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Art Of Darkness - Brewery Ommegang

Art Of DarknessArt Of Darkness

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

528 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 528
Reviews: 121
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 11.65%

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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Edwaka01 on 02-13-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 528 | Reviews: 121 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of micromaniac129


3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours stoudt like, deep and dark . A never ending head sits on top. Well carb'd brew nowonder the head never fades.
The aroma is sweet, malty with some dark fruits too.
Taste is malty and sweet. There hints of fruits earth and spicy yeast.
Drinks thin and very dry and bitter. A solid alcohol presence almost dominates the beer.
Tastey and drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2013 13:34:25 | More by micromaniac129
Photo of ksimons

New York

4.16/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-dark chestnut with a bit of ruby highlights and two fingers worth of rocky head that sticks to the glass

S-dark fruits, dark bread malt, cocoa, and light roasted notes which develops more as the beer warms

T-lots of sweet dark fruits, dark malt, cocoa, peppery, a bit of roastedness as the beer warms, and light yeast flavor

M-medium body, light to medium carbonation, and peppery finish

Overall this is a pretty decent BSDA, nothing too amazing but for the price I got it at I would definitely have it again

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 23:19:20 | More by ksimons
Photo of KYGunner


4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 00:25:21 | More by KYGunner
Photo of JackMcAwesome


3.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A lovely dark pour, with a 1 finger head that lingered until halfway through.

S: A bit of floral, with some chocolate afterthought. It also reminded me of Captain Morgan: Tattoo, which I found interesting.

T: A very small hint of chocolate, but mostly a nutty licorice bite. I think also a bit of cherry.

F: Medium bodied. An even amount of carbonation.

Overall: A fun one to try. I don't know if I'd repurchase any time soon, many things to try, but I'll revisit it for sure. If you like dark ales, then this is an obvious choice to at least try.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2013 02:13:10 | More by JackMcAwesome
Photo of beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Rich hersey chocolate pour produces a monster pecan tinted head of 3 finger proportions. Porous, soapy surface leaves a sloppy lacing only after a lengthy retention.

S: Spicy nobel flowers and chocolate come upfront, soft dry coffee beans with a light strength, typical of Ommegang's offerings. The nobel hops are flowery and fresh, bright and at the forefront of the drink and the chocolate malt base, an unusual set of circumstances.

T: Spicy cocoa, fresh bready yeastiness with mentions of green pear and banana come with a light helping of nuttiness. There is a bit of dried honey wheat and sweet chocolate mixture. Spicy flowery chocolate brightness comes on the swallow with a sweet swiss chocolate finish that is eloquent and clean.

M: The body is light to medium in substance with a very relaxed state of carbontion.

O: Overall an exceptionally smooth, clean and very easy to consume offering. The dark malt base is more schwarz then double stout, and is sweet creamy and smooth like swiss chocolate. The noble flowers really shine here while the chocoalte malt is so silky sweet and refined. The yeast brings a good deal to the table too with its pear and banana offering and things finish out as strong as they started. Ommegang is not going to slam you in the face with a bold aggressive nature and flavor, thier beers are shown to be exceptionally clean and polished with a delicate and eloquent balance that shows off the slightest nuances that is to be appreciated. Definitly worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2013 23:54:55 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of puboflyons

New Hampshire

4.48/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From the corked, caged 750 ml. bottle stamped: Pkg on 02/20/12-Best By 02/2015. Sampled on February 25, 2013.

It is a handsome looking deep dark brown to jet black with a silky, beige head that erupts and settles down to a lasting ring.

The aroma has a lot going on with black licorice sticks leading the way along with dark malts, dark plum/prune fruitiness, yeast, spice, and a hint of hops to balance it off.

The body is medium to full and smooth.

The taste, like the aroma, is complex with dark fruits that are more like cherries, black licorice, and even a little coffee. The alcohol can be spotted but it is generally well-integrated into the beer. The hop bite is muted at the end but it builds and lingers with each passing sip. I guess I liked it better than the previous raters.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2013 19:11:30 | More by puboflyons
Photo of denver10


3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep magenta with a dirty cream colored head. Aroma was of some dark fruits (dark cherries, figs, plum) and somce cocoa. Flavor followed suit with the dark fruits standing out and a nice little underlying of some chocolate and some caramel malt. A medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, not my favorite style but Ommegang did a very nice job with this one allowing me to enjoy it a good deal. Probably not a beer I would have enjoyed as my opener to the night, but a beer that worked well as my closer.

Serving type: on-tap

02-17-2013 02:27:20 | More by denver10
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.51/5  rDev -11.1%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

02-10-2013 08:59:41 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Apellonious

North Carolina

3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

1 pt 9.4 fl oz bomber pkg 2/22/12

A - black with brown highlights. One finger head dissipates to a thin lace.

S - picking up spice, some yeast, maybe some dark fruit

T - non distinct and hard to place. The dark arts. Plum, fig, pepper. Getting some brown sugars.

M - very sharp. Slightly metallic. Mouthfeel is full.

O - decent if not overly memorable, makes me think a properly cellared version (who knows how long it was on the TWine shelf) may have been smoother and more complex.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2013 23:01:21 | More by Apellonious
Photo of jbertsch


3.03/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle aged 1 year.

Pitch black appearance, even when held up to light. 1 finger of beige head.

Aroma is not significant. Most notable is the belgian-like yeast. Faint cocao and a hint of cherry.

Rather than distinct flavors, this is really a blend of flavors that are hard to pin down. Some christmas spices sit over dark grains, with a hint of chococlate, leather, and tobacco, and brown sugar... But you really have to search hard for those flavors.

Medium body. Not as belgian-like in the mouthfeel. Almost more brown ale-like.

Overall a decent beer, but it's a bit too non descript, without much character. I've come to expect more from Ommegang.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 02:45:03 | More by jbertsch
Photo of socon67

New York

4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

01-30-2013 04:49:30 | More by socon67
Photo of DMXLOX22


3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 22 oz. of this brew at my local establishment. Fully stoked to be drinking this beer. I just had to review this beer.

Appearance: Pours a black, earthy, with a great showing of a nice, white, fluffy head.

Smell: Has a strong aroma of spiced almonds and hints of chocolate. Enjoyed the presence of dark roasted malts.

Taste: The first sips brings a infiltration of dark malts, light flavors of banana and some tangy prunes. Has a moderate alcohol complexion. It did leave me wanting more. Has a clean aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Presents moderate carbonation. Light-bodied for a Belgian Ale.

Overall: Actually a delicious brew. Quite mellow and enjoyable, but also presented a strong-flavored body. Really enjoyed this beer and will have to try again if and when its available.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2013 01:54:57 | More by DMXLOX22
Photo of Gmann

New York

3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2013 03:45:58 | More by Gmann
Photo of Kevin73


3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2013 21:40:24 | More by Kevin73
Photo of ckk527

South Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Last 32 ounces of a keg into growler of same volume. Served in a chalice.

Appearance: Deep brown, almost black. Thin head just forming a brief film. Spotty lacing.

Aroma: Initial hint of a well fermented Christmas pudding. Dark fruits soaked in alcohol, with a subtle sweetness softened by a malty quality. Subtle cinnamon or allspice notes add interest and warmth. Very appealing.

Taste: Supported by the aroma; no surprises here. Reminiscent of a raisiny bread pudding or figgie pudding - but without the Devonshire cream weighing everything down. Pleasant, balanced. Raisins, plums, hint of molasses cookie and alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium, really. Surprisingly silky, followed by alcohol warmth. Quite lovely.

Overall: An interesting and very good example of the style. Pleased to have picked this up. Another quality statement from BO.

Serving type: growler

01-13-2013 02:18:09 | More by ckk527
Photo of teromous


3.4/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pitch black with a very thin off-white head on it that disappears into a small ring around the rim of the glass and small islands of bubbles. Small droplets of lacing.

S: Cocoa comes to me immediately. Then alcohol comes through, along with some light candy scents. The candy scent is similar to one of those old fashion root beer barrels...not the root beer scent but that sweet smell that accompanies it. It smells pretty good but I think it could possibly use some aging to get rid of the alcohol scent.

T: I'm approached with a combination of banana and fig flavors. Immediately following is a coffee flavor. I get a slightly iron taste to the beer as well. Some of the alcohol comes through, but there is a burnt character that masks it.

M: The mouthfeel is relatively bright with carbonation. Despite the limited head, there is a fizzy quality to the beer. I'm not overly fond of the carbonation level. It has a full mouthfeel, and has a welcome dryness.

O: I felt that the beer was a little too roasty for a Belgian Strong, and that it was a bit overcarbonated. I wanted more phenolic character, but it was masked behind the roasted flavors. Much of its Belgian yeast character was not brought to the forefront. It's not a bad beer at all. I felt that despite everything, it was a relatively average beer. I will enjoy my beer, but won't be looking for this beer anytime soon.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 01:03:52 | More by teromous
Photo of rlee1390


3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Black in the glass, clear brown around the edges, one finger tan head.

S-Mainly darker fruits with some spice, not much else.

T-Sweet dark fruits, plums and raisins, not much bitterness nor spices.

M-Light lots of carbonation but a tad watery.

O-A nice beer but it doesn't have anything that stands out, had it with some age on it, maybe fresh it would be better.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2012 00:18:58 | More by rlee1390
Photo of Suds


3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a deep, nearly black, brown color. It reveals slight red highlights when held to the light. The head is fizzy and short-lived. The aroma is of brown sugar and candied fruit, dark malt and Belgian yeast, pepper and a distant, fleeting smoke-scent. Nice. The taste is sharp with alcohol and carbonation. Warming and malty, with dark fruit and yeast. It seems highly attenuated, yet is sugary on the lips. Full and satisfying body.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2012 21:10:39 | More by Suds
Photo of SLeffler27

New York

4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark chocolate brown with clear ruby highlights. A thick, beige head reaches a dense, creamy three inches with golden flashes. The head is long lasting while dispersing a complex web of lace on an Ommegang tulip glass.

Opens with aromas similar to cherry cordial and a molasses background. Some notes of light pine and yeast open with warmth.

The flavor profile generally follows the nose while adding light coffee and cognac. Warmth brings out a roasted character with earthy fruits such as fig. Tartness is slightly off style but is well balanced against bitterness and sweetness. The complex progression with warmth is consistently followed with a long, chocolate finish.

This is a full-bodied, satin-textured beer with fine effervescent carbonation and lightly warming alcohol.

Well-suited for sipping while reading on a cold, wet autumn day. This is an interesting rendition of the style.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 12:28:49 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of jrenihan

Ontario (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer is black with a large light tan head. Pretty good retention. A bit of lace.

Smell is light and malty. Some dark fruit, primarily raisin and grape. A bit of yeast.

Taste contains malt, some chocolate, some dark fruit, but not as noticeable as in the nose. A bit of roasted malt. Mildly sweet. Strikes me as closer to a stout than a BSDA - I guess Belgian Stout is the closest description.

Medium bodied, lighter than expected. Moderate carbonation.

Overall, disappointing. A decent beer but nothing exciting. Not something I would go for again.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2012 23:29:11 | More by jrenihan
Photo of MattyG85


4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2012 08:02:42 | More by MattyG85
Photo of fx20736

New York

4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml wired and corked bottle into a chalice, served at cellar temp.

Onyx black which permits no light to pass through. Thick, souffle like sandy colored head that leaves spectral lacing.

aroma of dark fruit and molasses

slippery mouthfeel

Dark prunes and raisins with a treacle like bittersweetness riding atop a tidal wave of malt.

Notes: outstanding, tasty, yummy.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2012 00:53:21 | More by fx20736
Photo of Ryan011235


4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an Orval chalice on 11/19/12

Medium, ruddy sort of brown that settles much darker. The head is fizzy, reaching 1/3rd of an inch before settling down to a fraction of that. Some lace.

The aroma has an interesting culmination of goings-on: rum soaked raisins, figs, black licorice, clove, toasted grain and overtones of Dr. Pepper and RC Cola.

The flavor has a lot of dark fruit - raisins, plum, maybe even some prune. Dark grains and spice, too. It has a slight cola bent, as suggested by the nose. Yeast tones throughout. The finish is dry and quite bitter with notes of earthy hops, unsweetened cocoa and perhaps a touch of coffee.

Art of Darkness has a smooth, rolling medium body with granular undercurrents. Carbonation tapers off over time, leaving a pillowy, plush feel. Very nice.

I worked on Art of Darkness for over two hours and I enjoyed it more with each sip. One to let warm. An easy recommendation.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2012 04:44:30 | More by Ryan011235
Photo of Brant


4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

BLUF: A very well balanced dark ale, great for dessert or cold winter nights. A subtle and tasty mix of dark fruits and sweet malty alcohol.

A - Right out of the bottle it's a nice chocolaty brown with a hint of deep amber. In the glass it looks black. Nice head that fades a little too fast.

S - Sweet, hints of raisins and figs, mildly alcoholic scent.

T - Incredibly well-balanced. No one flavor stands out, but there's chocolate, raisins or figs, malt, and a slight alcohol tang (that by no means detracts from the experience!). Very nice.

M - Medium bodied, creamy but not overly so. Was not as heavy or syrupy as I expected it to be.

O - I bought two bottles of this because they both stated "Limited Addition" on the label. Glad I did! I'll drink one myself and save the other to share with my family over Christmas, and will certainly grab more if I see it. It has a very well balanced taste, nothing overwhelming, everything working in concert to yield a fantastic, warming ale.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2012 22:21:22 | More by Brant
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 2/27/12. Poured in to CBS snifter.

A - Very dark brown with some deep amber present during the pour. Completely opaque. Half a finger of light brown head.

S - Belgian yeast, dark fruit, roast, spice and hints of chocolate.

T - Belgian yeast and some clove notes present up front that are well complimented by chocolate, spice, cherry, raisin, brown sugar and fig flavours. No one flavour dominates.

M - Medium body; creamy. Moderate carbonation. A little too much carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2012 18:36:23 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Art Of Darkness from Brewery Ommegang
89 out of 100 based on 528 ratings.