daknole (10279) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - NOV 30, 2013
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep brown, almost black in color. Cocoa powder colored head. Robust porter flavors with some nice oak and vanilla notes. Good chocolate finish on this one. Nice brew. Sampled at WtF.
wchesser (1467) - Denver, Colorado, USA - AUG 16, 2013
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Cask. Nose has some cocoa but don’t really get it much on the flavor. I really like the regular one, feel like the chocolate kinda flattens out the overall complexity of the base without really bringing anything.
3fourths (8594) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - AUG 16, 2013
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: AUG 17, 2013 Cask. Rich milk chocolate / cocoa focused nose with strong roasted coffee bean and burnt grain husk and salty campfire beach wood notes. Creamy and silky carbonation, soft up front but more husky, brash and char-heavy in finish. Some soy sauce saltiness and burnt bread. The char just lingers forever (definitely lingering in the finish!). I don’t get much of the nibs, which is a good thing I guess, the small amount of the flavor and aroma that I could guess was contributed by them is drowned by the heavy roast. It’s been a few months since I have Gilpin and Hogshead does have noticeable batch to batch variations and I don’t remember it being this roast / char heavy. I get a sense that remnants of smores and campfire wood made it into yesterday’s cup of camp coffee. That’s the character for me here. There’s no major off notes, it’s just out of balance and has too many quirks (thing body with crusty burnt popcorn at times) to be something I would drink regularly. I’ll have to try the unadulterated version of Gilpin again soon.
notalush (5351) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAR 2, 2013
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Cask at Hogshead - I love this beer without the chocolate - why you would feel the need to add cocoa nibs is beyond me, as there is already plenty of chocolate flavor in the original - anyway, all the good qualities of the original are here - I will not bother retyping them here, as they are in my rating of that beer - the cocoa doesn’t improve the beer, but rather, diminishes the enjoyment - the cocoa adds a bitterness and acidity that make it much less smooth and easy to palate than the original - these qualities cover up some of the sweeter elements of the base beer - if you have a choice, get the regular Gilpin.
Ratman197 (11222) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - FEB 7, 2013
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
On cask in a proper pint at Hogshead poured a clear dark reddish brown with a lasting creamy tan head. Aromas of cocoa nibs, roasted malt, light earhiness and light carmel. Palate was light to medium bodied and smooth. Flavors of roastiness, bittersweet cocoa nibs, light vanilla and light earthiness with a smooth lingering cocoa finish.