krisbierjaeger (844) - dolores, Colorado, USA - JUN 9, 2006
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
well, thatís it. i broke a nail opening this bastard. and i donít mean a fingernail, i mean a goddamn 16 penny galvanized framing nail. i was trying to wedge it under that bear trap they call a latch-top. jeez. quite a chastity belt on this gal: the lid features a lead and epoxy compound poured over a heavy stampede-grade livestock gate hinge. i normally like to listen to the sound of the carbonation escaping when i pop the headgear of a good beer, but with this one all i could hear was the pop of my shoulder dislocating. seriously, i was thinking of getting to the beer via an easier route: chewing through the glass. this is very nice packaging otherwise and a beautiful product from a brewer that previously seemed to be on a fateful confluence with mediocrity. hurah, charlie, for making a big, ambitious beverage. when i finally got it open-- and had mostly recovered with a quick nap and a couple aspirin-- i was able to appreciate the choke cherry red-black pour. the beer has got heft and mass, sure, but itís not like trying to see through a charcoal briquet-- itís edges show a lot of transparency that suggest a pumpernickel brown. the head was a brief little formality; mostly it was open brew across the top, while a couple bubbles drifted aimlessly like forlorn castaways. i smelled hemp fiber and pumpkin seeds, rinds of grated bitter chocolate and lemon, a bit of burnt toast, a suggestion of cedar. all these were given with a restrained hand: itís not explosively fragrant, nor alcoholic. flavor is like a iced coffee-- big on dark chocolate flavor and sweetness, and providing the tangerine bitterness of pleasing balance. itís not a huge or important imperial, but a nice one. (and you know that itís more important to be nice than it is nice to be important). priced at over ten bucks though, one wonders why so much fancy exterior need adorn this "nice" but unremarkable imperial.
NYHarvey (2153) - New York, New York, USA - MAY 16, 2006
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: OCT 7, 2006 Courtesy of BŁck Dich
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Sharp alcohol aroma is followed by chocolate, roast, vanilla and very mild coffee. Deep black body with a diminishing finger thick mocha head. Rich roasted malts, more vanilla and chocolate run through the middle fore and finish. Has a very nice creamy texture and a good intensity of flavor, but little range.
jake65 (2447) - Williston, North Dakota, USA - MAY 7, 2006
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAR 1, 2008 Bottle (2005) sampled 05/2006: Dark pour of blackish brown with a small brown head. Aroma is smooth with tones of coffee and malts. Taste is packed with chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and bittersweetness. Rich and full bodied brew.
<P>Update with 2007 batch on draft: Huge black pour with nice large brown head. Nose is rich and sweet with mocha and roasty malt. Lots of cocoa and coffee flavors with a subtle smokiness and plenty of roast. I love the dark chocolate presence. Smooth and rich.
billk (352) - Coeur díAlene, Idaho, USA - APR 23, 2006
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tap @ the brewery. This stout was into full bodied, quite rich & complex, but I found it to be rather sweet with a cooked sugar essence. It was also very alcohol foreward, to the point of interfering with my ability to enjoy the flavors. The server mentioned it would improve over time and I would have to agree.
Ratman197 (8484) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - MAR 13, 2006
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
1 liter swing-top bottle poured a dark brownish black with a small, diminishing brown head. Aromas of licorice, oak, light boubon and bitter chocolate. Palate was medium bodied and dry. Flavors of roasted malt, coffee, smoke, hint of licorice and light oak with a smooth, lingering bittersweet finish.
Murphy (1759) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - MAR 10, 2006
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Big oleí bottle. Pours opaque with a lasting thin brown head. Aroma is sweet malts, chocolate, creme, slight soy, stinging alcohol (7.5%, wtf?) Palate is chocolate malts, slight bitter grains fading into a lasting hop bitterness. Vanilla, cocoa, roasted malt and slight alcohol. Hints of oak. Palate is a dreamy thick deluge, very inviting. Very, very solid beer.
harlequinn (2744) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - FEB 28, 2006
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a deep dark as night color, with just a small tan ring of foam. The aroma is heavenly, rich malty chocolate, and roasted coffee, soy sauce and licorice, with just a hint of molasses. The flavor is slightly smokey, fruity and just a tidbit of woddy oaky vanilla. Finish has some graham crackers slightly burnt and bittersweet.
luckygirl (1223) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - FEB 25, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
From a bottle into a sniter. Beer pours a nearly opaque black color with an average-sized, warm-brown, frothy, quickly and mostly diminishing head. The aroma is promising: Heavily malty with notes of roasted grain, caramel. coffee and sweet chocolate; Moderately hoppy with a note of resin/pine; A trace yeast note of cellar; and miscellaneous, moderately weighty aromas of vanilla, oak, smoke, dried fruit and alcohol. The flavor is heavily sweet, moderately bitter and lightly acidic with a long, moderately-to-heavily bitter, lightly acidic finish. The palate is dreamy: The body is medium-to-full, the texture is velvty and the carbonation is lively. Nice stuff.
aracauna (2925) - Georgia, USA - FEB 24, 2006
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
The body is black with mahogany highlights. The head is a frothy tan foam that lasts for a bit. The aroma is full of rich chocolate and espresso with undercurrents of oak, although the whiskey is a very subtle characteristic buried in the mix unlike most of these whiskey-barrel imperial stouts. The body is pretty thin and the beer doesnít stand up to being chilled very well, but let it warm up a bit and this is a very well-balanced, very tasty Imperial Stout.
Ernest (5892) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - FEB 24, 2006
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: FEB 20, 2010 2005 bottle. Head is initially average sized, frothy, brown, mostly diminishing. Body is black (not quite opaque). Aroma is moderately malty (chocolate, caramel, roasted grain), lightly to moderately hoppy (resin, apricot, grapefruit), with light notes of vanilla and alcohol. Flavor is moderately to heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Finish lightly to moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter. Medium to full body, watery texture, soft/lively carbonation, lightly to moderately alcoholic. Nice. Itís a bit on the simple side, but itís pretty solid.