DrBayern (1139) - Morehead City, North Carolina, USA - OCT 11, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: OCT 12, 2006 12 oz. bottle, Jan 06, Batch 1. Black as night, big brown head with good lace. Immense aroma of black dark roast coffee, chocolate, and dark fruit is immediately apparent, followed by a vinous undertone. Rich and thick, so much so that it can almost be chewed. Carbonation is so light that it is almost still, but this does not detract. Complex malty flavors combine for a sweet character that is kept in check by a bitterness that is attributable more to dark bitter malt that hops. Bittersweet finish is satisfying and lengthy. Alcohol was never really too noticeable until after I finished the glass. It was quite obvious at that point! This would be good to compare side to side with DFH WWS, Stone Imperial Russian, Alesmith Speedway, Great Divide Yeti, and Great Lakes Blackout. It certainly is in that class.
aracauna (3454) - Georgia, USA - OCT 11, 2006
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
This is a big beer done poorly. It starts off promising, being pitch black with a large, lasting brown head. The aroma is full of dates, raisins, brown sugar, anise and a touch of coffee and soy. All of that is present in the flavor, but it’s nearly masked by an overwhelming sugary, cloying sweetness that ruins the beer for me. This is an example of when the alcohol becomes the goal and not the flavor. You either ruin the beer with cloying sweetness or overly hot alcohol.
Hazmatt (363) - Virginia, USA - OCT 11, 2006
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: SEP 5, 2007 Bottle. Pours a thick, muddy black with a small dark brown head. Aroma is of molasses, rum, roasted malt, bourbon, burnt wood. full bodied is an understatement. Tastes extremely sweet, caramel, molasses, hints of chocolate and raisin. Warming but alcohol hidden fairly well for 15%. Very decent.
JJClark (551) - Roscoe, Illinois, USA - OCT 11, 2006
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from trade with FrumptyDumpty. Thanks Ryan! What an amazing beer. Pours pitch black with thick tan head. Aroma of chocolate covered cherries,expresso and alcohol. It has a heavy body with a thick mouthfeel. Taste is sweet and of dark chocolate. Also has a mellow roasted coffee and malt flavor. Finishes quite nicely with a the alcohol leaving a warm presence in the back of the throat.
trokini (1025) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 10, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: AUG 27, 2007 Black pour with a stocky brown head. Dense aroma of coffee, anise, and roasty malt. The flavor does not follow through. The sweet licorice overpowers the coffee and malt flavors. The fruitiness comes out in the back, but it only masks more of the malt and chocolate flavors. The alcohol is masked quite well, this just needs more balance.
gnoff (9472) - Mölndal, SWEDEN - OCT 9, 2006
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: DEC 19, 2010 First rating
Bottle 12 Fl oz
Dark brown to black color, brown head. Sweet strong and alcohol scent. Burnt and smoke, raissin and Madeira. Lots of high level alcohol. Thick mouthfeel. Extreme heavy raissin burnt sweet, Maderia alcohol, roasted taste, sooooo complex. Warming. Low bitterness. A bit burnt aftertaste.
Rerate, in a blind tasting
Bottle, 12 fl oz, thanks to Mats (not on Ratebeer)!
Sampled on December 17, 2010
Very dark red to black color, dark brown head. Sweet and alcohol scent. Thick, sweet, raissin and alcohol taste. Smooth mouthfeel, medium bitterness.
JohnnyJ (5334) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 5, 2006
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 16, 2007 Jan 2006 bottle poured into a tulip. A burst of dark fruity chocolate aroma once the cap comes off. Intense aroma fills the air. Pitch black with a beautiful dark tan head. Very rich appearance. wow I took a sip of this stuff and it makes me shiver. Very sweet and fruity with hug flavors of chocoalte, coffee, more candied dark fruit, and then lots of smokeyness. Creamy with a little bit of rum flavor. Finishs with some barely distingishable hops (because everything else is so strong) and alcohol. The abv is quite well hidden though. Very thick and sweet. Damn this is good.
muenster (345) - Sevierville, Tennessee, USA - OCT 4, 2006
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle. This is my third of the Demon series. I was totally stoked to find this at Discount Liquor in Milwaukee on my trip to the great lakes, and I have been awaiting this moment for a long time. As soon as I cracked open the bottle, I knew I was not going to be disappointed. The aroma of very sweet dark fruit, espresso, and chocolate instantly filled the air. Really, I mean filled. The pour was dark black. DARK black. Flavor was everything an Imperial stout should be, lots of dark fruit, coffee, and chocolate, then a nice alcohol warmth, and a nice sweetness on top of it all. Not at all overbearing, but quite fitting. The finish is eternal espresso beans. As I take the last sip from my snifter, I feel sad and rejoiceful at the same time. Wonderful.
NachlamSie (3213) - Denver, Colorado, USA - OCT 4, 2006
4.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUL 1, 2008 Bottle, batch 1, acquired in a well executed trade with SoLan. Rating #600. This is one of those really black beers. One of those that is so black it is staggering. I held the goblet to the light for a few minutes trying to discern an iota of light coming through the very edges of this beastly brew. Nope, maybe some dark opaque reds are seen on the most outer boundaries. A solid, dark tan head sits atop for quite some time as well. The aroma is equally as intense. It was assaulting my olfactory glands from the moment I cracked open the glass vessel. Loads of espresso and thick, dark fruit are apparent along with a milky, sugary sweetness. This is quite sweet for the style, but not gritting. I was a little afraid of the sweetness factor after sampling their Samael, but this is nowhere near that level. Plenty of roasty espresso notes and bark are apparent then a wash of licorice and dark, dark rum, though perhaps not quite as reminscent of sugar cane. An earthy, ripe boquet of vinous notes coat my palate throughout. The mouthfeel is thick and coating with minimal carbonation. This is extreme and sets itself apart from other impies with the dessert-like qualities. Completely solid brew. The alcohol is only detected in a pleasing warmth on the back of my palate.
[June 11, 2008]
Bottle from November 2007 thanks to BossHossBikes. Look at this stuff. It is pure black and absolutely opaque. A small dark head forms only to recede to a ring. The aroma is roasty, not absurdly so, and most of the focus seems to be on dark fruits, chocolate brownies, and molasses. What is striking is the absence of alcohol in my nose. The mouthfeel is very slick and thick as oil, highlighting the fruity notes that come out in something akin to cherries. More baked brownies, spiced rum, and earthy coffee. The alcohol now is slightly detected, but for 16%. . . .it is masked quite well. I’m really enjoying the flavor and especially the palate on this one, however I prefer drier, roastier imperial stouts. Still, this is a mammoth beer to behold. I must say I remember the first batch having more defined flavors after 6 months.
[July 1, 2008]
Bottle of Batch 2. While I enjoyed my bottle of batch 3 quite well, it didn’t live up to my memory of my first encounter with Mephistopheles. I picked this one up in hopes of reliving that original glorious moment. The pour is just what I expected: solid viscous oil with a black color. The head was dark and frothier and longer living that expected. The aroma is boozy with heavy suggestions of dark fruits, some molasses, cherries, brownies. I welcomed the familiar heavy, near-still, sticky palate. Now this is more like it. I get all that sweet, boozy stuff that I experienced last time, but also a nice earthy, bitter note for balance. It makes the whole thing a bit roastier, just like I like my imperial stouts. Hints of coffee beans, dark chocolate highlight the heavy chocolate foundation. I am completely digging this one. What a beast. Alcohol is apparent, but certainly not overwhelming. I hear a lot of people griping about the sweetness of this one, but I haven’t encountered that problem. Believe me, some of Avery’s beers are way too sweet for me but this is not one of them. I’m not sure if I just preferred this batch better or if it is the age on it that brought everything together. Whatever it is, I like. My score reflects this tasting.
holdenn (2110) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - OCT 4, 2006
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
12 oz bottle pours a thick black with ruby hints and a thick chocolate milk shake colored head. First aromas are sugar and alcohol wow, lots of both. As it warms these aroma mellow and more roasted and sour aromas come out, but underneath them all the alcohol and sugar is the real back bone to the aromas as well as the taste. First taste is a thick sugar sweetness that fades to a brief chocolate dark fruity flavor before setting fire to your throat with alcohol. But luckily as it reaches room temperature the alcohol and sweetness mellow out a ton. Changing more than most any other beer that i’ve had. The first sugar sweetness rounds out with more roastedness before the complex dark fruit, cherries, chocolate, and carmel slide across your tongue. The alcohol finish then comes in but now only warming your throat instead of torching it.
I could barely notice any oxidation, but the sharer of the bottle, drewbeerme, could taste a hint of it even though this was only 9 months old. Overall it is overly sweet and I think they’re trying too hard with this one. It should be bottle conditioned so it can age for about 4 years but alas it might well be a piece of cardboard by then.