Sheltowee GloomSucker Black Ale | Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's

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Sheltowee GloomSucker Black AleSheltowee GloomSucker Black Ale
23 Ratings
Sheltowee GloomSucker Black AleSheltowee GloomSucker Black Ale

Brewed by:
Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Kentucky, United States

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BEERchitect on 11-15-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 23 |  Reviews: 16
Reviews by the Alström Bros:

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More User Reviews:
Photo of merlin48
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Twelve ounce bottle pours a clear dark brown body with a small beige that quickly fades into faint wispy lacing. Muted aroma has hints of coffee and chocolate. Light to light medium body is well carbonated but feels quite thin. Taste is on the malty side, with hints of caramel and milk choclate. A trace of coffee, perhaps. No significant hops presence. A good dark lawnmower beer.

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Photo of chinchill
3.43/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

From a 12 oz bottle purchased near the brewery last month. Bottled in Dec. 2012 is notched on the label. Served in a snifter.

Pours clear, dark red-brown color, but nearly black in the glass. The modest tan head soon reduces to a partial, thin coat and a ring but this is very durable and leaves some spotty lacing.

S: Dark roasted grains with toffee and sweet malts.

T: Sweet upfront but balanced by the finish and mildly bitter aftertaste. More dark roasted malt flavor than suggested by the nose.

M: Light carbonation; medium body; fairly smooth.

O: Solid American Schwarzbier.

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Photo of Dave128
3.35/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle purchased as a single into a Duvel tulip.

A - Almost black with a light brown head. A probably over-rigorous pour leads to a huge head that slowly dissipates into a very thin disc. There are dark brown ruby highlights to this beer when held up to the light. Lacing is slight, but its there.

S - Smells of dark smoky malts. Not much else to it.

T - Like the nose, dark and smoky. A little watery though. Can kinda detect the alcohol on the finish, but there's not much to this one.

M - Overcarbonated and way too light bodied for the flavors.

O - An average beer. It doesn't have many faults and then again it doesn't really have anything that shines.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.57/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Black as promised, this one opens with a thin tan head. No lace.

Interesting nose...milk chocolate, some burnt malts.

Flavor is burnt chocolate, maybe a touch of coffee, like a light porter almost. Thin in body. Not bad, though.

A solid session ale here, but not too memorable.

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Photo of wspscott
3.33/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle in Sam Adams glass

A: Very dark, not quite black, when held up to a bright light it is a very, very dark copper color. Not much of a head or lace.
S: A little bit of roasted malts mixed with some sweetness, maybe darker caramel malts. No hops presence at all. A little muted overall.
T: A splash of roasted malt in the front that quickly turns into boring basic malt, not toasty or biscuity, just malt.
M: On the thin side, could use a little bit more body.
D: This goes down very easy, but that seems to be because there is not much going on. A good beer for someone who "doesn't like dark beer". Not bad, but I probably won't buy again. Worth trying if you find the average porter or stout to be too much.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.27/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle, bottled in December 2010. I guess I should pay better attention to the bottle dates the next time I'm buying single bottles at Liquor Barn! Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with a 2 to 3 inch frothy tan head (and I wasn't able to pour the whole bottle into the glass because of the large head). Head retention is very good, and there's a decent amount of lacing. The brew smells like roasted malt, coffee, bittersweet chocolate and a bit of smoke. The taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, but with the roasted malt and coffee flavors being the strongest. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, but there's high carbonation which doesn't help this brew. Even though the carbonation does settle down after a while, it's still too high for my liking. Even with this being a year old, it's not a bad beer at all. I'd like to try a fresher bottle of this in the future, I'll have to look for some the next time I head down to Kentucky to a Liquor Barn.

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Photo of Brent
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

One of Bluegrass Brewing's private label beers produced for the Liquor Barn chain. Pour was a tarry black with thin mocha head. Up front deeply roasted caramel malt flavors, thinning with slight astringency, then followed by an oddly drying note, like tossing a pinch of unsweetened cocoa powder on the tongue. This last element seemed off-kilter.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.23/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a flute.

4.5 A: Clear medium-dark brown color. More bock like than schwarzbier. Big head, bigger than I wanted or tried for. Head is tan in color, thick, whippy, and retains very well. Decent amount of lacing.

4.0 S: Subdued caramel sweetness, which is balanced by a soft, yet noticeable burnt toastiness. However, the biggest component of the aroma is cider, which in this case works really well. Not sure if the brewers were going for this though.

4.5 T: Quite dry. Dark malts combine to make a pleasant coffee/nut hybrid. Again, there's a toastiness present, but no cidery taste. Decent hop bitterness. Elegant brew.

3.0 M: Light body, which works. However, there's just way too much carbonation. I knew this would be the case when I did a usual pour and got excessive head. Otherwise very smooth.

4.5 D: I didn't have high hopes after trying my first BBC brew. However, this turned out to be quite a tasty brew. There are flaws such as the cidery aroma, but everything works well in this brew (other than the superfluous carbonation).

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Photo of Spidey13
3.62/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Gloomsucker Black Ale pours a dark brown. (Not black as the name states. I'm taking off a half point for false advertising.) A light tan head rests on top. There is a good amount of chocolate on the nose, along with a hint of orange, a bit of roast, and possibly some smoke.

The flavor starts with roasty chocolate and caramel. There is a bit of hop bitterness on the back. Mouthfeel is medium as well as the carbonation.

Overall, this is an OK beer, though I don't think the name "Black Ale" really fits.

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Photo of chaunur
3.46/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A friend brought a growler of this to a gathering last night. The brew poured a very dark brown/copper almost black with almost no head, just a very thin film. No retention or lacing. A very basic malty aroma with a very slight coffee overtone. Smooth flavor, again just a very basic malt flavor with a little sweetness, a hint of coffee and carmel. Kind of like a weak stout. The only real complaint I had was the beer was very thin in texture, I was expecting something with more body. The beer is not overpowering and is very easy to drink

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Photo of OldSchoolGamer
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the third Sheltowee beer I am reviewing. This is their take on the German Schwarzbier style:

A: Pours a real dark reddish brown. Light easily penetrates the beer, but it is pretty dark. Head dissipates almost to nothing rather quickly.

S: Smells pretty roasty. Some caramel, some sweetness and maybe a touch of coffee or chocolate. Nothing overpowering, but pleasant.

T: This reminds me of a lighter bodied Irish Dry Stout. Lots of roast in the flavor. Some caramel sweetness. A little roasted coffee as well. The taste isn't as strong as a well crafted Irish Dry Stout like Three Floyds Blacksun or Avery Out of Bounds, but very good nonetheless.

M: Lighter bodied. Drinks pretty much like a typical lager. The roastyness does linger on in the aftertaste, which is a good thing. Could have used a bit more body, but still pretty decent.

D: Very easy drinking and very tasty. A lot more flavor and character than most macro Irish Dry Stouts like Guinness or Murphy's. Pretty low in ABV which only adds to the drinkability. Not the best tasting Scharzbier around, but still pretty solid.

I actually wasn't expecting much from this brew, but I was pleasantly surprised. No, this isn't going to awe you like an Imperial Stout, but it does show good craftmanship and is overall a solid beer. Is recommended and worth checking out.

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Photo of Darugo
3.76/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was looking for something from Blue Grass Brewing and came across this one on sale.

This beer appears black at first but held up to light shows a nice brown. Poured into a chilled glass the brew produced a one finger deep head but it disapated very quickly.

Smells of sweet caramel. Taste is the same caramel and malty. Low carbonation and limited after taste makes this a nice find.

Dark, Malty and drinkable. Not astounding but worth getting a six pack for the weekend.

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Photo of Tone
4.2/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color. 4/5 inch of a tan color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of sweet malt, hint of alcohol, slight spice, hint of dark citrus, and hint of earthy malt. Fits the style of a Schwarzbier. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of pale malt, sweet malt, slight grain, dry hop, alcohol, slight citrus hops, and slight roasted malt. Overall, good aroma, complexity, blend, and feel.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.97/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Disclaimer: The beer is listed as A Schwarzbier (lager), however the lable lists the beer as an ale. After consumption of the beer, this seems to be the catagory that best fits the flavor profile. Now back to your regularly scheduled review...

This beer is the fourth in a series of 'Sheltowee' beers that the Kentucky beer retailer, Liquor Barn, has commissioned the Bluegrass Brewing Company to brew for their exclusive sales.

The beer is adorned with a turtle wearing a mask and cape-- an obvious Halloween theme, although the holiday was two weeks ago. This beer resembles a Schwarzbier throughout. From it's dark brown hue, creamy thin head formation that retained reasonably well, no evident lacing. Mild aromas of roasted grain, toast, maybe a mild Columbian coffee hint, along with soft caramel tones throughout. Flavors are much the same with more emphasis of malty caramels and ligter on the coffee taste. Creamy, nutty, and well attenuated tasted all along. Body is light, creamy, and smooth with no alcohol, harshness, or graininess. Powdery and pleasantly dry in the finish.

At times, the beer seems to ride the fence of a Dry Stout, but ultimately remains in the realm of a Schwarzbier. Again, a good sessionable dark ale.

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Photo of rxthree
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of SykDoc
3.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got this courtesy of a trade with Opethsprite, much thanks. Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. It pours a nice dark brown/ruby blend. A 1/2 inch tan head forms and reduces to a nice lacing. Carbonation is visible and no sediment.

The aroma was primarily a dark fruit caramel malt sweetness, which seems primarily like prunes. Some roasted malt components.

The taste seemed a bit thin. There are definitely the dark fruit and caramel sweet components and a touch of hops, but just not strong enough. A touch of coffee as well.

The mouthfeel was light bodied and thin. Carbonation also seemed a bit light. It goes in and out cleanly with a hint of lingering roast.

This is an okay beer. I am glad I traded for it but think there is some room for improvement. I would have it again and could probably have a couple in a row but not something I would seek out.

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Photo of Opethsprite
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cute and cheeky packaging, this "black ale" pours a deep, rich brown with hints of read. Head dissipates quickly, leaving little traces at the edge and center. Smells strongly of burnt chocolate, coffee, vanilla, and a hint of maple. There's a lot of that smoky sweetness in the taste, though the maple is softer than expected. Fades nicely into a sweet grassiness. Intense pang of carbonation does a bit of damage to the palate and fades slowly into stickiness. Highly drinkable, though the mouthfeel is a bit volatile.

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Photo of mwar
2.5/5  rDev -30.6%

Photo of Dapperticus
5/5  rDev +38.9%

Photo of bzach
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of t0rin0
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of ADTaber
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of Arsenal0328
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Sheltowee GloomSucker Black Ale from Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Beer rating: 3.6 out of 5 with 23 ratings