rangerred (989) - Johnson City, Tennessee, USA - JAN 31, 2013
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
275ml bottle into a snifter. Bottled in May 2011.
Pours pitch black with a dark tan half finger head that is pretty fizzy and quick to fade. Head retention and lacing are both lacking with just a ring left around the top of the beer.
The aroma has much more of a fruity character than other RIS I have had. Lots of dark fruit and licorice that really reminds me of many English ales, just on a stronger level. Really not much roast at all just a lot of fruit and yeasty esters. It works, though, and nothing is offensive whatsoever.
The flavor is where this beer really shines. Much like the aroma, dark fruity esters dominate at first. Somewhat sweet with quite a bit of yeast character. Not extremely impressive but about halfway through the taste, something magical happens. Almost out of nowhere tons of roast comes shooting in along with some coffee and dark chocolate. This marries magically with the dark fruit leading to an intensely complex finish. Moderate bitterness with a lot less sweetness than many other RIS with a pretty dry finish.
Overall, probably the best RIS I have had. Extremely complex flavors and an absolutely amazing mouthfeel with alcohol being extremely well hidden. A definite world class beer.
bartzluke (121) - Oklahoma, USA - APR 28, 2015
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2012 (Consumed April 28th, 2015) (#024927) 275 ml pour from room-temp bottled in Spieglau stout glass. Pours a moderate dirty-tan head that quickly dissipates into nothing-- no lacing or trace of it at all. Black or deep, deep brown; opaque. Nose is complex. First whiff gives strong dark chocolate, but that quickly gives way to dark wood, maltiness, roastiness. maybe a little caramel. A bit hard for me to describe everything going on in the nose, actually. Suffice it to say, it smells amazing. Mouthfeel is moderately creamy and very pleasant. Taste, like the nose, has a lot of layers to it. Starts with a woody and burnt character, then moves to notes of espresso grounds and caramel taste without any sweetness (strange, I know, but the best way I can think to put it), then strong vanilla. A little scotch-y booziness on the end that pleasantly warms without any burning. More of everything (especially smokiness) when I let it sit in my mouth for a bit. I drank at least half of my glass trying to tease apart all of the flavors. Delicious.
Darkmagus82 (1939) - - APR 24, 2015
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured from bottle into a snifter
Appearance – The beer pours a pitch black color with a one finger head of a cream colored foam. The head fades rather rapidly leaving a trace of foamy lace on the sides of the glass. Upon swirling the brew in the snifter, thick fingers of beer cling to the sides of the glass, very slowly receding to the bottom of the vessel to leave some bubbly and sticky looking lace on the sides of the glass.
Smell – The aroma of the beer is huge of a sweeter smell of chocolate mixed with caramel. Along with these aromas are some nice notes of a roasted malt smell as well as a nice expresso aroma. Other lighter notes of darker fruits of cherry and raisin are there as well, with these also being accompanied by some sweet vanilla. With a little bit of grain and a light booze there as well the smell is overall quite warming.
Taste – The taste begins with a nice drier roasted malt taste mixed with a decent showing of some coffee. A lighter sweet flavor of caramel and some chocolate are at the front with these growing stronger as the taste advances and with them being joined by some light fruit tastes of raisin and plum. The coffee seems to dwindle as the taste advances all while the caramel, chocolate and fruit sweet flavors get stronger and stronger. A light bit of a boozy taste as well as some flavors of vanilla work their way onto the tongue at the end, and with a little resurgence of the coffee, end up leaving one with a dark and robust roasty flavor to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is quite thick and chewy with a carbonation level that is on the slightly lower side. For the dark roasted flavors mixed with the blend of sweet and the higher abv. the feel is right on and makes this one a slow sipper as it is meant to be.
Overall – A quite tasty and enjoyable Imperial stout. It has a good blend of sweet, roast, and booze to maintain a good drinkability but yet keep you in check all while bathing the tongue with a whole lot of flavor.
jake65 (2851) - Boise, Idaho, USA - APR 15, 2015
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle, Boise imperial stout tasting. Deep dark brown with a thin brown cap. Nose is sweet, followed by a little smoke and dark fruit. A little sweet and smoky, feels like some anise, and fruity yeast. Decent roast and overall a middleweight body. Ok, but not really my style.
connor0415 (47) - - APR 1, 2015
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: APR 2, 2015 2012 vintage drank in 2015Smells like dark chocolate, esspresso, honey and pear. Tastes like dark chocolate with a bitterness on the tongue at first but then a sweet honey oxidized taste comes in and you get a bit of pear and cherry. The mouthfeel is oily and thick with a good bit of carbonation. Overall it?s a great russian imperial stout made better with age
nihtila (1394) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 27, 2015
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
19.1.2015. Aroma of cacao, dried fruits, slight espresso, slight smoke. Taste is sweet, molasses, cacao, almost like feeling the fine cacao powder in your mouth, chocolate. Decent but taste is too much about molasses.
Gerbeer (2221) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - MAR 26, 2015
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
275 ml bottle. 2012 vintage. Pours a very dark brown - almost black - with moderate tan head. Aromas of dark fruits, roasted malts, creamy coffee, and a little bit of cola. Flavors of black coffee, dark bitter chocolate and dry roasted barley. Maybe some nuttiness. Really dry though ABV is noticeable. Great stuff.
Dodgrblu (661) - Sacramento, California, USA - MAR 22, 2015
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Ten ounce pour at Pangaea, thin, mocha, disappearing head, roasted, crisp. bitter finish.
VinegarStroke (320) - Napa, California, USA - MAR 17, 2015
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle on St Patrick’s. Very dense. Medium to light head with a light lace. Very dense inky aroma. Roasted coffee, cocoa, black prunes and a hint of mocha. Off dry, not sour and medium bitterness. The palate is saturated with flavor. So dense and rich and dark. Coffee, toffee, chocolate cake and ice cream all in one. Very rich and moreish. There are also vinous character about the palate. Prune also
An amazing surprise. I expected something commercial and it’s certainly not that.
HonusWagner (1692) - Florida, USA - MAR 17, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Roasty as hell, some molasses, medium sweetness. It’s a little fruity and basically a defining RIS even if it’s far from perfect.
Stuu666 (5660) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 11, 2015
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle at home. Pours black, nose is coffee, chocolate, liquorice, taste is delicious, thick, sweet.