Serve in Snifter


on tap

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RATINGS: 64   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.7   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 70   EST. CALORIES: 345   ABV: 11.5%
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Tough Love is bold but nuanced, an homage of sorts to the traditional Russian Imperial Stouts and the ruling style of Catherine the Great. We Construct it with dark, roasted malts, malted rye, and oak-smoked wheat, and then banished it for nine months in Kentucky Bourbon Barrels. The aging smooths out the edges on an otherwise bold statement, and bitterness succumbs to tender strokes of vanilla beans, hints of dried cherries, and new layers revealing themselves with each sip.

after4ever's rating

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
after4ever (6390) - Brier, Washington, USA - DEC 26, 2013
375, corked, capped, and waxed. Pours jet black with a dense and creamy dark tan head that falls immediately away to not too much. Big sweet bourbony nose, some apricot showing. Lots of roast and coffee as well. Creamy thick body with soft carb. Roasty sweet coffee and black liquorice body. Long ashy roasty finish. Everything’s here, everything’s nice, not really a new spin on a style we’ve had a million times by now. Very good stuff. Just a lot like what everyone has done.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
tcon25 (110) - Duvall, Washington, USA - FEB 26, 2015
Bottle pour at home, listed as bottled in 2013, black pour, nice sweetie aroma, very very slight coffee, mostly chocchocolate, and licorice and the barrel age of this comes through nicely. This was definitely better than I expected. Going to find some more of these to age.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
TylerGreenDC (439) - - FEB 24, 2015
Draft, 2014. Aroma of wood and some chocolate. Marvelous progression of flavors: chocolate, vanilla, herbs, finally some bourbon kick before a smooth mocha finish. Superstar beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
tmrmwel (1108) - Bergen, NORWAY - FEB 20, 2015
Bottle, 2013 release, enjoyed January 2015. Pours pitch black, with a finger thick brown creamy head. Aroma is roasted malts, with lots of cocoa, woodwork and bourbon barrels, as well as tobacco, vanilla, coffee and molasses. Full body with creamy texture, and soft carbonation. Flavour is sweet roasted malts, with raisins, dark fruits and wooden barrels, as well as notes of bourbon and leather.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
TheGoldenChalice (20) - The Garden of the Beer Gods, North Carolina, USA - JAN 24, 2015
Served in Teku from 375ml ’14 bottle. Very excited... Aroma -- bourbon barrelesque aroma, hints of chocolate, cocoa, and very subtle cherries. Honestly, more barrel emanating from glass than anything. Not my favorite aroma from an IRS, but not underwhelmed by any means. Appearance -- pours pitch black w/ rusty, light brown, frothy head. Hardly any head-retention after beer has sat idle for a few minutes. Taste -- First thought: this beer is absolutely phenomenal and worth every penny. Unique chocolate, cherry-like, succulent, full-bodied IRS that leaves you w/ this pleasant molasses taste that lingers in the back of your throat for quite some time. Barrel is evident, but not overwhelming, and is honestly astonishing as-is, fresh. Palate -- incredibly balanced in all respects: cherries, vanilla, molasses, chocolate engulf palate w/ barrel on after-tone. ABV is hidden well; this brew is not boozy. Overall -- I’m truly in love w/ the presentation of this brew: waxed, corked, and brewed w/ true, tough love. $20 for a 375ml, but totally worth it. Interested to see how my other bottle ages over the course of the coming year. My favorite aspect of this beer is despite all of the adjuncts, you can still get a true feel for the base beer, which is very uncommon w/ most adulterated, fresh stouts.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
tourette (217) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 13, 2015
Blockbuster amazing beer. Had it on tap at Chuck’s and then later from the bottle, and it was very consistent from both. The bottle has a cork and cap and wax seal - stupid pain in the ass. The beer is deep and rich and dark and complex. Roasted and dark with some bitter chocolate notes. The bourbon barrel aging is perfect on this beer. Not a smack you in the face sort of taste, but it certainly enhances the complexity. I love this beer. I wish it wasn’t so expensive.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
ACHops (840) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 1, 2015
On tap @ The Yard. Pours thick dark inky black with very thin lacy dark mocha head. Aroma is dark roasty malt, quickly overwhelmed by bourbon and barrel notes, and steady dark fruit flavors. Faint tart cherry note stands out on the back. Taste is similar - aged bourbon, raisins, plums, smooth vanilla and coffee on the finish. Really enjoyable beer; and a cool different take on the standard bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Alsaill (1) - - DEC 27, 2014 does not count
Dark dark brown. Tannish head started out good but dissipated to a nice ring. Some booze aroma, some chocolate, not much bourbon. Mouthfeel is nicely smooth but not overly thick. Lots of chocolate, mocha. Some bourbon, some booze. Mostly cocoa. Finishes with a nice bitter chocolate sweetness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
cbfobes (2601) - Quad Cities, Illinois, USA - DEC 25, 2014
Bottle sent from homer, like over a year ago, thanks! Split with drowland, pours black with no head at all, also should note this was a bitch to open, wax dip and cork? Jesus. Aroma had some vanilla mixed in with dark chocolate and some bourbon, flavor has a chocolate front end with some bourbon in the finish, pretty subtle, nice.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
drowland (6479) - Valdosta, Georgia, USA - DEC 25, 2014
12/25/14. 375mL bottle... I believe Homer321 sent this to myself and cbfobes last Christmas... here goes! First of all, fuck this stupid brewery. Waxed, capped, and corked? Then the cork wouldn’t even come out without crackling all over in the beer. Black pour with a small tan head that fades to a small ring, almost no lacing. Rich aroma, ashy, sweet figs, brown sugar... reminds me of a foreign imperial stout, just a touch of bourbon. Rich flavor, ashy, a touch of soy sauce, mild bourbon, sweet brown sugar, not bad. Thanks, Homer!

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
mackRIS (37) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - DEC 24, 2014
Pour from the bottle. Pout jet black with some head. Aroma is coffee, roast, bourbon, dried sweet fruit, vanilla. Taste is sweet chocolate, bourbon, dried cherries, vanilla. and mouthfeel is fully body. Great RIS!

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