walleye (1094) - Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA - AUG 22, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
poured dark brown with a med. size tan head. aroma toffee, roasted nuts, molasses, floral and a hint of yeast spices. flavor over roasted nuts, sourness, licorice, malts and a nice taste of alcohol. not to bad
Kevin (2192) - New Mexico, USA - AUG 16, 2004
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 13, 2004 bottle. pours a watery black with a thin tan head. aroma of chocolate. flavor is a semi sweet chocolate with a coffee undertone. a bit more roast flavor than i expected. has a bit of a watery hop finish that is empty tasting. the sweetness of this hides the high ABV. I was asked while drinking this what the ABV was i thought 5.5 or 6. i was shocked when i heard 11.9. this might sneak up and hurt ya. but sometimes you need to hurt.
04- black with a fat tan head. sweet chocolate and fruity grapelike aroma. i detect some a bit of alcohol in the nose(hehe). taste is alcohol, chocolate, caramel, plum and raisin(why do these to tend to appear together???) finish is warming-BOY HOWDY is it warming. leaves a dry cocoa taste. there is a bitter hop taste that is prevelant in the finish. molasses comes out as this baby warms. there is a jumble of flavors here. but the alcohol also takes hold as this creature nears itís end.
ratings: ap-4 of 5, ar-6 of 10, tas- 7 of 10, pal-3 of 5 ov-17
starngely this is what i gave the fresh 03.
lets see i sat on this for a year so i go into this with hope. unfortunately they get dashed. damnit, damnit, damnit.
pours black with a lighter head than the 04. aroma of green raisins that is not pleasant. notes of alcohol sugar and chocolate. taste is alcohol, alcohol, raisins with licoriceand not much else. a brown sugar and currant flavor permeates this brew. finish is one dimensional and not that enjoyable. leaves a brown sugar and vanilla and alcohol flavor. i donít believe this beer actually deteriorated in the last year. i checked my rating from a previous sample when it was fresh and apparently it was better fresh, but i have high hopes for the cellaring of the 04.
03 one year later numbers:
ap-4 of 5, ar 4 of 10, tas-6 of 10, pal 3 of 5, ov 14
Lumpy (1802) - Carrollton, Texas, USA - AUG 16, 2004
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JAN 6, 2005 Bottle. First flavors to come out are grape, liquid sugar, helluva lotta spice, smooth hops, dark malt, coffee, and alcohol. The grape note is a little too much up front, but other than that, it is damn near perfect. This tastes like a mixture of a Belgian Strong Ale and an Imp Stout. The 11.9% ABV is almost undetectable. Outstanding.
2004: Same as 2003, but the sweet grape is replaced by cherry. Very good. Sweet and complex.
BrockLanders (780) - Panama City, Florida, USA - AUG 12, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Iíve got several of these in the cellar and decided to bust one out and enjoy it as T.S. Bonnie passes through. This son-of-a-gun is another great example of why I like imperial stouts so much. Deep black with some brown creeping around the edges. Nice head at first, fading into a ring. Aroma is firmly of molasses and coffee. Deep, complex flavors. Where to begin? Roasted malts; Caramel; Toffee; Brown sugar; Blackberry jam faint in the background; Espresso. Raisins. A fine brew.....certainly not the best, but in this category thatís nothing to be ashamed of.
DocLock (9999) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 5, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Good news and bad news here.....or I should say good news and semi-good news. Is this in my top 5 RISís? No. Is it a great beer in its own right? Absolutely. Pours deep mahogany (why do I think of Diana Ross everytime I use the word "Mahogany"), with a rather small tan head...sort of like Halle Berryís tits.....very nice, but not huge. Aroma of malt, coffee, chocolate, currants, licorice, cabernet, and soy sauce. Tastes malty, with big coffee, chocolate, some prunes, milk stoutiness, and a finishing cherry tartness of sorts with some hops. The palate is dense, firm, with a slightly dry, tart finish. The alcohol is not as well hidden as other Impyís Iíve had, but that takes nothing away from this one. I have always been, and continue to be, impressed by the offerings of Avery.
Quetzalcoatl (153) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - AUG 5, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottled in 2002. Pours as dark as dark can be, with very little head. The flavor was great, roasted malt, coffee. This has sweet and sticky mouthfeel, very big and chewy. Overall a fine Imp Stout.
kumite56 (473) - Cordova, Tennessee, USA - AUG 1, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
I enjoyed this beer. Nice malty, nutty roaty aroma with some floral hops noted. Appearance was nice, black witha smallish tan head. Flavor was great. Alcohol well masked with a nice balance and none of the burnt taste associated with inferior stouts. Good beer.
barenada (211) - Georgetown, Indiana, USA - JUL 26, 2004
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
At 10% alcohol I knew this would be the only one of these Iíd have. I liked the taste of this a lot. I detected a definite bourbon odor, and I asked if it was aged in an old bourbon barrel but the bartenders didnít think so. There wasnít really any bourbon to the taste so I may be insane.
Cobra (1100) - - JUL 25, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottled in 2003. 11.9% ABV. My bottle was aged for a year already when I bought it. I aged it an additional 3 months. Served in a snifter glass. 22 oz. brown bomber bottle, with silver foil covering the snap cap. Satisfying pfftt when opened. Poured out a deep black opaque color, with reddish / caramel colored highlights at the egde of darkness. Head was dark tan colored, and minimal.
Aromas are of licorice right off the bat, with strong maltiness following as it warms slightly. Hops are somewhat noticeable, with a nice, earthiness to their aromas. I was actually afraid to open this beer, because Iíve heard so much about how overpowering it was. Well, aging must have taken itís toll, because itís nothing to be scared of. The licorice aromas meld nicely with sweet caramels, English toffee, anise seeds, the hops, and alcohols.
Very aromatic, and changes as it warms up. Tastes are of strong malts, espresso coffee, warm caramel, and the alcohols, of course.
Waxy, thick mouthfeel. Oily, slick, waxy, and smooth are the only words I can find to describe the mouthfeel. Itís like chewing on a coffee scented wax candle, sort of. Definitely a meal in a glass.
Warming alcohols hit your gut hard when swallowed. Not "hot", but very warming. Finishes dry, almost astringent. This beer has a definite puckering power to it. Well balanced flavors, so nothing dominates the flavor profile. A really nice, well made Russian Imperial Stout from the dedicated brewers at Avery. Good show, gentlemen!
kwoeltje (2233) - Manchester, Missouri, USA - JUL 23, 2004
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 11/20
Deep black with almost no head. Aroma of molasses. Flavor was bittersweet with molasses and dark fruit. IJust didnít do it for me--I was disapppointed after reading all the rave reviews