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RATINGS: 919   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.79/5   SEASONAL: Series   IBU: 60   EST. CALORIES: 291   ABV: 9.7%
Barley, wheat, rye and oats provide the foundation for this big stout. Layers of complex flavors slowly emerge from the glass: espresso, roasted fig, creme brulee. Belgian yeast provides a plum-like fruitiness, noble German hops reveal spicy, herbal notes, while the rich, velvety mouthfeel mellows to a dry, smoky finish. Such a robust beer stands well by itself, but also makes a wonderful end-note to any rich, indulgent meal. Discover the secret of combining this roasty ale to sweets, by pairing with dark chocolate or caramel, or even by pouring it over ice cream.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
MrChopin (4303) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - NOV 26, 2010
Dark brown, creamy bubbly beige head. Chocolate, ethanol, lightly green, well balanced nose. Flavor is a bit decadent, brownie chocolate and with considerable hop bitterness through the finish. Chalky end, more cake and brownie.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
bluejacket74 (1815) - Reynoldsburg, Ohio, USA - DEC 19, 2010
750 ml bottle, Batch 2010-1. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with a couple inch frothy tan head. Head retention is pretty good, with a decent amount of lacing. Aroma is dark fruit, roasted malt, molasses, chocolate and some smoke. Taste is similar to the aroma, it tastes like roasted and burnt/charred malt, dark chocolate, coffee, smoke, and a bit of milk chocolate and dark fruit. There’s also a nice lingering bitter roasty finish. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it’s a bit syrupy and coating, but also seems a bit thin as well. Good carbonation. Drinkability is OK, it’s certainly not hard to drink at all. I think this is a decent enough overall brew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Dixonian (1562) - Plano, Texas, USA - FEB 1, 2011
12oz bottle. Black pour with a finger of tan head. Dark fruit and molasses aromas - taste is quite nice. Roasted malts and bitter chocolate, a bit of fruitiness. Another good entry in Boulevard’s Smokestack series.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
ChainGangGuy (4770) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - JAN 18, 2012
Appearance: Pours out a dark brown body with thin slivers of garnet at the far edges and capped by a tall, light tan head.

Smell: Moderately chocolaty with a corresponding roastiness ahead of lesser, lighter notes smelling of fruit, spice, and toast.

Taste: A start of dark chocolate, soundly roasted coffee, and with some soft, sweetish caramel included. Small pinch of aniseed. Dark fruitiness of plums and smoked dates. Very slight chalkiness. Particularly subtle German hop character and bitterness. Late-breaking alcohol presence. Dry, roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Fairly smooth mouthfeel.

Overall: It’s nice. No, really, it’s nice. But, can I have the BIS instead??

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
annunz123 (948) - Taunton, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 19, 2012
Pours dark even by stout standards. Malt, coffee, and alcohol in the aroma. Malt and smoky roast in the flavor. Very creamy mouthfeel.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
cgarvieuk (21037) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 2, 2012
bottle at home ... dark roast ... bubbly tan head ... soft light malt roast ... sweet roast ... dark malts ... little chocolate ... light dark roast ... soft bitterness ... light hint of yeast ... nice and easily drinkable

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
pushkinwow (2551) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 15, 2012
12oz bottle from Dresden. Black with a mocha head. Dark molasses and chocolate along with some expresso combine for a very strong yet not intense aroma, some roasted malts are detectable. Medium to full body, moderate carbonation, underlying sweetness, can detect the alcohol although its still quite smooth, a slight bitterness is there on the palate, some fruitiness, chocolate, expresso and molasses carry through. An interesting and quite powerful beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
SlovakSniper (4984) - Candiac, Quebec, CANADA - APR 20, 2012
(Des bouteilles via des échanges avec Marheb et dresden) Une tête brune pâle spectaculairement indestructible. Une dentelle qui dessine un relief montagneux. Un superbe regard. Un nez qui ne cache jamais son allégeance à la Belgique. Une levure fruitée. Des pruneaux et des raisins. Une mélasse de dattes. Un côté rôti, des grains qui transpirent le chocolat. Une touche épicée : est-ce les grains ou les houblons? Des saveurs comme la suite logique des choses. Des malts et des houblons qui apportent douceur et amertume. Un alcool fortifié qui n’est jamais trop présent. Le retour attendu du travail de la levure fruitée. Je soupçonne aussi des houblons épicés. En bouche, une texture crémeuse. Un pétillement un tantinet trop élevé. Un corps tout de même confortable. Une finale qui se targue d’être puissante: la rencontre agréable de notes amères et de la chaleur inopinée d’un alcool insidieux.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
FlacoAlto (4139) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - MAY 29, 2012
Purchased at D&Q Mini Mart; Best by September 8, 2013; Sample May 2012
A steady pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces an almost four-finger thick, darkly brown stained, dark tan colored head. The beer is a concentrated chocolate brown color that shows opaque when held up to the light. The aroma smells slightly smoky, most definitely roasted, perhaps a touch savory, it has a cold espresso character to it, a subtle sweet plum fruitiness, some definite warm alcohol, and a richly toasted dark grain character that leans towards dark chocolate aromatics.

Smooth, yet still effervescently textured, the beer has a creaminess to the body that lightly coats the palate; certainly chewy though, but without being overly heavy. Deep, dark chocolate flavors intermingle with an expressive toasted / roasted whole grain character. The toasted and roasted notes linger for a long time in the finish and provide a touch of burnt bitterness, a hint of acrid character, and even some burnt derived acidity. Mixing with the rich chocolate flavors are notes of roasted raisins and figs, and perhaps a touch of clove; this last seems to come out more as the beer warms up. Deeply roasted flavors are more reminiscent of richly darkened, roasted malt than coffee; burnt, yet balanced by roasted malt richness / savoriness / not-quite-sweetness. Sort of makes me think of a malted, heavily dark chocolate laden, espresso boosted, ice-cream shake, but without all the sweetness or milk / cream flavors. Touches of alcohol mix with the turpene like spicy clove character in the finish and helps to add some bite to this brew. As the beer warms up the bitter, roasted malt character softens and more of the chocolate, smooth, richly malted notes come out.

While a bit atypical, I like that the body of this beer is a bit more viscous and rich than your typical, Belgian in origin, Belgian Stout; especially with such a huge roasted grain component, the residual body helps to temper and balance this brew. This definitely drinks like a meal, and is quite enjoyable if you are looking for a roast focused, chewy stout. It could have used a touch more of an expressive Belgian yeast character, but that can be a hard thing to balance in a stout, and I certainly don’t have any material complaints with this beer. In the end this is quite nice, and I am quite happy that I picked up a bottle of this to bring home.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
kdm1984 (814) - Missouri, USA - JUN 14, 2012
UPDATED: NOV 20, 2012 Smell is coffee, alcohol, toffee, roasted richness. Flavor is similar - some Belgian yeast as well, like plums, which is to my liking as a Belgian fan. Pairs well with the small cake I am having now. Well balanced imperial stout - ABV well hidden also.

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