hopdog (9270) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 30, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Batch #4 bottled on November 2002. Poured with a large, thick brown head. With the strong wine smell, you can definitely tell this was aged in Wine casks. Other aromas; roasted, coffee, sweet and woody. Strong wine flavor with subtle hints of coffee and molasses. Different tasting Imperial Stout.
JoeMcPhee (8746) - Toronto, ON, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 1, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks to puzzl for sharing this... I really thought that I’d had this before, but I was either wrong or too stupid at the time to have entered the rating. Deep black pour with a thick tan head. The nose is intense. Lots of bright, rich, vineous character. A bit of cocoa and soft fruitiness through the middle. The barrel really shines here... not really vanilla/bourbon laden like so many others. Sweet chewy malt with a bit of dark cocoa and heavily toasted malt. A little bit of cherry and soft fruity hops. The age barely shows on this one, it’s still got loads of time left in it. Lingering herbal finish.
3fourths (8293) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - AUG 17, 2003
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: MAR 31, 2009 Re-rating a bottle of 2002. The wine flavors completely mask anything that would resemble an imperial stout... no burnt malts, no licorice or smoke, just a small hint of chocolate. The sweetness of the oak wine casks is a pain.
MartinT (8236) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 29, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Munificent grapes and their alcohol find warm residence in the thick roastiness of the malts and their oily dark chocolate...Yeasty fruitiness is grounded by a few marshmallows and the vinous personality elevates it to near-decadence...If not for the pinch of saltiness in the end, the barrel-aging is very well-done and personable...A somber elixir to christen the most devilish winter evenings...
DocLock (8093) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 4, 2005
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Big thanks to footbalm for this. Pours jet black with 2-finger khaki head. Aroma of malt, chocolate, dark fruit (cherries), licorice, prunes, cognac. Tastes roasty malty, extremely dark fruity, with a big cherry element at the finish, along with hcocolate and some soy sauce. Smooth, dense palate. Well hidden alcohol. To me, this one is 1 part GD Yeti, 1 part Weyerbacher Raspy Impy, and 1 part Stone RIS. All parts are delicious.
mcberko (7447) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - DEC 30, 2011
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
750mL bottle, bottled Nov. 2001 cellar’d in Bottleworks’ cellar since, split with manuchampions, Matts_Property and uhlan. Pours pitch black with a small light brown head - looks beautiful. First sniff reveals a perfectly kept beer, especially for the age (over 10 years!), with notes of rich roasted malt, maraschino cherries, cabernet red wine, almost a bacon / smoke note, light molasses and many other subtle complexities I cannot find words for. Flavour is immensely rich and complex - hasn’t gone off at all - with roasted malt, red wine, slight smokiness, maraschino cherries, vanilla, light molasses, etc. etc... so many layers of depth and complexity. A bit port-like on the finish, especially as it warms up. Glad to have had the opportunity to try this, despite the hefty price tag. Too bad Fish Tale does not brew this anymore. Amazing beer.
chriso (7428) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 11, 2004
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Black as black can be. Modest head. Oily appearance. Very vinous aroma, with smoky malt, a touch of dark chocolate and masses of woody notes - maybe a touch of oxidation (not in an off way). Flavour is more wood, balsamic vinegar and licorice. A bit too woody if anything. Slightly tart, lactic edge on the finish. Medium mouthfeel. Not the richest mouthfeel, even a bit reminiscent of an Old Ale. I found the beer very interesting - good, but not great. Bottle, post DC gathering.
Ughsmash (7203) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - SEP 10, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle, Batch 4 (Nov. 2002), kindly shared by David! Poured black with a tall, deep, well-retained dark brown head.. just lovely!, with intricate lacing following it down. The aroma was of rich dark chocolates delicately intertwined with darker grapes.. some sherry was also present, and the oak made itself known.. the vinous presence was greater than anticipated, but was fantastic!
The flavor was also rich, with well-roasted darker chocolates and heavy vinous notes at the core.. sherry and increasing vinous notes ride out the roasty finish with drier chocolates and cocoa.. this was like candy to me! The body was not much heftier than medium-bodied, but filled out a bit as the drink progressed.. great roast and barrel influence!.. creamy middle balanced well with sour oaky accents. Brilliant!
Ibrew2or3 (7158) - Tempe, Arizona, USA - DEC 11, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2002 vintage. 0.75L bottle shared with Degarth and crizay. Courtesy of Degarth. This is one of several beers I’ve always wanted to try and figured I’d never get a chance. That’s has happened a couple of times this month.
Poured black with beautiful multi hued brown spectrum head. The aroma is intense with sweet molasses and chocolate malts. As time passes and the beer warms the tart and sour red wine like aroma begins to dominate. The first flavor I get is the tart red wine grape and sourness from the barrel. More tart than sour. At the same time there’s some malty sweetness as an undercurrent just below and on top there’s a subtle fruitiness. As the taste progresses the malty sweetness of molasses and maybe toffee begin to arrest the flavor away from the tart and sour wine regime. Just past midway a chocolate note surfaces. The beer finishes smooth. In the after taste I get sweet toffee and then later it is sort of a red wine sweet grape note. Delicious beer. Thanks Degarth.
CaptainCougar (7132) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JUL 2, 2003
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAR 20, 2007 Batch 4, rerate on 8/26/06: Pours a dark black opaque with a dark tan/brownish frothy head. Sweet dark malty and fruity grapey aroma has nice oaky complexity. Body starts with a smooth, full chocolatey and slightly tart oaky fruity flavor toward a nicely balanced, bittersweet finish. Mildly oxidized, but otherwise has aged well.
Batch 4 rated on 7/2/2003: Rich dark black with a good tan head. Thick, lightly roasted bourbon wine aroma. Sweet, dark, fruity alcoholic flavor with some light sourness. Good complexity throughout and a warming finish. A good imperial stout, but I think there’s too much bourbon flavor. Unique nonetheless.