VTHopHead (1490) - Barre, Vermont, USA - FEB 14, 2014
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2011 Vintage, aged in my cellar - Pours a opaque black in color with absolutely no head or carbonation. Aroma is strong of chocolate, milder of astringent dark malts as well as dark fruit and has a fair amount of ETOH in the nose. Flavor is really all very smooth chocolate...
Hard to find, but definitely worth seeking out and AGING... :)
thome50 (848) - Boringville aka Irvine, California, USA - FEB 14, 2014
3.2 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sample on tap at Yardhouse. Pours a deep brown to black with little tan head. Aroma is cherry, cough syrup and some marshmallow. Taste is overly sweet cherry with a medicinal finish. Alcohol is very present but the sweetness just takes over in spades.
keanex (1218) - Atco, New Jersey, USA - FEB 12, 2014
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: MAR 5, 2014 Bottled on December 11, 2013.
Appearance: Not as dark as I suspected, but nearly fully pitch black, some chestnut is showing through the edges. The head is short with a tan hue, quickly falling into a thin coating with a bubbly ring. I was definitely expecting pitch black with a dark brown head in all honesty.
Aroma: The aroma is mild, showing some chocolate, roast and fruitiness along with a touch of booze. The fruitiness is most prominent, like fresh jam.
Taste: The intro is mildly boozy with chocolate and roast showing most prominent by the mid-taste, but an underlying raspberry jam is very prominent and shows itís face strongly by the finish. The finish is boozy, but nicely restrained for 18%. I must say I remember this being bolder in flavor though. This is certainly very close to being very drinkable though. Perhaps 6 months in a cellar and itíll be dangerous.
Palate: Full-bodied and softly carbonated.
Overall: This is pricey and boozy fresh, but if this years is brewed to any sort of quality the 2010 was then this will age beautifully in a year or so. Iím surprised how well this tastes for a 2 month old 18% beer, well done.
Bottle from 2010 aged on a liquor shelf.
Appearance: Deep opaque chestnut body with some chunks of sediment on the bottom of my glass. Perhaps proteins breaking down? The head is short with a khaki hue, quickly settling to a light filmy coating with a messy ring.
Aroma: Booze and port wine come to mind. Lots of fruity fig and grape aromas, also lots of booze. Boy this is much boozier than I ever remember.
Taste: Ah this is much better, the booze definitely shows throughout, but the flavor is huge with big fruity fig, raspberry and grapes along with a chocolate presence. This has definitely gone downhill though compared to last year. This is boozier and less complex, lots of fruit, little of anything else.
Palate: Full-bodied, but not very viscous. Mild carbonation.
Overall: This is drinking pretty rough at 4 years old now. It may have been the storage, but I had one last year that was kept in the same conditions and it was much better. Iíd say if youíve got any from this batch youíre left with two options: Age it much longer for the hell of it, or drink them now while itís palateable.
Ratings: Ar: 5, Ap: 4, Ta: 5, Pa: 4, Ov: 12
dansac (70) - Loa Angeles, USA - FEB 10, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Huge letdown. This is just not complex enough. Sweetness overpowers the beer, making it cloying and rendering the other elements opaque. In this day and age, it is simply not complex enough to compete with other heavy hitters. It could use barrel character or more prominent bitterness. As it stands, itís just a sticky, sweet excess. Itís still a very nice beer; just very much overrated. Alas.
Iíd take Yeti, Speedway, Black Tuesday, BCS, The Abyss and many others, any day, over this.
Bule (509) - California, USA - FEB 9, 2014
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
On tap at Whole Foods. Pours a dark black color with a bit of head. Sweet burnt toffee. Slight alcohol taste, but pretty smooth for such a high alcohol content.
Howlader (385) - - FEB 9, 2014
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
12oz bottle. I have this beer many times - and eventually I learned to like it. With some age on it, is really is just fantastic.
badhack (256) - San Francisco, California, USA - FEB 9, 2014
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Dominated by booze and chocolate, but otherwise remarkably smooth and balanced beer. Also some dark fruit. Quite soft, low carbonation. A sipper.
billblack908 (2) - West New York, New Jersey, USA - FEB 8, 2014 does not count
4.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Aroma: Boozy, sweet, chocalate aroma. Blindfolded, I would guess this is a port
Appearance: Cappuccino colored thin head with lacing that lingers (for a lifetime, it seems)
Taste: Heavy chocolate and coffee frontend; evens out with caramely, smoky malts in the back. Aftertaste of coffee beans and whipped cream. Sophisticated and delicious
Palate - Leaves a surprisingly moist palate for such a high ABV. The coffee/cream feel settles well on the tongue
Overall - This one is not for the weakhearted. For the beer enthusiasts? This is the Holy Grail. A rarity that Iím so glad I got my hands on. This lived up beyond its hype. Delicious.
CardsFan25 (51) - - FEB 8, 2014
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Coffee and boozy aroma. Black, thick pour with about half inch of head from bottle. Sweet taste up front of chocolate, malt, barley, and raisins. Finishes strong but no where near 18% strong.
ImperialSuttle (16) - - FEB 6, 2014
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Super thick on the palate, heavy on the alcohol aroma and flavor. Charcoal and espresso with a hint of vanilla bean. Super dark with a heavy punch. Grab a blanket and a fireplace for this one.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone