TAR (2346) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - JUN 25, 2009
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: AUG 10, 2009 Batch 210: Impervious black. Compact cinnamon head exhibits flawless retention. Rich espresso truffle nose with pen ink, nougat, oats, vanilla bean, burnt toffee and hints of roasted malt hulls and blackened cookies swirled with liquefied caramel. Cozy, fluffy carbonation. Bottle conditioned. Extraordinarily explosive and succulent with initial waves of velvety bittersweet malt lapping the tongue. Succulence persists with an ensuing molasses-candied plum and salmiakki twang which is gently lifted by a clean but assertive alcoholic surge. Springy, cakey malt backbone softens the sharper roast and char elements. Despite the relentless malt onslaught, the malt possesses absolutely no astringency. Scant malt-derived acidity aids in tempering the sweetness as well as deepening the richer malt aspects. As if the beer couldn’t get any juicier, lustrous notes of espresso, chocolate fudge, and ink-soaked plums emerge to further reinforce the core. Nauseatingly rich and decadent, but addictively so. Juicy and meaty to the point of suggesting braised beef accompanied by plum sauce and an oozing black licorice tingle. Notably leathery, as well. While the chocolate fudge viscosity has absolutely no difficulty blanketing the palate, the body is impeccably attenuated and thus retains plenty of fluff and the malt sufficient vividness. Oaken, ashen dryness is buried within the weighty malt girth. Closes with potent fudge cake swimming in a dark chocolate espresso reduction. This is a clinic on malt extraction and purity from one of the world’s neatest breweries. Liquid velvet.
Ernest (5627) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUN 23, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Head is initially small, frothy, brown, mostly lasting.
Body is opaque black (flashlight tested), bottle conditioned.
Aroma is moderately malty (roasted grain, dark chocolate, caramel), with notes of vanilla, anise, blackberry, spruce/juniper.
Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly to moderately bitter.
Finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter.
Full body, velvety texture, lively carbonation, moderately alcoholic.
In a word, solid. About as nice an appearance as a strong stout can have...smallish head to start off, but somehow never goes away, and completely opaque. Characteristic Haand nose with berry and evergreen notes, quite nice...not quite as deep and complex as Dark Force was at the top of its game, but very enticing and lovely nevertheless. Rich, warming mouth experience that despite being somewhat decadent and sweet, is somehow magically well-balanced and elegant such that I was still craving the very last sip of the bottle. While there might be some small areas where improvements could be made, I don’t mean to suggest that improvements are needed. Again...solid.
WeeHeavySD (3356) - San Diego (Hillcrest), California, USA - JUN 21, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle, Shared with Kyrsten, Mal, Cyn, and Naomi. Pours black with a light brown head. Nose is super big, lots of big rich malts. Taste is sweet, bold smokey, syrupy, boozy, but not so bad.
bb (5888) - Alamo, California, USA - JUN 13, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Rich, dark mahogony/black beer with a brown head. Light roasty, light chooclate aroma with rich malt. Rich malt flavor with light coffee, light chocolate, and light roast. Fuller bodied. Rich malt and caramel lingers with light coffee, light chooclate, and slight licorice.
Finn (3090) - Tromsø, NORWAY - JUN 4, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Flaske 0,5l - batch 195. Svart som natta. Skummet er veldig mørkt: Starter høyt ved god lufting og stabiliserer seg på et anstendig nivå i løpet av noen minutter. Sterk aroma av frukt , bær sjokolade og kaffe. Vel avrundet smak som er forbausende mild før en syrlig bitterhet slår inn og bidrar med mer smak: Aner lakris og einer. Tynt lag med sedimenter som stort sett ble igjen i flaska. Alkoholen er godt kamuflert - inntil du prøver å komme deg opp av godstolen 8-) . Veldig bra! KI=-1 .
hopdog (7657) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 3, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
500ml bottle. Batch 210 Brewed 20 01 09. Poured a dark black color with an averaged sized brown head. Brown edges. Aromas of chocolate, roastiness, cofeee, and caramel. Tastes of chocolate, roastiness, coffee, caramel, vanilla, and lightly earthy. Medium alcohol in the finish. Oily and thick body.
michael-pollack (4962) - King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 31, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
500ml Bottle: Aroma of alcohol, light roasted malts, light chocolate, and a hint of coffee. Poured pitch black in color with a medium-sized, creamy, dark brown head that diminished but lasted throughout. Opaque. Very sparkling. Flavor is medium sweet and medium hot. Flavor of alcohol, chocolate, roasted malts, tar, and some cream. Medium body. Slick texture. Soft carbonation. Alcohol, chocolate, cream, and tar finish is a tad chalky. Quite alcohol hot, took off points.
gunnar (3591) - Sandnes, NORWAY - MAY 31, 2009
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, batch # 195Pours almost black, with a moderate brown head. Aroma of dry roasted malt and wood.
Taste is first of all sour, but not in the acidic way, rather more oilish and complex, red berries are noticeable together with cherry and hints of liquorice. Long aftertaste, starts sweet, ends with dark alcoholic notes, an outstanding beer.
RuneStumo (1707) - FØRRESFJORDEN, NORWAY - MAY 20, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
20.05.2009, 0,5l Bottle. Batch 207, Brewed 30.01.09, BB 30.01.13. Black with dark brown head. Aroma is roasted malt. The beer tastes a lot and there is a lot of alcohol, hops and roasted malt. The beer is also a little sour, and that gives the beer a kind off vine-like taste. Nice long aftertaste.
altonbrownd (4210) - Brussels, BELGIUM - MAY 20, 2009
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle from Bierkoning. Pitch and oily black. Thin dark brown head. Nose of sweet, toffee and roasted malts. Cloying and oily texture. Taste of chocolate, coffee and toffee. Sweet finish, almost of sweetbread. Skoll!