1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Dark Truth Stout - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Dark Truth StoutDark Truth Stout

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

1,972 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,972
Reviews: 601
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.59%
Wants: 87
Gots: 286 | 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:
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)
View: Beers (48) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dark Truth Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,972 | Reviews: 601 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of theboozecruise
3.28/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter, it's a really dark color with a small off-white head.

The aroma is a little faint, boozy and chocolatey with a bit of vanilla flavor.

The taste is a little thin as well for such a dark beer. It has some rich chocolate notes and some wood undertones but it's just not a filled out flavor.

A little thin like before, not all that impressive on the mouthfeel.

It's still an okay beer, but Boulevard has been nothing but awesome in their smokestack series thus far. This one doesn't quite measure up.

Photo of Ghenna
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Squid ink black beer, tightly bubbled light brown head. Sticking around for a bit as well.

Smells of Dark chocolate, a bit of spice and stout-y goodness.

Taste is initially of bunch of big dry roast. Roast follows, with the usual dry chocolate and whathaveyou.

As is expected with a big beer like this it definitely lingers on the palate- though the near 10% is absolutely invisible.

Interesting beer, and my first from this brewery- really nice truth be told. Exactly what I expect the style to be. Lots of roast and dark chocolate, relatively dry, no hops to mention. Despite what my review numbers may say, definitely B+/A-/

Photo of flagmantho
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: completely, utterly, totally black with two fingers of creamy tan foam. Great head retention and lace on the glass -- just about as good as it gets.

Smell: sweet aroma with an appropriate roastiness and not a little yeastiness. Not bad, but lacking complexity -- especially for a strong stout.

Taste: big alcohol bite along wiht lots of roasted malt. Coffee flavors with roasted malt bitterness prevail; again, this beer lacks much complexity and is thus not terribly enticing.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a rich and silky texture. Creaminess is good, but a little bit more body would work wonders here.

Overall: a decent beer, but I like my big stouts to be more complex and less dry -- this beer really seemed like it was overattenuated.

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.63/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, opaque sable with a very thick and rather persistent yellowish-tan head. Nose-filling aroma has tones of chocolate, quality coffee, fresh-cut wood and molasses along with hints of caramel and licorice. Fabulous flavor is rather sweet but not cloying, like mocha made from excellent coffee and fine chocolate. A woody overtone provides a little hoppy bitterness to offset the sweet flavor, and hints of caramel, molasses and licorice round out the lip-smacking flavor. Texture has substantial body and a fair amount of tingle, Finish is fizzy and has chocolate and woody tones. Recommended!

Photo of avius
3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a stemless Bordeaux style glass. I chilled it down too far (obvious from the get go) so I hand warmed it.
It pours out a DARK brown, like hand made hot cocoa. Seriously like a fresh cocoa. The head dwindles to nothing and leaves almost no tracing of lace; this is to be expected, as there is not much hop note (higher hop=better retention?).
As it warms, the malts come out: deep, dark, rich. Just up to the edge of smoke. Oats? Did they add milk sugar? Nooo, but it is creamy and smooth like a milk stout.
No hop on the nose or tongue, this is an ode to malt. Rich barley, and I think rye and oats. The rye and oats combine to create the cream sensation on the tongue. It seems to go right up against the milk stout idea and pull back from the edge - it lacks the sweetness of a milk stout - and this is where the yeast and hops kick in.
It has a real subtle bitterness, German hops would imply Haulertau? It must be very subtly hopped, because I just do not get the classic German flavor. Well, maybe on the loooonnnnggg finish).
At its base, it is all toffee, a pinch of coffee, caramel, and a hint of chocolate malt. At the end, the nose is all toffee, alcohol, the tongue is sweetness and light...?
This is a good beer... Though it claims a Belgian yeast, I just cannot find it. The layer upon layer of malt so completely overwhelms any sort of Belgian flavor... though, the finish has a hint of that Belgian astringency... The bitterness becomes an after thought, as I would hope for in any worthy stout. It lingers on well after the beer has transgressed the palate.
Mouthfeel is outstanding. Creamy, smooth, with out being over the top. Very fine bubble structure.
Over all, this is an extremely well balanced beer. The more I sip it, the more I come to understand why brewers are reluctant to create a Belgian Stout. The malts just overwhelm any chance for the yeast to show through up front. The astringency of the yeast pairs well with the hops as an afterthought (which is what that German hop has turned into for my palate). Maybe if it weren't 9.7%? What if they tried a 5.5-6%? Instead of hiding behind the malt...
Over all I give it a 3.75... I want to unmask this beer and see what it is hiding. Until then, I just cannot go any higher...

Photo of fltmedic
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured the 12 oz bottle into a stemless goblet and the result was a beautiful head of mocha colored froth about 2 inches high. Not a bit of light passes through it.

The aroma is rich like dark coffee and toffee and caramel with over ripe bananas. It concentrates nicely in the glass and keeps coming through sip after sip.

The taste abounds and is so complex i am not close to qualified to describe it. My attempt goes something like this: Lots of dark chocolate in a little coffee, raisin, prune. Then there is more coffee with some alcohol warmth. The fade holds these all together and the chocolate bitterness remains on the tongue.

There is a thick, warm velvety and silky smooth mouthfeel, but it's not too heavy.

This stout was my dessert tonight and I would love it to be my dessert again. This fall I have a date to sit and sip one out on the deck in a crisp, clear night.

Photo of AmericanGothic
4.38/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Unibroue tulip. Best by 10/19/11.

A: Pours a nearly opaque, dark brown color with two fingers of khaki head. Good retention and lace.

S: Molasses and wine, a little chocolate.

T: Like the smell, leads with molasses and wine, chocolate comes next, and then finishes with fairly bitter coffee. Plenty tasty. Alcohol pretty well hidden. After a bit, sweet bread and black pepper join in the flavors.

M: Very creamy/foamy, slightly oily on the tongue.

O: Dangerously drinkable for the alcohol content, relatively inexpensive and always available. A go-to imperial stout. Well done, Boulevard.

Photo of DelMontiac
3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Nearly black body with one inch of dark mocha brown head that's not as tight as most stouts, but it hangs on for the whole glass and creates some pretty spectacular lace.

Aromas are black coffee, dark fruits, licorice, grassy hops, and a tinge of alcohol.

This is the fourth time I've had Dark Truth and let me tell you - you must let Dark Truth warm to get rid of a strange metallic note. I also think it needs age to be at it's best. If warmed and aged, you'll be happier with it.

Coffee and burnt bread crust is pretty much upfront followed by a lot of other flavors - dark chocolates, faint vanilla, dates, plums, wet hops, a strange bit of mintiness, and some alcohol coming through.

Mouthfeel is not optimal for a stout. It's lacking the velvety feel I like in a good stout brew. A bit too prickly for the style. Finishes very dry.

I was on the fence for a long time with this one. I could tell is wasn't a bad beer, so I let a couple age for nearly a year and they smoothed out pretty well. Plan on storing it and drink it fairly warm.

Photo of bsp77
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter. Enjoy by 4/27/13.

Appearance: Near black with very thick tan head that leaves lot of bubbly lacing.

Smell: Musty, dank and fruity with plum, molasses, spicy hops, chocolate and a touch of banana. Not too much roasted character in the aroma.

Taste: Not as Belgian as the aroma, although there is still a decent amount of plum. Fairly strong roasted characteristics of bittersweet chocolate and chocolate. Nice spicy hops on the finish, along with a long roasted bitterness.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation, medium to full body, very dry finish. Feels more effervescent than smooth and creamy (although it is that as well), belaying the Belgian yeast.

Overall: I am really a fan of Belgian Imperial Stouts (need that added as a style), and I seem to enjoy them more than most since I always have big positive rDevs on these. Loads of flavor, but not quite as heavy as a standard RIS.

Photo of Spcoly
3.4/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My first boulevard brew...

A: Pours dark with a thick head that takes its time

S: Coffee, roasty, and malty

T: Heavy bodied but not enough flavor for my liking. Came up a little short

M: Good carbonation, somewhat drinkable, but not really

O: Decent brew, but left me hanging. Will probably pass on next time I see it.

Photo of SummitVA
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - deep brown pour with tan head. Carbonation is on the lighter side.

S - Wonderfully complex. Molasses, dark malts, plenty of roast, coffee, wet coffee grounds, stone fruits, and a bit of alcohol heat.

T - Caramel sweetness balanced well by roast. Molasses, coffee, and stone fruits again apparently, along with a bittersweet chocolate flavor. Some heat in the finish.

M - Medium bodied.

O - Fantastic nose on this beer and some great complexity. I really need to try this again when the temperature is below 90 degrees, but I was hardly going to turn this one down today. Always happy to have a Boulevard brew, and this was no exception.

Photo of ms11781
3.48/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to duff247 for this one. Best by 07/30/2011 on bottle. Reviewed on 05/05/2011. 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a dark brown, almost black color, with dark reddish hues at the edges and bottom of the glass. A thin, tan head develops and has excellent retention, staying for the duration.

The aroma is noticeable from a few feet away as the beer is poured. A nice roasted malt aroma is picked up first along with a hint of sweetness. At times there are some spicy notes and some licorice that can be picked up.

The taste follows closely with the nose but the flavors are bolder and there is a bit more complexity. Roasted malt character hits first along with a fruit-like sweetness. Definitely some dark fruit, maybe raisins or plums. The spice that was picked up in the nose isn't here but the finish has a smoky character that almost has a bit to it.

Medium to heavy body with surprisingly high carbonation. Impressive because usually a stout with carbonation this high feels thin and this one doesn't thin out. The finish is somewhat dry with the smoky finish.

Overall, this was a pretty good stout. Pretty interesting and unique with the full body and high carbonation. The aromas were ok but the flavor was better. The characteristics do seem to be a bit delicate, hence the best by date on a stout with an ABV nearing 10%. I'd like to see this one fresh and compare.

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

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Pours dark (of course) with a light brown big fluffy head. Head fades slowly, leaving a huge quantity of lacing. Smells chocolatey, roasted malty.

Taste is dark cherry syrupy, chocolatey, a little bit of coffee. Surprisingly sweet, very strong flavor. Pretty nice.

Mouthfeel is thick and heavy, as you would expect for the style. Overall, this is a nice solid imperial stout.

Photo of pkeigs
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pretty tasty treat, I can taste the Belgian influence in this beer, has a lot more dark fruit and Caramel compared to say Old Rasputin. Pours a dark brown with a nice head, head quickly fades but leaves a little lacing on the glass. Smells like dark fruit and caramel, light coffee and chocolate notes. Feels nice on the tongue, I could use a little more body, but that is my biggest gripe with most stouts out there. Long lasting finish, great dark fruit and caramel notes. No booziness, balanced beer. The finish is fantastic.

Photo of hiroprot
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12oz bottle into a snifter. Decent head, with a little bit of lacing, but not as much as some of the heavier Imperial Stouts (especially Boulevard's own Imperial Stout, which is amazing).

A: Nice dark color, almost like a very dark brandy. This is a very good-looking beer. Not a whole lot of carbonation, once the head settles.

S: Smells of roasted coffee, with a little bit of woody sweetness.

T: The taste pretty much matches the smell, but there is less sweetness and more roasty bitterness. I was hoping for a little more character, but it tastes quite nice.

M: The mouthfeel is a little on the thin side for an IS, but that's not necessarily a bad thing...it sets this beer apart from some of its brethren.

O: Overall, I enjoyed this beer. It is not as good as the Imperial Stout from the Smokestack Series, but I like that it comes in 12oz bottles (I got a 4-pack). I'd recommend checking it out.

Photo of FrankenBeerStein
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a goblet glass. Poured out nice and dark as expected with a small tan-ish head to it that stuck around pretty well with some good lacing. (In all fairness, it was a "gentle" pour and I am sure I could've gotten a bigger head by upending the bottle but I saw no need.)
First sniff....deep hearty roasted malts that one expects from a stout, and the first sip followed up by delivering the check written by the aroma. Nice, deep malty, roasty flavors...hint of coffee (more of the grounds not the liquid) and deep roasted malts. Very nice. Mouthfeel leaves a very nice aftertaste and, for lack of the technical term, "coating" on the inside of ones mouth, allowing one to properly savor this beer.
Moment of truth...Would I willingly drink this again? Definitely. And recommend it.

Photo of Mississipping
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a Boulevard smokestack series goblet:

A: Pours a very dark brown, almost black, only letting a glow of ruby light in around the edges when held to light.  A large mocha colored head forms and recedes slowly, leaving moderate lacing behind.  

S: Heavily roasted malt, dark chocolate, and dark fruit (large plum, cherry, fig presence) dominate the smell.  It becomes quite evident that the beer is very aptly named, given the dominating characteristics.  Subtler hints of vanilla and some molasses.  Very rich aroma. 

T: The dominant aromatic qualities also dominate the taste.  Roasted/charred malt, bitter dark chocolate, and ample dark fruit are all right up front fighting for center stage.  Continuing the follow the smell, vanilla, molasses, and toffee are very subtle, but are able to nudge their way past the richness at the front.  A bit leathery on the finish as well and a bit of booze, but just enough to provide a slight warmth that sits well with the dark characteristics and is not off-putting.  

M: Heavier side of medium-bodied.  Viscous with ample carbonation making it creamy and velvety on the tongue.  I typically like a higher level of viscosity, but the mouthfeel is really great for this beer, making it a little more drinkable as it is complementary to the richness of the aroma and taste.  Slight bitterness at the finish and a decent bit of drying.

D: Drinkability is pretty high for the style and the characteristics.  The moderate alcohol level and somewhat thinner mouthfeel certainly help.  Overall, this is a good take on the style, however, it is a bit fruitier than I was expecting.  The dark fruit are really amped up, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, it just may not be for everyone.  I enjoyed it, but it's kind of a mid-range stout in my opinion.  

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

A- Deep brown with a ruby hue on the outer part of the glass. A Tan ring resides around the top of the glass, some lacing but not much.

S- Lots of roast and toffee upfront, the roast dominates the nose.

T- Starts out sweet, quickly moves into the strong roast flavor. Kind of get some dark fruit notes in the undertone of everything.

M- Fairly light body for the style, nice a easy going down.

O- Really good beer, would love to lay one down.

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

A nice, dense, big stout that does not go over teh top in any area. Inky black pour with a bit of sweet-ish malt in the nose. A little thick, leaning toward syrupy on the tongue. Deeply roasted malt is predominant, with some brown sugar and caramel in the background. Finish dries just a bit.

Photo of Chaney
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #1 of 2010; Best by 1/13.

I split this bomber tonight with my wife because... I had the calories left in my diet to do it. :(

A: Inky, but doesn't look too thick after close inspection. The mocha head was ridiculous and stuck around for a good bit.

S: Totally figs on the nose.... and without a trace of coffee. Spicy and fruity and without a chocolate candy bar quality on the horizon.

T: Very spicy yeast... sort of like a small, non-barrel aged version of Black Ops. Plums, figs, wheat, and TONS of rye. No soy sauce of any kind, which was a pleasant surprise in this setting. Dry, smokey finish.

M: Sort of like a liquified "Larabar" in terms of sugar lingering. In other words, very organic fruitiness. Pretty well carbonated, and the lacing left on the glass was car wash stuff!

O: Despite some of the things I mentioned describing smell and taste, this doesn't really taste like anything. However, since it was pleasant and wasn't particularly expensive, I would have this again if the opportunity presents itself.

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.

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

A: This Dark Truth Stout poured very oily and by the time the glass was filled up only black could be seen. A finger size head laid on top, caramel in color. As the head (and beer) began to disappear from the glass a very nice lining remained.
S: A little bit of a fruit smell meets the nose, perhaps coming from the type of yeast used, with hints of spicy components coming into play.
T: It tasted like a log cabin in a glass. It started off a little spicy and then a strong smoky flavor took over that ended very dry.

Overall a very good beer to accent a cigar or smoked sausage, or just accent it with the other three bottles in the pack.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark as night with a small cap of tan that appeared right on the top, settling down slowly it leaves a touch of side lacing and a nice bit of foam around the edges. Ten minutes in the top is bare though and only some light lacing on the sides remains. Aroma is sweet, licorice and brown sugar, hints of chocolate coming together nicely, but missing that little bit of push to really throw it over the top for me. Smooth, creamy and full bodied it started to grow on me as the session wore on. Bitter, dark German chocolate, coffee, hints of something else, fruit, maybe but probably not. Hard to place but there is something else there providing another flavor of some sort that is hard to discern. Dry finish with a light alcohol warmth to it and last tastes of cookie dough and coffee.

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.

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

Crazy powerful flavors mixed with dragster fuel. Sweet on the lips with a long bitter finish. More than a touch of the burnt malt taste. Slight sour, woodiness to go with the big malt. Raisiny sweetness, yeast, nose of toasted fruit bread. More astringent than most big stouts. Flavors just don't quit. Not just a sipping beer, but one that demands small sips. Aroma is more of alcohol than anything beery. smoke seems to creep in after some tasting.

Dark Truth Stout from Boulevard Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,972 ratings.