Ebony And Oak | The Bruery

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Ebony And OakEbony And Oak

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by EgadBananas on 07-28-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 144
Photo of JoshBrews
4.75/5  rDev +45.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this as a Preservation Member...was told about the risk of infection in this batch, so I chilled and opened almost immediately upon receiving. This was quite possibly one of the best Bruery beers I have ever had...such a depth of flavor (and no infection). Wish they would revisit it again...

Opened this back in 2013, just never got around to the review!

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Photo of Roguer
3.75/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful, solid black brew with a nice, fairly thick tan head, with excellent retention.

Aroma is sharply sour, with big oak notes, dark fruit, and hinting at a wild flavor. Bourbon notes are very soft and subdued, as is any roastiness.

Flavor certainly has some significant sourness up front, but far more approachable than the aroma would have led you to guess. This fruity tartness is followed immediately by thick chocolatey waves of roasted barley, and finished off by a growing boozy sweetness from the bourbon. Oak and vanilla make appearances throughout.

There's a decent, tart sting up front, followed by a very smooth body. A little thin for a stout, even a BBA stout. A little alcohol heat on the back-end.

This is a low-ABV BBA stout with very nice sharply sour notes, but well, well below sour/wild ale/stout thresholds (e.g. Tart of Darkness). There's also no heat or metallic infection notes; it's just enough tartness to separate it from a regular BBA stout.

Unfortunately, the beer loses a few points on the overall flavor and feel; while it's very interesting, I want more STOUT in my stout!

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Photo of SHODriver
3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: poured into a nonic pint to a deep black with a finger of dense tan head that is slow to fade courtesy of the nucleation points on the bottom of the glass. Some lacing but not a lot.
S: Smells faintly sour with notes of chocolate, coffee and wood
T: tartness on the front that yields to some chocolate notes, a whisper of woodyness, some coffee, and a bit more sourness. Swallow brings some vanilla, a bit more tartness and more coffee and chocolate.
M: somewhat light in the mouth but still pretty moderate. carbonation is a little prickly but not overly so. Finish is slightly drying but not a lot.
O: Overall, it isn't what they intended but it isn't terrible. The tartness wasn't overpowering and I didn't end up sacrificing to the sink when I removed the cap. It has some good stout flavors with just a bit of tartness to ruin the day. It didn't lean too heavy toward the sour overpowering everything else and it also didn't have enough gusto with the stout to keep the tartness at bay so I really don't know what to make of it. I've drank worse and I'd like to see how this would have tasted if things would have gone right.

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Photo of scottfrie
2.74/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

750ml bottle into snifter.

A: Pours a deep dark brown, near black, with a huge fluffy dark brown head that slowly faded into a thin bubbly film that left wispy patches of lace.
S: Sweet notes of chocolate syrup, molasses, and fresh bourbon dominate alongside vanilla and hints of caramel and sour cherry infection.
T: Infection dominates with flavors of sour cherry pits, but sweet chocolate, vanilla, bourbon and brown sugar, caramel, and molasses poke through. The finish is tart and lightly acidic, and the aftertaste is sweet and gritty with barrel tannins.
M: Fluffy ample carbonation, medium body, airy and smooth mouthfeel. Infection tartness isn't out of control but it is tart and sour.
O: Tastes like this would have been a great beer had the infection not set in. Shame, I didn't even finish a glass. Most of the bottle went into the slow cooker with a pork shoulder though. Let's see how it turns out.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.49/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Part of a flight at the tasting room. Pours a dark brown with some light around the edges and a small cream colored head. Aroma of oak, light bourbon, cola, chocolate malts. Flavor follows this aroma almost perfectly, with some light chocolate notes in between brief bourbon flavor and some definite woody oak and coca cola. Very light bodied for a barrel aged beer, but this took up just the right amount of barrel to keep it from being an astringent booze brew. Overall I thought this was an interesting take on a BA beer with its light body. Not bad.

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Photo of pants678
2.75/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Black with a very light beige head.

Cocoa powder and vanilla, particularly strong scent. This is what kept me going with this one.

Smoke might be what I confused for oak. Typical stout material, I'm not picking out anything definitive. There's nothing rich about this beer, year or malt. There's no real hop presence. Complexity's nil. Considering the source, this is an awfully tame offering.

Flat-ish like a dry irish stout.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
1.95/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

I had an infected bottle.
Started with a massive gush that wouldn't subside.

The nose had an obvious tartness with some roast and oak. The palate had an obvious tartness from being infected with some roast and chocolate notes. The infection seemed to completely mask the barrel presence - there was a very slight oak flavour but it was minimal with no bourbon or vanilla. This could have been a good beer if not infected.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.67/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at The Bruery, on to the beer:

Black colored and topped with a little head on the pour. Decent head retention and a little bit of lace hanging around. The aroma shows that there was some wood which come in contact with the beer beforehand. It smells of whiskey, a little fudge, and some booze. The whiskey aspect carries much of the aroma's score.

Ebony and Oak tastes more of oak than ebony. Oak soaked in whiskey and oxidation are the highlighted flavors of the beer. Red grapes, vague toasted notes, a kiss of cocoa, and even acidic. It claims to be a stout, however its character is more Belgian. It's medium bodied and the alcohol is hidden well.

Decent BAB overall, though disappointing by The Bruery's astronomical standard. Worth a taste if you fancy your beer to be aged in wood.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.29/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Served on-draught into a Verdugo branded stem-tulip at Verdugo's anniversary event some months ago. Reviewed from notes. Due to the nature of the event (standing room only, crowded) I couldn't go into as much depth as I would normally have liked to. Please forgive the truncated review below.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a two finger head of tan colour. Nice creaminess and frothiness. Good (~6 minute) head retention. Nice even lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is an opaque solid black. No yeast particles are visible. Looks good overall.

Sm: Messy bourbon notes. Cream. Chocolate malt. Dark malts. I'm not finding any roasted character, which is disappointing. Rich. Some coffee. A pleasant aroma of mild strength.

No yeast, hop character, or alcohol is detectable.

T: The bourbon notes are great, complementing the rest of the flavour profile very well; great. Dark malts and chocolate malts fill out the body. No booziness is noticeable, luckily. I do get some light roasted character, thankfully. I always get disapoointed when drinking a stout without any roast at all. Well balanced, if lacking true richness and evocative quality. Fairly complex. It sags in the second act, losing flavour and complexity. Nicely constructed, but it leaves something to be desired. Could really use more subtlety, as well as some more careful balancing. I like it, but the base beer seems weak and lacking in comparison to the superior bourbon notes.

Mf: Lightly creamy. Smooth and wet. Nicely carbonated. Nice thickness and body. Has pretty decent presence on the palate. Suits the flavour profile well.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but fairly forgettable for a bourbon stout. Hides its ABV decently. I wouldn't get it again. A pretty pedestrian offering from The Bruery. I wouldn't recommend it to friends. Disappointing.

Low B-

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Photo of jlindros
3.57/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Split with rudzud.

Light fizzy head, no real lacing and head disappears very quickly, no gushing though, except after the poor rises up a bit in the bottle. Pretty much pitch black.

Nose buttery oak, lots of coffee grinds and light roast, black malt char, little caramel and toffee like, hint of bourbon, very light sour cherry infection but not as bad as I thought.

Taste starts with the nice dark malt, hint roast, caramel, dark choc, and pure coffee grinds, light char and powdered cocoa. There is a vanilla barrel too with light bourbon, quite buttery barrel. Mild infection, hint sour cherry like, but not crazy. Finish little sticky and slimy like, mild bitterness and more buttery barrel, little sour cherry and chocolate powdered coffee grinds.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, mild creamy and almost slimy, decent carb almost over carbed, hint of booze.

Overall it is infected but not so bad.

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Photo of rudzud
3.44/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Split with JLindros.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a deep dark brown black hue with s thin halo that left nice side lacing and a thin blanket.

S - Aromas of well, infection. Chocolate and cherries here, light metallic notes, basically it.

T - Taste is flashes of something that could have been epic and then boom infection. Deep chocolate notes, light bourbon, faint roast, then pow cherries. It's really not bad, consisting it's infected. I've had worse infected beers.

M - Mouthfeel is super sharp, to be expected.

O - Overall this is not a bad beer, all things considered. Don't mind what this is, Dodd not gush either.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.44/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

From 08/23/13 notes. Poured from a 750ml bottle into my Bruery tulip. Got this in the RS this year and also a refund due to the infection, so free beers. Bottle was not a gusher at all.

a - Pours a deep brown, almost black color, with one and a half fingers of fluffy light tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Head lasts for several minutes and a lot of lacing. Looks great.

s- Smells of coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate, dark fruits, caramel malts, light bourbon,and light vanilla. No infection is noticable in the nose at all. Loads of chocolate and roasted malts which are really nice, though the bourbon is very very light in the nose.

t - Tastes very light, of light coffee, roasted malts, milk chocolate, bread, toasted malts, light bourbon, and light dark fruits. Again, not really sour at all, though maybe the dark fruits coming through are leading to more infection. Either way the taste is a big step down from the nose, just very light overall, and not a lot of taste to it.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation. Body is very thin for an 8% ABV stout and a tiny bit watery.

o - Overall I think I got a bottle with very little to no infection, but didn't love it. It looks great and smells great, but the taste was very light and non-existent; I'm guessing this has to do witht he infection starting to set in. Same with the body, a bit too thin for a stout. Not much bourbon to it, but for a free beer, decent to try. Will probably trade my other bottle to a ticker.

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Photo of ThickNStout
3.64/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle acquired through the Reserve Society. Bottled 5/28/13. Served in a Bruery snifter.

Pours dark brown with two and a half fingers of fluffy pale tan head. The head fades, leaving copius lace.

Smells of bourbon, chocolate and a little raspberry.

An interesting blend of mild bourbon, burnt chocolate and a tart, sour raspberry. Off but strangely appealing. Cool mixture of barrel character, bitter roast dark chocolate and a funky, yeasty tartness.

Medium body made seemingly lighter by a hefty carbonation. Tart and roasty finish.

I can definately understand that this is infected. It really is enjoyable in it's own right though. It's like a Tart of Darkness at only twenty percent. Despite the need to adapt my expectations for this beer, I don't regret buying multiples.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.02/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Heard it's infected, still looking forward to trying it. Once popping the cap. the beer does gush a bit. Beware opening around electronics, such as a computer. Pours black with a medium sized tan head that goes down quickly. Scent is...yep, this beer is infected. I immediately get some lacto notes and tart aromas. There is also quite a bit of cocoa and powdered chocolate. Some wood-like notes with a hint of vanilla. Some raspberries as well, which is weird. It smells like a chocolate covered raspberry beer. Taste is toasty chocolate at first, but immediately turns to tart infection. However, I feel that it really works for this beer. There are subtle bourbon characteristics, but the tartness makes them hard to find. Tart raspberries and oaky vanilla with a ton of chocolate. This beer is damn tasty. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and suits this beer well. Drinkability is very high. Overall, it sucks that The Bruery did not achieve what they wanted to with this beer. However, I'm really digging it. It's like Tart of Darkness with much more chocolate and bourbon notes. Higher ABV, less sour, but just as enjoyable. I can honestly say I like the way this beer turned out.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to drewone for sharing this one at Wowcoolman's tasting.

Pours a clear dark crimson-brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, and slight sour aromas. Taste is much the same with sour bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is obviously infected but not all that bad to drink as is.

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Photo of jeff1973
2.78/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pour from a 750ml bottle into a Maudite tulip.

A - Dark brown/ opaque color. Beige head with decent lacing.

S - Raw wort, slight charcoal, a little vanilla.

T - Raw wort taste, a little cocoa and brown sugar, vanilla, char. Finishes a little dry and wanting so much more.

M - A little watery for what I was expecting. Wished it was a lot more fuller and richer.

O - Very disappointed. Expected a light version of Black Tuesday, but got almost no bourbon and much too light body for what I expected or enjoy in this style.

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Photo of EgadBananas
3.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours nearly black, opaque, dark tan head. Aroma was nice bourbon and chocolate with roast and dark fruits. Pretty nice. Taste disappoints. Metallic, astringent brown sugar, slight booze, no wood or oak. The feel is light, and its unfortunately thin, especially for 8%. Drinks ok, but not too great in the end. This had so much potntial, but execution was poor...

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Ebony And Oak from The Bruery
3.26 out of 5 based on 144 ratings.
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