Collaborative Evil 2008 | Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery

very good
53 Ratings
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Collaborative Evil 2008Collaborative Evil 2008

Brewed by:
Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery
Illinois, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
A collaboration of brewers Todd Ashman (FiftyFifty), Zac Triemert (Lucky Bucket), and Matt Van Wyk (Flossmoor Station). Made with Raisins, local honey, Mexican and Indian sugars, orange peel and black cardamom.

Added by orbitalr0x on 09-28-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 53 |  Reviews: 41
Photo of gford217
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bomber poured into a tulip.

This one pours very dark brown in the glass with a strong reddish tint around the edges. There's a big thick off-white head that shows excellent retention but doesn't leave too much lacing.

The aroma is massively spicy with the cardamom being the most dominant aroma overall. There is lots of brown sugar and dark malts in the background as well as some dark fruit sweetness.

The taste was really surprising and the initial sip had a pretty strong sourness with the caramelized sugar and Belgian yeast forming a solid backbone. The finish brings back the cardamom and leaves a spicy, peppery tingling going down with the orange peel also making an appearance.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and highly carbonated, maybe a tad light for the style but nothing too distracting.

This is a decent beer, but I wasn't the biggest fan of the sourness in the taste which seemed a little out of place. The spiciness in the nose was also a little overpowering. The former limits the drinkability a bit for me.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

"The evils of government are directly proportional to the tolerance of the people."

--Frank Kent

Pecan shell brown with generous tangerine highlights... that becomes glossy russet when backlit with afternoon sunshine. A vigorous pour has created three fingers of golden ecru colored foam that has an attractive texture and is leaving a fair amount of sea foam lace. Not a stunner, but it'll do nicely.

The aroma is dominated by dark malts and by two of the additional ingredients. An orange peel citrusiness is in the background and cardamom is in the foreground. I hope Matt didn't go too crazy with that spice since it's pretty aggressive and tends to take over whatever it's used in.

Collaborative Evil actually tastes like a BSDA. That's probably because the Belgians aren't especially style-conscious and tend to add all manner of things to their strong dark beer. It's also very well-behaved for a 10.0% ale, although more than one year in the bottle tends to help in that regard.

Putting flavor in terms of color, the malts taste midway between brown and black, which is pretty much like most BSDAs. Despite a decent amount of malt, two sugars and honey, CE 2008 isn't overly sweet. In fact, I'd go so far as to call it balanced. The various flavors are also integrated into a cohesive whole, especially given what was added.

Steely caramel and raisins are responsible for the darker flavors. Orange peel contributes a tangy fruitiness and coriander adds a warm spiciness, both of which become more bold with warming. Interesting and delicious is a sure-fire combination when it comes to big beer. Or any beer for that matter.

The body/mouthfeel is the only fly in the ointment. It's on the thinnish side for the style and doesn't have enough bubbles to provide the creamy expansiveness that I look for. This is the only place where the beer's age is apparent.

Collaborative Evil 2008 is damn good beer that could just as easily have earned the next highest flavor score. Sweet-bitter-tangy-spicy is a killer combination more often than not. I'd love for Flossmoor Station to brew this recipe again, but I'm also excited to taste what the new version has to offer. Thanks for rooting through the cellar Bryan.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle warmed up from the fridge.

Pours dark chestnut with a ruby hue and a half inch of beige foam. Threads and dots of lacing throughout the glass as well as a partial skim coat on the surface.

Aromatics lead off with spices, raisins, plums, and dark rum. Nutmeg up front with licorice, honey-drizzeled cloves, and burnt caramel riding atop a firm malt base. Lightly peppery with a tinge of medicinal undertones.

On the fuller side of medium bodied with a mouthfeel that stops short of chewy.

Ripe fruit, plump raisins, and dark rum start the palate. Dark cherries, clovey phenols, and vineous alcohol follow through.

Finishes with lingering dark fruit, peppery spice, building tartness, and boozy overtones.

The tartness was unexpected and I'm wondering if it was intentional? Not much mention of it in early reviews..Hmmmm.
The spicing is a bit strong for my tastes, and the alcohol could use some mellowing also. A great cellar candidate it would seem though.
Probably more in the neighborhood of a Grand Cru
at the present though.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown in color. Lots of carbonation bubbles running up the sides of the glass. A little ring of froth around the edges of the glass and a film sits atop the center.
Smell is dark belgian malts, some very dark fruit, probably plum and some tobacco roastiness.
Taste has some bit of sour tartness to it. Don't know if this is coming from the dark fruit flavors present, but it works well. You would never guess it from the notes in the smell. Plenty of carbonation and good mouthfeel. Good beer. I would of liked it to be a bit smoother, but this is still a very enjoyable beer.

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Photo of emerge077
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours in to a Duvel tulip a dark shade of brown that glows crimson when backlit. A finger or two of tan foam rise above the rim, and slowly recede. Swirling rekindles the head immediately.

Raisin, spiced cookies, it's bready like a doppelbock, but smells more like a Trappist. Some faint cola sweetness, fig and plum.

I had read about the tartness development, and noticed it right away when tasting this bottle. Not sure that this was intentional, since it wasn't present when fresh. Luckily it compliments the residual sweetness and spices present. When fresh it was pretty phenolic and warm with alcohol, now the heat isn't noticeable at all. There's still some honey laced banana bread in the background and trace cardamom, behind the tart berry flavor. Leather and tobacco blend into the initial tartness, reminding me of a Flanders Oud Bruin. The light astringency works against it, though it's fairly full bodied and well carbonated. Honey and spices in the pleasant aftertaste.

Looking forward to the next release...

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Photo of BeerZack
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Murky brownish, like dirty bathwater, with soapy covering.

At first its very spicy and hot. After the alcohol dies down a bit, lots of other things come out. Citrus fruit? Sour candy?

Taste was really unexpected. Spice is there, but a little subdued by the unexpected sourness. Get the same sour Mike & Ike candy flavor as in the nose.

Mouth waters a bit from the sourness, adding to the light mouthfeel, fairly low carbonation.

Wasn't sure what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised with this one. Kinda weird, but good in moderation.

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Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.02/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: deep rich mahogany color. full bodied dark tan head, good retention, nice lacing.

S: big fruity aroma of dates, raisins and figs. sweet notes of rich dark malts. big spice aroma, clove, nutmeg and some thyme.

T: good malt body with a decent hop palate. major tones of honey, raisins, figs, and plums. solid spice character, mostly clove. light sourness/tartness.

ML medium bodied. big carbonation level. a little harsh, but rather smooth for the ABV. very warming.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Strange beer, and not at all what I was expecting. It definitely has a strange clend of spice and sour to it with lots of raisiny fruit. Pours deep brown with a scant head. Smells strongly of sultanas and herbs and spices. An aroma of Rosemary seems especially noticeable, or another very piney herb. The taste starts sour- which is a surprise, and moves back into raisin territory with more pungent herbs and some late sweet cherries. Very unusual. It's a bit much overall. The sour and the herbs together are a little jarring, and the raisins make it a little over the top. It reminds me a bit of Avery 15, but with more herbal punch. I'm glad I tried it, and I'd probably have some again just because it is so unusual, but I can't say its anywhere near my favorite.

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Photo of Viggo
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650 ml bottle, big thanks to grub for sharing with me.

Pours a murky dark orange brown, some dark reddish hues in the corner, thick off white head forms, drops to a really solid ring around the glass, lots of lacing, good retention, nice layer for the whole glass. Smell is very spicy, lots of raisin, some chocolate roast, ginger and cinnamon, cake, honey, yeast, some sweetness thats overpowered by a ton of spice. Taste is weird, very spicy, ginger and raisins, honey, sweet fruit, cinnamon, cloves, some sour/vinegar notes, some orange peel/lemony notes, very spicy and lots of cake/cookie character. Some molasses/brown sugar sweetness, figs and raisins, kind of all over the place. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation, alcohol is well hidden but the spice is a bit out of control. Has kind of a strange sour/acedic note as it goes down thats a bit tough but I enjoy this more as I drink it, at least its interesting.

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Photo of grub
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jay23 hooked me up with this one as a bonus in a recent trade. big thanks jay!

22oz bottle topped with red wax. sampled jan 31/09.

pours deep red-brown with a small very fine tan head. the head quickly drops to a ring around the glass and leaves a few spots of lace.

aroma is spicy! ridiculously spicy. tons of clove, coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger. bit of alcohol. there could be more, but it's honestly hard to pick out any other particulars under the thick layers of spice.

taste is intense. waves of spices keep crashing against you. heaps of clove, ginger, nutmeg, coriander, and cinnamon. bit of anise. as the spice starts to fade there's a bit of malt vinegar in the finish. it more feels like vinegar than tastes like it, so it could just be the spice concoction throwing me off. there's some sweet caramel and dark fruit hiding beneath too. bit of raisin and date. touches of white bread and cracker. bit of alcohol.

mouthfeel is ok. medium-high carbonation level. medium-light body. the spicing and/or vinegar character definitely clouds the mouthfeel too.

drinkability is hard to call. this is just such a giant spice mess that it's tough to decide what to do with it. if you like your spice heavy you'll certainly enjoy this beer. i tend to like my spice to be applied more a little more cautiously. still, after a few sips they start to overwhelm and numb your taste buds, making it a little more tolerable. tolerable is really the key word for me - it's not great, but not terrible either. just too much spice for me.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.68/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow this is a damn good beer. Much thanks to D0b for sending me this one as an extra. Served chilled, and poured into a nonic pint glass, this twenty two ounce bomber was consumed on 01/12/2009.

First off, bonus points for the fantastic looking bottle with the red waxed cap. Poured a deep, dark black, with no light shining through this monster at all. A huge tan head of three inches in height came up over the top and settled down nicely into a thin film maybe an inch high that lasted throughout the rest of the session. Very big looking beer I have to say.

The aroma was wonderful. Tart cherries and prunes, hints of dates and a luscious almost raspeberry note to it. Very much alive with a sour funk note and lots of hoppiness. The flavor defies style. As it starts with delicate, soft plums and grapes, hints of cherries and blackberries them coming forward giving that tart flavor a wonderful foot forward. Exceptional depth here as each flavor was better then the one before and each sip seemed to get more and more complex. I can just see the fruits in my mind as I sip on this one,The texture was nice, though a little fuller would have made this one wonderful. I was really impressed as the alcohol was soo well hidden that by the end of the session I was really feeling this one,

Overall I loved this beer. I was expecting something heavy and sweet but instead a subtle fruity belgian beer is waht greeted me. Not sure what style I would call this one, but it its damn good, and I would love to have another.

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Photo of miketd
3.81/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to D0b for the bottle. Pour is dark brown with a small beige head. Aroma is cinnamon, spicy, sweet malts and caramel. Flavor starts of very malty with spice. More flavor emerges with warmth. A bit of alcohol. Nice beer and im glad to have another bottle.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark reddish hued cola color with a HUGE stiff foamy light tan head that settles fairly quickly to heavy spotted patterns of lacing. The smell has that earthy musty character that's a must to be considered 'in style'...banana, honey, raisins, almond, cloves and pumpkin. Well carbonated and really creamy, the mouth feel is medium-light textured. Full flavored, the pumpkin, caramel, banana, raisin characters standout and linger nicely. I experienced a little heat with the first mouth that was masked by the cloves and other complexities...can't believe that it's as heavy as 10% ABV! A real nice drinker....really enjoyed it!!

Many thanks to DavidEddie for the opportunity to consider this one!!!

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Photo of jwinship83
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- murky dark brown body with red around the edges and a finger of lasting cream colored head. very little lacing left on the sides of the glass.

S- lost of yeast. some spices. very fruity. banana, raisins, plums, figs. a hint of alcohol.

T- lots of sweet malts. figs, raisins, honey, and various spices

M- thin and almost watery with a nice high level of carbonation

D- an easy sipper. a little more than one bottle would be great. too bad its a limited release. the alcohol is pretty well hidden.

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Photo of srandycarter
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours cola, not much head, leaves fast, thin bubble sudsy lacing.

S - Banana, fruits, other standard Belgian yeast smells.

T - Cola, banana, vanilla, spices.

M- medium body, creamy, good balance and carb.

D - For the style, nice. Frankly, it just wasn't a stand out beer for me.

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Photo of Crosling
2.53/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark auburn color, with a thin, creamy, long lasting white head. Nose doesn't have much depth to it and is dominated by spice character. Very thin mouth feel with the flavor being mostly dominated by sour and spice. Lacking anything resembling malt or yeast complexity.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.32/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a red wax sealed 22oz bomber into two St. Bernardus goblets. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Slides into the glass a murky, dark chocolate-y brown. The tiny, off-white head quickly gives way to a mere suggestion of a skim and leaves the barest minimum of lace...we were ok with that!

S: Here's where this beer really shines. Glorious aromas of tart fruit, pungeant funky yeast, toffee, dark chocolate, spice, roasted malt, dark fruit, honey, clove, caramel, and raisin. Heather noticed earthy, "vegetable-like" aromas of squash, pumpkin, or gourd.

T: See above for a really accurate description. Add to this a bit of metallic alcohol burn and more sweet, spicy, and earthy vegetal flavors. Awesome!

M: Dry and roasty, with a sweet, tangy, and funky earthiness. A bit thin at first, but that could've been due to the slightly too cold serving temp.

D: We both enjoyed this beer immensely. The alcohol is present but not in your face, at all. However, by the end of the bottle we were both feeling a little "flushed". This was an excellent collaboration. Could this be the first in a series? Here's hoping yes!

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Photo of Floydster
4.32/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

650 ml bottle with red wax acquired in a trade with wkcyr4, thanks for sending this my way on your first trade Wendall, drank on Halloween, reviewed from notes, poured into a snifter

A-First thought was that this looked like soda, then I started to pour a little faster and a small head formed, color was a medium to dark brown, head was 1/2 inch and creamy beige, some retention, lacing at first
S-One of the best smelling non-sour beers beers I have ever had, it had this buttery scent almost along the lines of candy corn that just drew me in, lots of honey, spices, sweet malt backbone, brown sugar, berries, raisins, faint alcohol, and toffee
T-Starts off with a sweet honey taste with raisins mixed in the middle and more malts than I could smell, finish is slightly warm and mostly made of spices and buttery cream which was my favorite part of both the aroma and flavor, later on dark fruits and candied sugars come to the surface, by the end there is a big spicy presence and it is more sweet than before, still as good or better than when the cap first came off, could not have picked a better beer to drink while passing out candy
M-Tons of carbonation that made this slightly crisp, medium bodied, sweet, buttery, spicy, and sugary mouthfeel, taste lingered with both sweetness and spice
D-Drank the whole bomber but I sipped on it for close to three hours, does not exactly go down easy but alcohol is well hidden for the most part, it is not overly heavy or anything either, it is ten percent though and quite potent

I will start by saying that the artwork on this bottle was well done, I had never had a single beer from the three breweries that made this masterpiece which are Fifty Fifty, Lucky Bucket, and Flossmoor Station, lucky to have tried this since it was a brewery only release limited to around 70 cases, would certainly drink again, recommended

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Photo of roadhouse
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle with red wax into a snifter.

Appears a dark cola brown with a half inch light tan head. Sinks to a skim and leaves very little lacing.

Aroma has a somewhat sweet backbone with lots of herbal tones, dark fruit, clove, and other spices that I can't really distinguish.

The taste is initially kind of sweet then there is an explosion of spices. Spicy cloves, earthiness, raisins, berries, brown sugar, etc. Very complex.

Mouthfeel is medium but still somewhat thick, very soft on the palate, smooth and easy drinking.

Excellent stuff from Flossmoor. I think the spices have blended and mellowed a little bit since I last had it on tap at the release. I only wish I had more money with me at the release so I could have gotten more bottles.

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Photo of brdc
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to a generous BA for this sample.

Reddish brown in color, with a dark tan head, nice retention and lacing.
Nice aroma, dark fruits, cardamom, some herbs, lots of spices.
Full bodied, starts fairly sweet, malty, and heavily spiced, but fairly low bitterness to be noticed. Lots of fruits, dark ones, as expected.
Good, might turn great with some aging; spices are a bit too prominent right now.

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Photo of botham
4.53/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

on tap poured into a goblet at the brewpub in Flossmoor. pours a dark brownish garnet color with a single finger of tan, dense head that has good retention and leaves no lacings.

aroma is mildly sweet, with a distinct herbal quality and subtle malt notes of caramel and dark fruit. overall the brew takes on a medicinal quality from the herbal undertones, imparting a pleasant aura overall.

taste is heavy on malts, with a caramel base and a warming backbone of sweet biscuit and caramelized malt. the same herbal undertones envelop the malt, creating a wonderfully complex and complete profile. the 10% APV is barely detectable, with notes of dark fruit (plum and raisen) rounding out the profile. finishes on a malty note with the same herbal quality lingering after the fact. aftertaste is of dark fruit and a bit of black malt without being bitter.

mouthfeel is excellent. a full bodied brew with a complex character and a smooth mouthfeel that rounds out the malty profile and covers up the alcohol nicely. one would think that this has been aged for wuite a while due to the smoothness of the overall brew.

drinkability is great. this is a big brew with solid malt complexity and a very unique overall character. a wonderful fall/winter seasonal with a nice warming quality from the richness and the alcohol. Flossmoor is worth a trip just for this brew. cheers!

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Photo of rye726
4.39/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Not sure is I would call this a BSDA, but is fro sure a delicious brew. Pours a dark brown with a decent head. The nose is simply amazing. It has the most earthy and herbal aromas I have ever experienced in a beer. The taste was quite nice as well. Good malt profile along with the spicy green hops. Full body goes down well. A fantastic offering.

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Photo of brentk56
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a burnt caramel color and a very modest head which leaves a bit of lace before morphing into a ringlet

Smell: Dried cardomom dominates along with cherry, ginger and Cheerwine (you have to be from NC to get this)

Taste: Opens with a cherry flavor that is joined by the cardomom, cinnamon and ginger flavors at mid-palate; lots of dark fruit and candi sugar aspects in there, too; after the spices dominate the flavor profile, although there are some yeasty dark fruit elements discernable underneath

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body but a bit undercarbonated for a Belgian style

Drinkability: The spice profile is very interesting and a nice experiment but, to my palate, a bit overwhelming relative to the BSDA elements; it would be a much better beer if the two aspects were reversed

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This has a frothy, dark tan colored head that sits on top of a murky, amber tinged, dark brown colored beer. Wow, this smells strongly of cardamom with a mix of aromatic notes of cola, clove, an at times green herbaceous note and even a distinct hemp like notes. The aroma is also quite herbal, and I was actually a bit surprised by how spicy this was.

The herbal / hemp flavor continues on in the flavor, but there is also lots of expressive cardamom character as well as a clove-like finish to the beer. This is fairly sweet and has a chewy, rich, viscous bodied, amply maltiness to it as well. The herbal notes are interesting in their intensity; at times it is mint-like and at others more menthol oriented, but both are probably a result of the dominant cardamom character. Underneath all the spice character, and accentuated by the rich malt character, is a hidden, rich, fruity backdrop that adds notes of raisins and figs.

Once tasted, I realized this was obviously quite amply spiced. This will most definitely age quite well for quite some time, especially since the spice character is fairly intense. It is not spiced to overwhelming levels though and, despite all my focus / complaining, is even fairly enjoyable fresh, but I definitely prefer a much more subtle approach to spicing beers.

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Photo of Blanchette
4.94/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Picked up a few bottles at the Lush special re-release party in Chicago. I'd went to the brewery on the release day but got there too late, so this was an unexpected treat.

I was originally a touch disappointed by the appearance; it poured a murky brown color with a rapidly dissipating head. Revealed a nice thick body, though, and my original fears were calmed by the wonderful smell of this beer. Mysterious spices, a bit of alcohol, and something of a muted peppermint nose really got me excited for this one.

I was not disappointed: tastes like a richer version of the aged unibroue 2004. Absolutely unique, even for the style, and the flavor quickly shifts from a spicy sweetness up front to a roasty bitterness in the back, with a wave of muted mint. Extremely long lasting flavor, helped by a perfect density and smoothness in the mouth. Bitterness really takes over after a while, but it fills the mouth and isn't too sharp after it warms a touch.

The best thing about this beer is the drinkability. After a few sips, the flavors really come together and the heavy spiciness starts to dull the buds a touch. The flavor gets more intense and full in the mouth, leading you to want to drink this more and more. I easily finished a bottle and was itching to crack another (I resisted). The alcohol is very well hidden, and I could sip on this all night (though it was better from the bottle than on draft).

This one is world-class for the style. The Unibroue 2004 was a very original beer, but this one takes that style and brings it to a new level. It's rare that we see a belgian style dark ale as a special release that might achieve a cult following. I know that if this is released again next year, I'll be there at 11 am waiting to grab as much as I can.

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Collaborative Evil 2008 from Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery
3.88 out of 5 based on 53 ratings.
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