Sensory Series V.2 - Small Black | Stillwater Artisanal Ales

BA SCORE
82
good
127 Ratings
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Sensory Series V.2 - Small BlackSensory Series V.2 - Small Black
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States
stillwater-artisanal.com

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dbrauneis on 07-23-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
127
Reviews:
37
Avg:
3.59
pDev:
10.31%
 
 
Wants:
0
Gots:
4
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 127 |  Reviews: 37
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.31/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Nose light cocoa, yeast, & coffee, malt, faint ash, cola, & anise. Taste slightly sweet roast, faint sourness, chocolate, spicy, tobacco, licorice, faint oak, medium body. A little bit of a conflict between the two styles (Schwarzbier & Saison) which makes the beer sloppy.

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Photo of StoutAtTheDevil
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Brutaltruth
3.54/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed form the 12 oz bottle in a snifter. This interesting saison pours a dark black with brown cola highlights and a nice head of off white tan tinged foam that settles to a thick ring, light thin pool, and subtle lacing. Nose of subtle herbal hops, yeasty goodness, dark berries, and subtle cocoa and brown sugars. Flavors follow the nose with dark fruits of cherries and subtle sweet brown sugars married with a nice saison yeast profile on a blanket that layers itself front to back with tart cherries and light burnt sugars on the rear of the taste. Subtle hop notes makes their presence known on the rear as well but are muted by the tartness and yeast strain. Decent mouth feel, light carbonated with a coating medium mouth feel and a tart finish. Nice for the style. Overall a nice saison.

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Photo of JackRWatkins
3.42/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: prominent and soapy 2 finger head, red and brownish black, much like soy sauce in the light
S: subtle hints of chocolate and roasted malt, married with the zip and zest of a typical saison, creates a subtle cherry nose, also tiny suggest of traditional citrus flavored; lemon, pleasant
T: the fullness and deepness of a coffee stout is apparent right away, (sans the bitterness of course, more subtle cherry notes created by the deepness of the malt and zippy tartness of the yeast, tartness is magnified by the roasted malt, impressively enough the roast is not overbearing
M: dry, though not memorably so
O: pleasant, well balanced, not overly assertive in any specific way, would be a safe bet if your not much of a risk taker and you're looking to branch out

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.56/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours very dark walnut (SRM 25) with ruby highlights. A frothy chestnut head reaches three fingers, lingers, and then drops to a quarter of an inch sustained. Patchy lace coats the Cisco Fisheye pint glass.

The aroma contains burnt sugar and soap with a hint of chocolate.

The flavor is sweet and modestly spicy with toffee and bread dough in a short, mild finish.

A light-to-medium body accentuates a soft texture without any alcohol present. Carbonation is light.’\

This is an easy-drinking, but uninteresting saison. It is refreshing at the end of a cool, sunny summer day.

 582 characters

Photo of BeerOps
3.07/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of AlvinLin
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of akademiklee
2.86/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not my flavor pallet but I'm new to the saison world and never had a black.

75 characters

Photo of Norvelljeff
3.84/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Look is dark black with a red hues and a full white/tan head.
Smell is kind of hoppy? Defiantly some earthiness in there.
Taste is light and very earthy with noticeable hops. Nothing outstanding here.
Feel is a little slippery.
Overall it taste very good but I don't think i would pick it up again if I had the chance.

 321 characters

Photo of Beestin
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Zach122
3.48/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of let8it8grow
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%

Photo of jzlyo
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of RavenForBeer
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of fossage78
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of chrismattlin
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of carlos_fleico
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

355ml bottle poured into a wide-mouth snifter.

A: Pours a black, dark color, similar to a porter, but thinner, not nearly as viscous. About three fingers of an off-white head with low retention - dissipates quickly, leaving some lacing behind. Just by looking at it you can tell it isn't a stout or porter, because of the firmness of its head. (3.75)

S: Smell is very pleasant. Some roasted malts (less than you would expect for a beer this color), wheat cereal grains, a very refreshing and delicate tart citrus-like aroma, hints of cocoa. Hints of earthy hops, herbal and yeasty. (4.75)

T: Follows the nose on many aspects. Roasted malts right upfront, but not nearly as aggressive as it is in stouts or porters. The saison funkiness (a little stronger than usual) kicks in right after, with a spicy, peppery touch. The hints of cocoa are definitely noticeable in the taste as well. (3.75)

M: Light-bodied, high carbonation, dark sweet bread aftertaste. Very crisp and fizzy. (4)

O: Very interesting beer. Its "saisoness" comes pretty much all from its tartness, because the citrusy hints are very subtle, pretty much limited to the aroma paired with some tartness. I'm glad I tried this brew. (3.75)

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Photo of mscudder
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of smlmeyer
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of YalovaIA
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of jlindros
2.75/5  rDev -23.4%

Bottled 7/01/13, more than a year old, not surehow it got so old, between store and my cellar I guess.

Pours a smaller fizzy darker head that disappears pretty quickly, mild lacing, dark pretty much pitch black beer. 3.75

Nose some dark malts, a little cocoa and roast like but not much, black malt like, into saison with some grainy wheat and toasty malts, even a touch of pilsner like, with nice saison yeast, peppery phenols and touches of chemical phenols, spices and herbs, esters, faint herbal earthy hops. 3.5

Taste brings more phenols, all over phenols, chemical almost paint thinner like phenols but not quite that chemically, hot tingly acidic phenols, and peppery spices with the phenols. Mild saison yeast herbal notes and spices, into herbal spicy hops as well, little vegetal and oily feel too, almost rancid oil. Flashes of darker malts that sour a bit. Finish is spicy hop note, herbal vegetal like, more chemical phenols lingering too. Probably should have been enjoyed a year ago. I'll have to try it again I think. 2.5

Mouth is a bit chemical burny, sticky almost slimy, over carbonated as well, and touch oily like. 3

Overall either not very good beer, or way too old, probably both though seeing the fairly high rdev and lower ravg. So need to try again if I can, but not very good. 3

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Photo of Pleasure
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of pheelingIt
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of Jadjunk
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

No label information. Small Black is brewed in the style of a black saison. Available in 12 oz. bottles.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a tulip glass. Served above 53º Fahrenheit.

Small Black pours a frothy fizzed milk chocolate head over a deep dark brown body with slight crimson highlights. Retention is good, lacing is moderate and stringy. The aroma is similar to a standard Saison, with a pale malt and caramel body, hints of banana and clove amongst a spicy, effervescent yeast nose. Expect a hint of chocolate and some faint roast to mark this different from standard Saisons. The flavors of this beer are quite different, with a significant funky sourness joined by the fruitiness and spice of the yeast profile cruising over an unsweetened cocoa powder and soft cold roast body for a very unique blending of flavors that merge surprisingly well. Texture is silky, slick and moderately acidic with a soft carbonation for a delicate, mildly crisp mouthfeel. Body is medium for the style, medium overall. The balance is slightly acidic and tart over sweet. Alcohol presence is low. I'm not certain if the high acidity and funk in the flavor is intended or not, as earlier reviews do not seem to call to this, it is possible that some batch infection has set in with a few select bottles, mine included. Overall, this was a very interesting and enjoyable beer to try. I recommend it to anybody with a deep appreciation for the Saison style looking to expand into hybrid styles. Small Black should not disappoint.

Stillwater Artisanal Ales'
Sensory Series V.2 - Small Black
3.75/5.00

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Sensory Series V.2 - Small Black from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
3.59 out of 5 based on 127 ratings.
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