drewbeerme (3689) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUL 22, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 8, 2009 on tap at DLD09, pours black with tan head. nose is strong of maple syrup, oak, and chocolate. flavors of syrup, brown sugar, chocolate, and caramel. a nice sweet sipper. 4.1
12/8/09, draft at sheffields, pours black with dark tan head. Nose of coffee and maple syrup, flavors have a robust coffee roast with sweet maple syrup, and a dry ashy finish. Body is a bit thin. Itís a nice ba beer bu not crazy good, I know I like kbs better maybe even regular breakfast stout. 4.0
Borresteijn (3681) - Amsterdam, NETHERLANDS - MAY 1, 2012
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
75cl Bottle at AHBS. Black colour, beige head. Aroma is full on coffee and rather sweet, maple. Flavour is very sweet, maple syrup, light coffee, laurel, moccha, light bitter coffee and moccha finish with a hint of laurel and liquorice. Medium bodied. Too sweet to be excellent imo.
IrishBoy (3641) - Bakersfield, California, USA - JUN 26, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Hand bottle from Sprinkle shared by the ever generous Odeed! Smells like something I wnat a growler of! Nose of chocolate, oaky vanilla, maple, and almost a bourbon like alcohol note. Black with brown edges and a small ring of tan bubbles. Flavor is peppery alcohol, and a smoky note to go with the chocolate. Excellent!
boFNjackson (3632) - Portland, Oregon, USA - DEC 26, 2011
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2011 Bottle... Poured a viscous looking, pitch black with a brown frothy head. Nose was straight coffee. French press coffee all up in this aroma. The mouthfeel with thick and really coated the tongue. To me that was the closest hint of maple I got in this; the texture. Flavor wise it was intensely sweet with hints of alcohol booziness. The maple aged bourbon barrels didnít impart too much maple flavor for me. However this was lots of charred, dark wood and tannins going on though. Dark fruits, chocolate covered cherries, intense vanilla sweetness and more coffee characters. CBS is really nice, not sure about the huge hype though and Iíd prefer KBS, or even regular FBS over it.
TURDFERGUSON (3581) - Carrboro, North Carolina, USA - SEP 19, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Handbottle from Ucusty. Thanks so much for securing this David! Pours a thick, thick black with a small brown lace. Nose is sweet with caramel, slight maple, chocolate. Thick palate, yet silky smooth going down. Flavors of vanilla, brown sugar, coffee bitterness, and overall sweetness. Its sweet, without being too cloying.
JohnnyJ (3571) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 6, 2012
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle thanks to bulldogp04. Excited to try this. Deep black, with tan head. Maple syrup, coffee, vanilla, and chocolate sweetness. Rich, but not overly cloying. A very nice imp stout for sure.
emacgee (3506) - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA - SEP 20, 2009
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAR 25, 2012 Thanks to ucusty for giving this to us.
Pours a viscous oily black with a one finger dark brown head. Looks awesome. Nose is rich and mildly sweet, chocolate for sure, some coffee roast, mild woody character. Flavor is sweet, chocolate, some coffee, mild bitterness, a little wood comes through. Palate is velvety and coating with a mild roast. Looks and feels great but smells and tastes pretty good.
FlacoAlto (3506) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - FEB 20, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
A steady pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a dense looking, darkly browned head. The beer has a clear brown sheen to it as I pour it in thin sheets from the bottle, but looks exceedingly dark and opaque as it sits in my glass. The aroma smells strongly of concentrated, cold coffee up front; it is a bit acrid, exceedingly roasted, sharply burnt, with a clean, charcoal smokiness. More digging yields a deeply toasty, dark bread character, as well as notes of burnt molasses that intermingle with the huge roast character. Once you really take a couple deep draughts of the aroma in a row a sweet, maple and dark chocolate character become more noticeable, both of which are boosted by a dark, concentrated malt sweetness. The nose is definitely quite rich, it is a bit too dominated by the burnt and acrid roast grain / coffee character than I would prefer, but I canít say that I actually expected anything different. The maple character is quite subtle, but I like that it is at least slightly noticeable.
The beer has a dark malt and chocolate sweetness to it up front, but it isnít nearly as sweet as I might have suspected from the aroma. The sweetness is quite well tempered by big, bitter roast notes that are redolent of concentrated coffee as well as roasted malt; the coffee is quite distinct here, as the roast character from coffee does have a different character than roast grain; there is definitely a touch of acrid character, as well as a hint of sharpness / acidity from the burnt character. There is a soft, prickly carbonation that at times goes unnoticed underneath the rich, viscous heft that makes up the body of this beer; this is not anywhere near the heaviest of Imperial Stouts, but is most definitley a meal in a glass and a sipping brew. Woody roasted notes seem to be accentuated just a touch by a hint of maple sweetness that lingers on a bit in the finish. The finish is mostly dominated by a lingering, bitter, hugely roasted flavors though. Some of the acrid, roasted character seems to be accentuated by a slight, woody astringency that is likely contributed by the oak; without having known this was aged in a barrel I doubt I would have attributed this to wood, but now that I have noticed it, I canít help but continue to notice the contribution in each sip; this is especially true in the long finish as there is a subtle, spicy oak character here.
Chocolate notes become more and more prominent as the beer warms up and the maple sweetness also becomes a touch more noticeable as well. Nicely the acrid, bitter, and burnt roast character becomes a touch tamer as the beer warms up too. The oak character becomes a bit more woody and spicy and a touch more noticeable, though it still forms a secondary role in this beer (as opposed to the subtle one it played when cooler). I really like that the acrid / excessively-burnt character has been reduced, even though it has been replaced by more sticky sweetness my palate seems to be able to deal with the former a bit better.
I can definitely see why this beer is so enjoyed by people, but it isnít quite as good to me; this is still a tasty tipple, but in the end the burnt coffee notes and even the spicy / astringent oak add a harshness to the character that just doesnít quite speak to perfection for me. On the other hand without the ample roast character and balancing oak, this beer would be a sweet sticky mess; somehow this beer is missing balance & is certainly a long way from achieving finesse. Not all beer needs to achieve this though, and this is still quite enjoyable. This is certainly a nice beer to enjoy as a long extended dessert, over an evening spent keeping warm.
maniac (3474) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - SEP 17, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle courtesy of BrewEngineer from the Charleston Beer Exchange on 06/05/2010. Dark black body with a small creamy brown head. Big spicy roast and chocolate aroma. Big roast, chocolate, and sweet vanilla flavor. Medium full body with moderately low carbonation.
jrallen34 (3466) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 24, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
CBS pours a very dark black with no brown in the light with a very nice mocha colored head. The head is about a finger and super thick but is gone quickly. Lacing is ok.
The aroma is light chocolate and oak with a little vanilla. I didnít get any syrup here.
The taste is very sweet, almost way to sweet and now i know where the maple was hiding. It is prominent here with some bourbon and a coffee finish.
The feel is nice but too sweet to be drinkable.
I was very excited to drink this and I like it better than the KBS but to me this is way overrated. There are so many better beers let alone better RIS that no way this is deserving of a top 10 ranking. The rarity really must bump it up