's also a light tan head forming thick, with Belgian inspired lacing. Aromatics offer up with dark cocoa, spicy aromatics inspired by the yeasts fermentation process. Dark malts give off a solid roasted malt aspect that I can relate to anyday, also a dark toasted nut quality coming out with the bier I'm sippin' on. Floral spicy yeast base, with dark roasted malts slightly creamy acidity almost yogurt like. Especially tasty dark beer, hybrid Belgian American dark ale, with even flowing carbonation and a medium bodied ale that I really enjoy. Overall impressive offering, that is tasty and satisfying for the beer drinker's palate.

Photo of chinchill
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, murky brown color with a tan head.

S: nicely balanced array of roasted grain, dark fruits, baked bread, vague spices and caramel.

T: Plenty of dark fruit mid-taste and in the aftertaste, with a kick of dark chocolate in the finish. A trace of light smoke.

M: superb -- full body and very creamy.

O: exceptionally enjoyable and better than expected, even from a premier American producer of Belgian style beers.

Photo of frankiepop
4.7/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle that had an attractive black wiring holding the tight cork. Upon popping the cork, smoke hovered in the bottle, but did not dispense out. Poured a cool beer into Ommegang's own classy tulip glass and what a creamy big foam head with good lacing and sustenance. Color was dark dark brown near black, maybe hints of red ruby. As the beer disappears spin that beer around and the head reconstitutes itself a bit. I like that.

The aroma has a nice malty sweetness and some nice fruit scents arise.

Taste buds were hit with a true to Ommegang form of balancing a nice malty sweet flavoring balanced against subtle fruit & a bit of spice. Art of Darkness ups the ante a bit with an upfront blast of like licorice or espresso flavorings that remind you of an American style stout without the thickness. The beer finishes a tasty rich sweet bitterness.

A surprisingly smoooth heavy flavored malted beverage. Ladies who don't like stouts because of the grittiness then you might try Darkness if you are looking for more flavor.

A great beer that I may up my ratings on. So what complements this new monster addition to the Ommegang lineup? Well a perfect addition on a northern winter night in a craftsman home with a fireplace blazing while listening to Cecil Taylor percussive style piano with Jimmy Lyons saxophone player blazing next to him. I recommend the angry recording made in Germany "One More Salty Swift and Not Goodbye."

Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Belgian tulip from a 750mL bottle from February 2012.

It's got a light, foamy head that's just a massive beast. The body is a dark black with no visible carbonation. 4.25

Dark fruit and a funky yeast aroma are dominant. Despite two and a half years of age, there's a bit of astringency. 3.75

Raisiny with yeasty funk and astringency. There's some floral flavor and oaken bourbon with the taste when it's watered down.
3.5

The yeast I think takes this beer in some unpleasant places. It's effervescent and slightly funky with a faint bourbon astringency. 3.25

Damn, this is a bit of a disappointment. The flavors aren't great and the pungent bourbon flavor is unpleasant.

Photo of Weisenbeer
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A very pleasant creamy dark beer. Again, watch the ABV which is high as many of this style can be.

Photo of Sammy
3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Soapy head on thick dark brown body, with a lace sheet. yeasty aroma, I like their yeast. Smooth drinker, above average mouthfeel. Sweetish,and yet a little earthy, some malted milk, chocolate malt,touch of anise, not that complex still nicely drinkable.

Photo of tdm168
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - very dark brown with a huge, thick, brown head that has great retention

S - sweet, a bit of chocolate, some yeast, some dark fruit

T - chocolate, fruity, cherry, plum, medicine

M - medium to full bodied, smooth, well carbonated

I really enjoy this beer. The flavor is rich and complex. The fruit is a nice balance to the big malt bill. The yeast comes through but doesn't take over. Overall, very enjoyable and worth trying.

Photo of socon67
4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Dark brown pour with a mocha foam that retains well. No lacing of note and visible gurgling carbonation.

S - Scents of dark fruits, candy sugar, and chocolate. Smells alot like when you open that box of Russell Stover candy the first time.

T - Sweet notes of dark fruits, candied cherries, cocoa powder, and nutmeg. The Ommegang yeast strain is present and gives the finish a telltale tanginess.

M - Feels like it is on nitro-tap but wasn't. Has a creamy feel and the body masks the ABV well. Feels light and hits hard.

O - An interesting change-up from Ommegang. Not the best of the style by a longshot, but a very enjoyable offering from a local brewery that just nails Belgian styles.

Photo of Kevin73
3.56/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a mostly opaque reddish brown with a thin tan head that disappears quickly. One of the darkest quads I've ever tried. Also one of the driest. A fairly high carbonation is apparent from the first pour. The smell is yeasty and not much else. The taste is rye bread, malts, a hint of hops and very little sweetness of any kind. The beer is a bit boozie a result. Mouthfeel is good, nice carbonation, and not too thin. Basically my only complaint is it needs some sweetness to balance it out. Otherwise worth a try.

Photo of RickS95
4.37/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle

The color is really dark. Mostly black with some lighter brown shades mixed in. The head is a finger thick of offwhite bubbles that eventually forms a light brown film around the perimeter of the beer. A gentle swirl shows spotty lacing.

The bottle mentions flaked oats and it comes across as an oatmeal stout in the nose. Caramel malts are the only thing that comes to mind. If you really stick your nose in there, notes of alcohol come wafting up.

The taste is impressive, borderline spectacular. They've nailed the Belgian style, doing it better than a lot of brewers from across the pond. The caramel malts combine with the house yeast for a toffee taste with a backdrop of cola. It's really impressive.

The mouthfeel is pretty spot on as well. With the carbonation, it gives off a peppery feel. There is alcohol that provides a bit of bite as well. A subtle sweetness starts the sip and the alcohol and carbonation provide a bit of heat in the swallow. It's full bodied, but has a crisp, tangy finish that really coats the tongue.

If I didn't know better, I'd guess this to be a Trappist beer. It's really that good and the taste and feel are world class. Despite the high alcohol, it's an easy beer to drink. It's so good it begs you to take another swig. Really happy with this beer.

Photo of russpowell
3.62/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours mahogany with 2 fingers of tan head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Dark fruit, plums & raisins, some phenolic notes

T: Plums & figs with phenolic twang & some boozeyness up front, a bit of dark chocolate too. Green apple skin as this warms, a bit of figs & carob, along with black currants as this warms & more dark chocolate. Finishes dry & boozey with more apple skin, figs & carob

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation Booze warmth & dryness throughout this sampling

An alright Belgian Dark, perhaps too young to sample. To me this bottle looks to be a year or 2 from optimum. The last few beers from Ommegang haven't really wowed me. Pretty good, not great

Photo of Infamous7100
4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark mahogany with some orange tints around the edges.
S: dark fruits, mainly plums, figs and raisin. Smells great.
T: very complex. The immense malt is balanced by the dark fruits present in the aroma. Sweet, but balanced by the warming booze toward the back.
M: some high carbonation and full bodied. A nice, boozy sweet hang for the aftertaste.
O: do yourself a favor and pick the up. Very complex, tasty and improves as it warms. All kinds of different nuances come through in time. Well done by Ommegang.

Photo of jmerloni
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Dark brown body with medium tan head. Velvety looking.

S - Dark fruits: plum, grapes, cherries, dates. Mild oakiness.

T - Dark fruits predominate, followed by a dry, oaky and earthy finish. Very well crafted flavor.

M - Moderately carbonated, medium-bodied.

D - A very solid beer. As usual from Ommegang. I don't think they're capable of putting out anything sub-birdie.

Photo of thagr81us
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into Trappe Door tulip. Poured a massively dark reddish brown with a two finger light khaki colored head that subsided to a minimal amount very slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, dark fruit, bread, earth, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet amlt, dark fruit, bread, earth, and very subtle sweet alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a fairly decent brew. While the flavor and aroma on this one was fairly complex, it just left a little to be desired if I am completely honest. All of the right aspects for the style were definitely present, but I just wish they would have come across a little more balanced. Worth trying if you get the chance though.

Photo of Gmann
3.67/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a very deep brown color, almost black. The khaki colored head is moderate bubbled and slowly settles into a light cap.

The aroma is sugary sweet with some dark fruit notes. There is some plum, prune, and cherry notes. There is a light peppery spice from the yeast. Nothing crazy going on here.

Good cherry and prune flavor. Some musty clove notes from the yeast. A bit of woody or char flavors from the roasted malt but not much. Seems to be a dumbed down version of their quad.

The feel is moderate but way fizzy. The carbonation takes away from the flavor as it is hard to pick up some notes with all the fizziness. Sweet on the palate with a light spice offset.

A decent Belgian brew. Well made but not distinct, nothing really stands out and the carbonation is way too strong. Not really sure why they made this beer.

Photo of scootny
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A Lovely thick head atop a very dark clear but opaque black brow fluid. Some lace here and there. Smell is sweet with dark fruits. Raisins and figs, brown bread and yeasty esters of banana. Taste is complex with a firm sweet malt body and notes of licorice and anise. Some chocolate and cocoa/mocha. There is a very faint alcoholic edge in the finish and that quickly faded to a sweet warmth. Bitterness is low but adding the yeast by agitating did seem to all a bit of light chalkiness to the finish while at the same time adding a smoothness. Curious. Feel is quad like in its thickness but a touch lighter and well carbonated with a gentle creaminess. A very deep and delightful brew. Much to enjoy and savor and I hope I find some more to cellar.

Photo of KTCamm
4.06/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from Champagne bottle into a Duvel glass. Pours dark black with full thick head of 1/2 inch brown foam. The laye remains. Dark fruit smell. Oats. Plums, subtle raisin nose. Taste is fruity blend, mostly dark fruit - plums. Strong Belgian yeast. Some chocolate notes. Much happening - all good.

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

Very nice shades of brown in the glass the head was stout and firm.

The taste was nicely diverse with sweet malts, prune, date, dried grape/raisin, and a sugary candy mix.

The taste is in line with scent as raisin and sweet dried fruits dominate. There is a black licorice note at the end and a sugary sweetness. Very easy on the palate with pleasant sweetness. This Belgian Strong is a very good example of the sort.

Photo of Jaycase
3.62/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a: deep, dark brown - doesn't seem quite black. thick, creamy light mocha colored head.

s: caramel, molasses. yeast. plums, prunes, raisins. slight bit of booze

t: malts, sweetness at the beginning. yeast flavor settles in midway. dark fruit not as present as in the aroma.

m: light and creamy. med high carbonation.

o: decent offering from Ommegang. one of those which I'm glad I tried but not likely to seek out again. thought the aroma was better than the taste. worth a try.

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Art Of Darkness from Brewery Ommegang
89 out of 100 based on 656 ratings.