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Dark Truth Stout - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Dark Truth StoutDark Truth Stout

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

1,888 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,888
Reviews: 590
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 86
Gots: 266 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Throughout the ages, man has been fascinated by the quest for hidden knowledge, the search for the secret to transforming the elemental into the extraordinary, the simple into the sublime. Ladies and gentlemen, we present for your consideration this exotic, inky concoction, the almost magical creation of our modern day alchemists who have turned humble grains—barley, wheat, rye, and oats—into black, liquid gold. Layers of complex flavors slowly emerge from the glass: espresso, roasted fig, crème brulée. Belgian yeast provides a plum-like fruitiness, noble German hops reveal spicy, herbal notes, while the rich, velvety mouthfeel mellows to a dry, smoky finish.

60 IBU

(Beer added by: BradLikesBrew on 02-28-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,888 | Reviews: 590 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jdhilt
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a four finger tan head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Black color, no highlights. Medium carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Molasses and chocolate nose and flavor is more molasses with chocolate, then a light burnt molasses aftertaste. Decent imp stout. $3.49 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma. Best by Jul 2013.

jdhilt, Dec 02, 2011
Photo of portia99
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle (best by 07/27/13) poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours an exceptionally dark brown color...just shy of black - totally opaque. A thick cap of frothy and foamy brown head sits atop the beer displaying very good staying power. Foamy lacing is left on the sides of the glass as the head falls.

S - Lots of dark fruits show up first in the nose aside a fair amount of alcohol. Roasty with some molasses, milk chocolate and some green and bitter hops. A bit sweet around the edges in a sugary way.

T - Bitter hops, dark fruits, smokey and burnt, dark roasted malts, alcohol, sugar, caramel, coffee. Well balanced flavors with everything integrated together nicely.

M - Medium carbonation over a light to medium body that seems a bit thin for the style. Fairly noticeable alcohol component though still doesn't give much of any warmth...just a bit that lingers and becomes known only on the exhale.

O - Drinks more like a standard stout as opposed to an imperial. The thin body and overall smoothness go along way towards giving this impression. The excellent balance here is what makes this stout. Complex with lots of little nuances to the flavors. Really nice - for me, the overall impression of this beer is better than the individual components. Glad this one is now readily available on the MA shelves...will definitely get some repeat business on this one.

portia99, Oct 12, 2011
Photo of Florya
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%

Florya, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of sprucetip
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter.

Black, active, thick creamy tan head with good retention and thick lacing.

Roasty, smoky, some dark fruit, and heat. Malty sweetness just barely noticeable underneath.

Roasty flavors and bitterness are prominent but balanced well by the malty base, which imparts a hint of sweetness in the background. Vague notes of dark fruit add another layer of barely discernible depth.

Warm but not quite hot, with the tiniest sting from the carbonation. Full body with roasty bitter finish.

Very tasty and bold, relatively smooth for the style. Solid. If you like the style, it's certainly worth a try.

With the exception of the raisiny dark fruit elements, I didn't get the Belgian yeast character. And I definitely didn't find any German or other hops with all the bold roast.

sprucetip, Dec 22, 2010
Photo of webmanspidey
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a chalice. Dark black with a light foamy head. Smells include sweet chocolate mousse, dark plums, and roasted malts. Taste is heavy on sweet chocolate and cocoa powder. This is very sweet, but surprisingly easy to drink. Overall, I enjoyed this one.

webmanspidey, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of perrymarcus
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a snifter.
best before stamp 04/28/13

pours a dark, cola-brown; sits a solid black. aggressive pour yields a creamy, fluffy 2" head; very good retention and lacing.

nose is decent; not especially bold and fairly standard for the style. dark chocolate, coffee, roasted malts. maybe a hint of dark fruits.

taste is an improvement: more full of flavor and, frankly, tastier than i suspected judging from the aroma. the chocolate, coffee, and roastiness are all there, along with molasses, dark fruits, a hint of spice and a little char. creamy, medium-bodied mouthfeel with some prickly carbonation.

overall a really good stout. with so many worthy competitors in the style that line the shelves, it's not one i'll be bending over backward to try again. but i'd certainly be up for it.

perrymarcus, Sep 13, 2011
Photo of brewskifan55
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter

A: Black with a tan one-finger head that settles to frothy bubbles. Thick, tan lacing.

S: Anise, leather, plums, dates. Brown sugar, molasses.

T: Sweet, robust. Smokey. Semi-sweet chocolate, dark fruit. A nice, thick coffee-like finish. A terrific sipper.

M: Medium to heavy with thick carbonation.

O: Very pleased with this one. Would love to try more. Recommended.

brewskifan55, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of FanofHefe
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a Boulevard tulip; best by 7/27/13 - wow, I know stouts age well but this one must be pretty fresh. Deep, black body with no light getting through. BIG, four-finger mocha head, that, is much bigger in a stout than I expected. But, it does have good retention and lacing.

Excellent aroma: rich, dark malt and dark fruit dominate. But, accompanied by hints of chocolate and toffee and has the quality that I like to qualify as very inviting.

The flavor is a very good copy of the aroma with the dark malt, raisin, chocolate, and toffee flavors as well. A light smoky flavor blends in and a touch of bitterness from either the roasted malt or a bit of hops finishes the taste profile.

Medium to thick mouthfeel with a touch of the alcohol present. Solid stout that would very likely do well with age.

FanofHefe, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of ENIGma
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an 09 bottle from my cellar

a. It's as pitch black as you'd expect from a big imperial stout. Nice carbination after a year and a good 3 inches of tanned head from a medium poor.

s. Booze, coffee, chocolate, and a hint of dark fruits.

t. Coffee and roasted malt up front with dark chocolate and dark fruits and good bittering from the hops in the middle. Finishes with the booze warmth, coffee, and fruits.

m. This beer has a solid medium body and finishes slightly dry from the coffee.

d. This is a big beer and while you can taste the heat from the 9% abv, it's not overpowering in any way and actually comes together in a easy to drink beer.

I would highly recommend this beer for pairings with deserts especially something sweet and chocolaty.

ENIGma, Nov 22, 2010
Photo of Badger6
4.11/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Boulevard tulip.

A: The body appears black in color, because it passes no light...except at the edges where there is a hint of a deep reddish brown color where a sliver of light passes if the glass is held just right. Produced a thin but dense tan head that diminished in about a minute, leaving a small collection of of bubbles on the surface, with a very thin collar around the edge of the glass.

S: Light but distinct aromas of roasted malt, infused with hint of plum fruitiness, and the slightest hint of hops. The aroma is almost understated for a beer as complex and powerful as this one is.

T: The taste exactly mirrors the smell, but the smoked malts are more pronounced, the plum flavor form the Belgian yeast is distinct (not overpowering or unbalanced) and there is a clear hint of spice. The finish brings it full circle to the smoky malts, very smooth ending. There is no hint of booziness in the taste.

M: The body is robust, but not heavy, on the palate. The carbonation is moderate, and the finish is dry from the smoky malt flavors. There is no tone of alcohol on the palate, which is surprising for an offering with an abv this high.

O: This is a totally drinkable beer, surprisingly so for a 9.7% abv offering. This may be one of the most unique stouts available mixing smoked malts with Belgian yeast and German hops. The complexity of these ingredients together is unique, in a good way. This, like all of the other Boulevard Smokestack series, is a drinkable beer, and will definitely be in my rotation of regular beers.

Badger6, Jan 24, 2014
Photo of Captain_Komamura
4.11/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - It is a black to very dark brown in color, with a brown head.

Smell - It is a nice fruity smell, with chocolate and coffee.

Taste - It is the fruity plum taste, over the dark chocolate flavor, with a nice sweet smokey finish.

Mouthfeel -It is a good-bodied stout, with a nice alcohol burn.

Overall - It is a pretty good American Imperial Stout.

Captain_Komamura, Jan 22, 2014
Photo of BucannonXC5
4.11/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: 0.5L glass
From: Bine & Vine Bottle Shop in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $8.99 for a 4-pack
Purchased: Jan. 29, 2014
Consumed: Jan. 31, 2014
Misc.: Best by Sept. 3, 2015

Poured a pitch black color with 2-to-3 fingers of frothy dark tan head. Above average-to-good lacing along the sides. Great retention on the top all the way down.

Smelled a pleasant whiff of dark sour fruits, sour cherry, plum, cocoa, chocolate, caramel, toffee and some roastiness. But really the sour fruits dominate.

Tasted not really much like the smell. First was buttery dark malts. Also toffee, caramel, dark sour fruits, cocoa, smoky woodfire, plum, black cherry and chocolate.

Medium-to-full body. Slick texture. Average carbonation. Long, smooth finish.

Just a fantastic beer. Loved every part of this.

BucannonXC5, Feb 01, 2014
Photo of matthewbailey76
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%

matthewbailey76, Sep 02, 2014
Photo of lnashsig
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I'm really falling in love with Boulevard Brewery. Some amazing stuff coming out of this creative force in Kansas City Missouri- especially the Smokestack Series. Has yet to disappoint me.

Poured into my dfh Snifter, a midnight black completely opaque pour, that immediately rushes out a dark tan frothy head that fills the glass before I can get the whole beer out of the bottle (12 oz bottle). Smell- dark fruits, belgian yeast, currants, chocolate. Taste- big dark sweet fruits first, chocolate, currants, big belgian flavors, with a bittersweet chocolate finish. I have a hard time classifying this as an Imperial Stout, I would actually like to categorize it in the Belgian Stout category. The Belgian fruit flavors are very obvious here, and it is almost completely void of the hoppy flavors you would expect from an Imperial Stout.

Mouthfeel: this is a chewy beast- appropriate and enjoyable for the style, with good carbonation.

Drinability: my only knock on this beer- you get some big alcohol heat that makes this one a one-and-done. it will probably take me over an hour to finish this beer (and thats not a bad thing- it has already improved with a little warmth on it.

Yet another masterpiece from Boulevard- one of the most under-rated breweries out there in my opinion, and they are bringing some creativity to the craft beer scene.

lnashsig, Feb 19, 2011
Photo of Bung
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml Picked up in South Bend IN.
Pretty much black pour with a huge frothy tan head. Stuck around forever as well.

Roast malt, light chocolate and hint of bannana or chocolate covered fruits. Some herbal spice tones as well? Belgian yeast always does strange things to the nose of stouts/porters imo.

Thankfully, they don't seem to do strange things to the taste. Roast malt, molasses and dark chocolate. Faintest red fruits and bannana in there. Finishes a little dry with cocoa and coffee.

Mouthfeel is pretty solid mid bodied and creamy. Goes down easy, no alcohol presence. Not as good as the other Imerial Stout I had from Boulevard, but still worth trying.

Bung, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of n2185
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours black with three fingers of tan head that fades into a thick ring with great lacing.

S: roasted malts up front followed by lots of sweet molasses and dark chocolate aromas. Creamy coffee with some char notes bring up the finish. Smells great.

T: strong toasted malt flavors at first, with dark chocolate flavors following. There are some roasted coffee notes along with lightly bitter char flavors on the finish.

M: thick body with medium carbonation, this beer is more carbonated than most imperial stouts, but it goes well with the bitterness of the beer.

O: a good imperial stout, overall. Nice and roasty with a great aroma.

n2185, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of rrski198
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Jet black, huge mocha colored head. Good lacing. Head hangs around quite a while.

S: Dark chocolate, burnt grain, carmalized sugar, anise, alcohol.

T: Burnt chocolate. Deeply roasted and spent coffee grounds. Burned brown sugar.

M: Big time flavor, thick in the mouth. Syrupy, high carbonation. Bitterness kicks and lingers at the end.

D: Very nice beer. A little to sweet for my Imperial Stout taste, as I prefer the drier Russian Imperial Stouts, however, this is a very quality brew that I will by again.

rrski198, Nov 19, 2010
Photo of GbVDave
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into three pint glasses. Thanks to Steve and Chris for the assist!

Batch Number/ 2010-1
Best By Date: 01/13

A: Intense black coffee pour. Dark khaki head. Very pillowy. Excellent retention and lace.

S: Heavily roasted malt, coffee, oats, milk sugar, bakers chocolate and dark overripe fruit.

T: See above with roasty malt, rich dark fruit, oats/milk sugar, and a slight Belgian yeastiness.

M: Very smooth. Coats well with a slight dryness during the long roasty finish.

D: Fantastic! No trace of ABV. Very nice, indeed.

GbVDave, May 09, 2010
Photo of riored4v
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 3/19/10

Poured into a goblet. 3 finger, dense, tan head. Good lacing. Pitch black body.

Smell was molasses, coffee, burnt malt and no real standout sweetness. Good aroma although not real strong.

Flavor had some rasoted flavor with a subtle bitter finish that seems to come more from the malt than the hops. Some mild sweetness, molasses and coffee flavors. Some fruitness is present from the belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel had a medium body. Fairly high carbonation (seems a little high), somewhat dry finish. Silky mouthfeel.

Drinkability was good. No signs of ABV. Flavor is mellow enough to drink easily.

Overall this was a tasty stout. Nice complexity of flavors and the belgian yeast lends an interesting character.

riored4v, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of JayReq
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I actually had this recommended by someone very cool, so I went out to Whole Foods and found it! I am glad I did. I drank from a small tasting glass (basically a miniature pint glass), and man, what an easy pour!

Appearance: Poured out almost silky smooth, it looks very thick and has a really nice deep pitch color. The pour produced a nice head, somewhat creamy in its texture, but the foam is a light-tan brown, like the color of wet sand.

Smell: Banana bread and nuts, believe it not, but I can't really place what kind. I can't really pick anything else up in the nose.

Taste: This is a rather complex stout. For a 9.7% Imperial Stout the alcohol is barely there, and it tastes a bit like darker rum. The banana bread is definitely under the rum, and there is a hint of burnt oat and hops, almost an ale-like quality in the latter. A little bit of a bite on the finish, which reminds the drinker that there is indeed alcohol in there. Very smooth and drinkable for stout fans, but I don't know if I would suggest this to first-timers.

Mouthfeel: Barely-there carbonation, which I like in my stouts. Very smooth, velvety on the tongue. Very nice. "Warming" is a good word, and warming usually means a good stout. Settles very nicely.

Overall: I really quite enjoyed this. It isn't a pinnacle beer, but it is a masterful expression of the style. Boulevard really made this a pleasure to drink. This is probably one of the best stouts I have had, period, and I will most likely pick it up again.

JayReq, Apr 28, 2013
Photo of draheim
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (best by 10/19/11) poured into a snifter.

Pitch black brew, nice 1-finger tan head. This beer looks gorgeous.

Smell is some vanilla, dark roasty malts, maybe a little toffee, chocolate, oak, dark cherries, pipe tobacco, black earthy loam. Nice and complex.

Taste is bitter, smoky, woody. More dark fruit as it warms, maybe a little brandy. Mostly bitter with just a hint of rich sweetness.

This is a unique, complex stout. Maybe almost too much going on here, but certainly worth investigating a few more times to make up my mind. I could see myself enjoying this a lot, especially in winter.

draheim, Jul 21, 2011
Photo of paperbackfoster
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep black coffee pour with an espresso colored head, comes up to about a finger and a half before receding to a solid half that, if I’m not mistaken, lightens up in color but doesn’t show signs of dissipating. Lacing is delicate, but solid.

S - Belgian yeasts pop over an almost leathery, plum-like body. Sweet and savory scent. Hints of ripeness, sweet cherry, touch of dark roast.

T - Sharp roast and sweet yeasty tang dominate, but that barely scratches the surface. Taste runs deep, and develops long after a sip. Plum and cherry, bedded in bitter chocolate, are easy to discern, but to name sweetness like such sells the beer short. Underneath is a complex, dry malt profile. Roasted, toasted, and full of sharp bite. Citrus and pepper tie it all together. A constantly evolving beer.

M - A rich, dry stout. Creamy body, but finishes with a snap.

Overall - This is another outstanding example of what separates the Smokestack series from Boulevard’s other staple sessions and seasonals. Boulevard Dry Stout, for instance, is a fine stout - an equally fine stout to get in a six pack. Dark Truth, however, is like an upgrade worth spending time with. It’s characteristically dry, full, sharp. But the sweetness isn’t just a hint of sugar or cream, it’s an entire separate profile of ripe fruit, chocolate, and yeast. Dark Truth is a one-and-done sort of beer, a complex imperial to sip on.

paperbackfoster, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of BradLikesBrew
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No. 14 in the Smokestack Series

Barley, Wheat, Rye, Oats
Belgian Yeast
German Noble Hops

Like the Collaboration Pils, this one looks great. Mocha head slowly settles depositing sheets of lacing. Jet black body.

The aroma is dark and roasty with hints of fig.

Well put together on the palate. A more restrained style of Imperial Stout, flavors are superbly integrated and balanced allowing one layer after another to just leave a kiss of flavor on the palate. First I get coca-cola and toffee before things turn dark, namely dark baking chocolate. It was planted in my mind by the description on the back of the bottle, but roasted figs and espresso really are appropriate descriptors. Plum is there too.

Beyond the generally less aggressive, more subtle path that this beer takes, I think the spicy quality of the yeast and hops lend a unique perspective. Rather than balance out the rich roasty malts with gobs of the hop bitterness (like Yeti or Ten Fidy) Dark Truth instead allows a lingering spice character to round things out.

Make that the 14th superb offering in the series. Guys, you're bating a 1000.

BradLikesBrew, Feb 28, 2010
Photo of illidurit
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle shared at the July Santa Cruz tasting. Pours clear darkest brown with red highlights and a fluffy light brown head. Aroma is boozy with dark chocolate and some smokey molasses. A touch of dark fruits too. Flavor has notes of dark chocolate, acidic red fruits, mild prune, and black coffee. Also some chocolate cake and dark caramel as well as a bit of burnt, roasted character. Palate is soft and moussey for such a big stout. Pretty nice beer.

illidurit, Jul 25, 2011
Photo of NoLeafClover44
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Weyerbacher tulip. Bottled 4/16/12.

A - Typical appearance for the style. Black with a finger or two of mocha head. Shows good retention and leaves nice lace behind.

S - Smells of roasted wood, char, and mellow vanilla. Some coffee and dark fruits sneak in as well. Good but not great aroma.

T - Big campfire smokiness covers the other flavors from the nose. Very bitter for the style. Sweetens as it warms as dark fruits and chocolate emerge. The conglomerate of flavors works very well.

M - Carbonation is light, combining with the medium body for a creamy feel. The initial bitterness of the char drys the palate, but this phenomena dwindles more with each sip.

O - Found this one on a recent beer run to State Line Liquors in MD. Not a brewer I am used to having access to, so I picked up a few of their offerings. This one was toasty and bitter, which I enjoyed. Improved considerably as it warmed and new flavors joined the party. I really enjoyed it and will get it again.

NoLeafClover44, Jul 19, 2012
Dark Truth Stout from Boulevard Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,888 ratings.