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Short's Sustenance Black Bier - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Short's Sustenance Black BierShort's Sustenance Black Bier

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BA SCORE
85
very good

144 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 144
Reviews: 79
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 9.84%
Wants: 8
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TurdFurgison on 06-07-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 144 | Reviews: 79
Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into lager glass, bottled on 2/2/2015. Pours slightly hazy very dark brown color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, herbal, and roast/smoke earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good complexity of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, herbal, and roast/smoke earthiness. Fair amount of herbal hop and roast bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Very clean in lager flavors with zero yeast notes present. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, crisp, fairly creamy, and slightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent schwarzbier style. All around great robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of Alextricity
3.89/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

$3 on-tap during Happy Hour at HopCat.

Appearance: Welp, it's black. What did you expect? Decent lacing, nothing special.

Smell: Ash. Smoke. Chocolate.

Taste/feel: Like the smell... tastes like ground up bricks, soil, smokey ash, roastiness, and a bit of chocolate. That should sound disturbing -- and it was disturbing to my dad and sister -- but it's what I thought the beer would taste like, and I enjoyed it. The smoke/ash flavor isn't massive, but it's definitely there, and the chocolate/coffee flavors follow. The feel is a bit thin for my liking, but it does make this a very drinkable beer.

Another tasty brew from Short's. I'm not too sure I like this more than their Black Diamond, which is a pretty similar beer, but it's still one that I'd like to have again when I want a dark beer that's not quite a stout or a porter.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Equal parts brown and black make up the color of this beer. A lighter shade of brown makes up the head portion, about 2/3" on this one. Lacing was clumpy and spotty, retention was average. Aroma was somewhat hoppy like a good schwarzbier should be. Has a bitter, roastiness to it that is similar to coffee malt.

Taste is a lot thicker, has an almost smoky meatiness to it like a fortified rauchbier. Maybe thats what the 'sustenance' is all about? Minor anise in the mouthfeel. Alcohol and bitter notes follow. Needs a little more toffee to balance it out, the hops, roasted malt, high carbonation give it a slightly unbalanced situation. Dark fruit raisin creeps in.

Decent enough. I think they tried to do too much with this one. Instead of the acidity/acrid notes, I'd like to see a little more sweetness, maybe honey added to this one to give it a little better presence.

Photo of Bitterbill
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle thanks to Andygirl. Cheers, Andrea!

A- looks pretty black to me, nice 1/2 finger head of foam, and it's a lacer.

S- big notes of Bourbon, some fruitiness, a sweet, almost milk stout like aroma.

T- tastes of Bourbon, very fruity....kind of like black cherries, and to me some milk stout like sweetness. Lots of flavour here and at a reasonable abv for anything that gets put in Bourbon barrels.

M- a pretty light bodied brew, good carbonation.

O- I like this brew. Especially the fruity character I get out of it. A nice thumbs up here, from me.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a schwarzbier, this is pretty decent. Probably a bit too heavy for the style though. The delivery is consistent and thorough. But in the end, like I said, it's a bit too heavy for me, as far as judging to style. This is a style that breweries rarely try out, so nice to see someone trying. Still a nice beer.

Photo of IPA35
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle with no freshness date or alcohol percentage. We in Europe have better regulation regarding these issues it seems.

A really, really dark brown, nearly black beer. You cannot see through it and it has a thick frothy off white head. Pours thicker than for example a true German schwartzbier like Köstritzer.

Smells more intense than I expected, not unlike a stout. Coffee, roasted malt, dark chocolate, a light smokiness. Not much hops and quite sweet from the nose of it.

The taste is more subdued as per the style.
The roastiness is not very strong, the flavour is one of this light roast, sweet malts, dark chocolate and slight earthy hops.
It is actually rather nice yet still quite drinkable.

The body is medium and the carbonation is low to medium. Smooth and a little creamy.

Overall this beer is more flavourful compared to beers like Köstritzer. This a little less sessionable though, but that's not a big issue for me.

A nice beer, recommended.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.07/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from MilwaukeeCrusher, so a big “Thank You” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a thin beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains coffee, roasted malts, lager yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a hearty roasted malt character followed by lager yeast and a strong black coffee flavor. There are also touches of dark fruit and chocolate in the background. The after-taste is slightly bready and a little bitter-sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, this is a very solid dark lager worth drinking for a long time if you’re in the mood for the style.

Photo of ngeunit1
4.35/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown color with a thick finger of thick frothy chocolate colored head. The head fades down very slowly leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - The aroma is full of lightly roasted chocolate malts, a bit of lactose sweetness, some earthy hop, and just a touch of smoke.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasted chocolate malts and some milk sweetness. There is a bit of earthy hop in the background as well. Through the middle, some bitterness comes through with some earthy bitterness. The finish is a mix of earthy hop, roasted milk chocolate, and a touch of smoke that lingers.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and just a touch creamy with a roasted and lightly smokey finish.

D - Very drinkable. Very nicely balanced with a nice kick at the finish. Maybe a bit too roasted for the style, but I am really enjoying it.

Photo of suspect
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Dogfish Head Shaped Pint glass. Thanks to rfraga77 for the hookup. The bottle says "for when you're thirsty and hungry" and that advice seemed to fit the bill here.

A: Pours a thick dark brown body with a tan colored 1 finger head that dissolves into a 1/4 finger head as I drank it down the glass. Lacing seems pretty thick and consistent.

S: Toasted chocolate malts, coffee, molasses, tobacco, light hop presence and a yeasty tinge to it as well.

T: Malty up front, a hint of coffee, hops, and the toasted malts are definitely present as well. Not one flavor stands out on its own - a nicely balanced brew. It definitely warms the insides on its way down.

M: Light, yet creamy. Perfectly carbonated. Coats the mouth nicely with a light bitter coating that is only quenched with the next swig.

O: A good beer. Nice light flavor, nothing overpowering yet there are a bunch of good flavors in it to enjoy. This one was an easy drinking, good beer. Although I'm still hungry.

Photo of alpinebryant
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured into Long trail pint glass heavy lacing and a light tan head.

S: Light bittered chocolate with a dry chalky feel. Mild yeast presence and a bit of smoked malt.

T: This is a lightly flavored mild beer. There is a mild charred flavor with a hint of smoke and a light yeast presence. Mostly chalky in finish , and bitter with a cocoa nib like flavor.

M: Very creamy, lactose sweetness taste, light carbonation

O: This is a light Schwarzbier ; a style I have hardly visited and it is not bad but not great. Glad to have tried it and it is refreshing. Having this off tap if even an option I am sure would be slightly fresher with some more flavor.

Photo of GONZALOYANNA
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle served in a Lager glass.Enjoyed on sep´11.Medium mahogany in color.Light beige froth, pretty good retention, some lacing rings.Yeast,cinnamon & tobacco to the nose,hints of chocolate too.Coffee at first sip followed by intense toasted malt flavor.Slightly peppery on palate.Medium body.Medium carbonation.Dry bitter finish & aftertaste with subtle smoky notes & hints of licorice.Good drinkability.

Photo of JayAre46
2.34/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - thanks to elephantrider for the extra. pours black....whatta ya know, big mocha head very creamy shows great retention.

A - caramel,molasses, very grainy, light hops. tobacco leaves.

T - tastes like shitty smoked tobacco leaves, maybe some burnt anise, bitter hops. not a big malt profile at all. it tastes like...shit. the finish is especially bad

M - a bit watery, easy going like it should be, creamy, moderate carbonation.

O - the aroma was decent, but the tastes is just off, and not good. i will say my next beer is going to be amazing no matter want, thanks short's.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
2.81/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip. Thanks to Dunt for bringing this over.

Appearance: Mahogany with transparent edges and a creamy tan cap that fades.

Smell: A little bit of bourbon, dark malts, molasses, and some chocolate.

Taste: The flavor is a little bit strange. The flavor is light - chocolate, molasses, dark unroasted malt, some bourbon. It finishes kind of watery.

Mouthfeel: Somehow this has a creamy feel but a watery body. Boozy in the back of my throat. Sticky.

Overall: This is all right at best. In terms of barrel aged beers, it does not stack up well, though.

Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep brown (although a bit of clear ruby does come out along the edges), topped with a rich ½ finger of dark mocha head. This maintains some robustness on the edges, leaving back a foamy cascade of lace. The aroma smells of cocoa, toffee, coffee, and some green citric character. This is well balanced in the nose and quite flavorful.

The taste is sweet up front with a mix of chocolate and caramel but that is evened out nicely by more bitter notes of roasted coffee and some green citric hops that give this some zip. This overall has a nice tangy bite to it from the flavors, with a dry and bitter finish that hangs in there a bit. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a steady crispness on the tongue, yet there is also more of a slick and creamy feel along the back as well.

This was nice. A well balanced and flavorful Schwarzbier here that I would consider pretty darn drinkable for a 6% ABV dark beer. Short’s did right by the style with this one.

Photo of Wadsey
3.74/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sustenance Black Beer

Served in New Belgium globe glass

A: Pours clear deep brown with modest head. 

S: Clean, roasted malts, especially chocolate, dominate nose. Additional aromas include smoke, cola and molasses. 

T: Malty sweetness, along with roast and bitter chocolate. Smoke, cola and molasses are somewhat present, albeit in smaller proportions. Medium bitterness with a green/hoppy kick. Roast lasts through finish. 

M:  Medium-light body and medium carbonation. Pleasant, somewhat creamy mouthfeel. 

O: I've drank only a handful of swarzbiers in the last few years, but it is a style that suits me: lower abv, malt-forward, and big flavor. I enjoyed Short's Sustenance Black Beer and think it rates above average. 

Thanks hurfer for the opportunity!

Photo of Preismj
4.17/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Dark with a mocha head. nice lacing. good color...looks interestingly thin in body.

s: roasted malts, cocoa and dark fruit. This smells very good, though it is not a potent scent. A hint of nuttiness to it.

t: very nice flavor profile and surprising complexity. A dark fruit nuance of raison and plum take center stage as well as leave a sour taste. This is rounded by a rich sweet cocoa and balanced with nuts that hint toward hazelnut/pecan. Very flavorful and very good.

m: creamy and smooth. sticks on the palette and is medium bodied. very nice. Leaves the mouth dry.

o: surprised by how good this was. A tremendous flavor profile. i wouldn't need many of these, but I would search this out again to have occasionally. strikes me as a great one to have int he fall.

Photo of mgbickel
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Duvell tulip. A single finger of eggshell white head formed on top of the dark brown(not black) body. The foam quickly dissipated, leaving behind tiny traces of lace.

The nose has lots of roasted malts, some weak coffee, dark fruits and brown sugar...nothing really sticks out as an overpowing aroma...

The roasted malts start and finish the taste. The middle finds the sweetness of the brown sugar. The finish is where the earthy peet/coffee flavor comes out.

Light to medium mouth feel...a tiny bit watery with moderate carbonation.

This is a pretty decent offering...nothing fancy but very easy to drink. Refreshing, not heavy as the name would suggest...

Photo of minterro
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Kalamazoo beer exchange

A: deep black colored beer, completely opaque. Little more then a fingernail of foamy head that has a off white color. The head fades quickly, leaving little to no lacing.

S: strong hoppy pines. A bit of sweetness and roasty scents

T: piney, very smoky, a touch of earthy tones. Not very complex

M: medium to light, low carbonation but still has a bit of a sting. For being a bit of a light beer it sticks to your tongue and teeth like a thick beer

O: overall pretty good, not bad for a beer that was only 2.75. An interesting style with characteristic especially in the mouthfeel category that I’m not used to.

Photo of mikereaser
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shorts Brewing Sustenance Black Beer
A - Pours a pitch black with an inch of off white foam that quickly faded and left some decent lacing
S - Roasted malts with a good amount of smokiness but not too much, there is a bit of cocoa and dark fruit, roasted coffee and brown sugar. Its like all of these flavors blend together and it is hard to pick out just one.
T - Taste is very similar to the aroma, roasted coffee, dark malts, some chocolate, a bit of plums. There is a bit of an alcohol flavor in the finish along with more chocolate. Interesting flavor, not an every day beer, but i'd go for another one.
M - smooth mouthfeel, medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation.
D - Very enjoyable and mild beer. I like it because its not over the top on flavor. Its just easy to drink and very nice.
4/4/4/4/4

Photo of BBP
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a near black with shades of cherry and chestnut. Some head, but slight. Small amounts of lacing.

S- Extremely roasted aromas. Slight chocolate and coffee creeps through. The roasted aroma is somewhat dominant over everything. Hard to pick much else out.

T- Roasted malts and very slight amounts of caramel malt. A bit of cocoa can be tasted in the aftertaste as well as some sweetness.

M- Not quite stout or porter thickness, but very close. Has a considerably dry finish. Carbonation is spot on.

O- Another good brew from shorts. The only downside for me was reading the line under the bottle "For When You're Hungry and Thirsty" and having it fall a little short of the sustenance thing.

That aside, it tastes good, but will probably be forgotten.

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draft at Churchkey in D.C.

The beer is a deep, dark shade of brown with a large beige head that leaves copious lacing on the snifter.

The aroma is slightly sweet, bready, and lightly roasty.

The flavor is malt forward with a light roast character. Each sip brings a subtle sweetness, with hints of dark fruit. A decent beer, and one I'd try again.

Photo of StoutHunter
4.35/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Short's Sustenance Black Bier the other day for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. It's been a while since I have had a Schwarzbier so when I saw that Short's made one I knew I had to see what they can do with this style. No visible bottling date, 2011 vintage. Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a Pilsener glass.

A- The label is a little weird, it looks like a couple sitting down for dinner, the label might be implying that this beer is meant to go with dinner. It poured a pretty dark black color that let just a little bit of light through with some ruby highlights. It had a big, four fingers worth of fluffy, rocky and bubbly tan head that died down to a thick layer that stayed the rest of the time and left some lacing.

S- The first thing I pick up is lots of roasted dark malts that smell like they were heavily roasted and they have a medium amount of sweetness to them that give it a brown sugar like aroma. I also picked up some black coffee, chocolate, and a slight amount of toffee. It has a pretty nice roasty aroma and I didn't pick up any hop aromas.

T- The taste mirrors the aroma nicely. It starts off much like the aroma with loads of heavily roasted dark malts that aren't as sweet as they were in the aroma. The heavily roast of the malts made for a nice subtle smokey flavor that was unexpected but I felt like it worked well with this beer and it helped set it apart from all the other Schwarzbiers. The black coffee and chocolate flavors from the aroma were present but the chocolate seemed to stick out much more. The finish was very smooth and there was no presence of hops or alcohol at all.

M- Smooth, medium light bodied and nicely carbonated, it may have had a little bit more carbonation then I would have liked, but with Short's I will gladly take a little extra carbonation then a mild amount.

Overall I though this was a pretty damn good Schwarzbier, I haven't had a ton of this style but I would have to say that this was my favorite Schwarzbier I have had to date. I find most Schwarzbiers to have a good amount of hops in them and this one wasn't hoppy at all, it was focused on the roasted and smokey malts and I liked that. It had a very rich and roasty flavor that was somewhat similar to a porter but every thing else was pretty true to it's style especially the mouthfeel. I could see how this beer would make a great choice to drink with dinner, the flavor is roasted and robust while the body is light enough to not be too filling to go with dinner, I will have to try and pair this beer up with a nice dinner next time I have it. I would for sure buy this beer again, it would represent it's style nicely in my fridge, I hope there is some more left at the store so I don't have to wait till next year to enjoy this fine brew. If you like roasty and robust beers then this beer is for you, it has great drinkability while retaining all those great flavors. Short's comes through with another great beer, I like the fact they can take an often overlooked style and add their own personal touch to it to make it a truly unique and great tasting beer, lets see what you guys can do with a Hefeweizen, yes that is a challenge.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Churchkey. Served in a snifter.

Pours a very dark brown with a single-finger tan head that sticks around for a bit before fading and leaving a bit of light lacing. The nose has a bit of light roast and a bit of dark fruit as well. Mild anise character. The flavor has a moderate amount of roast along with some sweet malt. Dark fruit and cherry come through a bit, along with some slight black licorice. There is a bit of a cardboard character in the finish as it warms, however. Medium body and lightly sweet throughout. Pretty decent.

Photo of drabmuh
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Probably the star of the night for me, beer is black but clear at the corners with a haloed head of off white bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass with some carbonation present.

The aroma is sweet and dark but not roasty.

The beer is medium to light in body with a wet finish. No bitterness to speak of in the back, just a nice simple beer with a nice malt profile. I'd have it again.

Photo of chugalug06
3.63/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - WOW, what a nicely pouring brew... Head is a nice Khaki color with great foamy density. Head retreats to leave decent lacing. Brew is Black as night with no hues of any kind.

S - Smokey! Roasty! Deep! Very chocolate. Slight coffee scent lingers too. There's some molasses buried deep inside.

T - Quite a smokey brew. Not absurdly smokey, just slightly over done. Quite rich tasting with very dark chocolate tones. Slightly bitter, but not distracting.

M - Smooth and silky. Near perfect carbonation. Quite a nice feel, As close to perfect as I've had in some time.

O - There's something missing in this brew... I can't quite put my finger on what's missing, but there's definitely something! I would add more caramel and less chocolate to help reduce bitterness. Over all? Quite a grad brew! Very glad i got to try it! Thank you Another6pack!

For When You're Hungry and Thirsty....

Cheers!

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Short's Sustenance Black Bier from Short's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.