SG (465) - Valley Center, California, USA - MAR 1, 2003
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JAN 21, 2004 I've had this on tap and in the 750ml bottle. Review is on the bottle... Wow! Very dark and looks great, but the aroma is out of this world. The coffee and chocolate flavors dominate. Pretty smooth for 12%. Hints of caramel with a snappy finish. The taste gets bigger on the last half of the glass. Probably my favorite Imperial Stout right now. Sometimes it can be a bit much though, it should be shared.
baobubba (455) - Starkville, Mississippi, USA - JAN 13, 2003
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
This had one of the best aromas I have ever experienced from a beer. Starts out sweet with touches of coffee and cocoa powder. After it warms up a bit the chocolate really starts to come out and this tart cherry like aroma begins to take form. The aroma finally takes the shape of this awsome chocolate/mocha covered cherry aroma.The flavor is sweet with a super roasty finish. Bitterness grabs the back of your tongue on its way down. Wish they sold this in Seattle.
BeerLimey (2154) - California, USA - JAN 13, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUL 15, 2003 Dense black, thick chocolate mousse foam. Creamy roasted coffee aroma, light graininess, winey fruits. Smooth easy drinking, slips down pretty easily. Dark chocolate and roasted coffee front. Second half shows considerable alcohol content and apple fruitiness. Aftertaste comes back chocolaty.
rodolito (162) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 7, 2003
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: MAR 26, 2004 Kudos to Alesmith! What a beer. The bourbon cask version is simply amazing. Again, thanks to OíBrienís for the excellent tap list. A sinful, opaque black that is so powerful it bends light in its direction and absorbs it. Fluffy, creamy, cocoa colored head. Velvety smooth. The 12% alcohol is only barely noticeable. Chocolate aroma that made my stomach growl. The strong coffee aroma present in the bottle version was greatly subdued. Beautiful, rich mouth feel. Delicious chocolate, coffee, and vanilla flavors. None of the coffee acidity present in the bottle version (when first released). The bottle version has a much more pronounced, intense, quality coffee flavor. Each has its pluses. I havenít had any of the bottled version since it was first released, but I imagine it is aging well. Iíd rate the bottled version only slightly lower. If you ever want to start your day off right, have a bottle for breakfast! It will leave you inebriated and buzzing with joy.
jayme9874 (756) - Hamburg, New York, USA - JAN 3, 2003
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
(Slight re-rate) Black with slight ruby edges and i mean slight, beautiful, think,rocky and creamy brown head and lace. Nose of malt, strong black coffee, chocolate pie with dark chocolate shavings. Alcohol nose has lessened with time. Oh man, silky smooth, INTENSE flavors of bittersweet chocolate caramel ,alcohol, coffee beans and cocoa powder. Full, rich, intense and sharp. Nice long bitter finish, a bit drying as well. I didnt notice many burnt fruit impressions, notably some raisons and plums. This is a HUGE beer and one not to be taken lightly. I feel it may need some time to age so it can mellow and meld a bit. Its awesome now but he is a beast. I cant imagine what he would be like in 3-4 years. I need a few more:) Alesmith can brew. Thank you Gusler, Herbjones, and Trap for samples of this.
Marc (485) - Yokosuka, JAPAN - DEC 22, 2002
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JAN 25, 2006 Strong coffee nose (as expected) with touches of bakers cocoa. Thick oily mocha head and a black as hell color. First sips had a lot of coffee and more but it was kicked over by too much alcohol. So after it warmed a bit and the alcohol monster got out of my face it revealed dark chocolate, fresh roast coffee, a bit of soy sauce, burnt caramel, and toasted marshmallow. Finished a bit shorter than expected with assertive malts and a puff of (yes) more coffee. 4.2 2002 bottle 24JAN06 Alcohol has really mellowed out and has made foom or a lot more coffee and dark chocolate. Despite its hugeness it is still extremly balanced. <strike>rerate whiskey barrel cask Holy scheisse creamy beyonde belief. Butter Irish cream, wiskey, vanilla and wood all make special apearances in this wiskey barrel edition. Finishes burnt, bright, and sweet. .yet another rerate growler of whiskey barrel cask. Like DaSilky1 said, every time I have this, it gets better. Look out in the next few months for a new edition.</strike>
Schroppfy (2350) - Łůdż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - DEC 10, 2002
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: FEB 10, 2008 Whoa baby! Iím sitting next to Radek in Volgonís room, and we launch into this one. Coffee city, but much more. Radek says bubblegumm, yeah, I agree aa bit. Also plum, and did I mention coffee? Smoky as well. I can definitely see why this gets the palate ratings it does. I only had a small amount (saving myself slavishly for other brews) but this was an unbelievable brew. This damn ratebeer party was top-notch! Thanks, Gus, for sending this one.
joet (1919) - Santa Rosa, California, USA - DEC 9, 2002
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
The brightest stout Iíve ever had -- freshness all over this, that Alesmith sparkle in the glass, heavy deep cocoa and coffee flavors, fresh toastiness, suggestions of anise?, finishes dry and with peppery alcohol, excellent smooth feel.
beerdedbastard (22) - Willoughby, Ohio, USA - DEC 8, 2002
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This was an Oak aged draft/or maybe casked(?) version.
Opaque,black velvety appearance with a light tan,creamy head.Huge aromaís of chocolate,coffee and vanilla(from the oak).Velvety mouthfeel with a crisp,yet soft carbonation.A HUGE "dessert" beer that would go great with a Black Forest chocolate cake,or even as a float with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
JCW (1273) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 8, 2002
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: OCT 21, 2003 This is one my favorite Imperial. Has a taste that blends with the roast coffee taste.
Rerate: The new batch went a little overboard on the coffee. Acidity goes with the coffee.