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Dark Truth Stout - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Dark Truth StoutDark Truth Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,027 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,027
Reviews: 617
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.59%
Wants: 92
Gots: 301 | FT: 8
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:
Beer added by: BradLikesBrew on 02-28-2010

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
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,027 | Reviews: 617 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of johnnnniee
4.28/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Curious looking 12 oz bottle caught my eye and made the ride home with me. Pours a deep brown color bordering on black with a huge fluffy tan head that shows moderate retention and mad lace. Smells roasty, chocolatey and dark fruity. Slight caramel and licorice and hints of yeasty esters round out the aroma. Taste is roasty, fruity, and Belgian like. Lots of dark fruit, caramel, and chocolate mixed with a quad like fruity and yeasty Belgian character. Medium to thick body, moderate level of carbonation, sweet almost syrupy mouthfeel. I normally don't enjoy "Belgian Stouts" but wow this one is very well done and very tasty. It seems to have just the right mix of stout and quad character to help me really enjoy it.

Photo of jondeelee
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark Truth opens with a rich, malty nose that is not entirely what I normally expect from a stout. Still present here are the typical stout aromas--coffee, ash, chocolate malt--but these are comparatively light, and joined by a large sugary swirl that brings in heavy brown sugars and molasses, coffee cream, dark caramels, and some vanilla and fig. The result is enticing, reminding me of some of the more exotic flavored black coffees.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a fast jolt of tobacco ash and coffee grinds, very much in contradiction to the sugars present in the nose. These initial bitter, black flavors are not tempered by time, continuing to grow on the tongue and joined by chocolate and black malt flavors, as well as touches of anise and pepper. Some brown sugars do provide relief from the char, and a good hop-brought bitterness (60 IBUs) and grapefruit citrus zest also help temper the brew. Subsequent mouthfuls reveal a fuller fruit base, with figs and port wine flavors joining, somewhat oddly, white grape. A medium-strong alcohol bite growls at the edges, thanks to the 9.7% ABV, but is largely held in check. The aftertaste is a mouthful of delicious char, with some sugars remaining, and fades with medium quickness. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium-high.

Overall, this is good stout, and the dark fruit flavors revealed in later mouthfuls provide nice counterpoint to the initial coffee and tobacco ash bitterness. The mouthfeel is oddly light, given the strength of the flavors, and the ashy aftertaste can be a bit much, but this is still worth trying for stout-lovers.

Photo of 1fastz28
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours as black as you would expect with a nice frothy head. the aroma is great, coffee is the most overwhelming scent but also has some chocolate in the mix. The taste is good, but one thing about higher alcoholic content stouts is that you normally dont get the alcohol bite but with this one it is very powerful. It is almost too strong and takes away from the other flavors of the beer. Mouthfeel is nice and full, not watery at all. Overall i think it could have been a better if they had a less pronounce alcohol presence.

Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours jet black with a tan head. In the aroma, a dry coffee roast and a small sweetness. In the taste, a nice coffee roast and a sweet to dry small alcohol presence. A small bite and a medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a dry coffee like aftertaste. Nice stout, big coffee and hides the ABV well.

Photo of lackenhauser
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black with quite the tan foam head on top-almost too much carbonation took 3 pours to get it into my imperial pint glass. Deep roasted/espresso aroma. Very india ink like. Strong roasted and grain flavors. Sulfury and yeasty tasting. Plums/dried fruit/black currants. Nice full and somewhat smooth mouthfeel-lingering acrid bite to it. enjoyable enough. Lacks the smoothness and finesse to make it a bit more enjoyable and drinkable.

Photo of Jayli
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours an opaque brown, almost brown with a two finger of light, foamy, brown. Head recedes at a moderate pace leaving nice sheets of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is dark fruits, chocolate and some booze.

T: Taste is coffee notes upfront before it tails off to some chocolate flavoring. Middle has an undercurrent of roasted malts nad dark fruit. Finish is where the dark fruits really take over- raisin, date and a good dose of caramel comes through.

M: Medium to slightly heavier bodied, medium carbonation, for a stout rather crisp and dry.

O: Goes down easy, tasty, somewhat filling, good kick that is ok blended, decent representation of style.

Photo of coldriver
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours pitch black with fluffy tan head. Alcohol, caramel, toffee, with the belgian yeast aromas coming through in the background. Plum, alcohol, smokey malt are the predominant tastes. Smooth for a 9.7% beer, with a dry finish. Honestly not a fan of mixing Belgian Yeast with non-Belgian styles but this one is interesting and well balanced. Probably wouldn't do it again but worth a try.

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.

Photo of Goliath
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours pitch black and completely opaque with a gigantic three inch brown head. The retention is very imnpressive.

The aroma is fine. Dark malt provides notes of chocolate and a sweet raw grain. There is a very floral note in there as well.

The taste is nice. There's definitely a big grain bill here and it provides notes of bitter chocolate, roasty grain, and a light burnt note.

The mouthfeel is full bodied with a high level of very fine bubbled carbonation.

Overall it's a solid beer. Although I've strayed from bigger stouts in recent years, I am finding myself enjoying this beer quite a bit. The appearance is almost ideal to me. The flavor profile is basically what you would come to expect in a beer of this type, but it is just becoming common place. I love that for almost 10% ABV it's not boozey. I also think there is some fantastic subtlety that is lost on many palates. Solid, but it wouldn't show up on my best of list.

Photo of KELPAK
4.8/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Fantastic beer. Was the first i've tried from the Boulevard Brewary and i'm very impressed. Nice mocha finish to it and pours nearly black. Was extremely shocked by the alcohol content after first tasting the beer, certainly does not taste like a stout that contains 9.7% alcohol.

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.

Photo of PEBKAC
3.55/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

4-packer from somewhere up north(or was it Philly?). Best By 10/19/11.

DFH rounded pint glass. Heavyhanded pour results in lots of sandy, dark tan-colored insulation foam on top of a black(on black) body. Sticky, archipelago-like lace.

Sniff. Lots of cocoa, raisins, & soft citrus upfront. Coffee, hazelnuts, lactose, & lots of heat on the back.

Roasty, charred sweetness. Ash. Earthy/minerally hops. Dry, bittergreen/rindy finish.

Constantly frothy. Average body. Moderate carbonation, but pretty acidic. A bit too hot for being under 10%.

A little tough.

Photo of warnerry
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by 10/19/11

A - Pours pitch black with two and a half fingers of creamy tan head. Still one finger of head more than five minutes after pouring. Outstanding retention. Also leaves some nice lacing.

S - Dark chocolate, lots of roasted malt, and a bit of char. Also quite a prominent fruit presence (fig, raisin and a faint tartness) and a bit of anise. Has many of the aroma components found in other stouts, but I have never smelled anything quite like this, which is mostly a compliment. Maybe a bit too much char.

T - Similar to smell, though there is more of a sweet milk chocolate component to the taste than the smell. Every sip finishes very roasty with a touch of char.

M - Very nice smooth, creamy medium/full mouthfeel. Definitely not heavy, but substantial.

O - A very nice stout. I wasn't sure how much I would enjoy this based on the smell, which had nice components, but seemed slightly off somehow. But the taste came together well, and having a bit of sweet chocolate, which I am normally not a big fan of, helped to counteract the heavy roasted character. I would have this again, but wouldn't stock up on it.

Photo of Chico1985
3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

With temperatures approaching below freezing recently, it's officially stout season.

12oz pours into a snifter pitch black, nice tan sand dune head retains easily as a full cap leaving some nice lace behind.

Some faint dark fruits in the smell...figs and maybe red grape, dark malts, tartness. Reminiscent of a red wine somewhat, nice, but not much stout-ness.

Taste also brings on the dark fruit. Plum, raisin and some tart cherry there too. Starts to taste more like a stout with some warmth, big roast, coffee, caramel. Really ashy, smoky finish. Seems a bit one-sided with the fruit at first but it melds pretty well after some time.

Smooth, silky mouthfeel. A bit high on the carbonation and foaminess which I've noticed in most Boulevard beers, but it's not bad here. A bit of alcohol heat but also not a bother.

Takes some time to balance out but when it does you get a pretty nice Belgian stout, interesting stuff. It will be cool to see how this ages in a year or two.

Photo of CuriousMonk
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into snifter glass. Barley, wheat, rye and oats provide the foundation for this big stout. Layers of complex flavors slowly emerge from the glass: espresso, roasted fig, creme brulee. 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. Such a robust beer stands well by itself, but also makes a wonderful end-note as a dessert itself.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by date 10/19/2011 drank on 10/17/2011 Thanks SalukiAlum for the awesome extra had been wanting to try this beer for awhile now

Look: Pitch black with a red ring on the bottom of the glass with 1/4 inch dark tan head and no real retention

Smell: HInts of dark fruits and licorice. Has some sweet chocolate on the backend

Taste: The front end has a chocolate covered prune note while the backend carries a roasted coffee note that is followed up by a bit of ash

Mouthfeel: Full body and way to much carbonation for the style

Overall: This beer is not bad but it is nothing special. Definitely worth a try however

Photo of Keithstone44
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

6-month old bottle poured into a snifter.

A: pitch black with a 1-inch deep tan head that leaves behind great lacing.

S: Sweet-malt, chocolate and fruit (cherries, and plum)

T: Intense roasted barley in the beginning, followed by hints of caramel and fruitiness

M: Lightly carbonated, very full-bodied. Silky smooth texture

O: Great stout from Boulevard. A little too much roasted barley getting through, but that could be because of the age on the bottle

Photo of RunForYourBeer
3.45/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle says best by 4/27/13

A: Black with a good sized tan head that sticks around.

S: Dark, roasty chocolate and a hint of dark fruits.

T: Dark chocolate with some coffee and roastiness. Has a bit of dark fruits and alcohol warming in the finish.

M: A bit thin and too carbonated for me.

O: Not a bad beer but nothing I would go out of my way to find.

Photo of iceburger97
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- black with good carbonation

smell- chocolate, coffee liquor and the faint aroma of menthol cough drops , cola

taste- black licorice, burnt coffee, the flavor of cured sweet sausage was noted, although I don't think sausage is in the beer but that flavor did pop into my head as I tasted this beer, and the flavor of burnt cola or cocoa.

mouthfeel- rather extraordinary, went down smooth, quite refreshing, can be held in mouth and tasted with little bitterness

overall good. I would suggest trying this stout. I would suggest serving cold

Photo of jman892
3.18/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Great looking beer, pours black with a very big, fluffy, mocha colored head. The head shrinks but is retained throughout. As a result, nice intricate lacing remains

S - Mild coffee aroma, some roasted malts, somewhat smoky aroma.

T - Taste is bitter cocoa, very burnt toast, the alcohol is not too hidden in this, somewhat chalky and smoky, reminds me of a fireplace log.

M - Mouthfeel is nice and creamy, smooth and full bodied

O - Great looking beer, but the bitterness in the taste combined with the alcohol burn was a little overwhelming.

Photo of dbexpert
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A.Light brown head builds to a dense 1/2" and recedes to a complete covering head. A good sign of a quality brew.
S. Notes of roasted coffee(darker style but not quite espresso). Dark chocolate with a slight note of prune/raisin.
T. Black coffee, minimal residual sugars, Very drinkable 9.7%. Alcohol is not overbearing
M. Clean, dry
O. A VERY nice beer. Another solid creation from Boulevard. Their ability to brew big beers and make them this interesting and available is quite an accomplishment. Quickly become one of my favorite breweries.

Photo of horshack7
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Well this is quite an abyss of darkness. On top is whole bunch of very thick rocky head which is dark tan. As the head thins out very good lacing is left behind.

Aroma: Sweet fruits, roasted malts, toffee, phenolic alcohol. Burnt hop notes tart fruit as well as sweet fruit notes all through it. Phenols make themselves well known. Malts are sweet and bready with yeasty notes.

Taste: Very sweet out of the gate lots of sweet fruits and even ripe. Malts are roasted dark and sinister along side the hops. Sweet bread, phenols, minor esters. A little bit of yeast towards the back. The mouthfeel is very creamy a bit light melted dark chocolate.

Notes: This one is mean and ugly almost sinister what a monster and dam tasty. Cheers.

Photo of cbutova
3.7/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle.

A- Poured into a tulip with a pitch black body and a massive mocha colored head. Retention is basically infinite, waiting to drink because of it. Nice thick spots of lace.

S- Straight up stout. Big roasted malt notes which has characteristics of cocoa, coffee and burnt sugar. Also raisins, alcohol and smoke.

T- Follows the nose for the most part but I would say the dark fruit flavor is bigger here. This blends nicely with notes of heavily roast malt, cocoa, coffee and smoke. Slight alcohol.

MF- Thick, oily body with moderate carbonation level. Finishes warm and somewhat bitter.

A nice big stout but a bit too fruity for me, it is a nice flavor but would work much better toned down just a bit. Still worth trying for sure.

Photo of nhindian
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Dogfish Head Signature glass.

A - Pours an obsidian black, completely opaque and flat at places. Exceptionally pitch black, like the moment you turn the lights off and can't adjust to it just yet. This is contrasted nicely by the mocha-colored head, which almost explodes when it touches the glass because it's so bubbly and frothy. It's easily pushing 3-fingers in height and has retention for days. I can't tell if it's done receding or if there is really almost a finger's worth of cap on this beer. The lacing, as expected due to the impressive head, is thick, generously slabbed across the glass and dripping with foam.

S - The nose on this is pretty unique in my opinion. It balances a few different characteristics, but pulls it off nicely. There is a touch of soy and smoke, but both play nicely within the larger view. Also even a dark, pitted fruit quality that even gives off an almost tart note. Then you have the big chocolate from the malts, and finally a soothing alcohol heat rounds everything out.

T - The first thing that I noticed about the taste is that it isn't very sweet at all. Given the chocolate, fruits, and soy I got in the nose, I was expecting something pretty sweet, but instead it is actually a bit bitter and acrid at times. The chocolate is still here, and actually dominates the front of the taste, but it is a much more bitter kind of cocoa. Think really dark chocolate. Luckily the soy is again very faint, so there's no worry of it overpowering, but the smoke and char does linger a bit. The second half of this beer has a decent amount of plums or raisins and figs, which gives it an earthy quality. The alcohol burn is again present, but it only serves to give a little warming sensation.

M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with high carbonation. Definitely a very active mouthfeel due to the constant popping of carbonation and the silky smooth head. Quite dry in the finish due to the chocolate and bitterness.

D/O - Drinkability is moderately high. This is a fairly bold stout and definitely delivers on all of the flavors. I'm liking the addition of the darker fruits and the shift to a more bitter kind of flavor compared to the overly sweet stouts that some breweries are churning out. I'd like to get a few more bottles of this to set down for a few months or years.

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.

Dark Truth Stout from Boulevard Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,027 ratings.