Friday, October 14, 2011
De Struise Brouwers - Outblack
A few days ago, I noticed that I was approaching the 400 review mark on beeradvocate. I completely forgot to get something special for the 300 mark and went with Dogfish Head's Festina Peche. Not a terrible selection (and way better than the beer I had for the 250 mark: Kennebunkport Blueberry), but nothing out of the ordinary. For my 400th review, I decided to go with a beer I bought on a whim a few months ago: De Struise's Outblack. I've had a few of De Struise's beers before, including one of my favorite Belgian beers out there, Pannepot. This one definitely intrigued me with it's label. De Struise claims this beer is a blend of two very different styles: a Belgian Strong Dark Ale and a Black IPA. I couldn't really imagine those two styles going together, but I've tried stranger beers that have worked, so I picked up a bottle.
Outblack pours a nearly black murky dark brown color with a huge tan head that took a full 10 minutes to settle. At first, I picked up a hint of citrus hops in the smell, but these faded quickly and gave way to smells of freshly baked whole wheat bread, dark fruit, chocolate, bananas, figs and a slight touch of booze. To tell the truth, a lot of these smells reminded me more of a quadrupel than a belgian strong dark ale or a black IPA. Whatever style it actually was, it smelled good.
The taste started with a lot of dark fruit and roasted malt along with some yeast, bread and some subdued hop resin and charred grain on the finish. While I didn't get anything in the taste that would lead me to think that any part of this beer was an IPA, it was still a pretty delicious beer.
Final Grade: A-
Top 100 Beers Tasted: 34