FlacoAlto (3881) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - MAY 1, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle Date of 3 6 10 0900; Sampled April 2010
A solid pour yields a four-finger thick, darkly browned head. The beer is a rich, opaque, black color. Wow, the aroma is incredibly hoppy, surprisingly so for even an American Imperial Stout. Aromas of tangelo zest, lychee, ripe tropical fruit and just a juicy, hop fruitiness. The dark malts take a back seat in the aroma, something I find amazing in an imperial stout; if you dig for it though there are notes of bitter cocoa, ample toasted whole grain crackers and only a hint of roasted grain. Chocolate malt character becomes more noticeable as the beer warms, but it doesn’t remotely compete with ample, aggressively smooth, super hop character packed into this beer. The aroma seems to define the perfect character for a Dark IPA (really a double version).
Smooth and viscous feeling as it first hits my tongue with a complex dark malt sweetness, quickly, as it rolls across my tongue an ample hop character of tropical fruit, ripe tangelo zest, big lychee and kumquat flavors become noticeable. The beer finishes with a bitterness that isn’t overly big for such a huge beer; much of it comes from a bitter roast malt character, but most of it is from a smooth hop bitterness. The finish has a herbal, essential citrus oil edge to it as well that I wouldn’t quite say is astringent, but does contribute to the overall balance of the beer along with the bitterness. Dark cocoa flavors couple with notes of roasted espresso, some burnt pine-tar notes and really, just a rich, complex, dark malt character. The hops have a way of making this big beer drink a little smaller than it actually is, which is definitely nice, but is probably a bit dangerous in a beer this size. The chocolate and coffee-liquor like malt character becomes more noticeable as the beer warms ups, though it still can’t compete with the smooth, but still loud malt character.
What a fantastic beer, I knew it was going to be hoppy, but I had no idea that this would be so hop dominated. I really dig this beer, and it reminds me of fresh Yeti, a beer I haven’t had in years. So incredibly smooth and I really like how the aggressive hop character has completely dominated this big roasted beer so thoroughly. The ample hop fruitiness is so smooth and juicy. This is fantastic because it is so hoppy, what a pleasant surprise.
jcwattsrugger (11586) - Florida and, New Jersey, USA - MAY 1, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
@CBC–on tap-pours a light tan head with black color. Aroma is resin hops, dark malt-roasty. Taste follows. Full body.
sthlm (1254) - Minnesota, USA - APR 30, 2010
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
[Bottle] Pours black with a nice dark brown head that fades to a ring. Aroma is very hoppy, with white spruce, vanilla and mandarin orange powering through the cocoa background. Taste has strong hop bitterness to balance the strong overall sweetness of the beer. Also has a lot of alcohol, restrained banana, some orange zest and vanilla notes ending with a burst of chocolate that melts into the deeply roasted barley in the finish. Very thick mouthfeel with a long finish. Outstanding. Between this and Bourbon County, GI has created two amazing beers that although share the same base, are very different. A touch too sweet, and lacks the complexity in the taste to get it up closer to the 5.0 mark...but still a gem as far as thick, hoppy imperial stouts go.
polomagnifico (1202) - Saginaw, Michigan, USA - APR 30, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Aroma has tons of piney hops with some chocoalte and roatsted malts. Black with a small foamy brown head that fully diminished and left no lace. Sweet and sticky then finishing bitter. Palate is very full bodied and very soft. The hoppiest ImpStout I’ve had. Very thick and chewy and the alcohol is very well masked. I love the idea of dry hoppin the crap out of an Impy but I am not sold on the young version of this beer. I do think that this beer will age better than most and should turn into something wonderful 2.5yrs and beyond. Very cool to see GI try something besides barrell aging.
riversideAK (5738) - Shoreline, Washington, USA - APR 28, 2010
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Nose is full of piney hops, citrus notes, bright and hoppy on top of tons of sweet chocolate, black patent malt, dark sugary notes, some alcohol. Love the hops on top of the sugary sweetness. Super interesting. Pours jet black with a dark brown head. Nice looking beer too. Lots of sweet chocolate, black malts, darker fruits show up, dark sugars, some roasted charred notes, and big hop bitterness, Pine, floral and citrus hops. The hops battle the sugars in the finish and create an incredibly balanced 11 percent beer. Big viscous body, smooth and full with some noticeable alcohol notes.
Darkover (1528) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - APR 28, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark black with a small frothy brown head. Aroma of piney hops and chocolate malts. Taste of medium sweetness, medium bitterness, full body, sticky, average carbonation, long warming finish, .
Silphium (3188) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - APR 28, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Deep opaque black body, thin tan head. Strong hoppy, piny nose, with roasted coffee, chocolate, and dark fruits. Intensely sweet, gummy body, with potent alcohol, roasted malts, finger-sticking cotton candy, and chocolate, a strange concoction that tastes sweeter and as hot as Bourbon County Stout.
Benjiehorn (21) - Chicago, USA - APR 28, 2010
4.2 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
The dry hopping in this stout is really nice and prevalent! Lots of toffee notes, dark chocolate, and a little bit of dark fruits, i.e. raisins, plums and prunes.
cracklefish (108) - Ohio, USA - APR 27, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Wow, smells like an IPA with deep toasty notes and alcohol that curls my nose hair. Some chocolate coming through. Boom! Citrus and pine on the front end big time. Middle is chocolate, coffee and bitter hops. Almost astringent and grassy. Finishes with roast, licorice, coffee and chocolate. Bitterness lingers. I feel like this beer needs time but with all the dry hopping the impression is drink it now! I agree *whoo* ...drink it now and save another.
decaturstevo (5487) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - APR 26, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Brown pour tihe hints of red. Tan head and lace. Chocolate and light coffee. Chocoffee and sweet roasted malt. Medium bodied with good carbonation. a very nice beer.