Surly / Lervig 1349 Black Ale
Surly Brewing Company

Surly / Lervig 1349 Black AleSurly / Lervig 1349 Black Ale
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Style:
American Black Ale
ABV:
13.49%
Score:
88
Avg:
3.93 | pDev: 12.72%
Reviews:
30
Ratings:
155
From:
Surly Brewing Company
 
Minnesota, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  9
Gots
  35
SCORE
88
Very Good
Surly / Lervig 1349 Black AleSurly / Lervig 1349 Black Ale
Notes: This entry is for the 750ml waxed bottles produced at Surly Brewing Company. For the Lerving 11.2oz version, please review here: http://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/18604/177820/
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Reviews: 30 | Ratings: 155
Photo of Ozzylizard
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Undated 750 mL bottle at 42 degrees into a hand washed and dried JK snifter
Aroma – malt
Head – Large (Maximum 4.8 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, creamy, diminishing to an irregular three to five mm ring with drag marks and a rocky heaped partial layer
Lacing good – thin rings of varying width, tiny to small bubbles, covers just over 50% of the inside surface
Body – dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – Expresso! Starts off slightly sweet (malt) which ends immediately followed by a jaw-tightening bitterness that is felt more than tasted (Expresso!). Apparently no hops were harmed in making this beer: at least their presence is overwhelmed by the expresso to the point that they appear to be an afterthought although I think I finally taste a little hopishness around the edges. No diacetyl could survive the expresso onslaught.
Palate – full, almost creamy, soft carbonation
Wow! A BIG beer for sure, maybe not in alcohol content, but certainly in flavor. Bottled coffee with some alcohol added. A little sweeter and it would give Kahlua a run. Since expresso usually gives me the runs…
Appearance 4.25, Aroma 4, Flavor 4.5, Palate 4, Overall 4.25

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.31/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Ei8ht Ball b&tr. Dessert beer all the way. Heavy molasses, lighter coffee, hides the abv very well.

Even at a top shelf place like the 8B, this is served far too cold. The flavors really start to bloom at about 50 degrees, so your patience will be well rewarded if you can pace yourself!

Even at 13+%, it manages a crown and some legs of lace. Smooth as silk on the tongue.

Would age with the best of them.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.44/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of this from The Party Source in Newport, KY when my wife and I passed through there on vacation in March of last year. Been cellaring it until tonight. Poured into one of my tulip glasses out of an 11.2 oz bottle, this beer pours a solid, dark brown color that's not interested in letting in any light whatsoever. Has a creamy looking tan head that's about an inch thick when first poured that settles eventually to a fairly thick ring lining the inside of the glass along with some nice cluster swirls of foam on the beer's surface. Aromas of oats, dark chocolate, coffee and roasted caramel malt notes, raisins, and certainly a bit of alcohol being that this is a 13% ABV beer. Flavors of chocolate, vanilla, coffee, roasted oats and roasted caramel malt sweetness that give way to some prunes and raisins that's all rounded out with a fair degree of booziness. A slight touch of earthy hop bitterness is still present. The sweet flavors certainly dominate here, and that's what I was expecting. Has a fairly crisp, somewhat smooth, slightly chewy and stick, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Has a clean finish with a sweet and boozy aftertaste. Easy to drink in a good way.

Eric

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Photo of TheGenesisOfElegance
4.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, poured into a glass beer chalice.

The first thing I noticed from the insane aroma is the incredibly strong alcohol presence. At over 13%, it will either turn you away or assist the intrigue of this beautifully black collaboration.

Scents of booze and coffee assaulted my nose first, but as it warmed up I detected hints of chocolate, raisins, citrus and hops in the back end. If I hadn't known what this was, I may have mistaken it for a Russian Imperial Stout.

The velvety smoothness washes across my tongue at first, reminding me of a cream stout. But that was quickly followed up by a playful sweetness, but not of the dessert variety. After that, chocolate and vanilla and prunes and coffee all dance across the tongue simultaneously, all of which help to accentuate just how expertly crafted this beer is.

It's pretty mild on carbonation, but that's not necessarily a bad thing for a beer of this nature. In the end I really didn't detect the immense alcohol factor of the beer. Which is yet another hint at how well this beer had been made.

Appearance is dark and opaque, which is typical. The medium sized, dark khaki colored head lasted for a good while, but ultimately diminished into a thin ring. Lacing was very prominent and draped the sides of the glass, but that too ultimately abated as time went on.

All in all, this was an amazing and perfectly balanced brew.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.73/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Surly/Lervig 1349 has a thick, beige head, a dark brown (almost black) appearance, and heavy lacing left behind. The aroma is of sweet, dark, malt, dark coffee, some chocolate, oats, citrus rind, and hop resins. Taste is of those elements, with even more roasted malt and coffee. Mouthfeel is velvety and high medium, and Surly/Lervig 1349 finishes dry and warming (from the high abv).

RJT

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Photo of emerge077
3.91/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Thomas & Jenny for sharing this one!
Black with a tan head, lasting surface retention, spotty lace all around.
Malted milk balls, oxidized malts, hop resins.
Taste is resinous with an herbal hop bitterness, sweet sticky malt, heavy feel, roast and light alcohol warming presence. Bitterness balances the sweetness but just barely. This is more imperial stout territory than black ale. Overall ok to try, but nearly impossible to finish a full bottle solo I'm sure.

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Photo of hardy008
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark black with a two finger beige head, which has good retention and lacing. The aroma has dark roasted malt, chocolate, cocoa, grapefruit, and pine.

Tastes sweeter than expected based on the aroma. There is chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, and lactose. There is some bitterness from the hops and roasted malt, but the bitterness is overpowered by the sweetness, which is fine with me.

Full bodied with modest carbonation. Has a sweet aftertaste. Much better than the 1349 Pale.

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Photo of JackieTH
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Opaque mahogany-black beer with a thick, creamy head, persistent and sheets of lace. Very attractive. Smells of roast coffee, dates, chocolate, dark cherries, figs, roasted caramel and faint licorice. Quite Good. Taste is lightly sweet with vanilla and cherry, licorice, French press espresso coffee, toffee and fig newtons. Interwoven with mild chocolate. Citrus pith hop notes. Lots of flavors here all vying for attention. Quite a creamy, thick, heavy body for a black ale. Mild carbonation. Faint bitterness of coffee and sour/bitter notes of citrus pith in the finish. Very interesting and quite complex the flavors are many and it seems to work. Big beer, some imperial stout characteristics. I'd have another. Far better than the 1349 series Pale.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.69/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Jeff for this one. 750ml waxed and capped bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a .25 finger mocha colored head with good retention. Beer is pitch black but not thick. Lacing is layered and spotty with great stick. A really fantastic looking brew.

Nose is roast, citrus and liquorice hop bitterness. Creamy with hints of vanilla, booze and some pine. I know this isn't gonna be my type of beer.

Opens rich vanilla, roast, sweet cane sugar, dark fruit and a smoky hop bitterness. More vanilla and piney, resiny hop presence in the middle with a bit of coffee, liquroice and chocolate at the end and finish. Awkwardly sweet with a big hop presence for balance. One of the better black IPAs I've had.

Medium bodied with low carbonation. Slick and creamy in the mouth and goes down boozy and rich. Finishes boozy and messy with a lingering, sticky aftertaste. Pretty good.

I'm not a fan of Black IPAs at all but as the style goes, this isn't bad. Good balance but the sweetness needed to balance out the roasty hop presence just gets too much at times. If you like the style, I suspect this is one of the better offerings... still, its not for me.

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Photo of Sammy
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dry expresso coffee taste and hardly any hops. One dimensional though drinkable for coffee fans. Not as drinkable as would like. Fresh bottle from Binnys.

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Photo of kkleu357
3.55/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Well this beer is just a tad bit over priced. Well, way over priced. It’s just a typical coffee tasting beer. Kind of a thin dark body. Big sweet coffee cocoa taste up front. Very bitter on the back. It’s good, but nothing special.

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Photo of tariq1
4.85/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Fantastic beer! The flavors are deep and powerful, striking you immediately as you sip and then mingling in a very rich and smooth swirl in your mouth. Molasses, malt, rich/bitter coffee, salted caramel, date, prune, and dark fruit. Quite delectable. I'll be looking out for this one to come around again, I should've gotten another glass before it blew out...

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Photo of RobinLee
3.87/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

An odd beer, no doubt. Dark, sweet fruits on the nose, kinda like a mix of dubbel/quad with a black IPA. Those roast notes are present as well. When you taste it, you get those in abundance, but also some coffee, and an odd spicy flavor which really kicks at the middle to end palate. It's not quite a hop spice either, more of a capsaicin/hot pepper spice, heat. Overall, an odd beer.

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Photo of mothman
3.51/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Not really my thing. For what it is, it's okay. Huge hop resiny stickiness. Dank and weedy. Lots of chocolate and caramel. Big roast and coffee. Boozy.

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Photo of ta_hagen
4.68/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Nice black ale, 13.49%, just a hint. Smooth... Very dark stuff. Near black with a creamy, licorice, molasses, candy sugar, bitter chocolate and caramel.
Much more palatable than I remember. A lot of the monster flavors that surface on the nose translate well in the taste. Very nice and will try again for sure!!!!

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Photo of morimech
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

$20 750ml bottle from Surly. No product of Norway on label. Huge disappointment nonetheless. I expected more coffee flavor as it was advertised on the label. A lot of caramel in the aroma and flavor complete with European yeast flavor qualities.Considering the ingredient list, and the brewers, this seemed a bit amatuerish. Very poor value.

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Photo of ramay86
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh batch at the Surly taproom, which apparently was also brewed in Norway.

Very dark stuff. Near black with a creamy, stubborn bit of khaki on top.

Massive nose: licorice, molasses, candy sugar, bitter chocolate, caramel.

Much more palatable than I remember. A lot of the monster flavors that surface on the nose translate well in the taste. Definite molasses, burnt caramel, coffee, dark chocolate. My one real complaint is the bitterness level, which is really high considering what's going on with the rest of the beer.

Very sticky going down, making for a long finish of that massive stack of flavors; which is probably either a bonus or a bummer, depending on who you ask.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.11/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle purchased at Nathaniel Square Corner Store in Rochester, NY.

This one pours a fairly dark black, with barely any head, and no lacing.

This smells fairly sweet, with charred roast, some caramel, booze, and burnt sugar.

This is beer turned up to 11, when it should have only been really turned up to maybe 7. It's way too sweet, cloying, and sugary. It honestly slightly reminds me of donut frosting in the sweetness. There's just the smallest amount of bitter roast, but it doesn't do enough to balance the heavy duty sweetness. So much chocolate syrupy and burnt, caramelized sugar. Just too much. I get the coffee a little bit but it's not super strong.

This is really quite syrupy, too much so, feels like drinking boozy molasses. The booze isn't hidden as well as it could be. The carbonation level is pretty low.

Was pretty disappointed in this one. I just don't feel like it was particularly well constructed in how syrupy it was.

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Photo of guityler83
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Deep brown - almost black with an edge of clarity showing through. Great head retention considering the ABV. tan colored head with mixed bubbles.

S: Moderate pine, resin, grapefruit hops with medium caramel and toast malt aroma. Mild milk chocolate sweet impression with light cold coffee at threshold levels. faint phenols come through as it warms up. overall impression reminds me of chocolate covered strawberry - very unique.

T: Rich black licorice, bitter coffee, molasses, burnt caramel and dark chocolate - all very intense and complimentary. An underlying nutty, bready malt flavor rounds out the fullness of the malt flavors. The balance is on the malt for sure and it comes off sweet, but not clowing. Hop bitterness is medium with heavy citrus hops coming through in the middle and finish - making it refreshing in the end.

M: A bug full body with medium, low carbonation and a touch of harshness in the back of the throat giving some astringency. Alcohol warming is prominent.

O: Excellent beer. The hop aroma was a unique touch to the rich complex dark malt symphony. 1349 + Surly are the shit already. My first from Lervig - but I’ll be keeping my eye out for more

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Photo of Stagga_Lee
4.64/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

An amalgam of deeply roasted coffee notes and potent black malts. It captures a broad variety of flavors while creating an intersection between a black ale, old ale, and stout.

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Photo of metter98
3.92/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a finger high tan head that gradually died down, leaving patches of bubbles on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of black licorice are present in the nose along with hints of piney hops. Notes of roasted malts become noticeable as the beer warms up.
T: Similar to the smell, the beer tastes like it could be some type of cough medicine, having lots of flavors of black licorice accompanied by hints of espresso, piney hops, and roasted malts. The black licorice lingers into the finish. There are some subtle hints of dark fruits and sugary sweetness.
M: It feels just about full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. Neither crispness from the hops nor warming from the alcohol is perceptible.
O: You can definitely get a sense that this beer is strong from all of the underlying malts, but it does a rather good job of masking any traces of alcohol and there must also be a heavy dose of hops to keep most of the maltiness, sweetness, and stickiness in check.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Received in a snifter from tap.

3.5 A: Black color. Came without a head.

4.5 S: Plum and prune gone wild. Lots of sugary sweetness. Grassy, herbal, and light citrusy hops with pineapple. Roasty with super dense molasses and caramel.

4.5 T: Orange and plum banging each other. Bittersweet orange and prune run deep. Big caramel and molasses. Pineapple upsidedown cake.

4.75 M: Heavy, viscous. Somewhat velvety with good moderate carbonation.

4.75 D: Really good. Review from notes.

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Photo of Mdog
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Black, good head.

Smell: Deep roasted sweetness, molasses, booze.

Taste: Starts like coffee that has about 4 sugars in it, very sweet. Slowly some grapefruit peeks out in the middle, and a mild coffee bitterness in the finish. Sweetness seems to go down a little bit as it warms.

Overall: Picked up a bottle of this Surly collaboration in Wiscoland, haven't seen it in Minnesota. It is one of the sweetest beers I've had, almost over the top sweet at times. The other flavors struggle to come through. The alcohol is well hidden though, and the body isn't heavy or syrupy which actually helps keep the sweetness from being overbearing.

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Photo of beergoot
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Deep brown, nearly black body; rich, creamy, light tan head. Pine resin aroma; touch of chocolate and roasted malt grains. Mocha and cocoa flavors; somewhat sweet; bright, spicy notes; faint boozy character; tangy hop bitterness at the finish. Medium-heavy in body; sweet start with a dry finish.

Rich and malty with an intriguing interplay of hop bitterness and alcohol presence throughout. A world of complexity and layers of depth emerges and reveals itself with every sip. There is a lot of dark malt and chocolate overtones throughout yet the hops and alcohol add some beautiful dimensions to the whole experience. A palate pleaser and mind expander...

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.51/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

In what's a battle between what's complex and what's complicated, the collaborative hands of America's Surley and Lervig brewers introduce a sweet stout with an aggravated hop tone and sweeter, fruitier nuances to boot.

Ominously dark and deviant in its patient mocha rise of meringue, the intimidating pour unleashes a hearty sweet, smoky and chocolaty tone but also a stern fresh pine, grapefruit and fragrant herb aroma. Its initial taste captures the malty sweetness of milkshake and sucrose although the roasted malt influence is of coffee, dark chocolate and heavy toast.

With its firmly sweet taste in tact, the middle palate quickly introduces a reckless amounts of citrus, pine and herb to accompany the sweetness as the palate tries to figure out which beer with which to side. Late flavors begin to favor hop; in its burnt citrus peel, softly whittled pine and herbaceous grassiness.

With the taste seemingly coming to a close, a long and lingering taste of cocoa and aspartame, along with fragrant woods and a spicy brunt of gin all make the disjointed tastes a great idea that has yet to come together. Its schizophrenic taste seems as if there are two or three beers living in the same glass.

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Surly / Lervig 1349 Black Ale from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 155 ratings