hopscotch (8776) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - MAR 21, 2010
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: AUG 14, 2013 New Rating
I just enjoyed a couple pints of Zhukov’s Final Push at the Order of the Red Banner dinner 2013. Better than I expected and I expected a lot. Just a deep, black, vanilla, charred, evil, espresso, acrid smoke, tobacco. So many great things about this beer... even better than the first time I tried this one, back in 2010. Greatest coffee beer ever!
Nitro… RBWG ‘10… This beer rocks!… Tar black ale with a mid-sized, creamy, dark brown head. Fantastic retention. The pungent, acrid aroma must weigh in at about 800 lbs. Huge, acidic, earthy, espresso and dark chocolate aroma. Smells more like espresso than espresso. Lesser notes of maduro tobacco and blackstrap molasses. Almost fecal… in a good way, much like a funky-as-hell, barnyard-ish, Belgian lambic’s bouquet can be very appealing. Full-bodied and velvety with pillow-soft carbonation. Big, bold, acrid espresso and black malt flavor. Malt sweetness is countered by carbonous espresso and charcoal bitterness. Undertones of pouch tobacco, cocoa nibs and blackstrap molasses. Lingering mocha finish.
Kudos to growler for saving me a generous pull of this world class coffee imperial stout as I was about two hours late for this event. Me? Late? Imagine that.
GT2 (8159) - San Diego County, California, USA - SEP 26, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tap at the BA Hunahpu release 9/24/11. Thanks to drowland for saving me a pour of this rarity. You are the man!
Pour is typical Zhukov, an ink black SRM that produces a Martian red head looking extremely similar to used motor oil. Bubbles and all. Lots of glass staining but not a lot of head retention and lacing. Nose is quite nice. I’m not the biggest coffee fan, but can appreciate having hazelnut, vanilla, cinnamon apples, and cocoa powder in the nose in lieu of near DMS like qualities and sharp, gritty roast. Rich and soft in the nose thankfully. For taste, I still think the palate is what shines above taste. Palate is rich and oily. Extremely thick but no cloying sugars like you would expect given the staining. Instead, the coffee does pack decent bitterness (no astringency) but there is still such a hefty dose of coffee acidity creating a tart lemon profile in the back end. Certainly yummy, but someone may see this as simply extremely thick coffee rather than imperial stout. Could use more bitterness and could work on the appearance department. If you are going for this whale, I hope you enjoy coffee explosion.
BMan1113VR (7813) - Los Angeles, California, USA - AUG 29, 2011
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Growler shared by hophead84 at Woodshop6. Pitch black pour that is extremely glass coating with a small iodine head. Looks good as do most CCB stouts. Aromas are strongly of coffee. To the point of being a bit peppery. Earthy, spicy coffee notes, chocolate, fudge, alcohol. A bit sweet. Flavors are very bitter chocolate and roast. Some coffee notes as well. Big syrupy and warming mouthfeel. Coating. Tasty, but I preferred the coffee notes in Kopi Speedway quite a bit more.
Ughsmash (7086) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 16, 2011
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Another gem courtesy of KAN! Poured basically black with a lovely cap of dark tan head. The aroma picked up a whole bunch of delicious coffee and roasty black malts, with touches of vanilla, nutty, and earthy notes.. excellent nose! The flavor was somehow a notch better, and consistent with the hype machine.. delicious coffee throughout, accented by burnt chocolate and molasses.. heavy roast, but the balance held perfectly.. more coffee and warm boozy undertones on the finish.. absolutely no complaints. Heavy-bodied with moderate carbonation on the palate.. a lot of coffee, and even more deliciousness!
Ibrew2or3 (6760) - Tempe, Arizona, USA - AUG 20, 2010
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours milk shake like consistency fudge brownie with lasting firm mocha head. The aroma is bold rich hugeness pulsing with perfectly highly roasted coffee to go along with rings of sweet dark fudgy chocolate and dark roasted malts. This is rich decadent aromatic yum. The taste is rich dark roasted coffee somehow conveyed on a near creamy mouthfeel pulling up supporting flavors of velvety rich dark chocolate, roasty malts and some burnt malts. Wow, balance – depth – decadence – D-Lish!
j12601 (6584) - Poughkeepsie, New York, USA - SEP 16, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pouring at the Blind Tiger for Mike’s 50th birthday extravaganza. Pours a deep jet black, with no head. I’ll have to agree that this one may have been better on nitro, and that’s a rarity since I usually think nitro is overused. Huge coffee on the nose, blows away any other coffee beers I can think of for the amount of “I’m pretty sure this is coffee, and not a beer with coffee in it” that I was getting. Deep roast, just loads of it, one dimensional really, nothing but roast and coffee. Like drinking an iced coffee, sort of too much. Long coffee and roast. Light alcohol on the finish. Still awesome, but maybe a bit too much.
sebletitje (6582) - Enghien, BELGIUM - JUN 23, 2011
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Entering old ratings. Draft @ RedLight RedLight RBWG.
Une couleur d’un noir profond donc on découvre une mousse intense et épaisse foncée.
Zhukov est déjà en elle même une imp stout complexe. On retrouve dans cette version, toute la bonté du malt, note de chocolat et vanille, parfois allant aussi sur un aspect de feuille de tabac qui met en avant une forte note de torréfaction et de malt grillé. Ce qui fait de Final Push au delà du jeu de mot du nom de la bière c’est le caractère unique que donne ce café. Ce dernier propulse Final Push vers des sphères qui font que l’on ne veut pas voir la fin du verre. Une bière riche dont le profile se développe à quasi température ambiante et qui ne se boit pas, mais se déguste.
after4ever (6055) - Brier, Washington, USA - SEP 2, 2010
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Medicine bottle. Thanks clint and alan. Pours jet black, headless, laceless, and completely still. Huge sharp intense rivening coffee nose. Acidic, almost berry-like aromatics. Funky and acrid. Sticky thick body. Still. Soy sauce, prunes, roast, and coffee on the mid palate. Long sticky coffee and black olive finish.
drowland (5980) - Valdosta, Georgia, USA - MAR 24, 2010
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Mmmmm... enjoyed at RBWG 2010 on nitro at Redlight Redlight. The flavor and aroma on this is HUGE coffee... intense coffee on this with some chocolate. The quality of this coffee dances amazingly well with the quality of this beer. Awesome stuff, folks!
Glouglouburp (5934) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 9, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
In short: A big fat viscous chocolaty stout with an almost espresso-like coffee character. Excellent (even if a bit overrated).
How: Fresh growler. Sent to me by GodOfThunder, consumed within days of receiving it. Thanks a lot Jay
The look: Pitch black body topped by a small brown head
In long: Nose is showing a roasted coffee beans over a chocolate cake. Given the hype of the beer I expected a more explosive aroma. Body is thick and viscous as hell. Somehow, the body felt more viscous than the base Marshall Zhukov, which is strange because usually I find that the coffee version of a big stout (example: Meph Addict vs Mephistopheles) makes for a dryer more roasted sensation. Taste is pretty straightforward, a big fattening rich chocolate cake with fresh coffee beans. I’m sure not familiar with the flavor of the much talked about Kopi Lowak coffee variety but to me the Final Push coffee character was a bit more espresso than with other well known high-quality coffee stouts (Speedway, Peche Mortel, etc.). Of all the quality coffee stouts I’ve had I’d say that Final Push was the most chocolaty I’ve had. Actually I don’t think the coffee outshines the chocolate or vice-versa. Alcohol is a bit apparent but it is fitting for this dessert beer. Also some green herbal notes. Carbonation was relatively smooth, I would have preferred a more active carbonation to increase drinkability but maybe it is because it was a growler consumed a week after it was filled. So despite my long rambling, all I can really say about this beer is that it is a rich chocolate cake and coffee with some alcohol warmth and light green herbal notes. Even after drinking a full growler I really cannot add anything. It is a straightforward but highly enjoyable sipper. In a blind tasting I don’t think it would score higher than the less hyped widely available quality coffee stouts out there (Speedway, Peche Mortel, etc.) but it remains an excellent example of the style. And in case you drank the beer but don’t know why the beer is named “Final Push”… well, you don’t want to know, just like you don’t want to know if your mother ever kissed your goodnight after giving your father a blowjob.