Ommegang is a pretty fun brewery. Their beers are usually a little off the beaten path, but I find them to be quite drinkable too. That being said, I didn’t go into this with very high hopes because I don’t like flavored beverages. I don’t get the whole pumpkin spice latte revelation, I am not a fan of flavored water, and I don’t like niche beers flavored like things such as dark cherry and chocolate. But this website would yield very little from me if I only drank beers inside my comfort zone.
This is a very pretty brew, the color of which is described by the brewery as “onyx” colored, which, as silly as it sounds I definitely see it. This is not just a dark beer – it is really beautiful. The head is maybe the most beautiful part of the pour, however. It’s this awesomely frothy brown cloud that looks like a dirty cappuccino – but in a good way! A REALLY good way! Now, I usually don’t highlight the actual appearance of a bottle unless it really is something special; this label is so cool! I love looking at this label almost too much. I’ve thought about peeling it off and sticking it on a wall or something.
This almost doesn’t smell like beer! Seriously, when you pour it, it’s as if you’re just mixing some dark chocolate on the stovetop. It is very enjoyable to behold. You get a lot more out of the enjoyment of the beer if you breathe deeply through the nose while taking a nice big swig.
So, up until this point, this has been a 5 star beer. My senses of smell and sight have reveled in the experience of this beer, but my sense of taste is not quite convinced. Do not get me wrong; this beer is a luscious DESSERT beer. I highlight the word dessert because you drink a dessert beer completely differently than you would any other. Let me explain: Any other beer you would drink just by itself, no food or any other experience is required, whereas with a dessert beer, it is much more pleasant to have the beer follow up whatever you were just eating and wrap up the meal with a full, savory flavor that caps the night. This plays into this because I had half of this bomber bottle before dinner and half after. Prior to eating I really disliked this beer, it was decidedly ‘meh.’ However, post dinner it was a very nice follow up to BBQ chicken and rice, wrapping up the spice of the BBQ sauce and char. It certainly tastes of chocolate and there are some surprising Belgian fruity notes. I feel that the beer by itself doesn’t stand up very tall, but following food – as a dessert beer, it is stellar!
Putting a numerical rating on this beer is difficult since I had two very polarizing opinions on it. On one hand, I really was not a fan of this beer by itself; it was a little boring and left me wanting more. If I am going outside of my comfort zone and trying a chocolate beer, hit me in the friggen face with some cocoa! But on the flipside, once I had something to eat and treated this like a dessert beer, the body and flavor really came alive. Not to mention the scent, appearance, and bottling of this beer are all stellar. I think this may call for 2 ratings.
3.5 out of 5 (By Itself)
4.25 out of 5 (Post food / As a Dessert Beer)