DMRz (230) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - MAY 22, 2008
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Robust thick black pour with a tall brown head. Aromas of vanilla coffee, bourbon, and a touch of smoke. Flavor is quite interesting, starting out with anise and bourbon and finishes with a more bitter chocolate/coffee. Flavor profile is unique and well balanced. The bitterness lingers on the palate, which is my only criticism of this otherwise terrific beer.
Revision: After allowing this beer to warm up closer to room temperature, it becomes even smoother and the bitterness dissipates, giving way to more bourbon and anise on the finish.
RCL (2030) - Waltham, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 22, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Distinct molasses and oak aromas. The licorice comes through more in the flavor. Huge beer, but still not too much over the top. A little warming alcohol on the finish, along with the slightly astringent oak, but it remains quite drinkable.
sthlm (1276) - Duluth, Minnesota, USA - MAY 19, 2008
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JAN 8, 2016 [Bottle í07, thanks a lot Guerde!] Pours black with a small dark tan head. Aroma is chocolate, oak (especially as it warms), some smoke and a good deal of anise. Taste is fairly sweet up front and then bitter in the finish--there is alcohol, roasted malt, chocolate and once again anise. Thick mouthfeel with a really nice long bitter (although it fades as it warms) and chocolate finish. A really, really nice imperial stout. Old rating: 7/4/9/5/18
Eight years later, and this seems pretty different. Really hot, and lots of anise and notes of Big Red chewing gum. Not great. Taste is also hot, with roasted malt and anise again. Pretty sweet and not much hop bitterness. Not a whole lot different than the aroma except the roasted malt is much more prominent. Great mouthfeel; thick and smooth and a long finish. A solid beer, but this pales in comparison to the great imperial stouts such as Expedition. Particularly when a bomber costs more than a six pack of Expy.
Schultsc (572) - San Diego, California, USA - MAY 19, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 11, 2009 2007 Reserve - tasted early May ’08. Souvenier from Eugene, OR. Pours a pure opaque black with a drak brown rim and a fine, medium-thin chocolate brown head. Aroma of dark chocolate, coffee, a slight lactic character, sweet roasted malt, treacle, a hint of dark spice, and a subtle suggestion of anise, hops, a bourbon barrel--that’s just the aroma. On to the flavor... Bitter coffee, bitter chocolate, sweet molasses, and roasted malt that rises and then fades over a backdrop of subtle spice, licorice, and wonderful oxidized characteristics. A very deft hand with the malt balance here. Each element is well represented in a way that is complimentary to one another. Each flavor peaks at a different moment so that none is overpowered and each can be discerned both individually and together as a whole. The body is exquisitely balanced with the 11% alcohol present only in the structure and not in the aroma, flavor, or finish as any hashness. Only a slight warmth accompanies the roasted bitter finish. Everything is superbly integrated. This is one of the most balanced "extreme" beers I’ve ever tasted. The mouth feel is unbelieveably light despite the massive dark flavor profile. This is an amazingly drinkable, ponderous, meticulously crafted beer. Top marks!
stegosaurus (1882) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 16, 2008
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle sampled with Mad_indian. Pours black with a good size beige head. Aroma of roast, oak, dark chocolate, light bourbon. The flavor is very smooth, chocolate, oak, slight bourbon, roast, and coffee. Excellent body, alcohol is well masked. Excellent brew.
Rogueone (506) - I F&ckiní hate those guys from, Ohio, USA - MAY 15, 2008
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle: Pours very dark black with a slowly dissipating carmel head. Aroma of chocolate and stale bacon. Full flavors of chocolate malts, smoke, and the dryness of oak. I can actually feel this beer on my teeth. Someone said velvety. Velvety is a good word.
MadIndian (2729) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 14, 2008
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle from ebay, sampled with Stegosaurus. WOW. Beautiful black pour with aromas of chocolate, coffee and roast. A smoke roast chocolate flavor blended rather well. This is underated.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - MAY 13, 2008
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dense blackness, dark as you get...huge head, burnt tan, slowly crumbling, leaving lace...
Roasty, toasty aroma, chocolate and espresso, yes, and more...carob and raisins, dark rum, and molasses...ah! Dark and lovely!
Whoa! Once in the mouth, itís a delivery of rich, thick, deliciousness....whiskey-toned, a bit, mixed with dark chocolate...indulgent, decadent...full, but surprisingly smooth. Velvety...someone should paint a portrait of Elvis on this. Here comes the whiskey kick again...here comes the blackstrap...
Iím only halfway through the bottle, and Iím feeling mighty satisfied.
Do I wish Iíd saved it for friends? Maybe, but Iím too content to worry about them now.
kmeves (1098) - Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 10, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a oil dark-black body with a small large bubbled beige head. Aroma is moderately sweet,coffee, roast, a bit earthy, smoke and some bourbon. Flavor is roasted coffee, some earthy, smoke, caramel and bourbon. Medium bitter chocolate finish. Smooth full body, alcohol is very well hidden.
Ofortuna (322) - Grafton, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 10, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Sampled at DLD 2008. Donít know who to thank as someone handed me this bottle and told me to drink up. Nice espresso aromaís with a bit of bittersweet chocolate dancing up from the cup. Sticky but balanced with a good dose of bitterness from the hops, specialty malt, coffee, molasses and licorice. Tasted with darklord soon after and I thought this was more complex, but lacked the body of darklord. Very well crafted with many layers of complexity. Oak and bourbon come out on the backend.