jjh19 (58) - California, USA - FEB 25, 2014
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Appearance: Pours a rich dark brown, bordering on black.
Smell: Wow. Vanilla and chocolate. I could not wait to taste this.
Taste: Double wow. My taste buds love vanilla, and it was the first thing I tasted here. But there’s so much more. I got hints of coffee, chocolate, and a sweet warming effect at the end.
Mouthfeel: Crazy smooth with a moderate body.
Drinkability: This is an easy drinking, special occasion beer. Strong recommendation. Complex and outstanding.
blipp (6148) - Newark, New Jersey, USA - JUL 11, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours near black with a beige head. Molasses, roasted malts, dark fruits, and vanilla dominate. Very sweet, with mocha-like chocolate/coffee, rich dark fruits, wood, and lingering sweet brandy-like fruity notes. Nice.
JoeTheYounger (1144) - Lake Arrowhead, California, USA - JUL 3, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
On draught at Lake Arrowhead Sports Grille. Dark Brown pour with tiny off white head. This beer rocks! Tons of vanilla up front with some chocolate, bourbon and coffee in the finish. Great job Karl Strauss!
bhensonb (11248) - Woodland, California, USA - APR 3, 2014
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tap at University of Beer in Davis, CA. Pours very dark brown with a beige head. Firm vanilla aroma. Full bodied or nearly. Flavor is chocolate vanilla. Or vanilla chocolate. Bourbon notes. Coffee arrives. The Alesmith throne totters a bit. Love the vanilla chocolate. Really tasty.
marcus (6586) - Sacramento, California, USA - APR 3, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap at University of Beer, Davis. Pours near black with a nice tan head and a chocolate and vanilla aroma. There is a hearty dark malt flavor with a lots of vanilla and a very warm bourbon trail.
Brigadier (3000) - Clevelandish, Ohio, USA - APR 3, 2014
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap in San Diego (CA)
Since this was such a big beer I saved this sample for last. I am glad because between this, the other beers, and a massive burger, it was difficult to even walk the few blocks to Stone World Bistro. I am not sure if makes a good data point for their normal releases but this one deserves all the praise being given to it.
Aroma / Appearance - An inky oily base swirls in the glass with a heavy feel. Due to the aging there is no head or carbonation. Chocolate truffles, oak, creamy vanilla, and espresso all add their own wrinkles to a heady presence that drips alcohol. The backbone of melted chocolate is an added bonus.
Flavor / Palate - A chewy and creamy mouthfeel clings to the corners of the mouth. Espresso, dark truffles, and heavy malt make it an ideal dessert beer or nightcap. Mint, raspberries, and ash heighten the experience before the bitter finish attaches itself to the throat. From start to finish this is a fine example of barrel aging done right.
TheHOFF43 (1756) - Robbinsdale, Minnesota, USA - MAR 3, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tap at brewery. Pours dark with minimal tan head. Aroma is strong vanilla, chocolate, coffee and roasted malts. Taste is creamy vanilla that sticks tobthe roof of my mouth. Chocolate and toffee comes on as well. Terrific, lived both BA versions.
brokensail (11085) - Orange County, California, USA - MAY 2, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Black pour with a khaki head. Nice vanilla and chocolate, coffee, mild alcohol, and some dark fruits. Good creamy sweetness, caramel, and toffee. Nice sweet flavor of vanilla, caramel, dark fruit, and chocolate. Some roasted malt, coffee, and a hint of alcohol.