Black Albert | De Struise Brouwers

Black AlbertBlack Albert
BA SCORE
4.26/5
1,786 Ratings
Black AlbertBlack Albert
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers
Belgium
struise.com

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#735
Reviews:
858
Ratings:
1,786
pDev:
9.15%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
338
Gots:
401
Trade:
27
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,786 |  Reviews: 858
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you for sending Absumaster the RIS original formula version. Absolutely black, with a bit of creamy head, it looks rich and thick. Aroma of maltiness and a little coffee roast. The flavour is chocolate,roast, malt, a little coffee, mid-sip bitterness. The real feature of this beer is its balance. Its not too sweet, not too chocolate. Just eminently drinkable. A fine RIS.

 379 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of jaydoc
4.19/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque black color with a 2 inch dark khaki head that fades to a thin cap. Nice thick rings and dots of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smells of dark roasted malt, dark fruits (raisins/plums), and bittersweet cocoa powder. Taste is surprisingly somewhat sour. Dark roasted malts, cocoa powder, and dark fruits coming through on the finish. There is a slight soy sauce flavor that comes out as the beer warms. Very mild roast/cocoa bitterness on the palate quickly fades after each sip. Good level of carbonation with a silky and smooth mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good RIS from Struise but the sour flavors I get from this one threw me off.

 659 characters

Photo of GRG1313
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of spycow
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Knapp85
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a bottle of this with my Grandfather who's name happens to be Albert. I felt that it was a fitting situation. This brew poured out as a deep thick looking black color. The head was pretty big at first but settled pretty quickly. There was a pretty good lacing along the glass and some oily brown tinge on there too. The smell of the beer is heavily roasted and had a pretty strong booze aroma too. The taste of the beer is rich with dark chocolate and roasted malts. The other flavors are a little sweetness that fades into a burnt bitterness in the end. The mouthfeel has a good thickness to it that coats the mouth nicely. Overall this brew is impressive. I enjoyed it quite a bit.

 689 characters

Photo of nmann08
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of t0rin0
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of metter98
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin dark tan head that left some lacing on the surface and a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are aromas of dark fruits in the nose—plums and prunes seem to stand out in particular. The smell intensifies as the beer warms up.
T: Like the smell, the taste is dominated by strong flavors of dark fruits. It's a little one dimension, but seems like you are having a Belgian Strong Dark Ale that's on steroids.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and rather smooth on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. No warming sensations from the alcohol are perceptible.
O: The label calls this beer a "Belgian Royal Stout" and this is something I definitely agree with because it seems like an imperial version of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. Judging this beer on its own merits and apart from any of the common styles, I found this beer to be remarkably easy to drink considering its strength because the alcohol is exceptionally well hidden. This is a pleasant beer to sip.

Note: June 2007 Vintage (BA No. 14)

 1,094 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.48/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really great to see this very popular Stout available across the river at Kegs Liquors. Let's see what all the hype's about.

Certainly Russian Imperial Stout-like to the eye. An opaque dark brown color gives the resemblence of chocolate milk, espresso, and well...Stout. A dense, shallow head falls on the beer and holds quite firm while offering a moderate amount of lacing.

The roasted and toasted grains give a French Roasted character immediately to the nose. Grassy and earthy hops give a sharp, fresh aroma that kinda dominates the nose. There might be some fruitiness and spiciness beyond that but difficult to note past the hops. A light phenolic-spice note is the only real influence from Belgian Ales--tamer than expected, yet nicely executed.

Malt sweetness governs the foreground of flavors with a caramelly, Milk-Stout taste that makes the beer very inviting. Hops soon provide a very sharp grassy flavor that is perhaps too bold at times. Some berry tartness along with grapes, apples, and plumbs come through a bit, but man those hops make it difficult to pull out the subtle Belgian characteristics. And the spicy Belgian yeast character balances the beer well.

Quite full, round, and rich textures. The hop bitterness does a good job off setting the sweetness. The light acidic, berry apple tartness, and alcohol reduces the weight of the beer into a surprisingly easy to drink beer. However, again hops give a sharp bite on the throat that edges on astringency.

The beer is caught somewhere between a hoppy American Stout, A Sweet Stout, and a Belgian Double. Though the beer shows slight hints of a Belgian yeast, I expected more Belgian character througout. Maybe the intense hops threw it off.

 1,719 characters

Photo of biboergosum
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very, very dark opaque brown, with chunks of sediment suspended throughout. The head is a light tan colour, and substantial, leaving a thick wallpaper of lace as it slowly recedes. It smells of fermenting black fruit - prunes, cherries, raisins - molasses, and alcohol warming. The taste is bitter, even sour at first, burnt malt, giving off essences of coffee, chocolate, and port wine. No hops are really evident, the sourness kind of masks that part of my tongue. The carbonation is quite mild, and the sour fruit mellows significantly as it warms, and the finish is actually quite clean, a little boozy malt lingering. The alcohol is very well managed, no direct heat, just that nice stewed fruitiness effect. This goes very well with some dark chocolate, but given the wine-like strength, one is good.

 824 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black body with khaki foam. A deep chestnut brown on the pour, with dense foam and spotty bits of lace. Thin cap of foam settles to a small head.

Aroma of chocolate covered cherry, cocoa, dried black cherry, and plum. Some chocolate syrup character too.

Rich chocolate flavor, cocoa powder and earthy bittersweet chocolate. Light char and dried cherry, earthy dry root or tobacco leaf in the aftertaste. Mild bitterness, but no hop character.

Full bodied, lactic/milky mouthfeel. Not as heavy or alcoholic as you might expect for 13%. Fairly light feeling for the style. One bottle would be plenty.

Thanks to Jay23 for sharing the spoils of his trade with Hoppymeal...

 675 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a nearly opaque dark brown color with ruby highlights; the tan head never quite reaches the anticipated Belgian standards and descends rather quickly, leaving some dots and dashes of lace

Smell: Coffee, dark chocolate, charcoal, tobacco and dark fruit

Taste: Starts with a blend of dark fruit (figs and prunes) and coffee, with a bit of dark chocolate thrown in for good measure; by mid-palate, the fruity hops start to assert themselves but, after the swallow, they seem an afterthought, taking a back stage to the roasty charcoal malt flavors; lots of tobacco on the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate to high carbonation; a bit thinner than I expected, but that is the Belgian character

Drinkability: With all the hype around this beer, I was truly expecting something different; I would say that this is still quite a good beer, though it should not be judged head to head against the best US-brewed Russian Imperial Stouts - it has some subtle, Belgian elements that add a nice twist

 1,027 characters

Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 0 poured into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours black as midnight with a hint of tan head that goes away almost immediately.

Smell: Quite sweet and slightly roasty. There is some dark chocolate, overly ripe dark fruit, and perhaps a hint of soy sauce here. May be picking up what reminds me of port as well.

Taste: Amazingly smooth and complex. I'm picking up some roast and dark fruit. The soy sauce from the smell doesn't really show up. There is a roasty bitterness in the finish as well.

Mouthfeel: Thick with hardly any carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a very good beer. Quite complex. I would have another, but I don't know how often I'll search it out due to the price and the number of great stouts that are out there.

 752 characters

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of zeff80
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a huge deep brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of deep dry black chocolate with an intense hoppy dry finish. Taste is also a very nice mix between some deep dry chocolate malt with some dry hops and a dry roasted malt and coffee finish. Full body with great carbonation and no alcohol was apparent. Very complex and not totally American in it approach to the style. A more creamy body would render this even better in my opinion.

 500 characters

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Black Albert from De Struise Brouwers
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 1,786 ratings
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