BBB63 (6013) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - MAR 23, 2006
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Well folks, It is Michael reporting here, the not so quite archangel, for I am the king of the Dark Side of Stoutieland. I am a about to pass judgment on this fallen angel Mr. Mephistopheles, should he be banished to the layers of hell and over-rated beer or given forgiveness and allowed to rise to the gates of Pantheon of beer nirvana? This is my word and testament...so it is noted:
This beer is completely lightless as a darkened soul. Is joined by a tan frothy topping, which lays claim to my Expedition snifter.
The vapors of this demon lord are quite restrained surprisingly as he seems to lay in wait. Oh, those molasses cured malts, Starbucks Mocha latte and heavy vinous qualities are there but they seemed to be afraid of my stoutie snout. Only the alcoholic phenols are will to give it up for beergeekdom. Disappointing, you coward!
The olde one finally come out to play and attack full force upon my palate with swords of black strap, star anise, semi-sweet chocolates, and effective brandy imbued oak. Just as I counter, he throws up a wall of cursed near rotten fruits and full throttled espresso bitterness. Damn him to hell I say and pressed forward I quickly subdued the alcohol golem and say no more. Only hell should bar the way.
Alas the Demon is driven off has only the oily black blood lingers on my beaten down palate.
I am victorious, Mephistopheles is no more. No passage onto field of brew heaven this beast for he failed to pass the test. Sorry, but you are NO DARK LORD, only a lesser demon!
So is my testament given this day March 23 of the year 2006. Enjoyed while listening to Loreena McKennitt - Danteís Prayer which fit the mood perfectly!
Kevin (2071) - New Mexico, USA - MAR 23, 2006
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
To get ready for this I waited until the sun was setting and I put some Danzig in the CD player. Dazing 4 actually just for the song call on the dark. It seems appropriate. Brand new god is playing as I contemplate opening this. It is cloudy out and cold. The sun is setting but no one can tell the dark is creeping across without announcement. Tonight is the night to unleash Mephistopheles. This monster pours a pitch oily black that looked like crude coming out of the bottle and sitting atop it is a thick arrogant brown head. I could smell the booze from this dark demon before I finished pouring. Also in the nose are plums, plump raisins, and cheesecake. I cupped my petrus glass in both hands to take the first sip and I tasted rocket fuel, then I started to pick out ultra sweet mango, pineapple, super sugared chocolate, and the kind of sweetness that would kill a diabetic at 30 yards. I like it. Oh yeah, Iím hearing the words from, canít speak as I try to wrap my mind around this. It is appropriate. I think I need more than a 12 oz er I wish Avery still made bombers of their BIG beers. Third sip is so evil and mean with alcohol and sweet flavors attacking my taste buds. Something port like, something like a mocha coffee blend, something like everything I have tasted in a stout but uncontained and wild. This tastes like the beast but with more chocolate and that is not a bad thing. But the finish is the same as I remember slick, fruit but with cocoa and the slightest coffee. Plum and green raisins also play a large part in this. But it is choc full of chocolate and incredibly sticky. The alcohol is much more prevalent than some stronger impyís Iíve had. I really need to get a hold of a few more to age. Oh yeah here comes the song I was waiting, oh can you see it now how black your future will be, oh can you see it. Until you call on the dark. A nice beer that can only get better
Ap-5 ar- 8 tas-7 pal-3 ov-17
Padron4KM (535) - Chandler, Arizona, USA - MAR 22, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
12 oz bottle, born in Jan 06, batch 1.
Inky black topped with a thin esspresso head that never realy went away. Lacing and alcohol coat the glass in a thin sheet.
Initial aroma is soy sauce, but allowed to warm slightly, you find chocolate, molasses, cherries, port and alcohol.
Flavors are sweet, prune, cherries, chocolate, port. also some salty soy sauce and just a little hops on the finish
definitely a big, decadant, desert type beer.
frankenkitty (1959) - Oak Lawn, Illinois, USA - MAR 22, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours oily black with a hint of purple at the edges and a thick, mocha head keeps as a fat, creamy souffle, leaving a wet sheet of lace on the way down. Aroma finds big salty soy sauce & anchovy opening to bitter & oily Java bean with asphalt and ham. Alcohol is apparent even when chilled. Huge and thick with a sweet affront in the flavor... esters creeping around all over the place amidst hard fruit candy. Fruity malts lead to a meaty, salty finish and coffee bitterness shows in the aftertaste in a lingering conglomeration of sweet, salt & bitter.
Hot, as mentioned, but... wait! Look! Thereís a freakiní demon on the label!! ("Hisssss... it burrrrnnsss!!") What did you expect? This is a 15.1% Imperial Stout for chrissakes. Let it sleep if youíre timid, but quit whining and let the more able-bodied open their bottles now to find the decadent portion of Hell dedicated to the Lustful and the Gluttonous.
<font size=-4>Bottle from <a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Places/ShowPlace.asp? Liquors, Chicago, IL 60638<font size=-1>
JoeMcPhee (8411) - Toronto, ON, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 21, 2006
3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
12 oz bottle shared with beastiefan2k and dickinsonbeer at Spuyten Duyvil. Dark black beer with a dark brown head. Very unusual aroma, quite boozy and a bit petroly (like some aged white wines). Very floral and light smelling for something that is so black. Underneath is some toffee, yeasty esters and some spiciness as well. The spice and molasses intensify as the beer warms up. Flavour though is all booze. Really alcoholic and hot tasting, which masks the nice burnt sugar and toffee that I can taste behind it. Fairly sugary palate as well, despite all of the booziness. Some really great flavours in this beer, but in the end itís too damn hot to be enjoyable. Iím in the minority on this one, but I didnít enjoy this one at all.
muzzlehatch (4424) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - MAR 21, 2006
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
12 oz bottle obtained in trade with illinismitty (thanks man), Batch 1, bottled January 2006. Sampled at cellar temperature from a Maudite snifter. Thick, thick mocha-malt head, fine-bubbled and lasting, atop a jet oily body, dark icicle-lacing, gorgeous....tar, port, cherries, old pipe tobacco, bit of vanilla-oakiness, succulent and already speaking of some age, hints of alcohol but they are fine and warming, dark cocoa when warmer and alcohol becomes oppressive to an unpleasant extent....Plenty of bitter dry hops in the body, juicy fruity wine and tannins, lots of oaky vanilla and a big alcoholic burn late, orange peel and sour cherries, thick espresso bitterness, so much going on itís the kitchen sink approach but it sort of works, huge caramel sweetness amidst the dark espresso and hops.....Thick, rich but also syrupy and burning, a barleywinish palate that is just too harsh for me, with a light soy quality that grows stronger towards the dry, corrosive finish....thereís no questioning the quality that went into this, it certainly shows oceans of flavor especially, and I enjoyed it in many respects, but thereís too much harshness and fuesel alcoholic quality when it approaches room temperature for me to ascribe greatness.....little subtlety, lots of burn doesnít do it for me in this style, or in any. Mixed.
Gusler (2653) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - MAR 21, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
The beer emerges from the 12-ounce brown bottle a soot black, the head Bunyanesque, the color a nice deep tan, the consistency thick and creamy, after its slow demise, the lace forms a glutinous blanket to obfuscate the glass. Ah that smell, toasted and roasted grain, sweet molasses, rich malt, a real foretoken of things to come, start is cotton candy sweet, the malt profile thick, the top full. Finish is merciful in its acidity; the hops mingle nicely with the 15.10 percent ABV, but a good thing to cut the sweetness, a belly warmer, and another hit for Avery.
beastiefan2k (2408) - Emerald City (formely NYC & KS), Washington, USA - MAR 21, 2006
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
100th rater, enjoyed with Dickinsonbeer and JoeMcPhee at Spuyten Duyvil. After the pour the smell hits you like a rocket. So I let it sit for a bit. It poured black (of course) with a brown head that left soon. After letting it sit for a bit, the aroma was surprisingly light. It was a light alcoholic, floral fragrance, unlike a regular imperial stout. Here comes the taste. The body is much lighter than expected. Bitter taste but a smooth finish, probably becasue of the lighter body. Again, the smoothness going down is surprising. As I sit and drink the finish becomes a floral bitterness. Imagine a sweet bitter floral beer. Definitly worth a top 50 spot. Also, probably not worth aging. Now check my two commrades ratings and see the difference.
pineypower (2504) - Pine Barrens, New Jersey, USA - MAR 20, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAY 3, 2009 So I finally got it, and I went in with high expectations, and boy did Avery deliver. Pours out a dark thick black with a nice active brownish head. Aroma is roasty and sweet with some notes of chocolate and some fruit. Taste is very nice so complex. First I got a nice rich chocolate flavor that faded into some notes of caramel coffee and some dried fruit mostly some plum and maybe fig here or there with some more notes of vanilla and some mild oak and rum. Finish is sweet but sharp like a strong coffee. Very complex beer, Iíd put this one on par with just about any imperial, one hell of a beer... no pun intended.
HopasaurusRex (195) - Glen Ellyn, Illinois, USA - MAR 19, 2006
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
One big bad mofo of a beer. I really like it though. Very much along the lines of Dogfishís WWS, but different in some way that I can discern. Iím glad I bought a couple because I have a feeling this will age nicely. I like that its well carbonated-not too much though.