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

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Short's Sustenance Black BierShort's Sustenance Black Bier

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BA SCORE
85
very good

82 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 82
Hads: 159
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 6.9%
Wants: 7
Gots: 12 | FT: 1
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 82 | Hads: 159
Photo of Lukafer
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes:

Again, thanks Josh!

Appearance is black, really black with a thin tan head. Smell is roasted malts, dark fruits, anise, and some pine thats kind of burie. Taste is roasted malts, coffee and maybe some molasses. Mouthfeel is okay, astringent, and drinkabilty is pretty low, one is enough, still glad I had a chance to try this one. (351 characters)

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. (439 characters)

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. (528 characters)

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. (628 characters)

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! (1,641 characters)

Photo of BBP
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
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. (768 characters)

Photo of suspect
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
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. (1,012 characters)

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. (656 characters)

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

black pour. little tan head. some lacing. nose is roasted and milky and chocolate cocoa with sticky bun glaze. the flavor is delicious and makes for an easy to quaff drank. chocolate and some chalky tones with a modest hop bitterness and light roasted quality are the main notables. mouthfeel is around medium. overall this is a nice little dance across my face. it does go well with food and i feel as though i lived the label being totally stuffed on alton brown's artichoke dip recipe and this here schwarzbier from short's. this is a semi sessionable dark bier toward the heavy end of the spectrum that remains true to style as it circles the stout and porter realm but never goes inside. thanks. (700 characters)

Photo of CortexBomb
3.09/5  rDev -18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'll try pretty much anything that Short's brews because, in a general sense, I think they're brilliant brewers who can squeeze extra flavour and interest out of almost any style. I ran into this at Ashley's in Ann Arbor and I quickly ordered it based on their name alone.

The beer has a wonderful appearance, jet black, no light can make its way through the beer. Light head, but still nice looking. Nose is mildly malty, not a lot of bite to it.

In terms of the flavour, I was surprised by not being surprised. This struck me as a fairly standard Schwarz, it has that dark malt flavour profile without any of the bite of a stout or porter with the lighter body and easy drinking nature one would expect of the style. It's not bad in any sense, but it's not doing anything particularly well either.

The bottom line: Surprisingly average take on the style by Short's. Perhaps worthwhile for big fans of the style, but I didn't think there was anything remarkable here. (971 characters)

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 (387 characters)

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. (691 characters)

Photo of mchegash
3.43/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottling date: 2/2/15
Poured into an English pint glass

Appearance - 3.5/5
Very dark, almost black, with hints of red-brown along the edges of the glass. A small amount of medium brown head which quickly dissipates to only a thin ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell - 3/5
Some darker earthy and roasty aromas along with a small hops presence.

Taste - 3.5/5
Moderately sweet. Very earthy (dirt-like). Some roasty coffee-esque flavors. A slight sourness to it, which seems to be mixing with the hops to create a slightly sour hops taste. Overall, I like the roasty coffee aspects of this beer, but the earthiness is too strong. I do not like the sourness either (I love sour beers, but this is not that kind of sourness).

Mouthfeel - 4/5
The body is medium-light, but the beer feels much fuller than it actually is. There is a light amount of light-intensity carbonation. Very crisp. I like the crispness and the body. I think the beer could do with just a tad more carbonation. Overall a good feel though.

Overall - 3.5/5
This was an okay beer. I don't know if I would recommend it to anyone or buy it again, but I don't feel upset that I picked this as part of a build-your-own 6 pack. (1,195 characters)

Photo of Trilogy31
2.91/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a drak cola black with a brown khaki fingers worth of head. Nose has a slight metallic scent with coffe rum barrel and really only an earthy funky note i can find. Light notes of smoky roasted malts when tasting along with some turkish cofee and maybe some dark red fruits. Easy to drink and refreshing but really quite average. (334 characters)

Photo of JayAre46
2.34/5  rDev -37.9%
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. (582 characters)

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. (426 characters)

Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to pilsner glass. Brew is color of dark chocolate,o cofe beans. Thin off white head, a finger full, that settles to a little cap with no lacing. Not much rentention. Smell is toasted malts, sweet dark fruits, raisin, black bread. Taste follows, with a sweet, raisiny tang upfront and a bitter bite on the end. Got this as part of the Spring variety pack; all have been winners. Highly recommend. (415 characters)

Photo of techfed87
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a well-rounded head. Color is about that what you'd expect from a schwartzbier, very very dark. Smell is a bit more sour than I would expect otherwise. Kind of a Corona-flavor wafting off of it.

First taste is a bit hoppy, and yet not as bitter as I thought it was going to be. Mouthfeel is what you would expect from a Short's beer: very potent and very rewarding.

One of the stronger examples of what a schwartzbier can be, this one is really worth your while. (471 characters)

Photo of IPA35
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
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. (969 characters)

Photo of Wadsey
3.74/5  rDev -0.8%
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! (771 characters)

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. (1,170 characters)

Photo of justinp444
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A dark black beer with a thin beige head. Smell is of malt, corn, chocolate, and earthy hops. Taste is thin but crisp mouth feel with chocolate and malt notes. Bit of a sour back end with dirt, earth, and light bitterness from hops. A very drinkable schwarzbier, but not nearly my favorite of this style. (304 characters)

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. (480 characters)

Photo of Preismj
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
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. (778 characters)

Photo of abraxel
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The bottle says this is "For when you're hungry and thirsty," which fits me right now. I'm hoping it sates both those feelings nicely.

It is indeed black (I expected no less), but some blood-red light shines around the edges when I hold the glass up to light. Looks moderately viscous. Topped with a fizzy, off-white head that looked like it would dissipate quickly but actually hung on for a while.

The smell reminds me a bit of cola, but not nearly as sweet. Maybe hints of dark fruit as well. It's a relatively weak aroma (maybe typical for the style, I don't know), but a good one.

I can taste just a little bit of hops, which I think is what made me think "cola" on the smell. There's a base of roasty malt, but it doesn't add any bitterness until the aftertaste, when it lingers a short while.

The mouthfeel is smooth and a little bit chewy, with a fair amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a good beer, though not a great beer. I'm glad I got a sixer and I'll enjoy the rest of it. (998 characters)

Short's Sustenance Black Bier from Short's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.