Origin of Darkness - Moon Dog
Collective Arts Brewing

Origin of Darkness - Moon DogOrigin of Darkness - Moon Dog
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Stout - American Imperial
3.8 | pDev: 19.47%
Collective Arts Brewing
Ontario, Canada
Retired (no longer brewed)
Origin of Darkness - Moon DogOrigin of Darkness - Moon Dog
Notes: Collaboration with Moon Dog Brewing


Inspired by Tasmanian black truffles and their culinary use in Australia, we collaborated with our friends at Moon Dog Brewing in Melbourne. We combined the flavours of dark chocolate, bourbon, and vanilla and added black truffles to age in the barrels. The combination is a velvety mix of earthiness, chocolate and vanilla deliciousness.


Reviews: 14 | Ratings: 22 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of micada
micada from New York

3.61/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is probably a polarizing beer. I was not a huge fan drinking it, though it is all it claims to be. It is aggressive, and not for the faint of palate. My opinion changed immensely when we used it in some ground beef for burgers. We only used a little, but the black truffles really shined through, and the bourbon stout base added a super fullness to the meat.

So, buy it if you see it. You’ll likely either love it or hate it as a drinking beverage. Either way, try it on some meat as a marinade of sorts. I think you’ll be a fan irrespective of your beverage opinion.

Apr 15, 2019
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Sammy from Canada

2.57/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Smell is fungi infection and then some leather cleaner sprayed over. Dry pieces in there. Not even a good home brew. I can't get through this one at all.

Apr 03, 2019
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REVZEB from Illinois

3.44/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Woah! This is the most mushroom smell beer I have ever had. Wasn't ready when opening the bottle, and it made me gag a little. No balance, maybe a little caramel and bourbon, but that's all I can get beyond the fog of potent truffle. Taste was better, with some brownie batter booziness to balance a bit with the truffle, some vanilla, caramel, herbal tea and a hint of wood from the barrel. Feel is fudgy, smooth, but wanted more barrel character.

Mar 31, 2019
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leaddog from Canada

4.41/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - Pours a jet cola black with three fingers of mocha tan head.

Smell - cocoa, vanilla, oak, bourbon, earthy and leafy hops, roasted malts,earthy aromas, and earthy yeast.

Taste - cocoa, vanilla, oak, and bourbon upfront. The earthy and leafy hops follow suit then quickly goes into the earthy aromas (tastes like eating fresh cut mushrooms). The roasted malts and earthy yeast round out the brew.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. Finishes smooth and creamy with the oak, vanilla, and earthiness (fresh mushrooms) lingering.

Overall - Another stellar barrel aged stout that incorporates a very pleasant earthy aroma and taste to it. Collective Arts has done this series of brews very well. Kudos!

Mar 09, 2019
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BeerNinja007 from New Hampshire

2.16/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

16.9oz bottle for $10.99 at Prost! in North Hampton, NH. Poured cold into a tulip.

Thick black brew with just a bit of carbonation that dissipates to a small ring around the glass. The smell is dominated by a pungent dirty feet odor. Taste is similar. I don't find it very enjoyable. The feel is extremely thick and would be overpoweringly sweet if not for the similarly overpowering sweaty jock strap elements. The rot and cloying sweetness battle for bragging rights as to which makes this beer more of a chore to finish. The description mentions dark chocolate, vanilla, bourbon barrel aged... none of these desirable qualities is easy to find.

My experience is quite different from most of the other reviews thus far. Perhaps I got the dregs from the bottom of the barrel? Did they dig out the truffels and squeeze the liquid into this particular bottle? That's what this tastes like. I like funky stuff. I like gigantic potent stouts. But this... is not tasty. It reminds me of matsutake mushrooms, which I actually like to some degree, but this is too much in beer form.

If you want to try it, split it with twelve friends and only have a sip. I had a hard time finishing the whole bottle myself. Very heavy and filling, and the smell/taste not appealing. Bleh. The least enjoyable $11 I've spent on beer in a long time.

Mar 05, 2019
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip.
The appearance was a nice looking dark brown close to black color capped by a small frothy off white to tan head. It strode off to some spotty concave lace.
The aroma had some earthy sweet bourbon woodiness playing with a copy of an airy and slightly stinky sort of 'bad breath' (almost morning breath). It's actually pretty hard to get through because of this morning breath - like quality. Some black licorice is trying to come out.
The flavor pulls in a sweet dry woody to coffee-ish bourbon spicy blend to some milk chocolate and roastiness. Luckily, that "morning breath" quality doesn't show up here. Mild aftertaste of woody to earthy bourbon spicy char-like sweetness.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sipping quality about it. There's a certain dryness to this beer preventing this beer from having in bigger sips. Dry airy and slightly sticky in the finish.
Overall, boy that was quite different. Never thought I'd ever find a beer that smells like my own breath. Flavor and mouthfeel were the best parts of this beer.

Feb 23, 2019
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Greywulfken from New York

4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown-black pour into an over-sized snifter produced a black-bodied beer under a thin finger of bubbly, dark brown foam... Head slimmed to a collar with a floating island of bubbles and trailed brief, tiny lace motes after each sip... Aromas rich with chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, and espresso... All of the same impressions on the sip are rounded out sweet molasses, a vaguely earthy, oily element I'm chalking up to the black truffles, and a drying woody char, for a moderately sweet, mildly bitter beer... Feel is medium-full-bodied and smooth with a bit of whiskey vapor across the palate... Another solid collab from Collective Arts, this one with Australia's Moon Dog Brewery... Totally recommended...

Feb 03, 2019
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LampertLand from Canada

3.54/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Collective Arts/Moon Dog 'Origin of Darkness' @ 11.5% , served from a 500 ml bottle
A-pour is near black from bottle to glass with a small tan head which is dissipating to a minimal lace ring & film along the tulip after every sip
S-pungent (rude) smelling
T-big bourbon thru out , thankfully the smell effects the swallow only
MF-mild carbonation , feels full bodied
Ov-fourth of six , the black truffles truly stink and make this beer a drainpour
prost LampertLand

Jan 21, 2019
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Smakawhat from Maryland

4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass.

A little bit of a wet looking pour coming out of the bottle, but also a touch of deep walnut brown body. Hints slightly red, and makes a very dark mocha head that is actually a bit soapy and fleeting.

Ooo that aroma. FUUUNNNNGUUUSS!! You bet it's truffle city. You either like it or don’t. It's large and reminds me of a good stinky cheese. However, it seems to mask any other beer scents. There's not much else that would normally be around in something like this such as a dark chocolate, it's just empowered by this giant truffle nose. Enjoyable for me, but this is going to displease others I would imagine.

The palate provides a lot more diversity. Deep dark chocolate flavors on first sip, mixing with that still large truffle aroma. Finish comes with a clear hop bite as well. Mouthfeel lacks a bit of barrel aging depth and complexity, flirting with a sense of wet body. There's even a touch of prickly quality on the mouthfeel as well that's almost a little fizzy.

Neat tasting beer but this isn't going to be everyone's cup of tea.

Jan 15, 2019
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biboergosum from Canada

3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

8oz glass at Beer Revolution YEG Oliver Square - and at half the cost of the bottles that I saw on the shelf earlier today.

This beer appears a solid black abyss, with a thin cap of wispy and bubbly brown head, which leaves little in the way of lace anywhere near the glass as things very slowly progress.

It smells of bready and doughy caramel malt, bittersweet cocoa powder, a faint Bourbon barrel woodiness, subtle campfire smoke, some plain earthy vegetal character, and very tame leafy, musty, and floral green hop bitters. The taste is gritty and grainy caramel malt, a lesser biscuity toffee sweetness, wet char, a muddled dark orchard fruitiness, medium chocolate wafers, more weird earthy mustiness, cafe-au-lait, a touch of anise spice, and more well-understated leafy, herbal, and dead floral hoppiness.

The carbonation is essentially non-existent in its wan frothiness, the body a dense middleweight, and generally smooth, with nothing really getting in the way of a so-so time at this point in the process. It finishes off-dry, the malt and frooty essences predominating.

Overall - well, since I'm not exactly familiar with truffles, or truffle oil, or whatever the hell they put in this, all I am getting here is a well-made big-boy stout, with the 23-proof booze quotient pretty much sublimely integrated. Dangerous stuff, to be honest, and not nearly as weird as the bartender portended.

Jan 14, 2019
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Roguer from Georgia

3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Huge dark mocha head; excellent retention. Brew is jet black and lively.

Incredibly pungent earthy, dirty tone from the truffles, mingling with bourbon and chocolate. Slightly sharp oak and sweet mash; burnt coffee from the malt.

That pungent note follows to the palate, lending a difficult to describe flavor halfway between pleasant and unbearably rich. Bourbon comes on strong on the second half, and the melange of malt, bourbon, chocolate, and truffles becomes quite decadently pleasant.

Thick and creamy.

The truffle note can certainly be off putting, and takes some adjustment. It’s less unpleasant than it is potent and overwhelming. Overall a very creative beer that is certainly not for everyone.

Dec 23, 2018
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avalon07 from South Carolina

4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a jet black color and a thick, opaque consistency. There was a half inch of foamy, tan-colored, somewhat long-lasting head. Pretty good lacing.

S: A powerful, pungent aroma of truffles, malt, bourbon, and chocolate.

T: Tasted of a fair amount of malt (not too prevalent), some bourbon notes (and its accompanying barrel), a ton and a half of truffles, a bit of vanilla, and a good shot of dark chocolate. They weren't kidding around when they added truffles to this. They dominate the flavor at first, but it does level off after awhile. Like the aroma, it's a pungent thing, but not bad.

F: A good amount of carbonation with a silky smooth finish. Medium- to full-bodied.

O: This beer is definitely not for everyone, but if you want something different, give it shot. Drinkable (in my opinion).

Dec 19, 2018
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csmrx7 from Canada

4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is going to be a very divisive beer. The black truffles give this a ton of earth and dank fungus. Honestly maybe a bit too pungent, and may get better with age, but this is incredibly different and worth the experience.

Dec 11, 2018
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ahogan877 from Canada

2.12/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I tried this during the official launch of the Origin of Darkness series. Having tried all six of them, I can safely say that this was by far my least favourite. It did nothing for me and it was so hard to finish the sample. Not for me, but may be for others. Bad taste overall.

Also, rating a beer 5’s across the board to boost the overall rating is suspect.

Nov 20, 2018
Origin of Darkness - Moon Dog from Collective Arts Brewing
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 22 ratings