Ebulum Elderberry Black Ale | Williams Brothers Brewing Company

BA SCORE
85
very good
537 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good
Read the review
Ebulum Elderberry Black AleEbulum Elderberry Black Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Williams Brothers Brewing Company
Scotland, United Kingdom
williamsbrosbrew.com

Style: Scottish Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Introduced to Scotland by Welsh druids in the 9th Century, elderberry black ale was part of the Celtic Autumn festivals when the "elders" would make this strong ale and pass the drink round the people of the village. The recipe was taken from a 16th Century record of domestic drinking in the Scottish Highlands. Elderberries were used for many natural remedies to cure sciatica, other forms of neuralgia, influenza and rhumatism as they contain tannins and fruit oils. Ebulum is made from roasted oats, barley and wheat boiled with herbs then fermented with ripe elderberries.

Added by Mitchster on 09-18-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
537
Reviews:
366
Avg:
3.8
pDev:
11.32%
 
 
Wants:
39
Gots:
23
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 537 |  Reviews: 366
Photo of mdagnew
3.22/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle bought the Vineyard, Belfast...

Poured pretty much pitch black even when held up to the light... Burnt cream head poured big, thick and fizzy then faded fairly quickly to very thin covering.. no real lacing...

Aroma - Strong charred coffee beans, leathery and slightly sooty, charcoal notes, toasted bread, burnt toffee, treacle, earthy / cardboard hints, roasted nuts, some plum and date fruitiness...

Taste - Lots of harsh charred roasted malt bitterness, sooty, very earthy, cough mixture, definite hints of wild herbs and flowers, strong espresso coffee, dried coffee grains, light toasted nutty sweetness, some treacle, faint anise, oaky notes...

Feel - Very sharp and dry... medium bodied... too harsh and bitter to be very drinkable...

Overall - Not something i'd be rushing back to... too many off notes and very rough around the edges...

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Photo of Patrick999
2.8/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured into a taster. Thin head with a pretty reddish-black body.

S - Smells roasty, a clean roasty.

T - Wow, this is a fairly bitter beer. I don't know if it's entirely due to hops, but I'm not that crazy about it. It's a coarse bitterness. Roasted flavors are there, as well as a fruit flavor that must be elderberry...but otherwise, this is kind of like chewing on an aspirin. Very desiccating.

F - Harshly carbonated and otherwise a little watery. A lot of lower-alcohol beers feel like this, and I'm not a big fan.

D - There are some good flavors here, I'm not sure this is a "bad beer," even though I find it a challenge. I think this would be far better served with some food. On its own, it's kinda sharp for my liking.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.74/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a four finger tan head that fades slowly and leaves a good lace. Totally black color. Slight malty nose. Light carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Flavor is roasted malt, I don't get any elderberry taste. Best by Aug 2009. $3.00 for a 330ml bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of GWaters
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a cellar temperature 11.2 oz glass bottle.
Freshness date August 2009

Overall, I really enjoyed this beer. It has a lot of character between the scent, palate, and taste. This beer is not a blatant attack on your scenses, but the whole experience is there if you take your time.

Pour: Pours very nice and thick as I would expect from a black ale. Very rewarding foamy head (3 fingers) with a caramel colour. foam recedes to leave a gentle lacing about the glass.

Smell: At first scent this beer comes across more like a wine than a beer - fruit and subtle acidity, but lacking the sulfites. As the beer matures in the glass, the aroma grows to a broader choice of scents. The eldeberry is surely present, but malt, caramel and a sort of mossy roasted scent tickle the nose as well.

Taste: Fruity smooth base flavour that develops into a more complex roasted malty accent with an undertone of currents.

Drinkability: Yes. This is a beer that I would consider an all year beer. The flowery, fruity sweetness hints of summer, while the dark black ale carries us through winter. This is not a beer I would cosume on quantities because it warrrants taking time and enjoying, but it is easy to enjoy.

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Photo of riversider76
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with a red hue when help up to light. Thin tan head. Just a bit of retention and good lace. Body is on the thicker side of medium with some carbonation. Aroma is of smokey malts and coffee.Taste is the same with a hint of dark chocolate. Worth a try but I liked Sam Adams Black Lager better.

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Photo of BarleyMine
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a cool beer that reminds me of an English style old ale but darker. It pours black with a thick tan head that fades to a thin tan line (probably from the G string) leaving slow, long lasting lacing. Maybe the tan line is from the lacing... Never mind. Anyway, the nose is roasted malts with a musty woodiness. The flavor is a nice, pretty mild bitterness with roasted malt tones and notes of blueberry skin on the finish. Berry flavor develops a bit as it opens up. The body is a very nice medium mouthfdeel with great carbonation. Very cool brew.

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Photo of froggyfrog
4.57/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Williams Bros Brewing - Ebulum Elderberry Black Ale

Plucked from the cold room (which at this time of year in Pennsylvania could aptly be renamed the 'way too' cold room) in this midnight hour, this little Scottish import has got my interests sufficiently piqued. I found this bottle at Stateline Liquors in Maryland the last time I was there. I don't know anything about at all, other than what information the label has seen fit to share of course. This particular specimen is marked best before end Dec 2009 putting this sampling at nearly a full year in advance of that deadline.

Having given the bottle as much time as I am willing to warm, I set about prying the tartan cap from the neck. The crown pops off with a medium hiss and aromas of red wine begin to waft from the open bottle.

The beer is poured heartily into my gold-rimmed Belgian chalice. My senses tell me that a tulip would be the perfect glass for this beer, but as I am quite capable of doing I ignore completely this attempt of sensability to rule my actions.

The moniker 'Black ale' appears to be a suitable one. The beer in the chalice is not fully opaque, but is surely black. The liquid edges incorporate the more translucscent tones of gold and mahogany. The head is a finger-thick and the brown of eggshells.

Initially very much like a merlot or other deep red wine, the aroma of this beer is evolving with some alacrity as time passes. In the begining a round musty red wine aroma asserts the first impression. The progression away from the wine-like character has led to the sweeter aromas of caramels, currants and black cherry. There is an underlying malt character also with a nod toward sweetness and not roasted malts as one might expect.

A refined fruitiness from the ripe elderberries stakes out the foundation for the other flavors evident in this brew. Voilet or rose-like floral notes swim with herbal spices and those of dark fruits and sweet caramel syrup.

Moderate carbonation and a silkiness likely attributable to the use of oat malt combine to give this beer a gentle delivery. There are absolutely no traces of higher alchohols and the lingering earthy finish makes this brew a truly pleasing to sip.

Take your time with this one. This is not a beer of over-the-top flavors or aggressive characteristics. Instead it is a quiet sipper with a depth of complexity to please even the most jaded of beer enthusiasts.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
2.77/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was one weird brew. I was doing a mixed six pack recently at the store and a friend insisted on me trying it.

Pours dark with ruby red highlights around the sides... Ok Im expecting something roasted with some porter characteristics maybe. Thin tan head formed of big bubbles after a few swirls with some gentle lacing.

Aroma... dark fruits but slightly sour or tart. Did I get a bad bottle? Maybe a hint of a roasted note. The taste starts out roasted and gets a little tart in the middle but finishes with a certain dry sweetness that almost tastes a bit chocolatey.

Overall it was really challenging to drink, as I couldn't pinpoint any one defining characteristic. I don't think that I would reach for this again.

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Photo of AltBock
3.28/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle with a dark wood label that has a Celtic design at the top, the letter "E" in a colorful Celtic design, and the ABV%. The back side of the label has a description of the beer, the history of the style, ingredients, and a notched best before date. This beer was brewed from a 16th century recipe using elderberries and roasted oats. It sure sounds different.

I poured this little bottle into a Unibroue tulip. This Ancient Ale poured a moonless medieval night with a small glimmer of dark mahogany at the bottom. It was the only part where light could shine through this beer. On top was a 1/4 of an inch light tan colored head of foam. It had pretty good retention that left behind a small tan film, a big string of foamy rings, and about 3 spots of lace.

The first aroma that came to me was that of ripe elderberries. If the beer is swirled around, the elderberries take on a light sour side to them. Behind the elderberries was a dab of milk chocolate, a hint of roasted barley, a quick splash of roasted oats, and some kind of wood aroma at the end. It was a very earthy aroma.

The taste was disappointing. It was way too thin. I thought the elderberries, barley, and oats could create a fuller body of beer, but I guess not. The taste was thin, dry, and lightly roasted with roasted barley, a hint of roasted oats, a few elderberries, a pinch of milk chocolate, and some roasted earth toward the end. The elderberries took a back seat to all the roasted flavors.

This was a light bodied beer that contained a soft aftertaste of roasted barley, roasted oats, and a gentle touch of ripe elderberries. This aftertaste will stick around for about 2 seconds and then its gone.

Even though the taste was thin, I'm glad I got to try this beer. It was different. If you want to try new beers, then definitely try this one. You're not going to find many beers with elderberries and roasted oats in them. One bottle will do it for me, but at least it was fun to drink.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 11.2oz brown bottle with very cool Celtic/Anglo-Saxon artwork on the label and a nice history of the beer style. Best before Apr. 2009.

Appearance: Deep brown almost black beer with bright ruby highlights when held to the light. A decent pour produces a nice light tan cap, but this fades quickly to a decent ring and light film.

Smell: Sweet dark fruits, rich earthy aromas, a little peaty smoke, slight roasted barley, and just a hint of chocolate.

Taste: Earthy and smoky upfront, with a mixture of sweet and tart fruitiness through the middle. There's a decent kick of dry roasted barley on the finish, both in flavor, but more noticable in its bitterness. The finish is dry and smoky with a little bit of tea-like tannic bitterness; the smoke character reminds me of the peated malt used in Scotch whisky.

Mouthfeel: Slick and smooth; low to medium carbonation, medium body.

Drinkability: Pretty high, esp. considering it's abv.

Conclusion: This is a nice brew. It's not something I drink all the time, but rather something I come back to every once in a while as a special treat kind of thing. The elderberries add just the barest kick of fruitiness which really nicely compliments the smoky, earthy notes.

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Photo of malty
3.72/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best before April '09 notched into the bottom of the back label.

A forceful pour into the stemmed tulip chalice showcased a midnight brown ale with dark ruby edges. A 3" beige head sit densely and quite with no visible carbonation. A little bit of clumpy lacing, but not much.

A few swirls evoke a fresh ground dark bakers chocolate mixed with mushed blackberries. A few more swirls bring forth a soft roasted malt backdrop. The back label states there are roasted oats used, so maybe that's what I smell. The head has finally diminished (after 4-5 minutes) so I might as well dive in...

...Ahh. A beautifully balanced dark roasted malt handshake precedes the fruity and interestingly spicy component of the elderberries. There is a neat pine & lavender flavor to this ale that must derive from the berry because I'm betting the hop ratio is too low to showcase the pine-like flavors from some hop varieties. I've never had an elderberry, but I'd like to now that I've tried this ale. The oat malt is showcased by its soft & oily texture.

Mouthfeel is a little watery for this medium bodied ale for my liking. A long dark chocolaty flavorful finish though.

Drinkability is good. I could stand to enjoy another if I had one, but then I think I'd want to move on to something else.

Overall a terrific and unique ale for sure. The spiciness really suited itself nicely for the first real snowfall of the oncoming Christmas season. With that said, I think I might buy a couple more and enjoy them fireside next to the Christmas tree. I wish the body had a little more traction though. Great fresh nose and overall a great beer.

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Photo of echdk3
3.72/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 11,2oz bottle into a mug

A_Beautiful black color with a caramel, medium bodied bubbly head that winds down to a very thin top skin somewhat quickly

S_Big time roasty and chocolaty aroma, like a coffee flavored dark chocolate bar

T_Primarily burnt chocolate, wonderful charcoal too. Not too much of an aftertaste to speak of. The alcohol is not very present

M_Somewhat heavy-bodied and chewy. No aftertaste, but definitely a finishing texture. The feeling of sloshing beer stays in your mouth after the beer has already gone down the hatch. Lightly carbonated

D_The burnt and roasty notes make this such a tasty beer but not very easy to have many of. I would have another just for the taste, but it would probably really, really fill me up

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Photo of selecter70
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up while grabbing a couple porters & schwarzbiers, listening to my wife's advice. The 11.2 oz. bottle poured a dark brown with a slight beige head & scotch-coffee-porter aroma. The head dissipated fairly quickly leaving little lacing, but a slight banana and dark berry smell soon added to the aroma's already rich smell. A stout-like feel to the mouth, although not to the Guinness level. The flavor definitely fulfilled the aroma with a Scotch porter taste with tasty earthiness to it. There was a slightly alcohol aftertaste, but not overwhelming. Definitely a fine pour for my mood!

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Photo of phantomwyse
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The look of black coffee with a medium off-white 1-finger or so head.

S: Milky, chocolates tones, caramel, and then just a touch fruity.

T: Like a good stout, but with a dark fruitiness in the background.

M: Creamy.

D: Peachy.

Good, but I wouldn't actively go and seek it out.

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Photo of EatsTacos
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very dark brown with a small, very fine creamy head that formed a ring around the glass. Drank this in a wine glass.

The aroma is very rich, lots of chocolate and coffee right up front. Roasted barley, earthy and fruity.

The taste lives up to the great smell. There's a sour and sweet berry flavour that is balanced between a really roasted barley grainy malt and the bitter hops. The hop flavour is floral and fruity too. A spicyness that is similar to a dry red wine in the finish is amazing.

Very smooth in the finish, soft carbonation and full bodied. The texture is oily and thick. The carbonation is probably medium to low and very smooth. Fantastic beer. I'd love to have this with red meat or any kind of savoury dish.

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

I poured this one from an 11.2oz brown bottle into a tulip pint glass.

A= This ale poured a deep dark black with slightly purple highlights just around the edges. With an aggressive pour, the light tan head rose just about 1/4". Some minor spotty lace appeared down my glass.

S= I got lots of sweet and roasty malts, treacle, molasses, and a dark fruitiness.

T= Sweetness dominated upfront, with a lot of chewy and roasted malt flavor as well as a dark berry, jelly/jam fruitiness. Some earthy hops made an appearance then quickly retreated as the long dry finish kicked in. Alcohol was faintly detectable.

MF= High end of medium bodied. Very smooth, almost oily feel with light carbonation.

D= This was a dangerously drinkable ale with a serious amount of alcohol that is nearly undetectable. The sweetness of the berry flavors made this one more of a dessert beer, but a damn good one at that.

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Photo of czfreeman
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours out a rich back color, topped by a creamy brown frothy head. Looks like a really good porter in apperance. Head is very nice, leaves lots of lacing.
Aromas of elderberries(duH) from the start, this adds ina blueberry-pomgranite sweet-tartness, roasted malts, light cocoa tones,black grapes. Smells really appealing.
Upon first sip, I am taken aback at how good this beer is. Soft red wine like notes, eledr/blueberrys, malty sweetness, less carbonation than expected, nice warming finish with a long lingering fruit-tartness lingering on the palate. This is really good.
I was facinated when I first read about Gruit, and have been anxious to try a really good version. Just thinking about drinking something that was passed around in ancient celebration of life is truly an enlightening experience.

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Photo of wl0307
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB 08/2009, served cool in Westmalle's broad-rimmed goblet.

A: black in colour, a beige frothy head dissipates slowly and settles down to a thin sheet of foam.
S: "meaty", chocolatey and raw-ish nutty rich dark malts come along with a very mixed herbal note, suggesting menthol, phenol, licorice, added with a touch of pine or other aromatic wood-chips... the herbal touch sort of lifts the malty body slightly, making it lighter than most other stouts on the nose. BTW, elderberries would never come to mind if I hadn't known of its existence according to the recipe.
T: dark chocolatey and roasty maltiness with a full body is underlined by a delicate touch of dark fruits (elderberry, anyone?), an exotic tinge of woodiness and menthol, slowly the fulsome dark malts expand in flavour and increase in weight/body, resulting in an aromatic aftertaste featuring predominately bitter-sweet toasted walnuts and even oats, but also lively due to a dash of sour dark fruits (more like dates) and even a hint of coke! The flavour base is actually reminiscent of the same brewery's Grozet - a gooseberry lager - albeit with abundant additional roastiness of course. Chewy and bitter-sweet in the lingering finish with a constant accompaniment of sour berry fruits. Truly enjoyable.
M&D: like my previous encounter, the elderberries are rather subdued with only a fraction of exotic sourness at play. Smooth on the palate but never without a decent amount of microscopic fizziness. All in all, this beer rings a bell of both Alba Pine Ale and Grozet gooseberry lager - maybe, just maybe some ingredients are in common, or my palate is too happy with this ale to be discerning...

* Tasting Date: 07/11/05
BB date: Jun 06.
3 A: nearly black, with a negligible tan beer head disappearing in no time. That's all.
3.5 S: interesting mixture of coke, Chinese liquid herbal-medicine or mixed spice drink including clove or sort of phenolic note, ripe dark berries, sweet dark chocolates, rough grainy note like crushed raw barley and oats; the intense, dark malty note sustains firmly at the back, underlining the slightly sour but very pronounced herbal+dark berry-fruitiness. Very different.
3.5 T: upfront is a flow of very smooth and light-bodied, dark chocolatey flavour of malts; the chocolatey as well as lightly roasted malt flavour gradually intensifies, but remains ever so smooth it's almost "milky" in terms of texture, enhanced by hints of oats as in some oatmeal stout, with its ultra smooth texture. The berry-like slightly sour-fruitiness is kept at the minimum level, though, or perhaps it's already turned into something else during the alchemy of brewing. The resulted balanced flavour definitely owes to the contribution of elderberries which is used, but there's no telling as the fruitiness is so mild I even think this beer can be termed as an "oatmeal stout"?!--for many stouts and porters carry lots of fruitiness with them naturally... The finish has some slightly sour edge like a normal, drier stout, as well as a faint, roasted malty aftertaste, albeit understated.
4 M&3 D: overall the mouthfeel is just ultra-smooth, almost the smoothest dark beer I've ever had; but the softness on top of a mild and rather simplistic taste of this black ale turns against itself, making it a bit boring to drink pretty soon... The small bottle, 330ml, is just about the right size, IMO~~

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Photo of emerge077
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2 fl. oz. bottle, BBD: 04/09

Pours black with a brownish ring at the edge, and ruby near the meniscus of the glass, under direct light. Thin initial tan head, that fades to a bubbly ring.

Some roast malt and hickory aroma, fairly subdued.

Dry roast, initial bitterness that fades, some light woody tones. Possible bakers chocolate. Lingering aftertaste of wood. Earthy, but with a slight hint of oxidation. No distinct flavor of fruit.

It drinks like a Schwarzbier, or a light American Porter. Sticky on the lips, with a modest carbonation level. Easy enough to drink, but i'd prefer a porter to this.

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Photo of Newkie
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Dark but not black. Brown hues along the edges. Pours a thin, tan head. Some lacing.

S: Earthy, charred wood, fruits, and burnt malt.

T: Dry berries dominate with a sweetness similar to some charred malts found in bigger stouts. Some coffee notes here. Lots of roasted malt and charred oak in a dry, bitter finish.

M: Thicker than expected. Medium bodied with a very smooth feel.

D: This beer suprised me. The earthy notes made me expect a Belgian dark ale, but the taste was close to a stout with a lighter mouthfeel. A great, different brew that's good for a change of pace. Not quite a dessert beer, but certainly not a session beer either.

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Photo of mhewes
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A : Pours black with a small tan head that leaves some lacing behind

S : Get some roasted malts and hints of the fruit

T : Interesting is a good way to describe it. The roasted malts are there barely but there is a strong oak and fruit flavor that comes through.

M : Medium-bodied, good carbonation

D : It's a unique beer that was solid but not spectacular. Not something I would seek out but not something I would avoid.

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Photo of Brad007
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black color with a very thin head. Resembles a stout in that regard.

Aroma is sweet with the essence of elderberries and a bit of roasted malt in the nose. Very roasty.

Taste is roasty and chewy upfront and fades to a smoothness and very light hint of elderberry at the back of the throat. Finishes with a dryness and hint of creaminess.

Mouthfeel is a light essence of elderberry, dominated by flavors that one would associate with a stout, including creaminess.

For a black ale, I swear this is more of a stout. Still, very delicious and the use of elderberries does add more of a well-rounded sweetness to it. Overall, very drinkable.

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Photo of koolk
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light brown head on a deep brown beer that has some nice lacing.

Toasty, roasted coffee aromas. Not much else going on. Slowly shows some more red fruit aromas, but still very toast/roasted dominant. Maybe some mocha over time.

More toast and roast on the palate - mimics the nose, but it starts to show the fruiter/vinous edge. Can't say the elderberries are screaming out, but it has a solid "red wine fruit like" base to the darker malts. Good sweet kick.

A little thin on the ground, but good carbonation helps out, but just lacking enough to reduce the drinkability.

A solid beer, but nothing spectacular.

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Photo of MTNboy
3.41/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: it is a very opaque like a stout there was not much for head or lace. What foam there was just formed a ring around the glass.

Smell: It smells like roasted malt but a little metallic

Taste: It doesn't taste metallic. There is a strong burnt wood flavor with some fruity and berry like tones. It was kind of like eating a burnt log. There is a little bit of chocolate tone as well.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and not very carbonated very carbonated at all.

Drinkability: Not something I would go out of my way for but alright. It would be a sipper at best.

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Photo of Overlord
2.04/5  rDev -46.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Pours a bubbling black with a big brown head. Attractive, almost a nitrous pour look to it. Stayed frothy.

Smells like ... some sort of berry, and coffee.
Upon the first sip, very nice. That same berry bite, with coffee and some sweet chocolate. Mouthfeel is way too thin for a porter/stout, but then again, this isn't one of those. Though it looks like one.

It's only as the bottle continues that problems arise. If you gave me three oz. of this beer and asked me to review it I'd say "the strange fruit/berry flavor lightens up what would otherwise be a fairly standard, too thin porter." After 8 oz., it would be more like "that berry flavor has a horrid aftertaste after a while and it drowns out what would otherwise be a pleasant but forgettable porter."

I guess I don't like elderberry, if that is what is responsible for the horrid medicinal/herbal quality of this brew.

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Ebulum Elderberry Black Ale from Williams Brothers Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 537 ratings.
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