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

158 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 158
Reviews: 82
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 9.55%
Wants: 7
Gots: 12 | 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: 158 | Reviews: 82
Photo of jpmclaug
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my Foothills pint glass

A - Black body with a nice sized tan head.

S - Smokey malt notes with a hint of a salty taste. Not especially aromatic.

T - Nice malty beer with a a nice smokey taste. This beer doesn't overdo the smoke flavor however and I really like that. Not much to say about the hops here.

M - medium body with that is a little too bubbly for my taste.

D - pretty easy drinking. I don't tend to like smokey beers but this one has just a enough of it to make this enjoyable. Only real negative for me is the mouthfeel but that might be because I'm used to the body a stout offers. I would drink this beer again.

Photo of glazeman
3.44/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: not quite opaque black with a nice one finger tan head.

S: Smells quite good, and is very similar to KBS on the nose. Lots of roasted malt, and some coffee.

T: Not as rich in flavor as I would have liked. To be honest, this tastes like a good stout blended 50/50 with a bud light. There's some roasted coffee bean flavor, and chocolate in there, but it's a little deeper down behind the BMC flavor.

M: Not as thick as I was expected from a beer whose label reads, "for when you're hungry and thirsty". Nice feel though, and nice aftertaste.

D: It goes down easy enough, but is not very exciting or noteworthy. Not one that I'd really be excited to find again, but not that bad either.

Photo of WeisGuy
3.38/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

a - pours a deep dark brown, just a few shades short of black, one-finger tan head with decent retention and lacing, good amount of haze

s - deep roasted malt aroma, light earthy hops, dark chocolate notes, no alcohol heat

t - smooth roasted malt flavors mixed with dark chocolate and light cherry, very light floral hop notes, no alcohol detectable

m - medium-bodied, moderate to lower carbonation, fairly dry finish, no alcohol warming

d - pretty drinkable in that it's easy on the palate and the alcohol is well hidden, but the flavors just aren't that interesting or complex

Decent beer, but pretty unmemorable overall. Worth a try if you see it on the shelf or you're looking for a schwarzbier, but not one of the brewery's best offering, in my opinion.

Photo of WakeandBake
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A black color pour with a small off white head, medium carbonation , spotty and jagged lacing . Aroma is caramel and roasty grain , coffee ,black licorice, and spicy hops . Flavor is very roasty , lightly sweet , lightly bitter with some roasty malt,caramel, black licorice, and earthy spicy hops . medium body , smooth creamy mouthfeel , very sessionable and very good , Nice work Shorts .

Photo of TCgoalie
3.56/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 6/4/10

Black, jet black with a lingering cloud of frothy head. Carbonation looks minimal, not much going on.

Coffee, molasses, anise appear in the smell. I don't know what kind of beer this is going in, but it reminds me of a stout. Dark cherries are also present, let's taste.

The dominant flavor seems to be the coffee. It doesn't taste as much like a stout though it could be a thin one. There is a good amount of hop bitterness holding up the malt and coffee. The molasses is subtle which is pleasant. The taste seems to be missing any fruit I detected in the scent.

Medium bodied with a slight drying from the hops.

This is a solid drink but the aftertaste sits heavy on my tongue minimizing the want for more. I could have another, but one is fine.

Photo of MIMicrobrews
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark with a little bit of color shining through as you hold it up to the light. After the pour, there's a nice tall, fluffy head on top. Great looking brew!

The aroma is a nice, roasted malt meets molasses type of scent. It's not that pungent, but it definitely has a dark, robust feel to already.

The taste has nice complex, dark flavors, from roasted malts and coffee to peanuts. Its body is relatively light considering it's dark stature and bold flavors.

The aftertaste has a nice peanut/coffee bitterness flavor that lingers for a good while, leaving a slight palate altering taste.

Overall, they don't mince word when they say this beer is like a meal. It's rich, bold, dark et al. It's not necessarily a hot summer day brew, yet its light body allows for easy drinking. It's full of dark flavors that would be great for a BBQ. Think of it similar to a nice, black stout, but with a sweeter profile. And since the ABV wasn't readily available, I'm guessing it has a fairly low %, since I'm getting much more flavor than I am buzz. Very tasty brew.

Photo of GregoryVII
3.58/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I drank my sustenance from a pint glass. (It's just fun to say). It poured a light head and the color was a light black/dark as can be brown. The aroma for me was strong on roasted malts, chocolate malt in particular, with a bit of sweetness. I was also picking up the slightest hints of some fruity, estery goodness.

The first sip gave me roasted malts again, but cleanly so, balanced by hop bitters, and suggestions of burnt caramel that fade to sweet. The hops have a nice, well played presence here, balanced with the sweet and the bitter of the malts themselves. Nothing is heavy handed. There is a medium body, with decent carbonation, but just a tad runny. The drinkability of this beer is great.

Photo of hosehead83
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into an English dimpled "pot" pint glass
Dark, black in color with amber highlights-nice head of off-white foam
Aroma-Subtle chocolate and coffee notes
Taste-Coffee, black patent malts,dark chocolate-Dry, black-coffee finish.
Overall, rather medium to light bodied, with a dry finish. Pretty tasty and very drinkable.

Photo of drxandy
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz to standard pint
pours a nice black (dark dark brown) with a tinge of red in light, cream colored head fades quick

smells of roasty malt, chocolate, light hops

taste is thinner than expected, roasty and smokey all the way, chocolate, coffee, lots of flavor, citrusy hops in the back bitter nicely

mouthfeel is thin but creamy, very sessionable for me, i could drink a ton of them

Photo of alleykatking
3.82/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle. Thanks to gratefulbeerhead a.k.a. Eric for this beer. Your kindness is over the top. Review from phone notes.

A- Pours a deeep dark brown color. Light red hues when held up to the light. Half finger tan head that dies down fast. No real lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Roasted malts with a light licorice aroma in the front end. Chocolate notes in the middle. Darker fruits come and go toward the ending of the aroma. Finishes off with a earthy hoppy tone.

T- Roasted malts right off the bat with this beer. Some light licorice notes in the ending front of the beer. Coffee in the middle with some light chocolate notes. This washes way to a light molasses. Earthy hops in the tailend of the beer.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Oily slickness left all over the palate. Smoked malts left on the palate with some light hoppy smokey alcohol left into the aftertaste. Flavors blended well and individual flavors could be picked out as well.

D- This is yet another beer from Short's that is very drinkable. The flavors blended well overall. This would be a couple pints and then move onto something else personally. A great beer nevertheless.

Photo of bierenutz
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a dark brown color with mocha thin head and moderate lacing about the glass.
S-Coffee, dark chocolate, licorice and malt dominate the aroma with milder notes of caramel and hops.
T-Burnt malty coffee flavor with milder citrusy elements and a finish and afternotes of smokey oakey earthiness which lingers on and on.
M-Creamy but not thick, it has moderate carbonation with a little bitterness at the finish.
D-This beer got better as it warmed. I started out with it from the fridge and didn't think much of it at first, but by the end it had a respectable taste and feel and turned out quite tasty.

Photo of AdamGarcia
3.6/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Randalld for this great xtra!
My first Short's brew served in a Bass tulip.

A: Pours just about black with a mocha head. Nice lacing. Head is rich and frothy.

S: Smells of strong coffee and bitter chocolate. Some raisins and dates hiding in there, along with the faintest hop aroma. Dark fruit becomes more apparent as the beer warms.

T: More hop flavor than the scent would suggest. Roasty flavors abound. Coffee and chocolate are back. Just a bit of nuttiness...possibly some hazelnut. Flavors are a little more robust than some other examples of the style. Finishes nice and dry.

M: Fuller than I expected for a schwarzbier, but much thinner than most beers of this deep, dark hue. Carbonation is about right.

D: Schwarzbiers are generally pretty sessionable. This, however, feels just a bit bigger than what is typical for the style. I could put back a couple of these, but I'm missing a certain "smoothness" that I would usually expect from a lager.

Nice beer. Really glad I got to try it and hopefully there will be some more Short's in my future. I wouldn't seek this one out, but if it were readily available I would pick it up from time to time.

Photo of marcobrau
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep black with moderate to light carbonation that forms a head that falls to a ring of foam. No lace. Fairly complex aroma of dark chocolate, burnt caramel and smoke. Tastes of dark chocolate, dark molasses, a touch of burnt caramel. Finishes with roasted chicory and espresso. Tastes moderately to lightly hopped; most of the bitterness tastes like it's coming from the malts with no real hop flavor. Fairly complex yet highly drinkable.

Photo of malty
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. longneck with no best before dated seen.

Force poured into a stemmed chalice produced a opaque black liquid with no highlights to speak of. The loose khaki head decreased to 1/4" after sitting for a few minutes. Moderate amount of broken rings of lace.

A few swirls of the chalice evoked wonderfully lush and fresh aroma of fresh dark chocolate truffles and Mackinaw Island chocolate walnut fudge. Malted milk and sour dough bread too.

The flavors are all dark, decadent and delicious. Even though the aroma was thick and sweet, the initial flavor is chalky, semi-bitter (as a fine dark baker's chocolate should be) and a tad bit charred. The coffee and woody notes blend nicely with the figgy undertones. The flavors are clean and agile, not cloying in the least. The flavors also are intertwined quite nicely but are very discernible on their own. I didn't have any trouble detecting what I was tasting, but they all blended together quite masterfully.

Mouthfeel is a smack-dab between light and medium bodied with a lower than moderate amount of prickly carbonation. It was slick and oily on the tongue with a clean, bitter and somewhat chalky flavorful (charred) finish.

Drinkability is great for such a full flavored 'big' tasting beer.

Overall I was fearing this beer would very sweet upon smelling it. The flavors really went into the opposite direction once it hit my mouth. So it's really the best of both worlds...Sweet, lush and thick aroma with clean, dry/bitter and flavors and textures. I don't know how Short's did it, but I will definitely buy it again when I see it. Hat's off to the Short's crew once again!

Photo of BMoney575
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 6-5-10

Pours a completely cloudy, almost black color, with a little light brown around the edges. The tan head settles nicely, with pleasant lacing.

Smell is deep and malty, with notes of oak, molasses, and coffee. Very complex for a lager.

Taste is more subtle than the smell would lead you to expect, with a tart bitterness and lots of smoke. The finish is all coffee bitterness, and lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is good, slick and nicely thick to accent the malty flavors.

Drinkability is very good, the bitterness balances things out and it easy to drink.

Overall, one of the better black lagers I've had.

Photo of jrallen34
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I drank from a 12oz bottle into my Orval glass...The beer pours a light black with a ligh tan head, good retention and lacing...The aroma is totally dead, shows off only light chocolate, really boring...The taste is also light, gives a little smoke and chocolate. Usually i want more taste, but for some reason I like this, a light roasty porterish type beer that is really easy to drink. Nothing special here, but if you're in the mood for a roasty dark beer that's easy to drink, not a bad call.

Photo of divineaudio
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

120z undated bottle into a pint glass.

pours a dark, chocolatey brown and forms a thin cap of tan head that lasts for most of the beer. got some nice leggy lacing too.

smell is roasty, earthy, and grainy with a bit of herbal hops.

taste comes through with lots of roasted malt and hints of smoke. has bit of a peppery spiciness to it and a pleasing herbal hop character. strong malts up front are well balanced by bitterness in the finish.

lighter in body with prickly feeling carbonation.

very drinkable and a great dark beer for the hot summer months. short's definitely did good with this one. added to my shopping list.

Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.55/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12oz brown pop top bottle; label says "for when you're hungry and thirsty" lol, I love it!

Appearance: Dark brown/black beer, with brown and garnet at the edges. A beige cap shows good retention and a bit of lace.

Smell: Equal mix of rich nut brown ale, brown porter, and stout. It's nice, roasty, malty, slightly sweet, with just a hint of juicy dark fruit.

Taste: Lots of chocolate malt, decent kick of juicy dark fruit, and I SWEAR, a hint of something like peanut butter! I wish I had this side-by-side with my Peanut Butter Porter to compare. It's a bit short, but pretty tasty.

Mouthfeel: A bit light, especially considering the name and the "meal in a glass" characterization.

Drinkability: Fairly high.

Conclusion: Tasty beer, but doesn't really live up to the way it's packaged. Up in Kalamazoo, I had no internet so I wasn't sure what style this was supposed to be. From the title and description, I was thinking stout or porter. On here, it's listed as a Schwartz and, quite honestly, it makes a lot more sense and probably deserves to score a B+ but, as I didn't know that at the time, I still have to rate it at a B.

Photo of BuckyFresh
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large wine glass. Pours a deep, dark brown with a one-finger head that recedes pretty rapidly. Areas of reddish brown are visible where the light shines through, and there is a bubbly ring of lacing left behind after the head dissipates.

Smell: Wonderful toasted malt aroma, as well as chocolate, coffee, caramel, and molasses. Very earthy and inviting.

Taste: Big smokey, earthy flavor. Getting lots of coffee, dark fruits, and toasted malt. Texture is pretty thick and creamy, and the alcohol provides a nice warming sensation. To sum it up, I guess I would categorize it as a lighter, smoother version of a stout.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, smooth, with adequate carbonation and just the right amount of bitterness.

Drinkability: Compared to other dark beers, I'd say this one fairs pretty well. Enough malt and bitterness to keep you interested, but not enough to prevent this from being a decent session beer.

Photo of ne0m00re
2.46/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.
A: Black with red hues, it seems undercarbonated with a thin collar and a quick head.
S: Very faint roasted malts with caramel and charred oats. Not bad.
T: Lighter, with a thin roasted flavor that bellows and lingers. That familiar clean lager finish. As a beer that advertises you can make a meal out of it, it is extermely disappointing. The flavors don't really have any depth.
M: Thin and undercarbonated.
D: Very good, but only because it is so damn light. I wouldn't have another.

Photo of younger35
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received this beer from Northernbrews in a recent trade. Gotta love Short's and I'm pumped to give this one a go. Drank from my Surly nonic pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a super dark brown with a beautifully creamy one finger dark tan head. A spotty cap and thick collar remain along with a few random spots of lacing here and there.
Smell- Very roasted and full of big malty coffee like burntness. Hints of molasses and licorice are also quite abundant. A touch of caramel creeps in and an almost oakiness. Some vanilla and chocolate round out the nose. Lots going on here.
Taste- Starts much the same as the nose with a lightly sweet bite of extreme roasted malts. Almost buttery at times with a bit of caramel, licorice and vanilla. The coffee isn't as prominent as you'd expect but the chocolate is. Loads of milk chocolate with a light earthy finish. Maybe even a touch of citrus cuts in towards the end.
Mouthfeel- Big full body with creaminess that is substantial. The carbonation is pretty low but the mouthfeel is awesome.
Drinkability- Not too shabby, really enjoyed this one. It's got a great mouthfeel that's top of the line and big bold flavors. The beer 'for when you're hungry and thirsty' rings spot on. Thanks much Jeff!

Photo of semibaked
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a pitch black with a thin layer of brown foam.

S - Big roasted malt aroma strikes me first then dark chocolate and a bit of licorice.

T - The taste is similar to the smell big roasted malt flavors, good bitterness from the dark chocolate and some of the licorice too. Nice flavors!

M - Medium bodied with good creaminess and has some chew to it too.

D - Definitely happy with trying this and you should too. Great effort from Short's here.

Photo of jt31914
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: black with nice foamy brown head; lacing is great and retention is okay. Not overly carbonated, but looks pretty good.

S: Coffee, Toffee, Alcohol, Chocolate, Licorice. Straight forward blend of five awesome flavors.

T: Very malty and full. All the smell flavors come out in the taste. A very nice beer, once again Short's impresses.

MD: Very much so in both cases.

Unique dark beer. Very much black, and very much good.

Photo of david131
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- A very deep dark brown, bordering on black liquid with a creamy light brown head that settles to a thin covering with some bubbles and leaves some nice lacing.

S- Anise, smoke, cinnamon, coffee, and dark chocolate. Very aromatic and intriguing.

T- Smoke, anise, coffee, dark chocolate, and a bit of earthiness. Meaty with strong lasting favors.

M- Slightly watery but there are some strong lasting flavors and a nice level of carbonation.

D- An interesting beer that I am glad to have the please of enjoying. Something worth trying.

Photo of webmanspidey
4.38/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Dark black, fizzy with half an inch of creamy head. Smells of chocolate, coffee, and cigar smoke. Taste is mostly sweet with hints of raisins, nuts, and toffee. Mouthfeel is thin and fizzy. Easy to drink with minimal alcohol presence. Very solid session beer.

Short's Sustenance Black Bier from Short's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.