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

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85
very good
84 Reviews
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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
Reviews:
84
Ratings:
168
Avg:
3.76
pDev:
9.31%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
14
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 84 | Ratings: 168
Photo of robwestcott
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured cold from the bottle a crisp cola black to a sun king shaped pint glass with a super thin, short lasting, tan head leaving a thin rim of lace near the rim after each sip.

roasty black coffee aroma with a bit of burnt chocolate meringue pie crust in the way back.

nice. smoky, milk chocolate, and black coffee.

light bodied, big carbonation, coffee bitter to the tongue, fading to semi sweet chocolate.

drinkable - yep.

overall - nice chocolatey, true to style.

 472 characters

Photo of abraxel
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The bottle says this is "For when you're hungry and thirsty," which fits me right now. I'm hoping it sates both those feelings nicely.

It is indeed black (I expected no less), but some blood-red light shines around the edges when I hold the glass up to light. Looks moderately viscous. Topped with a fizzy, off-white head that looked like it would dissipate quickly but actually hung on for a while.

The smell reminds me a bit of cola, but not nearly as sweet. Maybe hints of dark fruit as well. It's a relatively weak aroma (maybe typical for the style, I don't know), but a good one.

I can taste just a little bit of hops, which I think is what made me think "cola" on the smell. There's a base of roasty malt, but it doesn't add any bitterness until the aftertaste, when it lingers a short while.

The mouthfeel is smooth and a little bit chewy, with a fair amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a good beer, though not a great beer. I'm glad I got a sixer and I'll enjoy the rest of it.

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Photo of Viggo
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at HopCat in GR.

Pours a hazy dark brown, some orange highlights, looks black away from the light, thick off white head forms, settles to a thick ring, some lace drops on the glass. Smell is neat, toasty, some roast, licorice, very bready, touch of citrus, some caramel sweetness, very malty, but not a whole lot going on in the nose. Taste is similar, light bit of roast, some biscuit, dark fruit/raisins, light citrus, toast and a bit of fruity sourness in the finish. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation, goes down easy. Decent enough beer, but didn't really impress me as a Shwarz, something just wasn't right, and could use a touch more roast.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a schwarzbier, this is pretty decent. Probably a bit too heavy for the style though. The delivery is consistent and thorough. But in the end, like I said, it's a bit too heavy for me, as far as judging to style. This is a style that breweries rarely try out, so nice to see someone trying. Still a nice beer.

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Photo of THECPJ
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: dark brown almost black with a 2 finger off white head

smell: sweet, spices, caramel, malts,

taste: spice, caramel, black patent malts

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: a very interesting beer has a taste that I can't pinpoint. but will definitely have again.

Cheers,
The CPJ

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Photo of Wadsey
3.74/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sustenance Black Beer

Served in New Belgium globe glass

A: Pours clear deep brown with modest head. 

S: Clean, roasted malts, especially chocolate, dominate nose. Additional aromas include smoke, cola and molasses. 

T: Malty sweetness, along with roast and bitter chocolate. Smoke, cola and molasses are somewhat present, albeit in smaller proportions. Medium bitterness with a green/hoppy kick. Roast lasts through finish. 

M:  Medium-light body and medium carbonation. Pleasant, somewhat creamy mouthfeel. 

O: I've drank only a handful of swarzbiers in the last few years, but it is a style that suits me: lower abv, malt-forward, and big flavor. I enjoyed Short's Sustenance Black Beer and think it rates above average. 

Thanks hurfer for the opportunity!

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Photo of jampics2
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter. Graciously shared by Arp and enjoyed with Paul at his place.

This beer looks nice in the glass but lacks the head retention of the best Schwarzbiers in the world. The color is dark brown to black with a hint of red and even gold around the edges. There is a tan head that left the building in the time it took to write this sentence. A soapy film remains and lace is less than stellar. Great color, bad head.

Sustenance smells of sweet caramel malt at first, then some heavier notes come in. There's some black strap molasses, roasted chocolate hints from the malt and a touch of smoke or maybe toasted or burned malt. This is pleasant and well-integrated, but there is a touch of black malt acidity that scares me that this may be stale or slightly tart. But at least the typical Shorts infection is absent from the smell.

The beer tastes better than expected. The biggest win over the smell is the way everything is balanced and pleasant. Some acidity that I noted in the nose is present, but happily not sour. Some bitterness and touch of light smoke hit mid-way through the palate. I get some notes of coffee, which are contrasted by sweet caramel and a touch of licorice. There is also a touch of bitter citrus rind, I'm assuming from the hops. A good beer with depth and a myriad of flavors, but nothing that valuts this over the bar into the top tier of schwarzbiers.

The beer is medium bodied with some thin gaps but it has a relatively pleasant and substantial feel. The carbonation is a bit high for my tastes. Overall, Short's Sustenance Black Bier
is very pleasnat and comes together well. I'm very much looking forward to trying the barrel-aged version.

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Photo of jpmclaug
3.78/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my Foothills pint glass

A - Black body with a nice sized tan head.

S - Smokey malt notes with a hint of a salty taste. Not especially aromatic.

T - Nice malty beer with a a nice smokey taste. This beer doesn't overdo the smoke flavor however and I really like that. Not much to say about the hops here.

M - medium body with that is a little too bubbly for my taste.

D - pretty easy drinking. I don't tend to like smokey beers but this one has just a enough of it to make this enjoyable. Only real negative for me is the mouthfeel but that might be because I'm used to the body a stout offers. I would drink this beer again.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.79/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I drank from a 12oz bottle into my Orval glass...The beer pours a light black with a ligh tan head, good retention and lacing...The aroma is totally dead, shows off only light chocolate, really boring...The taste is also light, gives a little smoke and chocolate. Usually i want more taste, but for some reason I like this, a light roasty porterish type beer that is really easy to drink. Nothing special here, but if you're in the mood for a roasty dark beer that's easy to drink, not a bad call.

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Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to a74gent for this twelve oz bottle.

A: The schwarzbier is a dark stout in my glass, pitch black throughout except for at the absolute edges of the beer. A chocolatey brown manages to come through there. A head, just barely off-white, leaves a few legs behind.

S: The blackbier has a roasted, stout-like aroma with the excess body and strength of a stout. Chocolate and coffee, along with burnt toast, is strong but not overwhelming.

T: The roasted flavors start things off right, burnt and tangy with plenty of chocolate malts. Mid-sip a lactic respite, a mild sourness that contrasts with the roast, is a veer off course. That flavor doesn't last for long though, returning to the dark side for a rousing finish. Semi-sweet chocolate and cocoa powder appear in the finish.

M: The mouthfeel is full, as close to a stout as you can get without crossing that 'too heavy' line.

D: Much better. Not as chewy as they'd lead you to believe but a warming schwarzbier nonetheless.

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Photo of grub
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

sampled on tap at hopcat june 12/09.

pours deep brown with a few garnet highlights peeking through at the edges. a small dense dark tan head forms, dropping slowly and leaving spotty lace.

aroma is good. smells mostly portery at first. dark chocolate. light caramel. coffee. bit of alcohol. hint of smoke. i also get just a hint of yeasty spice. roasty. toasted multi-grain bread. bit of biscuit.

taste is good. dark chocolate. bit of milk chocolate. roasty. light smoke. toasted multi-grain bread and biscuit. earthy and a bit woody. touch of dark fruit. bit of floral character too.

mouthfeel is good. medium body. medium carbonation level.

drinkability is good. nice balance. neat overall. bit of complexity, but overall not much smoke for a schwarz.

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Photo of MIMicrobrews
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark with a little bit of color shining through as you hold it up to the light. After the pour, there's a nice tall, fluffy head on top. Great looking brew!

The aroma is a nice, roasted malt meets molasses type of scent. It's not that pungent, but it definitely has a dark, robust feel to already.

The taste has nice complex, dark flavors, from roasted malts and coffee to peanuts. Its body is relatively light considering it's dark stature and bold flavors.

The aftertaste has a nice peanut/coffee bitterness flavor that lingers for a good while, leaving a slight palate altering taste.

Overall, they don't mince word when they say this beer is like a meal. It's rich, bold, dark et al. It's not necessarily a hot summer day brew, yet its light body allows for easy drinking. It's full of dark flavors that would be great for a BBQ. Think of it similar to a nice, black stout, but with a sweeter profile. And since the ABV wasn't readily available, I'm guessing it has a fairly low %, since I'm getting much more flavor than I am buzz. Very tasty brew.

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Photo of BBP
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a near black with shades of cherry and chestnut. Some head, but slight. Small amounts of lacing.

S- Extremely roasted aromas. Slight chocolate and coffee creeps through. The roasted aroma is somewhat dominant over everything. Hard to pick much else out.

T- Roasted malts and very slight amounts of caramel malt. A bit of cocoa can be tasted in the aftertaste as well as some sweetness.

M- Not quite stout or porter thickness, but very close. Has a considerably dry finish. Carbonation is spot on.

O- Another good brew from shorts. The only downside for me was reading the line under the bottle "For When You're Hungry and Thirsty" and having it fall a little short of the sustenance thing.

That aside, it tastes good, but will probably be forgotten.

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Photo of alleykatking
3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle. Thanks to gratefulbeerhead a.k.a. Eric for this beer. Your kindness is over the top. Review from phone notes.

A- Pours a deeep dark brown color. Light red hues when held up to the light. Half finger tan head that dies down fast. No real lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Roasted malts with a light licorice aroma in the front end. Chocolate notes in the middle. Darker fruits come and go toward the ending of the aroma. Finishes off with a earthy hoppy tone.

T- Roasted malts right off the bat with this beer. Some light licorice notes in the ending front of the beer. Coffee in the middle with some light chocolate notes. This washes way to a light molasses. Earthy hops in the tailend of the beer.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Oily slickness left all over the palate. Smoked malts left on the palate with some light hoppy smokey alcohol left into the aftertaste. Flavors blended well and individual flavors could be picked out as well.

D- This is yet another beer from Short's that is very drinkable. The flavors blended well overall. This would be a couple pints and then move onto something else personally. A great beer nevertheless.

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Photo of BMoney575
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 6-5-10

Pours a completely cloudy, almost black color, with a little light brown around the edges. The tan head settles nicely, with pleasant lacing.

Smell is deep and malty, with notes of oak, molasses, and coffee. Very complex for a lager.

Taste is more subtle than the smell would lead you to expect, with a tart bitterness and lots of smoke. The finish is all coffee bitterness, and lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is good, slick and nicely thick to accent the malty flavors.

Drinkability is very good, the bitterness balances things out and it easy to drink.

Overall, one of the better black lagers I've had.

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Photo of FRivard
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12 oz bottle into a brewery pint glass

opaque in color a one finger mocha colored head with minimal lacing

smells of sweet malt and toffee maybe brown sugar on the nose

taste of black licorice and milk chocolate up front with the biting bitter coffee and some notable hops in the end

mouthfeel is rather light very drinkable could definitely drink more than one in a sitting

overall a good drinkable dark beer that is not too filling but still has flavor and is relatively complex for a lower abv beer

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Photo of drxandy
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz to standard pint
pours a nice black (dark dark brown) with a tinge of red in light, cream colored head fades quick

smells of roasty malt, chocolate, light hops

taste is thinner than expected, roasty and smokey all the way, chocolate, coffee, lots of flavor, citrusy hops in the back bitter nicely

mouthfeel is thin but creamy, very sessionable for me, i could drink a ton of them

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Photo of hosehead83
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into an English dimpled "pot" pint glass
Dark, black in color with amber highlights-nice head of off-white foam
Aroma-Subtle chocolate and coffee notes
Taste-Coffee, black patent malts,dark chocolate-Dry, black-coffee finish.
Overall, rather medium to light bodied, with a dry finish. Pretty tasty and very drinkable.

 351 characters

Photo of minterro
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Kalamazoo beer exchange

A: deep black colored beer, completely opaque. Little more then a fingernail of foamy head that has a off white color. The head fades quickly, leaving little to no lacing.

S: strong hoppy pines. A bit of sweetness and roasty scents

T: piney, very smoky, a touch of earthy tones. Not very complex

M: medium to light, low carbonation but still has a bit of a sting. For being a bit of a light beer it sticks to your tongue and teeth like a thick beer

O: overall pretty good, not bad for a beer that was only 2.75. An interesting style with characteristic especially in the mouthfeel category that I’m not used to.

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Photo of mgbickel
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Duvell tulip. A single finger of eggshell white head formed on top of the dark brown(not black) body. The foam quickly dissipated, leaving behind tiny traces of lace.

The nose has lots of roasted malts, some weak coffee, dark fruits and brown sugar...nothing really sticks out as an overpowing aroma...

The roasted malts start and finish the taste. The middle finds the sweetness of the brown sugar. The finish is where the earthy peet/coffee flavor comes out.

Light to medium mouth feel...a tiny bit watery with moderate carbonation.

This is a pretty decent offering...nothing fancy but very easy to drink. Refreshing, not heavy as the name would suggest...

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Photo of suspect
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Dogfish Head Shaped Pint glass. Thanks to rfraga77 for the hookup. The bottle says "for when you're thirsty and hungry" and that advice seemed to fit the bill here.

A: Pours a thick dark brown body with a tan colored 1 finger head that dissolves into a 1/4 finger head as I drank it down the glass. Lacing seems pretty thick and consistent.

S: Toasted chocolate malts, coffee, molasses, tobacco, light hop presence and a yeasty tinge to it as well.

T: Malty up front, a hint of coffee, hops, and the toasted malts are definitely present as well. Not one flavor stands out on its own - a nicely balanced brew. It definitely warms the insides on its way down.

M: Light, yet creamy. Perfectly carbonated. Coats the mouth nicely with a light bitter coating that is only quenched with the next swig.

O: A good beer. Nice light flavor, nothing overpowering yet there are a bunch of good flavors in it to enjoy. This one was an easy drinking, good beer. Although I'm still hungry.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle thanks to Andygirl. Cheers, Andrea!

A- looks pretty black to me, nice 1/2 finger head of foam, and it's a lacer.

S- big notes of Bourbon, some fruitiness, a sweet, almost milk stout like aroma.

T- tastes of Bourbon, very fruity....kind of like black cherries, and to me some milk stout like sweetness. Lots of flavour here and at a reasonable abv for anything that gets put in Bourbon barrels.

M- a pretty light bodied brew, good carbonation.

O- I like this brew. Especially the fruity character I get out of it. A nice thumbs up here, from me.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 6/29/2010. On tap at Shorts. Pours black with a small light tan head. Aroma of lots of roasted malt and grains, creamy bitter chocolate, and a hint of lactose. Flavor of toffee, lots of bitter chocolate, roasted malts. A light mouthfeel with a creamy texture. Very nice and quite a tasty schwarzbier.

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.86/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Absolutely jet black in color with a slight tan head-more stout like then a schwazbier but that's ok! Average aroma-somewhat spicy with a slight coppery/metallic note. Wonderful flavor-nice mix of roasted grains and a caramel like toffee flavor. Slight trace of licorice as well. Just enough hop bite to balance the whole thing out. Lingering sweetness. Velvety smooth mouthfeel. While it lacks the overall clean crispness of a lager and is far more stout like to me, this is one damn fine beer and very, very drinkable. Almost gone in 3 large "sips".

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Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap.

Pours one shade from black with dark purplish highlights and a half-finger light tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of mild dark malts with good amounts of bready aromas. Also present are hints of smoked and roasted notes.

Tastes more intense than it smells. Smooth dark malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by slight smoky notes. Midway through the sip the malt flavors thicken with the addition of bready flavors. Very slight amounts of char come into play before fading out into a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall I thought this was a solid beer for the style but was nothing to write home about. Still, worth a shot if you see it around.

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Short's Sustenance Black Bier from Short's Brewing Company
3.76 out of 5 based on 168 ratings.
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