DavefromChicago (201) - Illinois, USA - DEC 6, 2002
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Beer extract? Beer syrup? What is with Imperial stout, and why are otherwise sensible beer drinkers raving about it? What is the history of Imperial stout? Wasn’t it called RUSSIAN Imperial stout, and don’t the Russians also drink sterno and jet fuel?
Was it not created as a preservable brew that can withstand adverse conditions and sit endlessly in the hold of a ship? Sorta like astronaut food, eh…? Does anyone actually crave astronaut food when they’re not floating in outer space? Should I drink this stuff or keep it on my condiment shelf and use it as a flavoring agent, gravy thickener, and conversation piece?
I understand that beer fanatics, just like gourmets and oenophiles, become bored with familiar tastes and are continually craving something different, but I wonder if a line is being crossed when beer becomes a thick, black, nearly uncarbonated syrup.
Dogfish Head specializes in breaking the mold, shocking the bored, delighting the prurient cravings of beer fanatics.
So, anyway, I had the bottle sitting around for months. I looked at it once in awhile, held it in my hand and examined the label…read a few reviews, here and there - always ravingly positive. Finally opened the damn thing.
It pours espresso black. Bready, doughy aromas with coffee, dried cherries, chocolate and some whiskeyish notes. Mild hop presence.
Sweet flavored and syrupy - but with a nice mouthfeel, gently carbonated. Lotsa coffee and burnt toast, licorice accents and some alcohol burn.
Finishes bitter and somehow clean, despite the massive flavor which has preceded.
Makes a nice, after dinner sipping drink, though 12 ozs is too much of such a sweet beverage. Very warming.
kkleu357 (361) - Madison, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 19, 2014
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Sweet hoppy smell. Has hints of that typical dogfish head aroma. Medium thick body. Black in color. Fairly light tasting. Can tell it’s high in alcohol. Some roasted taste. Sweet and very smooth.
Beardaxe (263) - - DEC 17, 2014
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 12/20
Poured from bottle into snifter. Jet black with moderate head that quickly dissipated. Huge boozy aromas on the nose. Smells sweet with dark fruits. Flavor is similar. This thing is massive in the fruity sweetness. Honestly, it's a bit much. I understand it's that intense to provide cover for the alcohol (which is still quite present and deep, though never obnoxious), but I think it's a bit overwhelming. Mouthfeel is a bit harsh, with a hop burn but not much bitterness.
This just doesn't feel like a finished product to me. I would love to age this for a few years and revisit.
JorgeLee (1268) - Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 14, 2014
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle, picked up somewhere in the US, can’t remember where. Jet black, big brown head which disappeared fairly smartish. Looks nice. Big, boozy, quite sweet and malty. Unfortunately the booze rather overpowers everything else and it just tastes a bit one dimensional. Burns. All in, ok.
berntholer (1052) - Antwerp, BELGIUM - DEC 14, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
beige head leaves some lacing. coffee coloured. aroma is boozy, green banana, almonds, amaretto. taste is very very sweet, bit of roasted malts alcohol sweetness in the finish. medium body and carbonation. a real sipper.
vyvvy (4133) - Florissant, Missouri, USA - DEC 7, 2014
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2004 bottle - Pours very dark with no real head to it. The aroma has thick smooth chewy roast, soy sauce, chocolate, molasses, dark caramel with a minor amount of heat for the alcohol contained. It has a thick smooth body with light soft carbonation. The flavor starts with smooth chocolaty roast, dark caramel, minor soy sauce, vanilla and light heat. The finish has more soy sauce and heat. Really nice & aged like a champ.
DrinkinWell (290) - - DEC 6, 2014
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2013 bottle, aged in my basement for about 18 months. Very dark brown (nearly black) pour, thin mocha head, decent lacing. Vanilla, cocoa, hints of licorice. Dark fruit, thinly-veiled bourbon. Incredibly smooth, almost silky, mouthfeel. Starts off sweet, ends on a bitter note, full of alcohol. This stout lives up to the hype.
bursprak (763) - Aarhus, DENMARK - NOV 30, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, thanks guys for sharing. Slightly dirty black pour with almost no head. Really intense stuff, syrupy, sweet vanilla, char, some coffee, licorice and fairly boozy.
MrFecesious (1091) - British Columbia, CANADA - NOV 29, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Incredible as always. Pitch dark, minimal sustaining cap. Aroma is heavy dark fruit, vanilla, chocolate, and satan's own jizz giving it an extra sweetness. Excellently balanced sweetness and bitterness, leaving the mouth silky and finishing with a lasting medium dryness.
revolution2718 (263) - New Jersey, USA - NOV 28, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours black with minimal tan head. Nose is bourbon, woody, dark fruits, cherries, vanilla. Taste is tons of dark chocolate, woody, bourbon, dark fruits, roasty malts, a bit of vanilla, boozy warmth. Good but a bit boozy. really gets challenging.
Vestergaard (452) - Aarhus C, DENMARK - NOV 27, 2014
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle from trade with Matt. Pours clear, almost pitch black with a small, short lasting, brown head. Aroma has "skumbananer", booze, chocolate, roasty and caramel malts. Slightly fruity. Taste is very sweet, chocolaty, caramel malty. Boozy heat in the finish. Fat, greasy body and medium-low carbonation. Boozy.