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RATINGS: 2051   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.01   EST. CALORIES: 180   ABV: 6%
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This is a full-bodied stout with plenty of roast flavor as well as hints of molasses and chocolate. Ridiculous amounts of black and caramel malts make this stout smooth, creamy, and utterly opaque.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
LiebeBier (808) - Annapolis, Maryland, USA - APR 20, 2003
UPDATED: APR 27, 2003 Extremelly complex. Smokey flavor. Rich malt, chocolate. Wow, what a stout. Outstanding.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
ElGaucho (2156) - Minnetonka, Minnesota, USA - APR 16, 2003
UPDATED: NOV 10, 2006 11/10/06 re-rate: Rich, sweet, chocolate aroma with hints of lactose. Dark black body with a tan head and excellent lace. It’s remarkable that a beer that is as sweet as this, is as low in alcohol as it is. Not that this is overly sweet or cloying at all. Tastes like an imperial stout light. I’m not as overwhelmed with this brew this time around as the first time. Good flavor and very well made, just not a "wow" beer. I’m not going to change my ratings for it as I might only dock the aroma by a point and the overall by a point. 4/16/03: Rich, chocolatety aroma with oak notes. Completely black/opaque body with large brown, rootbeer float-like head; mostly lasting. Wonderfully thick lace. Sweet enough to be a porter...or a sweet stout. Chocolatety with oak and a chalky finish. A very good stout. Started to sour a bit upon warming like the Bell’s Porter, but it was a false alarm. Very good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
SilkTork (5121) - Rochester, Kent, United Kingdom, Kent, ENGLAND - APR 15, 2003
Inveigler smuggled this over from Michigan in his backpack. This is clearly his favourite beer - and it's easy to see why. A good creamy pour with a delightfully soft coffee coloured head. A malty nose, mostly dry and dusty, but with a hint of Horlicks, and a scraping of dark Belgian chocolate. The initial mouthfeel is double cream soft, but that soon settles into a smooth dryness. The taste is of an intense dry bitterness which seems divided between hops and roast malt. There is fruit in the background, and a molasses sweetness, but that doesn't make itself felt strongly enough against the bitterness. This reminds me of Guinness from many years ago. The nose remains interesting all the way through, with aged oak making itself felt now and again. An intense and well made stout, but just a little too brutal and unbalanced for me. The occasional fruit and nestles milk at the back of the throat do not really compensate for the relentlessly tub thumping orchestral bitterness.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
ARMed (590) - Garnet Valley, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 2, 2003
Very smooth and tasty. Thick black viscous stout with a great balance of bitterness. Dark chocolate overtones with hints of licorice and coffee. Excellent lacing with a perfect fluffy pillowy head that lasts extra long. Tiny bubbles can been seen floating to the top if you closely look into the blackness. A very nice brew indeed!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
thedm (4887) - Fort Wayne, USA - MAR 23, 2003
UPDATED: JUL 3, 2003 Good lacing on the pour. The head was a nice light color made up of small bubbles which quickly disappeared. Its body was a opaque black color. Its taste was that of some carbonation with a strong coffee and roasted caramel flavors. It went down very smoothly.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
amx1970390 (480) - Southampton, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 23, 2003
Sour, dark roasted malt aroma with a a stale coffee note. Very dark in color but not as dark as some stouts. Tastes is coffee, molasses and a chocolately finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Nuffield (3637) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - MAR 20, 2003
Among the more effervescent of Bells' stout series, it struck me as more hoppy than the rest as well, comparing in part to the Rogue Shakespeare. Definitely balanced in initial flavors, not containing the sour edge of the Special Double Cream and a few others, excellent roasted flavors in a dark concoction. Notably bitter in a very long finish. Very nice, though not necessarily to my liking.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - MAR 19, 2003
black black blackness with a nice creamy dark tan head of lathering loveliness..big roasty aroma of coffee and chocolate..big coffee, capachino, espresso, latte, mocha, frapachino, iced capachino flavors with maybe a smidgen of kahlua..chocolatey coffee grains..some bitterness..some toasted bread notes..super roasty stout with a nice full body that is lacking in many stouts at this abv. level..superb.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Uglyradio (791) - Greenville, South Carolina, USA - MAR 14, 2003
Pours a thick, jet black color with a small tan head. The aroma is not as strong as their Oatmeal or Java stouts, but still it evokes some nice hints of roasted malts and a mild bitterness. Full bodied with low carbonation, the flavor is wonderfully chocolaty with roasted malts and a slight burnt bitterness in the finish. This is a great stout, wonderfully balanced between seetness and bitterness with chocolate and caramel undertones.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
badgerben (4362) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - MAR 10, 2003
Nicely blackened. Thick tan head to start, dissapates into a small foam that lasts long. Definitely a truck full of roast in this one. I don't think it's all that sweet. Almost a porter quality to it. Defintely a good tasting brew, just not sure this is the right category for it.

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