Murphy (1759) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - JAN 19, 2003
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Fantiastic beer. Lots of alcohol taste and a full malty palate. Damn near got me drunk. Luckly the kegs rolled in afterwards. A fine beer, everyone should have this.
Drew (2411) - Kent, Ohio, USA - JAN 16, 2003
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Get yourself a Hershey"s Special Dark, slather it with gooey toffee. Then dip it into a cup of black coffee that"s been spiked with a generous shot of Irish whiskey. This is one heavenly concoction. Aroma is sweet and strong. Palate is thick and round, but thinner at the end - makes you want another sip. For some reason, the toffee flavors remained on the right edges of my tongue, the roasty chocolate was on the left and a nice, even hop stayed in the middle. This is obviously a world class brew, I can imagine the complexities possible with aging it. (I immediately followed this with a Stone IPA - what a Black&Tan that would make - try it!)
Rockinout (966) - Kent, Ohio, USA - JAN 15, 2003
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JAN 27, 2004 2002 bottle. Caramel colored but darker in the center and gets lighter toward the edge. Caramel-toffee nose, chewy round smooth on the palate. Hoppy, bitter finish. My last couple of sips are room temp and a very tasty alcohol bite has kicked in. Thanks to ecrvich for the trade!
Ringo (963) - Loveland, Colorado, USA - JAN 15, 2003
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Man oh man. I was sort of pre-hyped for this, being that it is a new local brew, but I vowed to give it an honest, non-biased rating. And I am. This beer is awesome. But my take on this is that it really does not taste like a stout, imperial or otherwise. Have you noticed people speaking of the toffee on this one? Well, to me, it tastes a lot like a great Belgian brown abbey ale, it reminds me a lot of Rochefort. It is just a little bit drier (that"s the stout part). But they could have called this an Abbey-style ale, and no one would think to question it. If you like Rochefort, and Westy, and the like, you need to give this one a try. Also, as previously noted, this beer is very drinkable, i"m going to use a word here that I have never used on Ratebeer but knew that someday I would: it"s quaffable. UPDATE: same beer, I just wanted to add that as the beer warmed, its stout qualities became more evident. It still reminds me of an Abbey ale though. Maybe an Abbey ale-stout?
JCW (1275) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 15, 2003
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: SEP 16, 2003 I had the opportunity to sample this beer next to Bells Expedition, Victory's Storm King, Brooklyn's Chocolate. Brooklyn's Chocolate was the most similiar to The Czar in flavor. Brooklyn had a slightly alcohol finish, The Czar would have none of that. I found the Czar to be slightly sweet up front with a comfortable finish. In the description toffee is bought up, I taste it alot. I'm going to age some of this. Avery definitely has a keeper here. Many Thanks to Ecrvich for providing this one. Cheers.
stephen (308) - California, USA - JAN 12, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Poured fairly thick with a slowly dissipating beige head. Medium carbonation level and not as opaque is I was expecting. When held up to light I got a mix of dark brown and ruby. Aroma is slightly more complex than most imperials but not overwhelming - chocolate, coffee, alcohol, and a little licorice. Flavor is also not overwhelming and in softer than I expected. Mildly bitter with chocolate, coffee and a unique sweetness that was balanced by the somewhat hidden alcohol level. 22 oz bottle was finsihed very quickly, so I’d have to say this beer is also extremely drinkable.
Schroppfy (2360) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - JAN 11, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: AUG 3, 2003 Very lively carbonation, much more palateable than some of the other motor-oil Imperials. Sweet and spicy, but also coffee (as both Aubrey and ecrvich say) and smoky, too...I don"t get a lot of chocolate malt through all the rest that"s going on here, and as much as I love Hallertau I couldn"t discern a strong presence. But I"m getting something really earthy about the malt, almost Scottish (but I had McRogue earlier today, so maybe that"s it!). A very different Imperial and a good one.
Aubrey (3442) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - JAN 8, 2003
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: NOV 7, 2004 Jan. 2003: Thin (yet enduring) dark tan head with healthy lace patterns. Dark and mysterious color with a luminescent ruby glow (in front of a bright light). Complex and inviting nose with hints of freshly roasted coffee, dark chocolate, sweet cookie dough, dark fruits, and fresh yeast. Mouthfeel is absolutely out of this world! Thick, but not cloying; velvety, soft, smooth & creamy, with the perfect amount of carbonation. My tongue convulsed with pleasure. PERFECT nip of alcohol adds to the flavor and warms the soul. Decent amount of hops add a little flowery zing and a gentle bitterness in the finish; complements the subtle, vanilla-cream-like sweetness very well. Incredibly balanced and overwhelmingly flavorful. Have to say, this beer is absolutely amazing -- and it’s SO YOUNG! This Imperial raises the bar. Dec. 2003: Different from the original batch. Alcohol is much more noticeable. Grapefruit pokes through more, also. Have a few bottles nestled in my basement with last year’s. Nov., 2004: Much better than the last batch, but not quite as spectacular as the first batch. That said, it’s still really good. Silky texture. Complex aromas. Warming alcohol.
Ernest (6259) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JAN 8, 2003
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: NOV 17, 2006 2005 bottle. Head is initially average sized, frothy, light brown, mostly diminishing. Body is dark brown to black. Aroma is moderately malty (chocolate, caramel, roasted grain), lightly hoppy (flowers, orange, resin), with notes of vanilla and alcohol, light note of leather. Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter. Finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic, heavily bitter. Medium to full body, vevety texture, lively carbonation, lightly to moderately alcoholic. Best batch since the 2002, easily. Bigger mouthfeel than the previous two batches, less apparent alcohol, same big chocolate-caramel malt nose, great balance. Tasty stuff! So glad Czar is pretty much back to how I wanted it! 2005 has been an awesome year for Avery all-around. 2006 bottle is pretty much identical to above.