Short's Sustenance Black Bier | Short's Brewing Company

BA SCORE
85
very good
172 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Short's Sustenance Black BierShort's Sustenance Black Bier
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
shortsbrewing.com

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TurdFurgison on 06-07-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
172
Reviews:
84
Avg:
3.77
pDev:
9.28%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
15
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 172 |  Reviews: 84
Photo of MSEGUIN
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of TimP2115
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of webmanspidey
4.38/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Dark black, fizzy with half an inch of creamy head. Smells of chocolate, coffee, and cigar smoke. Taste is mostly sweet with hints of raisins, nuts, and toffee. Mouthfeel is thin and fizzy. Easy to drink with minimal alcohol presence. Very solid session beer.

 301 characters

Photo of StoutHunter
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Short's Sustenance Black Bier the other day for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. It's been a while since I have had a Schwarzbier so when I saw that Short's made one I knew I had to see what they can do with this style. No visible bottling date, 2011 vintage. Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a Pilsener glass.

A- The label is a little weird, it looks like a couple sitting down for dinner, the label might be implying that this beer is meant to go with dinner. It poured a pretty dark black color that let just a little bit of light through with some ruby highlights. It had a big, four fingers worth of fluffy, rocky and bubbly tan head that died down to a thick layer that stayed the rest of the time and left some lacing.

S- The first thing I pick up is lots of roasted dark malts that smell like they were heavily roasted and they have a medium amount of sweetness to them that give it a brown sugar like aroma. I also picked up some black coffee, chocolate, and a slight amount of toffee. It has a pretty nice roasty aroma and I didn't pick up any hop aromas.

T- The taste mirrors the aroma nicely. It starts off much like the aroma with loads of heavily roasted dark malts that aren't as sweet as they were in the aroma. The heavily roast of the malts made for a nice subtle smokey flavor that was unexpected but I felt like it worked well with this beer and it helped set it apart from all the other Schwarzbiers. The black coffee and chocolate flavors from the aroma were present but the chocolate seemed to stick out much more. The finish was very smooth and there was no presence of hops or alcohol at all.

M- Smooth, medium light bodied and nicely carbonated, it may have had a little bit more carbonation then I would have liked, but with Short's I will gladly take a little extra carbonation then a mild amount.

Overall I though this was a pretty damn good Schwarzbier, I haven't had a ton of this style but I would have to say that this was my favorite Schwarzbier I have had to date. I find most Schwarzbiers to have a good amount of hops in them and this one wasn't hoppy at all, it was focused on the roasted and smokey malts and I liked that. It had a very rich and roasty flavor that was somewhat similar to a porter but every thing else was pretty true to it's style especially the mouthfeel. I could see how this beer would make a great choice to drink with dinner, the flavor is roasted and robust while the body is light enough to not be too filling to go with dinner, I will have to try and pair this beer up with a nice dinner next time I have it. I would for sure buy this beer again, it would represent it's style nicely in my fridge, I hope there is some more left at the store so I don't have to wait till next year to enjoy this fine brew. If you like roasty and robust beers then this beer is for you, it has great drinkability while retaining all those great flavors. Short's comes through with another great beer, I like the fact they can take an often overlooked style and add their own personal touch to it to make it a truly unique and great tasting beer, lets see what you guys can do with a Hefeweizen, yes that is a challenge.

 3,191 characters

Photo of ngeunit1
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown color with a thick finger of thick frothy chocolate colored head. The head fades down very slowly leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - The aroma is full of lightly roasted chocolate malts, a bit of lactose sweetness, some earthy hop, and just a touch of smoke.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasted chocolate malts and some milk sweetness. There is a bit of earthy hop in the background as well. Through the middle, some bitterness comes through with some earthy bitterness. The finish is a mix of earthy hop, roasted milk chocolate, and a touch of smoke that lingers.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and just a touch creamy with a roasted and lightly smokey finish.

D - Very drinkable. Very nicely balanced with a nice kick at the finish. Maybe a bit too roasted for the style, but I am really enjoying it.

 859 characters

Photo of rmarquardt17
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of stadmo1
4.21/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of drabmuh
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Probably the star of the night for me, beer is black but clear at the corners with a haloed head of off white bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass with some carbonation present.

The aroma is sweet and dark but not roasty.

The beer is medium to light in body with a wet finish. No bitterness to speak of in the back, just a nice simple beer with a nice malt profile. I'd have it again.

 394 characters

Photo of Preismj
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Dark with a mocha head. nice lacing. good color...looks interestingly thin in body.

s: roasted malts, cocoa and dark fruit. This smells very good, though it is not a potent scent. A hint of nuttiness to it.

t: very nice flavor profile and surprising complexity. A dark fruit nuance of raison and plum take center stage as well as leave a sour taste. This is rounded by a rich sweet cocoa and balanced with nuts that hint toward hazelnut/pecan. Very flavorful and very good.

m: creamy and smooth. sticks on the palette and is medium bodied. very nice. Leaves the mouth dry.

o: surprised by how good this was. A tremendous flavor profile. i wouldn't need many of these, but I would search this out again to have occasionally. strikes me as a great one to have int he fall.

 778 characters

Photo of BuckyFresh
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large wine glass. Pours a deep, dark brown with a one-finger head that recedes pretty rapidly. Areas of reddish brown are visible where the light shines through, and there is a bubbly ring of lacing left behind after the head dissipates.

Smell: Wonderful toasted malt aroma, as well as chocolate, coffee, caramel, and molasses. Very earthy and inviting.

Taste: Big smokey, earthy flavor. Getting lots of coffee, dark fruits, and toasted malt. Texture is pretty thick and creamy, and the alcohol provides a nice warming sensation. To sum it up, I guess I would categorize it as a lighter, smoother version of a stout.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, smooth, with adequate carbonation and just the right amount of bitterness.

Drinkability: Compared to other dark beers, I'd say this one fairs pretty well. Enough malt and bitterness to keep you interested, but not enough to prevent this from being a decent session beer.

 962 characters

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at Hopcat in Grand Rapids. The beer was black color with a thin head. The aroma was light and malty, a little roasty. The taste was dominated by roasted malts but stayed easy drinking with a light body. Very good schwarzbier, but honestly I'd made a mistake and thought I was ordering a rauchbier. Good though.

 328 characters

Photo of Beerasaurus
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of marcobrau
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep black with moderate to light carbonation that forms a head that falls to a ring of foam. No lace. Fairly complex aroma of dark chocolate, burnt caramel and smoke. Tastes of dark chocolate, dark molasses, a touch of burnt caramel. Finishes with roasted chicory and espresso. Tastes moderately to lightly hopped; most of the bitterness tastes like it's coming from the malts with no real hop flavor. Fairly complex yet highly drinkable.

 439 characters

Photo of malty
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. longneck with no best before dated seen.

Force poured into a stemmed chalice produced a opaque black liquid with no highlights to speak of. The loose khaki head decreased to 1/4" after sitting for a few minutes. Moderate amount of broken rings of lace.

A few swirls of the chalice evoked wonderfully lush and fresh aroma of fresh dark chocolate truffles and Mackinaw Island chocolate walnut fudge. Malted milk and sour dough bread too.

The flavors are all dark, decadent and delicious. Even though the aroma was thick and sweet, the initial flavor is chalky, semi-bitter (as a fine dark baker's chocolate should be) and a tad bit charred. The coffee and woody notes blend nicely with the figgy undertones. The flavors are clean and agile, not cloying in the least. The flavors also are intertwined quite nicely but are very discernible on their own. I didn't have any trouble detecting what I was tasting, but they all blended together quite masterfully.

Mouthfeel is a smack-dab between light and medium bodied with a lower than moderate amount of prickly carbonation. It was slick and oily on the tongue with a clean, bitter and somewhat chalky flavorful (charred) finish.

Drinkability is great for such a full flavored 'big' tasting beer.

Overall I was fearing this beer would very sweet upon smelling it. The flavors really went into the opposite direction once it hit my mouth. So it's really the best of both worlds...Sweet, lush and thick aroma with clean, dry/bitter and flavors and textures. I don't know how Short's did it, but I will definitely buy it again when I see it. Hat's off to the Short's crew once again!

 1,641 characters

Photo of WakeandBake
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A black color pour with a small off white head, medium carbonation , spotty and jagged lacing . Aroma is caramel and roasty grain , coffee ,black licorice, and spicy hops . Flavor is very roasty , lightly sweet , lightly bitter with some roasty malt,caramel, black licorice, and earthy spicy hops . medium body , smooth creamy mouthfeel , very sessionable and very good , Nice work Shorts .

 390 characters

Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Ashley's in Ann Arbor, MI.

A-Deep copper bordering on deep ruby. A medium off white head reduces to a thin cap and leaves nice lace.

S-Earthy, musty malt with a noticable peppery spiciness. Underlying notes of citrus rind that pops more upon warming.

T-Bold up front spicy citrus rind with supporting, but light, caramel malt. Not overly sweet.

M-Medium bodied, sharp and crisp with a long lasting bitterness.

D-A fairly spicy hop infused schwarzbier. Just enough citrus pressence to keep things in check and a light malty sweetness that creates a near perect balance. Very nicely done.

 601 characters

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into lager glass, bottled on 2/2/2015. Pours slightly hazy very dark brown color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, herbal, and roast/smoke earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good complexity of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, herbal, and roast/smoke earthiness. Fair amount of herbal hop and roast bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toast, dark bread, light smoke/char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Very clean in lager flavors with zero yeast notes present. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, crisp, fairly creamy, and slightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent schwarzbier style. All around great robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/roasted malt and earthy hop flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,523 characters

Photo of cb8282
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of FaradayUncaged
4.09/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from MilwaukeeCrusher, so a big “Thank You” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a thin beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains coffee, roasted malts, lager yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a hearty roasted malt character followed by lager yeast and a strong black coffee flavor. There are also touches of dark fruit and chocolate in the background. The after-taste is slightly bready and a little bitter-sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, this is a very solid dark lager worth drinking for a long time if you’re in the mood for the style.

 878 characters

Photo of techfed87
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a well-rounded head. Color is about that what you'd expect from a schwartzbier, very very dark. Smell is a bit more sour than I would expect otherwise. Kind of a Corona-flavor wafting off of it.

First taste is a bit hoppy, and yet not as bitter as I thought it was going to be. Mouthfeel is what you would expect from a Short's beer: very potent and very rewarding.

One of the stronger examples of what a schwartzbier can be, this one is really worth your while.

 471 characters

Photo of younger35
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received this beer from Northernbrews in a recent trade. Gotta love Short's and I'm pumped to give this one a go. Drank from my Surly nonic pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a super dark brown with a beautifully creamy one finger dark tan head. A spotty cap and thick collar remain along with a few random spots of lacing here and there.
Smell- Very roasted and full of big malty coffee like burntness. Hints of molasses and licorice are also quite abundant. A touch of caramel creeps in and an almost oakiness. Some vanilla and chocolate round out the nose. Lots going on here.
Taste- Starts much the same as the nose with a lightly sweet bite of extreme roasted malts. Almost buttery at times with a bit of caramel, licorice and vanilla. The coffee isn't as prominent as you'd expect but the chocolate is. Loads of milk chocolate with a light earthy finish. Maybe even a touch of citrus cuts in towards the end.
Mouthfeel- Big full body with creaminess that is substantial. The carbonation is pretty low but the mouthfeel is awesome.
Drinkability- Not too shabby, really enjoyed this one. It's got a great mouthfeel that's top of the line and big bold flavors. The beer 'for when you're hungry and thirsty' rings spot on. Thanks much Jeff!

 1,238 characters

Photo of divineaudio
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

120z undated bottle into a pint glass.

pours a dark, chocolatey brown and forms a thin cap of tan head that lasts for most of the beer. got some nice leggy lacing too.

smell is roasty, earthy, and grainy with a bit of herbal hops.

taste comes through with lots of roasted malt and hints of smoke. has bit of a peppery spiciness to it and a pleasing herbal hop character. strong malts up front are well balanced by bitterness in the finish.

lighter in body with prickly feeling carbonation.

very drinkable and a great dark beer for the hot summer months. short's definitely did good with this one. added to my shopping list.

 628 characters

Photo of Dustin_A_Stoutdrinker
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to pilsner glass. Brew is color of dark chocolate,o cofe beans. Thin off white head, a finger full, that settles to a little cap with no lacing. Not much rentention. Smell is toasted malts, sweet dark fruits, raisin, black bread. Taste follows, with a sweet, raisiny tang upfront and a bitter bite on the end. Got this as part of the Spring variety pack; all have been winners. Highly recommend.

 415 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Short's Sustenance Black Bier from Short's Brewing Company
3.77 out of 5 based on 172 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.