Black Albert | De Struise Brouwers

Black AlbertBlack Albert
Liked This Beer
4.26 w/ 1,786 ratings
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

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,786 |  Reviews: 858
Photo of greg4579
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%

Batch 14, 2007 vintage.

Very port like in flavor. Lots of vinous notes. I found the nose faint, and almost nonexistent. I thought the mouthfeel was good and as expected.

A dessert in itself and an enjoyable way to start watching Thursday night football.

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Photo of Thirstygoat
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tmoneyba
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Belmont Party.

Poured a clear dark brown color with a large frothy brown head that lasted with excellent lacing. Moderate to heavy roasted chocolate, caramel and alcohol aroma. Heavy bittersweet roasted malty flavor with a heavy bittersweet and small alcohol bite finish of long duration. Full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation.

This is a standout beer.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with a thinnish, tan-colored head.

Smell: Roasty malts with chocolate, strong coffee, as well as distinct notes of dark candi sugar, tobacco, prunes, black currants, and aniseed.

Taste: Rich maltiness displayed as candi sugar sweetened chocolate and dark, roasted grains. Concentrated, vinous fruitiness, even a bit of cooked apples. Pinch of English Cavendish as well as pepper and anise. Subtle yeastiness. Exceedingly minor hop flavor and bitterness. Flavor of spiced fruit compote on the drying finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation. Somewhat chewy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Well, for starters, it was good! The love child of a Belgian Quad and Imperial Stout. The drinkability is suspiciously high for a purported 13% ABV brew. I certainly recommend it if you can manage to procure yourself a bottle or two.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-dark brown black color with a decent tan head and some lacing

S-dark malt, coffee, chocolate, light caramel

T-dark chocolate, coffee, dark roasted malt, light molasses, light char

F-medium to full body with mild to moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy

O-good imperial stout and nice flavor, but lacks range of flavor of other stouts in its class

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Photo of hoppymeal
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark cola brown to black in color with an average sized medium tan head that fades to a ring. Sweet and fruity aroma, grapes and aged pruniness. Chocolate, a strong belgian yeast, tangy alcohol, and a breadiness in the aroma as well. Taste follows with the chocolate and fruity sweet maltiness mixing together very nicely, grapiness comes thru well, a decent tanginess leads into a slightly dry finish that shows a little of the alcohol. Mouthfeel is fairly full and sugary, a hint of pepper on the tongue, a bit of drying and warmth in the finish. A very tasty beer, definitely does not fit into the ris category. I had read some of the belgian stout posts before trying this so expected it to fall outside those lines and it definitely does. Would fit better in the belgian strong dark imo. Alcohol is very well balanced for its strength and it seems that this is a great candidate for some longer cellaring, look forward to trying it again after a year or two.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review #200. 12 oz bottle in a trade from Elric73 - thanks! Served at 51 degrees, poured into a snifter.

Appearance: A thick, solid black beer with an immaculately fine and even creamy coffee-colored head with average retention. A surprising amount of carbonation - you can see the bubbles creep up along the arc of the glass and form honeycombs along the edges of the glass.

Aroma: Amazingly light! Tart citrus notes, very sweet, black cherries, raspberries, yeasty earthiness, ethereal alcohol, and only the faintest hints of dark roasted malts. Very surprising and unexpected.

Taste: Again very light. Half-roast coffee, currants, blueberries, white peaches and grapes, no alcohol taste as much as a warm alcohol finish. Slight hints of smoke, and sweet chocolate as things warm up. Very complex and unique.

Mouthfeel: Small-to-medium bubbled, velvety. Mild but active carbonation. Leaves a bit of a film on the teeth and tongue.

Drinkability: Quite possibly the strangest RIS I've ever had. Manages to taste and smell amazingly light while at the same time being amazingly alcoholic. The aroma and taste, however, are fabulously complex - light and fruity, almost a fruity, 13% abv schwartzbier or something. Not sure if it's worth what I paid for it, but if this were available in my area and a little more inexpensive, I'd definitely get another.

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Photo of CHADMC3
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an oil slick black body with a thick, dark, mocha head that gives way to a thin, yet consistent lacing around the perimeter of the beer.

Roasted malt and sweet chocolate aromas float from the glass. Hints of booze, dark breads, and yeast are also present.

The flavor is much more roasted than the aroma with a bit of coffee, a touch charred and woody like, and also offering semi sweet chocolate as it warms. Similar to the aroma, there are some earthy yeasts here that compliment some of the roasty/woody elements of the malt.

This Royal Stout is fuller in body with medium carbonation and a boozy, yet somewhat drying finish.

This is certainly a stout that errs on the roasty versus sweet side. I thoroughly enjoyed the earthy yeast and wood character that is not present in many of its counterparts. Overall, this is an impressive beer.

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Photo of Peter1977
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of connecticutpoet
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of allenson21
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of punkrkr27
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Jet black pour with a very dense and frothy, 1-finger, brown head. The aroma is bitter black coffee with lots of roastiness and subtle notes of dark fruit, candi sugar, and brown sugar . As the head slowly fades, strong high percentage cacao dark chocolate notes come out. There is a slight metallic, noble hope tinge in there too. It's all very soft and mellow though. The flavor is much more powerful than the aroma but still with all the complexity. The dominant flavor is strong, spicy, bitter dark chocolate. Lots of espresso also blends with caramelized sugars, raisin, dates, and molasses. Generous hop bittering and some notable alcohol finish it off. The body id full and oily with lots of tingly carbonation and alcohol warming.

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Photo of Proteus93
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One review off being #93! That reviewer is from Alberta, though, so all is forgiven :p ... shared by dkachur in return for Pisgah Valdez. A nice pairing, they were.

A: Black as night. A huge, creamy light khaki that sticks around for ages. Beautiful.

S: Soft toffee, Belgian yeast esters are there giving their unique aroma and a soft hint of dark fruits. A little bit of a smokiness and a light breadiness.

T: A bit of tartness, with a nice gentle sweetness like ripe plum. Yeastiness, and a hint of spicy alcohol in there. Chocolate hints, and a caramel.

M + D: Nice and creamy, though not as full a body as some I have had. A great drinker, hiding that huge alcohol incredibly well. Nice stuff, and I'd like to have it again.

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Photo of mikehblack
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle poured into a snifter. 2007 bottle

A- Totally black. Small, beige head verging on reddish-brown on the edges. No lacing but alcohol evident on the glass. Beautiful.

S- Chocolate up front along with dark cherries. Very slight bitterness along with some Belgian yeast character.

T- Smooth chocolate and some bitterness. Dark fruits appear with heavy roasted malt notes. Almost reminds me of a cherry cordial. Alcohol is very hidden for 13%.

M- Fairly light mouthfeel with little alcohol burn. Nice.

O- Very delicious beer which is just getting more complex as it warms. Amazed at the lack of alcohol presence. Seems like 4 years in the bottle has served it well.

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Photo of drahodo
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Bonis
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes: 9/3/2011. Somehow found this bottle at a local shop near Polaris. I have never heard of this one being around, so I was pumped to try it. Thanks to the owner for throwing it on the shelf.

A - Black, oh yea, real black. A huge 2 inch tower of dark mocha foam clings to the glass as it slowly fades. This one looks real nice, like a 13% RIS should.

S - This one doesn't smell like your normal RIS, at least not one I'm used to. Very fruity to begin, lots of tart cherries and plums, probably due to the yeast. You can tell it's Belgian. Roasted malt undertones with some dark chocolate mixed in. Smells a little bit like some nice cordial cherries. Not much hops, then again I think this bottle has been aging. Pretty nice overall.

T - Nicely mimics the nose, but without as much chocolate. Roasty to start with with a blast of tart cherry and other dark fruits. A touch of bitter chocolate lingers. This may be fresher than I suspected. The hops mesh nicely to balance the sweetness of the malts and the acidity of the fruits (guessing this comes from the yeast), while adding a slight dryness to the finish. What's amazing is I can't really trace alcohol until it goes down. This is one of the more complex stouts I've tasted. I'm very impressed with this.

M - A little bit sweet and syrupy, but smooth and creamy at the same time. This has a big feel in the mouth but with low to moderate carbonation. Warm in the tummy.

O - This was a stellar stout in my opinion. One of the top Belgian beers I have had, and that says a lot. This is definitely more than I was expecting from a Belgian RIS. If Black Albert were more readily available to me (and somewhat affordable), I could see myself frequently drinking it. Definitely want to have it again, and would recommend to snag one if you see it.

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Photo of Skunkyluvmuffin
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of brc
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle, lot A best April 2013. Poured into Cantillon flute.

Jet black thick looking liquid. Dense dark brown head with great staying power.

Smell roasted barley, woodchips, plums, hint of whiskey. Rich aromas, but inviting instead of overpowering.

Layers of taste to this one. Roasted barley up front, molasses, dark fruits, dark chocolate. Later there is the taste of cream and alcohol mixing in with the roasted malt flavor. Overall it's super rich, like the most intense dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel is super creamy, milkshake like. Slight alcohol burn in the finish.

Very drinkable, though the alcohol is somewhat noticeable.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A bit surprised to see this one show up at the local shop, and I quickly grabbed it.

Pours dark. Black, almost pitch, with very faint reddish edge. Pillow head of light brown/tan foam. Soft, fluffy, looks good and cozy.

Dark soft fruits fill the nose, with some burnt caramel and dark chocolate. Figs and dark toast. Quite yummy smelling.

Great taste, and I don't give a 5 just b/c of the style designation here, although it probably should warrant it. The dark fruit and malt are there, but the chocolate wanes a bit. Great job hiding the alcohol, this is a very easy drinking beer. Short bitterness gives the flavors a jolt of freshness. Nice beer

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Photo of urwithdave
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mrstevens for sharing. Poured into my ccb snifter.

A- pours black in color with some brown highlights when held up to light. 2 fingers worth of a mocha head. Decent retention and nice legs.

A- dark fruits, licorice, dark chocolate, a hint of hops, and some booze.

T- really nice! Dark chocolate is the first thing that I get. The dark fruits come into play with figs and raisins. Molasses and licorice are in the mix. There are times where I get a hint of vanilla. I really enjoy this brew as it starts to warm to room temperature. The alcohol is noticeable but isn't real hot.

M- thicker side of medium. Good level of carbonation. I get a slight burn on the way down.

D- a sipper that I would sip on anytime!

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Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to warriorsoul for this brew.

Reviewed: 15 Dec 2010

Batch: 0
Lot: D
Best Before: Sep 2015

Been about 2.5 years since I last had this brew. This bottle looks totally different than the other bottles I had.

Poured into a chalice a nice black color, nice carbonation, very nice thick/creamy two-finger tan head, which leaves a HUGE oil slick in the middle of the glass, also has some nice sticky lacing. The nose is malty, with lots of chocolate/toffee notes, slight licorice, caramel. The taste is very nice, malty, slightly sweet, lots of dark stuff, licorice, vanilla. Full body, again the ABV is hidden very well. Very Drinkable, really enjoying this brew, Thanks Tom.

Thanks goes out to deepsouth and Bitterbill for this brew.

Poured into a tulip a very nice dark black color, very nice carbonation, a very nice two-finger creamy tannish head, which leaves some very nice thick sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, slightly sour, with some toffee/chocolate/caramel. The taste is malty, slightly sweet/sour, nice touch of dark chocolate. Full-Medium body, the alcohol is hidden very well with a brew this high in ABV. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew, a nice little twist on the other RISs, but very nice for what it is. Highly recommended. Thanks Jason and Bill.

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Photo of UnDeadly
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, pint glass. Lord I need a snifter...

Appearance - Pours black, though slightly translucent. Of course, in glass you cannot see through it. Beautiful, mocha brown foam that is persistent through drinking. Heavy lacing.

Smell - This is a stout, right? I get tart vanilla strongly in the aroma. Also notes of milk chocolate. But still, that citric tartness is very interesting. My girlfriend says it smells like one of those chocolate orange candies...I don't think she is too far off.

Taste - Geez, where to begin. Complex notes of bourbon and chocolate come through the front, melting sweetly in the middle with a nice, bitter finish. I can detect some light notes of orange-citrus and vanilla. Also a slight, SLIGHT sour note, its great.

Mouth Feel - Creamy, smooth, and does not burn at all like a 13% should. You can feel it slightly, but considering its 13%, I'm impressed.

Drinkability - ABV would be the only thing keeping me from drinking this puppy all night. Smooth, balanced, delicious.

Overall, this was very much a wow beer. Unique flavors, but without deviating too much from the stated style. I think I'll snag a few more and see how they age...

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Photo of domtronzero
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle. Batch #14. Poured into a Duvel Green tulip glass.

Dark black, near opaque with a large, lingering tan head. A little lacing left on the sides of the glass.

Smells of chocolate, cherries, and a little alcohol. Faint roast similar to coffee. Estery with a little bit of fruity aromas. This batch isn't nearly as strong as the previous batches that I've had.

Dark chocolate malt flavors along with a nice fruity bouquet flavors up front. Dried stone fruits, raisins. Yeasty esters of pears and a little bit of apple. Hop bitterness is right on allowing a very pleasant finish. The dark malts accentuate this, but don't have the acrid, burnt flavor that typically associates itself with these types of beer.

Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. No astringency and the finish is dry, with a lingering aftertaste of dark malts.

Overall an excellent beer, but a little less spectacular than previous batches; however, this is still an excellent Belgian-influenced RIS. Very good drinkability for such a big beer.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to bgramer for the opportunity to try this one. 330ml bottle served in my DFH snifter. Poured an opaque black with a one inch, tight, tan colored head with lots of tiny ringlets embedded in the cap. As the fluid receded into a fairly consistent layer of foam it left behind thick bands of sticky lacing. Scents of dark fruit dominate the nose (plum, black cherries and currants). Taste reveals cocoa and a slightly sour character to the fruit expressed in the nose. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, without being viscous, with a kiss of effervescence. Excellent drinkability and exceptional balance; I can't believe this is a 13% abv.

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Photo of armock
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to champ103 for hooking this up in a trade and to ccrida for giving me an idea how old this bottle is since my bottle is from the same batch and I've had my bottle for at least six months.

A - Poured a black color with a brown head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of roasted malt that gives off chocolate scents theres also some dark fruit scents and mild alcohol

T - Follows the nose roasted malt with chocolate flavors some dark fruit and quit a bit of alcohol warmth

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - As far as Imperial Stouts and 13% beers are concerned this is pretty easy to drink it is a little warm but the taste is very good and makes up for that this is a beer that if you have the chance to get some you need to get it

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Black Albert from De Struise Brouwers
Beer rating: 92.6% out of 100 with 1,786 ratings
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