Erdrick (21) - JAPAN - MAY 9, 2004
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
The alcohol is very well masked in this stout. The label of 11.5% would make you think that this beer induce a nap, but that isnít the case. Awesome scents roll off of the pour. I have never had a pour produce ANY head though. The dominant scents are those of soy sauce, fig, and raisins. Yes, I said soy sauce... anyone I know that has tasted/smelled expedition stout immediately picked up on the soy sauce scent. The taste of the actual beer is very strong, with an oily chocolate taste. This is not a beginners beer though, its very hard to drink, and I personally couldnít drink more than 2 in a sitting. It paired well with a red wine glass I had.
jonwell (104) - Huntington Beach, California, USA - MAY 9, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
A great stout indeed! (~55 degrees, snifter). A loose brown head quickly dissipates to a ring and some floating bubbles. Lacing is minimal. WHo cares? Aroma is roasted malt and a bit of alcohol... a touch of chocolate as well. Flavor has very little alcohol, suprising in a brew this big. A great burnt/roasted malt flavor, espresso, bakers chocolate, and a touch of hops to keep things balanced. Body is thinner than you would expect, but whatever. Mouthfeel is very smooth and velvety, with just enough carbonation. Well done, a great stout!
TheDean (786) - MIlwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 8, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAY 9, 2004 Wow, this is a nice stout. Looks good and taste good. Does Bell?s make a bad beer? So far, the answer is no.
darkerdabetter (255) - Michigan, USA - MAY 8, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JUL 10, 2004 Chocolaty goodness, black as can be, smooth and oily, with a wonderful aroma, and I didnít even taste the 11.5% alcohol (bonus). OK, I noticed it, but not overpowering at all. This is a top-notch stout.
ross (2075) - weddington, North Carolina, USA - MAY 6, 2004
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: MAR 31, 2009 first off, i FINALLY got a snifter!! that being out of my system- this is the first beer i put into it. i really like the presentation look that the snifter gives this beer. pours like motor oil with a thin tan head. smells of chocolate, coffee, and toffee. hoppy coffee flavor that is not much unlike speedway stout. this is much more drinkable than speedway is however because it is not so thick. great hoppy flavor that adds a very nice bitter aspect to the brew. this is absolutely wonderful, and very worthy of a top 50. this brewery has yet to disappoint me. wonderful beer.
zach8270 (3376) - Henrietta, New York, USA - MAY 5, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 11, 2008 [bottle] Pours a pitch black with a thick and sticky brown head that does not go anywhere for quite a while. Deep and rich roasted malt aroma with a hint of molasses and a slight trace of alcohol. First taste absolutely blows you away. Wonderfully rich coffee and chocolate taste with a strong malt backbone and a strong bitter finish. Warms on the way down, but hides the ABV well. Thanks again MarkR.
mardermax (71) - santa cruz, California, USA - MAY 3, 2004
4.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
cheers to zach diesel. 12 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass: no head, really. slight swirling on the top, chocolate brown. smell of alcohol, chocolate, coffeeeeeeeeeee. mmmm, mmm, mmmmmmm. MONSTEROUS! huge. genius. roasty burnt love. tastes great. smooth dark chocolate decadence. warms my belllllly. touche. one of the best beers ive tried.
Rastacouere (6123) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - APR 30, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: AUG 22, 2005 Pitch black motor-oil when pouring, a mirror to any trace of light adventurous enough to try to get through. Superb chocolate brown 1-inch head, long-lasting and displaying awesome lacing, foamy, sticky like it came nitro-pushed. Very rich malt aroma, satisfyingly bittersweet with tons of molasses, dark belgian chocolate over home-made cookies, dark european bread, torrefied coffee with two creams. Subtle fruitiness (plums, blackberries), just as subtle complementing hops as I love them, piney and obvious hints of smoke. Very complex, but still not overly envelopping in the aroma department. In mouth though, this is a very intense experience, contemplative flavour development with the typical Bellís milky aspect although thereís almost no sweetness here. Just great smoked chocolate. Multi-dimensional spicy hoppy aftertaste, piney, bitter and very long. Carbonation was much more generous than I was lead to believe from other reviews, itís just perfect here and I think Iíd have enjoyed it less or found it a bit less lively if it hadnít been for a little tongue-cleaning carbonation to entertain such a thick body. Holy Crap, totally dominant monument that I never expected to enjoy all that much and Iíll admit liking some sweetness in my beers and not being a fan of hopfests. Once again, Raindog is the gentleman to be thanked and re-thanked.
Iíve had this a few more times since the original rating and this remains my top imperial stout, does everything right for me. Complex, aging well, bold and superbly balanced. Transcendant world-class offering.
Sammy (8406) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - APR 23, 2004
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: AUG 28, 2004 Beautiful chcocolate brown. Bittersweet. Similar to Rogue stouts perhaps a touch better. Unpasteurized.
11026 (1772) - Alabama, USA - APR 16, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAR 9, 2007 From the bottle poured a dark brown head. Aroma of chocolate and coffee. Oily thick, canít see through the thing. Great malt taste initially, a little alcohol in the middle and ending in mild hops. Best Bellís Iíve had to date. 9/4/9/5/18 <P> Batch 6672 sampled Nov. í06. Low escape of carbonation as the bottle is uncapped. Pours a fairly viscous black color with a smallish brown head that fades somewhat quickly to a ring. Decent lacing. Aroma is lightly oxidized, still full of deeply roasted malt and dark chocolate. Full bodied and coating. Light cardboard notes blend well with roasted malts. Alcohol is not very apparent. Chocolate, still packs a nice hop bitterness for balance. Damn this beer is rockiní.<P> batch 7205 consumed March í07. Black with a quick fading beige head. Some lacing. Seemingly more malty than other editions. More roasty, less apparent hop bitterness. Slightly less hop flavor than other editions? Deep roasted aroma, slight oxidation. Pleasant, but seemingly lacking the hop punch in taste of earlier editions. Tasty all the same, just a more malty, roasty imperial stout. Quite enjoyable with an aged Acid cigar.