brownalegirl (199) - Fountain, Michigan, USA - JUL 25, 2003
4.1 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
I could live for several days on the aroma of this beer - it smells like an exotic jungle fairy tale and it's very easy to be seduced into the oily quicksand. There are some good strong fruit and licorice flavors, but the hard bitter coffee edges hold me back from raving.
jsporrer (1) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 26, 2014 does not count
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pitch Black, rich and creamy with medium brown foamy head that sticks to the glass. Very smooth and flavorful with no harsh aftertaste.
Mikebov (9) - Grandville, USA - NOV 24, 2014 does not count
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Really good stout. Maybe the darkest beer I have ever had. Very smooth despite being a 10 plus percent beer. Complexity increases as it warms.
coachd (130) - Missouri, USA - NOV 21, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Aroma is roasty, woodsy with some black licorice, light booze, raisins/dark fruit and a faint hops scent. Also some coffee notes present. Quite possibly the best looking beer I have ever seen - absolutely pitch black with a miniscule dark brown head, very clingy and sticky on the side of the glass. Pours out remarkably thick. Tastes roasty, slightly charred, hops are surprisingly subdued and ABV is masterfully well hidden. The only booze heat is in the aftertaste where it is most welcome. Some bitterness and dark fruit. I am not getting any licorice in the taste like some other reviewers. Palate is spot on. Thick, oily with a remarkable mouth feel. Overall a great offering by Bells. I can’t wait to see what it tastes like with a few years of age on it. Now if I could only get my hands on some Black Note Stout.
gregwilsonstl (1123) - Missouri, USA - NOV 20, 2014
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Jet black. Creamy dark tan head. Charred. Real dark chocolate. Heavy. This would be incredible w strawberry or oats.
MartinVanBeer (112) - Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA - NOV 17, 2014
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dark pour with lots of lacing and a small dark head. Bakers chocolate and a little smoke on the nose. Lots of nice deep fruit flavors, cherries, dates, orange rind, earth, meat, cinnamon, tobacco, and a touch of salt on the finish. Really delightful stout with long and revealing finish.
UrbanCaveman (63) - Ohio, USA - NOV 17, 2014
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
12 oz bottle, poured into a snifter at room temperature.
A: Pours almost exactly like Old Engine Oil, a thick, viscous black. Almost no head formed with my pour, with what did appear a deep tan. It quickly receded to a ring and patchy cap. No light gets through this beer. None. Not a speck of it, anywhere, along any edge.
S: The smell is roasted chocolate malt, with notes that remind me of a bourbon barrel, oak and booze. There’s definitely some dark fruits playing around in the background as well, like midgits running along the hills the FSM made with His Noodly Appendages.
T: A rush of darkly-roasted, burnt-black bitter chocolate malt opens the taste,which quickly transforms into a swirl of flavors. Seared molasses, espresso, cherries, prunes, and figs all dance about the mouth, atop a stage of dark earth bitterness with some pine needles mixed in. There’s some alcohol burn involved as well, particularly on the back and finish.
M: Oily, thick, chewy, and sticky, this is what a good RIS should drink like.
O: This is a darned good RIS. Being a malthead, I’d have loved to see a little less showcasing of the earthy-pine hop flavors, which are noticeable and sort of horn in on the malt profile. This beer also did not hide its ABV at all to me, though the bottle was only three months old - perhaps the burn fades with more age.
ttroha (328) - Americus, Georgia, USA - NOV 15, 2014
4.4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle from Maltitude. Pours black with a brown head. Aroma of chocolate, roasted malt, and dark fruit. Taste of chocolate, vanilla and molasses, along with chocolate and coffee. Excellent imperial
gopherfan99 (562) - CROATIA - NOV 15, 2014
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Tap; pours black with a thin mocha head; aroma is chocolate, roasted malt, dark fruit with hints of molasses and vanilla; taste is sweet with chocolate, dark fruit, and molasses then becomes bitter with a hint of coffee; finish is light dry bitter; excellent imperial
teemoney (86) - Wisconsin, USA - NOV 12, 2014
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Poured from bottle into snifter. Dark opaque brown with very thin light brown head around the edge. Smells of dark fruit, sugars, the slightest hint of coffee/ chocolate. Complex flavor with more dark fruit and sweet malt, with more evident chocolate notes, a little bitterness in the finish. Full body, with a nice smooth feel. This beer is pretty much perfect, as far as I’m concerned. Great flavor, great balance. Probably my favorite beer ever.
GlasgowTAD (112) - Glasgow/Aberdeen, SCOTLAND - NOV 8, 2014
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle 35cl as an extra from elyts_dlo, thanks dude! Appearances is jet black with no head. Aroma is raisins and roast malt. Taste is more raisins, bitter (dark chocolate and coffee) with an edge of saltiness? Could be alcohol harshness though. Medium bodied. Theres a pleasant chocolatey bitterness to the finish.