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Art Of Darkness - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Art Of DarknessArt Of Darkness

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

579 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 579
Reviews: 123
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.36%
Wants: 33
Gots: 91 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.90% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Edwaka01 on 02-13-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 579 | Reviews: 123 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

Sammy, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

t0rin0, Sep 02, 2012
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.51/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Boneyard Bistro in Sherman Oaks, CA.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. A foamy curtain of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and slight dark fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with a slightly sour fruity flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with some interesting aromas and flavors but nothing all that exciting.

UCLABrewN84, Feb 10, 2013
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +1%

djrn2, Mar 30, 2012
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +1%

spycow, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

zestar, Nov 10, 2013
Photo of metter98
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger light tan head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin head covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of dark fruits are perceptible in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of dark fruits along with hints of Belgian yeast.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink and hides its alcohol very well but lacks the complexity compared to the top beers in this style.

metter98, Aug 11, 2013
Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev +1%

Texasfan549, Apr 27, 2012
Photo of brentk56
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Arrives pitch black, with a nice head that leaves a boatload of lacing behind

Smell: Roasty, with black bread and fruit elements; licorice, too

Taste: Black cherry, red wine grape and fig along with a roasty character, up front; some chocolate, licorice and pie spices arrive at mid-palate, along with a tart cherry aspect; after the swallow, the fruity elements dominate though there is a slight tartness on the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: Interesting fruit flavors with a touch of tartness; a beer with a difference

brentk56, Apr 15, 2012
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part Belgian Strong Dark Ale, part Belgian Stout- Ommegang delivers a complex beer of roast and fruit flavor, and doing so with a surprisingly simplified palate.

Pouring with a voluptuous and billowing tan head, the beer carries the bubbly nature of champagnes but with the dark brown (almost black) color of hearty stouts. A mild garnet highlight plays through the modest haze in uncanny clear fashion. High level of foam retention and lace speaks volumes to the quality for which Brewery Ommegang is known.

Somewhat mild aromas tackle the olfactories with balanced elements of roasted barley, charred fruits, biscuit, and peppercorn- all wrapped in a thin envelope of caramel and light bread.

Malty sweetness hits the taste buds with the taste of fresh baked bread, bread crust, starch, and underlying caramel sweetness. The roasty char of grains play on the tongue with the taste of coffee, cocoa powder, and burnt embers at mid palate that seem to overshadow sweetness and bridge into the mild fruity flavors of burnt berries, currants, red grapes, and apples. Although esters are mild, their fruity effect is varying and command just enough attention to keep the beer interesting beyond the simple flavor spread.

Medium bodied throughout, the ale's sparkling carbonation prevents fuller texture and ushers in a highly drinkable and zesty bite that ushers in a finish of roasty-dryness, alcohol warmth, and peppery bite.

Where the Art of Darkness doesn't portray the breadth, earthy boldness, or assertive complex sweetness as many darker strong Belgian ales, it's relies on a simplified palate that's exquisitely balanced, more yeast-neutral, and somewhat subdued to celebrate its shear drinkability in understated fashion.

BEERchitect, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +1%

kjkinsey, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

Bottle: Poured a clear black color ale with a large off-white foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of candi sugar with light dry fruit notes is quite sublime. Taste is also a great mix of candi sugars with some dried fruits and a solid Belgian malt backbone. Body is full enough for style with great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Some spices can also bed detected. Very solid offering and this is a beer I could have more regularly.

Phyl21ca, Aug 25, 2014
Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

jaydoc, Dec 23, 2013
Photo of kylehay2004
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: two finger thick tan head with nice lacing on a dark brown with little light getting through body.

S: lots of dark fruit, mostly cherry, plum and raisin. 

T: a lot more malty than others in the genre. The fruitiness is mild. Caramel and mild toffee notes to the finish.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation. Dry finish.

Overall: malt heavy beer for the genre. Glad I tried this one, nice and unique

kylehay2004, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of Knapp85
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This poured out as a nice looking deep brown color, the head was creamy looking and tan in color. The smell of the beer is sweet and a little yeasty. There are some slight dark fruit aromas in there too. The taste is a slight blend of the candi sugar, the fruits and the malts. No real noticeable bitterness in this one too much. The mouthfeel was smooth, gently carbonated and silky. Overall I thought this was a very nice release from Ommegang.

Knapp85, Jul 23, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
3.25/5  rDev -17.9%

JAHMUR, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

SocalKicks, May 26, 2012
Photo of nickfl
4/5  rDev +1%

nickfl, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
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.

WVbeergeek, Jun 10, 2012
Photo of russpowell
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
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

russpowell, May 05, 2012
Photo of jlindros
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Ommegang tulip with a decent fizzy 1 finger darker mocha colored head that wants to fade quickly but doesn't, fades fairly slowly with some marks of lacing, over very dark molasses brown colored beer with hints of murky ruby light sneaking through.

Nose has some dark malts, dark crystal malts with some caramel and light molasses aromas, plenty of biscuity malts, a bit of flaked oats, a nutty malt that also seems to bring a hint of earthiness, and hint of a root beer like cola aroma. A bit of booze comes through there as well, with hints yeast spice and touch earthy hop.

Taste starts fluffy with plenty of carbonation coming through making the mouth foamy. Dark malts course through, with some earthy nutty malts, light root beer like earthiness again, as well as some biscuity light toasty malts, more darker brown malts, hint of caramel molasses like sugars. Light flaked oats bring a hint of creaminess and fluffy feel, and I think the wheat adds a light textured flavor. The yeast brings more of the earthy spicy flavors, as well as some light earthy hops and a hint of grassy hops, with a light bitterness that almost seems more to come from the yeast than the hops. A bit of booze finds its way through, but still seems to drink fairly well. The finish dries a bit but not a lot, plenty of lingering earthy nutty malts and root spices with the yeast, light syrupy flavors, and even a hint of cocoa.

Mouth is a bit fuller bodied, textured and smooth at the same time, with tons of carbonation.

overall an interesting beer, not sure if I would pay that much for it again, but at least a nice one to try. Decent malts, hops are a bit too far away on teh back end though, booze is about right, nice carbonation and body, decent all around beer.

jlindros, Apr 12, 2012
Photo of feloniousmonk
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Darkness incarnate in color, with crimson highlights shining through the bottom, under a lush, creamy cocoa-toned head. Lookin' good.

Aroma: soft, with notes of cocoa and cream, balanced and understated.

Taste: on the tongue, rich, full, dark and smooth. Lightly spicy, just enough wicked deliciousness from the yeast. A little bit of peppery heat. Lots of lush dark malts, but nothing too big, too sweet, too anything. This is Goldilocks' favorite beer, just right.
Some dark fruits, some fig and date, but completely utterly even, balanced, and dry. The nearly 9% alcohol doesn't stand out in the least.

Tasty stuff, this, but I so wish the yeast would contribute a bit more to the character. I want to really taste it.
But this one really does come close to impersonating a great Belgian strong dark ale. Kudos, Ommegang!

feloniousmonk, May 22, 2012
Photo of oline73
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on-tap at Max's, served in a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy dark brown/mahogany with a layer of off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Fruity malt with some hints of cherry and dark fruit. There is a mild herbal not as well, but the malt is the thing that's standing out.

Taste: Definitely malt forward, which is to be expected. There is a sweetness, but it is delicate. Mild fruit notes are there, but less than the smell. I'm getting some warm alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

OVerall: I think they did a good job of what they set out to do. I would have another, but I don't think I'd spend the money on a whole bottle.

oline73, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of Rifugium
3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Prohibition Pig, Waterbury, VT

Served in a mini-snifter, a dark brown nearly black beer, with a small cap of eggshell head; not much retention, but it did leave some nice soapy lacing while it lasted. Roasty malt aroma, dark sugars, a bit of dark fruit, bready. Taste is woody, malty, pumpernickel, caramel, with notes of figs, prunes, and licorice. Mouthfeel was about medium, would've been thin for a porter, but about right for a strong ale. Pretty nice overall, but nothing that I'd go out of my way for.

Rifugium, Apr 22, 2012
Photo of WesWes
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

WesWes, Jun 13, 2013
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Art Of Darkness from Brewery Ommegang
89 out of 100 based on 579 ratings.