Black Albert | De Struise Brouwers

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Black AlbertBlack Albert

Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally brewed exclusively for Ebenezer's Pub in Lovell, ME.

Added by brewandbbq on 08-23-2007

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,781 |  Reviews: 856
Photo of chrispoint
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Tyrawlings
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of SLeffler27
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fills a Dogfish Head snifter dark brown, almost black. No light passes under a tall, dense, creamy, chestnut brown head that never dissipates, but leaves big patches of lace.

Rich roasted coffee and bittersweet chocolate dominate with notes of dates, spiced rum and raisins. Black Albert warms well.

Roasted malt and chocolate are up front. Molasses, oak, cigar and charred beef follow through and the finish is short and fruity. Black Albert has amazing balance for 100 IBU beer and becomes more complex with warmth.

Creamy smooth texture and full body. Alcohol is quite present but less than others I have had at 13%. The carbonation is soft and there is a dry finish.

This makes for a great reading beer, but would also work well with long conversations, steak or ice cream.

 781 characters

Photo of Beezee
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of John11486
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of ObeMaltKinobee
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of waltersrj
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 14.

Pour: Dark black with a big, creamy, dark tan head that lasts for the entirety of this drinks' life.

Nose: Dark chocolate, fudge brownie, cherry pits, slight banana, fruit esters, and Belgian spice.

Taste: Opposite of the nose, the Belgian characteristics or spice, clove, and banana come out but are overwhelmed with dark chocolate and brownie batter, also slight mint.

Mouthfeel: Fantastically, velvety smooth. This is near perfect here for carbonation.

Overall: Great beer. This is SN excellent RIS with a Belgian yeast strain twist.

 551 characters

Photo of Pahn
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottle says B 6 BB, which other BAs seem to say means it was bottled in 2007. Big thanks to BA mmcgrath for trading me this bottle!

Appearance: Frantic, "oh no the bottle is gushing!" pour yields a 2 inch, frothy and bubbly tan head that appears to be permanent. Pours a solid black and leaves a few light lacing streaks.

Smell: Coffee and cocoa, with molasses and some possible oxidation (I'm a bit in doubt about the oxidation aroma, since there's no trace of oxidation in the flavor). Dark chocolate and molasses are the main smells, with some Belgian yeast highlighting them. Opens up with some aromatic dark fruit and coffee with time.

Strongly leaning toward giving a 4.5 or even 5.0 for smell, due to this sort of intoxicating, deeply inviting, very potent caramel smell that emerges with time. Holding back since the beer is otherwise a bit less complex than other great Russian Imperial Stouts.

Taste: Tangy up front (herbal hops, molasses, unidentifiable "tanginess"), then--whoa--waves of beautiful flavor in the finish. Caramel, then a heavy, nutty (almost like pistachios) flavor of roasted malt that stops well short of being too bitter, with a long coffee and caramel aftertaste. Nice.

Subsequent sips follow the same pattern of slightly bland up front leading to an explosion of goodness. Great sipper of a beer. Extra points for the 13% ABV being expertly hidden... I had a 10% ABV beer last night that tasted as hot as Bacardi 151 in comparison to this.

With warmth, the flavor up front opens up as well, yielding dark fruit flavors and chocolaty coffee that highlight the herbal hops and tangy molasses well.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied at first (a bit watery), then thick and creamy through the finish. Almost no alcohol heat. Not a lot of bitterness. Maybe a touch overcarbonated.

Overall: This is a very nice beer. Impressive (lots of flavor, well-hidden alcohol, well-balanced sweetness) and enjoyable. Not quite as excellent as Struise's Pannepot, but close.

 2,022 characters

Photo of Rhettroactive
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 330mL bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 2/3/12
*From notes

Thanks to the trader who got extra'ed me this a while back.

-- Batch 0 --

A: Dark. I mean really, really dark. A generous pour yields an epic 3.25 finger cascading and creamy head that never really fades away.

S: Straight brownie batter.

T: Quite unique. It's a bit rustic, with hints of rich earth up front. As it moves further back, the brownie batter quality of it hits the the mid in an agressive manner. The finish reveals a staunch Belgian yeast profile, with mountains of ground cocoa in the background. As it warms, black cherry skins become evident.

M: This isn't up to the jaw dropping levels of some in style, yet it holds it's own. There's a bit too much fizz, but as it sits and I swirl it in my glass, it calms a bit, and becomes a bit smoother in the mouth.

O: Black Albert is a pretty spectacular RIS. It's got layers of complexity that many American offerings just can't compete with. This is highly recommneded, and one I look forward to having again.

*Allow this to warm to room temperature for full enjoyment.

 1,100 characters

Photo of haz77
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Lot C J 2015

A - Pours jet black with three fingers of thick tan head. This slowly recedes to a thin cap, but can be easily refreshed. A very nice start.

S - Coffee, dark chocolate, floral hops, stewed plums, a collection of sweet dried fruit, slight plasticky phenol notes, cinnamon buried right at the back. Good, if not hugely mouth watering in the way that their quads are.

T - An initial mouthful of sweet dried fruit and a hint of apple evolves into caramel. This is joined by the acidity of red berries before a rounded coffee finish, with touches of tobacco and caramel in the aftertaste. Slightly herbal hops are also present and these flavours linger for some time. The 13% ABV doesn't make itself known anywhere in the flavour.

M - Once again with a De Stuise brew a deft hand is at work here. Rich, full, rounded, velvety feel coats the mouth without ever becoming overwhelmingly syrupy. An ever-present tingle of carbonation finally gains the upper hand right at the end and slices though. Exceptional.

D - It would be very easy to get bent out of shape on a beer that hides its alcohol so well. Finesse and a clever touch are present everywhere. They are fast becoming my favourite brewery.

 1,209 characters

Photo of Soneast
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of aflyershckyfan
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of MisledTitan
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of shagal
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of lbour
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Steggun
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of stevefinny
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of CBlack85
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of Fluke828
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been looking forward to this one...

11.2 FL OZ.(330 ml right?) Bottle -> CBS Snifter (about half)
Bottle Date: LOT: B 6 BB (from what I understand this is June 2007?)

A->very dark body with a tan colored head about a finger's worth, persistent lacing with tremendous legs on this beer....

S-> Immediately get some very sweet dark fruits, almost like a very dark cherry/chocolate funk. Signature Struise I suppose... Roasted malts and faint chocolate smoke upon further examination...lots of complexity here...

T->Very sweet chocolate up front, slight bitterness and the faint tartness of Struise yeast with a fruity flavor turns toward a bit of coffee flavor but can't seem to shake the black cherry taste all the ay through. Finishes fairly dry with a creamy roasted aftertaste.

M-> Felt a bit on the thin side at first but was likely still too cold despite leaving this out on the counter for about 15 minutes before opening and pouring. definitely thickened up and actually started to semi-gush right as I went to tip the bottle to begin pouring. Lots of pent up carbonation over 5.5 years I guess....I actually enjoyed the lively carbonation.

O-> A tremendous beer. I didn't even realize I had a five and a half year old beer sitting in my cellar until after I opened this. having never had a Black Albert, I am very impressed. Quite enjoyable. Perfect thickness, not syrupy and the alcohol is melded perfectly. Great example of the style with that unique Struise twist. Chalk up another "Highly recommend" from this guy....

 1,553 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Excited to try this beer! Big thanks to ICCULUS for this beer! Thanks Jim!

Lot number: B 6 BB (vintage 2007)

poured into snifter.

Appearance: black bodied beer with a 2 fingers worth of mocha brown head. Spotty lacing on the glass. Head fades to a thick ring around the side of the glass.

Smell: roasty and malty. Little bit vinuous smelling similiar to wine. Dark fruits that smell mostly of raisins and prunes.

Taste: This beer is roasty and moderately bitter upfront. Strong notes of molasses, raisins, figs, anise, and black licorice at mid palate that completely covers up the roasty qualities found at the beginning of this beer, but they compliment the bitterness of the beer with a mild sweetness. In the aftertaste I get some earthiness and unfortunately I taste do sour cherries. Its unmistakeable and the cherries tend to linger for quite a while after each sip of the beer. I think that this beer must have a minor infection going on or it could be oxidation since this beer is vintage 2007.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. This beer is smooth and a just a little bit thin. Carbonation is a little bit prickly, but close to where it needs to be.

Overall: This beer is better than your average stout. It just seems a little bit off though. Nice beer. I should give this beer a try when its a fresh batch.

 1,353 characters

Photo of samEBC
4.75/5  rDev +12%

Photo of mtbdonn
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of bwyu
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of match1112
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

first off, thanks to vegas beer man for this!

pours out a flat dark brown, no signs of a head, just some faint bubbles on top. smell is mostly dark fruits with hints of chocolate and some belgium yeast. taste is different, but good, not your typical ris. taste is more like a complex wine at this point. no signs of roasted malts, coffee or chocolate. just a funky sour dark fruit almost wine like taste. mouthfeel is ris like, full body, creamy yet oily. this is a weird beer. definatly worth the try, and would probably drink again if i could get a fresher bottle to try. this one says it's batch no. 14.

 607 characters

Photo of DSlim71
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Black Albert from De Struise Brouwers
4.24 out of 5 based on 1,781 ratings.
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