Black Sun Stout | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Black Sun StoutBlack Sun Stout

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
6.5% ABV, 50 IBUs - Black Sun has a nose of coffee, roasted malts and piney hops. This medium bodied stout has a broad depth of maltiness and a clean dry finish. December release.

Added by zerk on 12-16-2002

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Ratings: 841 |  Reviews: 464
Photo of kirok1999
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Black and inky with a slight crimson around the edges, No head and no lacing.

S- Citrus and floral hop notes, Not much malt sweetness present. Almost a sour grapefruit note.

T- The hops seem to dominate, citrus and floral. The grapefruit comes through more in the taste than the smell. Almost a papery, tar like taste, smoke, and leather. Very different than what I expected from 3F.

M- Dry and bitter, again like paper.

D- A little thin yet very drinkable. For the price there are much better stouts out there.

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Photo of cokes
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Ebony trimmed with scarlet flashes under a draping and groping mocha head.
Fragrant of baseball gloves, pothead ashtrays, and burnt grapefruit.
It begins with a thin, mild roast coffee essence, and unfolds into smoke with notions of tar and cigarettes. Hops hammer home pulpy ruby grapefruits and damp spruce fronds.
Thinnish but unduly quaffable, quenching, and basically gulpable,
if my wallet was fatter. As is, it's 2x the price of things like Shakespeare Stout, and only 75% as good.

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Photo of jackorain
3.78/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle oured into a pint glass

A-Black, foamy head, dark tan in color, great lacing

S-Floral hop, citrus hop, roasted malt, coffee in that order

T-Roasted malt, sweet caramel, coffee, floral hops, dry hop bitterness, very complex. . There is an odd sourness on the finish that is offputting.

M-Thick full body, medium carbonation, very creamy

D-I can finish this 22 oz. bottle but no more. Sourness ruins

Overall, the sourness stops this beer from being a top notch stout.

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Photo of UncleFlip
3.93/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Deep black in the glass, ruby edges when held to light. Beautiful cascadng head, but resulting tan head (at two fingers) a somewhat uneven...large bubbles break it up quite a bit.. It leaves a thick wet lace behind as it fades.

First thing that hits me in the smell is hops...more like hop pelet-type smell...but the roasted & chocolate malt smell creeps out nicely, and mingles with it- making it smell a lot like the homebrew shop where I used to work. ;)

Dry and roasty up front- with a nice spiciness underneath. Flavour gets thineer, but mroe rounded, as it goes on. Finishes with a nice dry spiciness. Not bad.

A bit more carbonated than I tend to like on a stout- and the consistency is a bit more watery than I really like.

Not as drinkable as some other stouts I've had...but still not bad at all...goes down easy, but still with some minor shortcomings. I wouldn't turn it dwn. ;)

Be well

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Photo of tavernjef
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Black with a slimming yet dense, lush tanned foam. Thin sheeting lace covers nearly every inch the head touches.

Sweet oily aroma of orange oils, pine tar, blackened stuff, and slight peppery spice.

Taste is round, big, and bold with a big jump of flavor on the buds with charred roasted malt tone mixed, almost balanced, but not quite, with a orangey pine oil. Slimming bite and bitterness. Semi tangy, mostly charred-like, peppy, lip smacking, smokey dryness really sticks it right on the palate and doesn't move from there. Finish is a mix of complex notions with blackened, charred, smokey, ashy things with a sliver of coffee and oily wood and orange.

Feel is sooo nice...quite big and everlasting in body. Richly set in lasting and well rounded big roasty/charred malts and tone with a semi plush tang underneath it. The hops really make for a unique experience as they add both an extra dimension of flavor and finish within the tone of charred malts. There's an oily side to it that stays just to the back and around the sides, letting the blackened stuff stay up front and heavy on the tongue. Complex as hell; I tell ya what...

An exceptional stout. A mind over matter...of drinking the hell out of the bomber type of brew that exhumes itself from the depths of obscured stout sessioning. What the hell I'm I talking about? Just drink it. You'll be impressed; and if you're not, more for me ...ya simpleton.

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Photo of nicefix
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured ink black with a big 2 finger dark brown head. Nice lace sticking to the glass and decent retention. Smells and tastes of chocolate, coffee, floral hops. Very smoth, suprisingly light and drinkable considering the appearance.

I really enjoyed this beer. My third offering from FFF and I've yet to be disappointed.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a dark black that fades to a port like brown in the thin strips around the edges. The collar of head was a copper and tan.

Smells of prunes, raisins, sweet corn syrup, smoke and a sweet and dry chocolate.

Tastes of green grapes with a bit of dry smoke that’s blended into a bitter grapefruit rind. Nice blend! I’m also getting hints of chocolate.

The mouth feel is light, but dense with a subtle carbonation.

The dryness of this one is really refreshing for the style.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.11/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The BIF 30 package from BA orbitalr0x included this 22 oz. bomber, and I am finally getting around to it. When poured into the pint glass, this looked as black as any beer I’ve ever seen, with a mocha colored foamy head. When holding up against strong back light, the body did not let a single photon pass through, so the color remained jet black. The aroma was a bit too timid for a beer that had such good looks. All I could detect was a distant coffee and burnt grain notes riding atop light alcohol fumes. The taste was very smoky with the coffee, toffee, and chocolate flavors being most prominent, followed by dense and citric hop bitterness. The finish was roasty and burnt, and aftertaste swung back into hoppy flavor again. The body was not overly thick to begin with, and the creaminess imparted by the carbonation made it feel even less so. It was a pretty easy task to get this bomber down.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Appears thin on the pour...Inky black. Nice, full bodied dark oatmeal colored head. Medium sized bubbles will leave only a sticky wake behind.

S: Roasted black patent, bakers chocolate, cafe au lait and some hops.

T: Begins torrid, bitter and dry. Quickly sweet malts, chocolate and creamy vanilla latte flavors take over. Slightly sour and cola like, they mingle for a short time before fading away. Citrusy bittering hops linger on the palate

M: Medium bodied with a fairly smooth carbonation.

D: Pretty good stout. Decently complex, rich and satisfying.

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Photo of westweasel
4.85/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber bottle that was stored in the fridge for about 6 months.

The beer poured out a mysterious, jet-black with about 1/4 inch of khaki-tan foam head. Lots of belgian lace all along the glass. The aroma is wonderful - coffee and vanilla dominate, some chocolate in there too.

The taste is excellent. Strong roasted malt flavors - definitely coffee, vanilla, carmel, and chocolate. This beer is an excellent balance of sweet and roasted malt flavors and notable hop bitterness - but the bitterness is not overpowering.
The mouthfeel is very full and creamy. It has a nice dry, slightly bitter finish.

The drinkability of this beer is very high. With the subdued bitterness, this won't
overpower the taste buds. You can easily enjoy a couple of pints, but the beer
is filling. If you were to pair this with food, I think that it would go well with a
chocolate raspberry dessert.

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Photo of Zorro
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in the glass this is a coal black colored beer with a wisp of a brown head. Impressively dark beer among the darkest stouts I have ever seen.

Smell is sharp strong black coffee with a fairly sharp hop aroma. The hops give an effect here that could be called the aroma of raw carrots. Additional scents of chocolate and fig.

Taste is bitter chocolate in the first sip. Lots of dark roasted malt flavor here and the flavor of chicory coffee. After your mouth acclimates to the bitterness level sweet malt flavors become tasteable. Good amount of chocolate flavor but the roasted bitter taste doesn't letup all that much this is a fairly bitter beer. Slight metallic after taste that I would blame the roasted malt for, but it is also a transient taste that doesn't hang around to annoy.

Mouthfeel is good.

Well this is no Dreadnaught but this is still a quite drinkable beer. This is a stout that will be best enjoyed by those who like a deeply roasted and bitter stout more than a sweet one. In flavor this resembles Flying Dog Gonzo quite a bit.

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Photo of oelergud
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Opaque black body. Creamy brown head with some small bubbles, low retention and some lace.
Dry coarse and sweet scent. Earthy and dense with roasted notes.
The taste is roasted cocoa bean with a smokey character. The aftertaste is dry hops lingering sweetly in a mellow and round sensation.
Not as dry as expected but an excellent example of the style.
Delicious and creamy. A great brew.


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Photo of HimerMan
3.28/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber, served in my Murphy's pint glass, many thanks to weare138 for the trade.

Poured a nice black, perfect stout quality, with a medium coffee 1 finger head that was fairly light at first. The head seemed to darken at warmer temperatures.

Smell was pretty intense with hops. The hops did not dim, from the start (which was cold) to the finish which was just a bit below room temperature (a little too warm) was hops with an incredible aftertaste.

After each sip the beer had a nice malty/chocolate flavor with a bit of coffee and porter-style feel. To me, the aftertaste was better than the overly used hops in the front of this brew.

Overall, this is perhaps an irish dry stout meant for the hop-lovers. I will drink these again, as I've acquired many of them. Give this a shot, but be cautious of the hops - very strong flavor, also as a note - it is not overpowering pine/floral like some other stouts.

Definitely worth a shot, perhaps a bit over-rated, in my opinion.


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Photo of cameraman
3.76/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very thick, black opaque color, darkest beer I have ever seen. A nice caramel colored head, that retains very well. At first, the scent has a quick burst of some hoppy floral aroma. Then the raosted chocolate and coffee scents begin to dominate the aroma. The taste has that strong raosted malt chocolate flavor, with the coffee being the most evident and stronger. There is a hop bitterness at the end of each taste and it lingers on the palate. The mouthfeel is a bit thinner than I expected, since it poured very thick inot the glass. It was more medium bodied and had a slick oily texture. Drinkability, could be so-so, it is not what one would expect from a stout, but it is still a very good beer.

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Photo of BeerRun13
4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours super black. Has a thick & fluffy tan head and superb lacing.
Nice aroma. Roasted barley, and as the label describes a smoky vannila. A little fruit shows as it warms.
a touch of caramel, roasty chocolate, slight cherries, and a sweet malty goodness behind it all. Maybe sweeter than many "Dry Stouts." A bit of a coffee like bitterness at the swallow and a touch of hops.
Medium to full bodied and creamy. Well balanced. A touch slick.
This is a very nice and drinkable stout. A whole lot of flavor. At 5.25% ABV you can't really hurt yourself to bad.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
4.92/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The lacing is thick and holds very well, the colour of the head is 2mm from the top of the beer and the the color is almost jet black, but has a very thin line of brown at the edges when held up to the light.

The smell has a lot of hops, the seemingly are mixed: cascade and some other hops. I get a good balance of dark roasted malts that are present and they're slightly molasess in flavor that compliments the body nicely with a mellow flavor.

The tart coffee malts are the main body that goes great with the hops that are very strong, but still compliments the body nicely with a mellow flavor.

The mouthfeel is slightly carbonated, but smooth and slightly watery.

I gave it a 5, nuff said.

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Photo of merlin48
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle purchased at The Keg, in Clarksville, Indiana. Pours into an English pint glass very dark and opaque. The body is topped by a two finger cocoa brown head. Impressive! Very good retention and gorgeous rings of sheet lacing decorate the glass.
Grassy hops immediately make their presence known to the nose, immediately leading into some standard stout notes of dark chocolate and roasted coffee.
Mouthfeel is quite creamy, with a solid medium body and subtle carbonation.
Taste is excellent. Very prominent hops for a stout, and they stand up very well to the roasted dark malts here. Dark fruits taste like fig newtons. A fresh, red cherry sweetness lingers throughout. The dark chocolate and burnt coffee notes are unmistakable, of course, but the fruitiness here is sublime. Roasted almonds emerge at room temperature, adding a smokiness. Very, very nice...A wonderful sipper. What a pleasant surprise! Goes down very easy. A very worthy little brother of the Dark Lord....

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Photo of ppoitras
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" dark brown head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head fades gradually down to an uneven layer of bubbles, with ample brown lacing. Aroma is fresh green hops with a blackstrap bitter malt tinge. Taste is upfront with the piney hops, quickly almost balanced by the hearty dark malts and their totally different bitterness. All flavors linger in the mouth long after the swallow. Mouthfeel and drinkability both superb, so much flavor and only 5.25abv? Excellent!

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Photo of SupaCelt
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This thing pours deep brown. Black. Decent head of chocolate colour. The nose holds so much citrus within a roasted malt envelope. This smells like alpha king made with roasted malt. Hops come through in typical luscious 3F fashion. The taste again holds citrus. It works amazingly well. There is a sort of smoky, roasted malt, dark, bitter flavour mixed with a juicy hop character. A bit of chocolate. Possibly coffee. The mouthfeel is medium to light. Drinkability is exceptional as usual. Three Floyds throwing their house spin on things to great effect.

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Photo of assurbanipaul
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours black as pitch with a thin khaki head that doesn't last long. Aroma is dry, black patent malt, some light acidity, some light hops.

Taste is more and lots of black patent malt and strong dark coffee. Very unsweet and bitter with a nice hoppiness in the end. A slight lactic sweetness develops after a while after it has time to warm a little.

Mouthfeel is moderate, borderline thin. I was expecting something over the top but this is pleasantly mild. Extremely drinkable, but probably a bit too sweet for the Irish Dry style. I could easily session this.

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Photo of xgrigorix
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Twentytwo ounce brown bottle, no dates.

Darkest black, opaque. Topped by a thin beige coloured head. Retains nicely & leaves some patchy lace behind.

Coffee, vanilla, along with some sublte fruit. Citrusy hops play in the background.

Nice bit of roasty coffee type malt flavours. Some muted fruit, with undertones of vanilla. Citrusy hops start off subdued, and become more prominent as it warms, becoming almost overbearing by the end. Medium bodied, moderate carbonation. Dry, but definitely American. Nice.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Yep, it's dry all right. Upon the first few sips, I began caughing up suit. But that does not mean that it's bad. In fact, it's an amazing Dry Stout. The look is an expected nearly-opaques burned amber brown with a light and airy foamstand, slightly tan in nature. Smells strongly roasted (coffee-like) without any burned or ashy aromas. Sweetness is light and a fermentation yeastiness persists in the nose. Tastes boldly of roasted grains, cocoa, and campfire-like. Sweetness really takes a back seat to the rosted grains and offers only a balance to the roastedness. Hop detection is nil, relying majorily on the roasted grain for bittering. Lightened in body for an easy drinking beer. Could handle a bit more creaminess. The finish is very dry and powdery (charcoal-ish). Quite clean despite the roasted grain bitterness. A huge success for FFF.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This fella came out almost pitch black in color with a very modest head. The foam that was there though was nicely tanned and left a ring of love around the top of the liquid.

Smell – The roasted malt aroma is awesome! It’s a pure, classic bouquet balanced with some drying hop notes and not overly sugared like most others. It also wants to be an espresso fragrance but just does teeter on the opposite border.

Taste – The roasty malts step back a hair at the taste and the brown sugar comes up a bit to even things out. They show up throughout the drink but don’t bring too much attention to themselves. The hoppy notes are small but noticeable.

Mouthfeel – This is shy of medium-bodied but bigger than light. It’s perfectly suited with just enough bitterness to keep the salivary glands happy but not so much that it puckers the mouth. I love the balance of this IDS. It’s dry to just the right degree.

Drinkability – This is an incredibly smooth, drinkable stout and with the low ABV lends itself to a nice session or two.

Comments – I’d like to throw out a big BA mugs up to BeerGuy for bringing this bomber out to Seattle.

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Photo of AaronHomoya
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass this beer is very dark, perhaps the blackest beer I've seen, and it has a nice think brownish-tan head. With a somewhat vigorous pour I got plenty of head and it remained nicely.

As with all Three Floyds beers I've had the aroma was outstanding. It was roasty and malty as you'd expect, but with plenty of hops and a bit of alcohol which surprised me given the relatively low strength of the brew.

The taste is sweet with some vanilla or fruity hints quickly developing followed by roasted malt and coffee. This transitions into a very hoppy finish that is nice and dry but a bit too harshly bitter in my opinion.

The mouthfeel is smooth but a bit thin, although the second pour seemed to be thicker.

Overall this is a very good stout, maybe a bit too flavored of hops (I can't believe I just wrote that), but I'd definitely drink it again.

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Photo of futureman69
4.04/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The name of this stout is "Black Sun", but they should have called it "Black Hole Stout", as it is the only beer I know that has an event horizon...

No kidding; I split a bottle of this with my brother at a recent family dinner...after a few minutes, we observed various objects in the room being sucked into this stout's dense, blacker-than-black gravitational field. We lost a few good recliners that day, but - holy-Karl Schwarzschild's ghost - what a stout this is!!

Experiencing this beer is like drinking the finest brewed cup of coffee, together with ultra-rich, nutty chocolate, served up chilled and creamy (and agree-fully bittery) smooth. All in all, a truly magnificent and mysteriously dark experience.

In summary: there are some pretender stouts on the market, but don't be fooled. Three Floyds brews this stuff with the intent of converting black sun star mass into energy...and result is a beer so dense, well, you know where I'm going with this...

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Black Sun Stout from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.05 out of 5 based on 841 ratings.
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