Woody639 (2) - Schwenksville, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 9, 2008 does not count
I was up in New England for vacation over the Holidays and made a point of going to my favorite “beer bar”…Ebenezer’s…in Lovell, Maine. While there, I had the honor of trying one of the best beers I have ever tasted. For the past 14 years I have sampled over 3000 beers. Because I had developed my own rating system long before I even knew about RateBeer.com or BeerAdvocate.com, I do not post my ratings on either site (it would be like keeping 2 sets of books). But “Black Albert” impressed me so very much that I felt that I had to let everyone know how truly amazing it is! With over 3000 beers tasted & rated, I have only ever tasted 3 to which I would give a perfect score…and this is without question, the best of those 3!
By coincidence, I had just held a Stout tasting event the night before. Among the beers we sampled were some of the best: Bell’s “Expedition”, Bell’s “Double Cream”, Bell’s “Java”, and Moylan’s “Ryan O’Sullivan’s Imperial Stout”. As great as these beers are, “Black Albert” was even better. It is the most complex stout that I have ever tried. The color is black with a light-brown, lacy head (about 1 finger). The initial smell is malty, with notes of coffee & fruits. The taste is smooth & rich (but not too creamy)…there is an initial taste of coffee, which dissipates, and later returns. The taste lingers…and changes…for a long while. While sharing this amazing beer with a few others, I heard the comment “I died and went to heaven”. I could not agree more with this. “Black Albert” was as religious of an experience, as you could ever hope (or pray) to have!
harrisoni (19318) - Ashford, Kent, ENGLAND - MAR 4, 2008
On tap at Erasmus, Bruges. Black colour with lasting tan head. Lots of tarry bitter. Black chocolate. Intense smoothness in mouth. Velvety. With Green & Blacks choc flavour. Good lasting dry graininess on finish. Lovely finish in fact, a mix of lime hop and choc. There are hops on the aroma, but they are balanced. They have to be strong to blend with the intensity of the choc/coffee aroma, but they are not too strong. Just perfect. The mouthfeel is sensational, the best I’ve had. I simply cannot find a fault anywhere in the appearance, aroma, mouthfeel, flavour or finish. Doesn’t taste anywhere near 13%. I can’t find any reason not to give this 5.0/5.0 for only the 4th time and my second for a Struise beer. They truly are the best brewers in the world. jercraigs (10867) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 14, 2008
2008-03-03. Black body with a good sized mocha brown head and lacing. (4+) Roast malt aroma smells "bitter". Toasty mocha-cocoa-coffee melange. Hints of dry dusty grains - or at least thats what comes to mind. Rich variations on the bitter roast and mocha themes throughout. Brief notes of licorice. (9+) Flavour echoes the aroma, moderately bitter roast balanced by sweet dark malt, notes of chocolate and cocoa, dark fruits. Alcohol is omnipresent but unobtrusive, restrained. (9+) Smooth medium to full bodied palate has the delicate small bubbled carbonation of Belgium that smooths it across the tongue. (4+) I feared disappointed with high expectations going in, but the really is superlatively good, and eminently drinkable. +1 or 2 overall just for the excitement of finding it on tap on our Belgium trip. Not sure if it would retain the high scores on a second tasting, but... oh f**k it - 5.0! Cedromar (2) - New Hampshire, USA - MAR 24, 2008 does not count
On tap at Erasmus, Brugge
Sampled on tap at Ebenezer’s Pub, thanks again Chris!
Aroma is chocolaty, with some vanilla and coffee mixed in.
Appearance is a beautiful black with a 1 inch head.
Flavor is a wonderful mix of bitter chocolate and coffee with caramel notes to help make it extra smooth.
Palate is amazing as well. I cannot get enough of this brew smooth with small carbonation.
Overall the best RIS I’ve ever had. It beats Kate, Darklord and Darkness all in the arse. When it finally is available in bottle I will be buying up every bottle I see. GreatLibations (1854) - Last Supper, Arizona, USA - JUL 19, 2008
Thanks Barak! Love the label. A cold pour reveals a black-ish liquid and a very tall head that lingers like a stubborn koon hound. Aromas of roasted chocolate. Full nectar with creamy carbonation and an oily texture. Up front and center is a massive charcoal meltdown that shape shifts into liquid copper and other heavy metals. A strong bitter cocoa character balances the heavy metallic essence precisely. This beer is rich and very complex pushing up chocolate, dark fruit, cakebread, roasted coffee bean, leather. The finish is long and lingers like a memory that consists of a car crash at 100mph, flipping the car as a result, and living to talk about it like it was a ride at some crazy amusement park in Tijuana the you just can’t miss. The hops show moderately on the end and bitter it up profusely. Extreme, strong flavored, and very generous with high ABV that I can’t seem to spot. Overall I’ll have to Trump it to 100 because the aromas was a little weak. I’m a lucky guy and yes I did flip a car, safely =)
17thfloor (2444) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 11, 2008
UPDATED: MAY 8, 2010 OK... a 5 on appearance, pours a thick syrupy pitch black with a fine brown thick frothy head, not an inch deep as indicated, but still enticing. Strong fruity aroma of black berries, black currant and varnish, some vanilla and light licorice. First taste is similar, very soft mouthful, holy crap is that smooth and velvety, unbelievably even consistency, like airy liquid marshmallow. Great deeply roasted barley flavor, so fruity and decadent. Lightly burnt coffee and dark chocolate blend beautifully with the rich berries. This really is like biting into a piece of flourless dark chocolate cake with raspberry preserves. Not terribly sweet either, its more understated with mild bitterness. Im not getting any alcohol what so ever. Really quick finish that leaves a nice lingering dark chocolate and berry taste. I must say I was expecting to pan this after some of the recent bad reviews of the latest release, however this is flat out delicious and absolutely deserving. Also... youre wasting your money if you serve this beer any colder than 60F.
126.96.36.199.20 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . ..... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .
[...update 4.27.09 - my Birthday - bottle] I’ve been lucky to drink probably around 5L of this stuff this year... it helps when you have access to it on tap and you are the one pouring it =). My favorite beer... not sure why I gave it a 8 on aroma... so unique and distinctly Black Albert and I’ve come to be addicted to it so I’ll bump it to a 9. The aroma brings me back directly to days spend in Belgium. Holy hell what a beer. Amazing pour, finally this time around I achieved the super thick, creamy, rich decadent large head indicated in the description. Never ending amazingly rich decadent dark chocolate with sweet, tart and tangy berries in a perfect marriage. I’ve tasted this beer several times side-by-side with Cuvee Delphine, Black Damnation and Double Black... nothing is quite like this most Royal of Stouts though. 188.8.131.52.20 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
[bottle 10.6.09] still can’t believe I only gave it a 9 on aroma... it is completely distinct and unique... I suppose it should get a 10 there also... so maybe this is a perfect 5... mmmm =p maybe.
this absolutely transcends beer... it is a beer and dessert all mixed in one . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . [rerate of 2 bottles batch B 6 BB 2.26 and 2.27.10] the first bottle opened fizzy, malts had fallen apart, tootsie roll grassy, crazy infection that made me very upset, unrecognizable as Black Albert. Okay, opened up 2nd bottle to check, definitely Black Albert in this one, nice dark chocolate cookie, beginning of infection starting to set in but still has plenty of roast, rich and decadent but on its way towards transformation, carbonation is getting a tad fizzy and less marshmallowish, raspberry jam (my favorite part!) offset against german black forest cake, coconut.... o o o o o o woohoo I love this brew!!! Not rating, just enjoying! Every time I have one of these I’m instantly transported back to the farm... love it! .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. [rated 5.8.10, B 6 BB] Pours the same... Aroma is much the same, black currant and german chocolate cake, a bit of soy starting to emerge. Flavor is lovely, and perfect just like Black Albert should be, the only difference is a little bit of soy that has emerged over time, nice espresso notes. So decadently rich, has a chocolate syrup thing going on now too. 10.5.10.5.20, after opening this I had to order some chicken enchiladas with mole.... wow great combo!
coldmeat23 (232) - Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA - NOV 17, 2009
When poured, slowly, this black liquid still manages to be the bottom third of the glass with a massive tan head filling the other two thirds. Wow. Minimal lacing but great head retention.
Dark fruits and sweet roasted malts. Slight yeastiness mixes with apples and pears. Mild vanilla notes. It actually hints at the smell of a nice top-shelf Rum.
Oh, yeah. That’s what I’m talking about, right there. B-A-L-A-N-C-E. Man oh man.
Dark roasted malts mix with sweet candy sugars and a slight hops bite to create ambrosia. Alcohol is very well hidden. Chocolate covered dark fruit flavors. Slight hint of coffee. Toffee and vanilla sweetness. An ever so slight hint of licorice.
All through this, it retains a nice earthy/grainy quality.
Nice and velvet-like in the mouth. Just the way I like it. Very creamy and smooth. Slight touch of oily-ness.
Exceptional! This is one amazing brew. I could drink this everyday from now on out and be completely happy.
Super tasty and super easy to drink. My very first ’perfect’ rating for a beer. obguthr (6653) - Staunton, Virginia, USA - MAR 13, 2010
Rich woody aroma of maple, tobacco, chocolate, walnut, and almond. It reminds me of an old wooden box in which my dad kept his pipe tobacco. Black, with a thick, firm, brown head, spellbinding cascading carbonation, nice lacing. It drinks like liquid chocolate wood, tobacco notes are ever present. Brief appearance of plum at midpalate. Wheat bread crust throughout. Coffee espresso finish. Outstanding mouthfeel and texture, alcohol not sensed. Superb balance. Flawless and an absolute delight. After over 1200 ratings, this gets my first perfect score. joostpost1985 (3) - delft, NETHERLANDS - NOV 27, 2012 does not count
Wow! This beer is unbelievable this is the best beer i ever tasted! please go sell this at the supermarket! beerdo71 (13) - - DEC 9, 2012
Malty, good balance between biterness and alcohol. Nice aromas and good carbonatation, really good beer to enjoy.