StewardofGondor (1934) - Washington Heights - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 1, 2005
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Medium-to-thin pour, settling in as a translucent mahogany concoction with dusty dumpings for the head. Promising aroma accentuated by hops and alcohol, some cocoa beans, roasty malts, milk chocolate, graham crackers and caramel. Flavor comes in loosely, with carbonation and bright semi-sweet chocolate butting heads. More like a robust porter. Dark chocolate cocoa powder and Hershey syrup drone on rhythmically, at times bringing the flavoring around to resemble Symphony chocolate bars with almonds. Slippery and thin body, titillating and active. Bitterness levels (72 IBUs) give it just enough to claim imperial status. Chocolate and hazelnut coffee creamer define the finish.
zig (2) - Portland, Oregon, USA - NOV 29, 2005 does not count
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
definitely not as strong as a typical Imperial Stout but one of the finest tastes around. Smooth and easy to drink. You canít taste the strength of the alcohol so watch out. One of my favorite beers.
blankboy (6007) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 26, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: FEB 28, 2006 Rerate: I liked the flavour more this time so I bumped it up a bit.
Original rating: 22.214.171.124.13: 3.4
Bottle shared with HogTownHarry and Dave B. -- courtesy of Dave B. Pours dark brown with some ruby hues and a big diminishing light-brown head -- looks pretty frickiní good. Aroma of sweet and roasted malt, vanilla, cocoa and some very faint hops. The flavour follows the aroma but is dissapointing: itís more like a mild Stout, never mind an Imperial Stout. I also found the taste a little too sweet. Itís good but I expect much better from Lagunitas.
HogTownHarry (6064) - Toronto (Harbourfront), Ontario, CANADA - NOV 24, 2005
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: JAN 20, 2007 Bottle (650ml). Shared with blankboy, GregClow, jerc and tupalev - tupalevís bottle. Poured deep dark reddish-brown, good sized creamy/rocky light brown head. Aroma is dusty-dry roast coffee, cocoa, shoe polish, prunes and raisins, paper pulp. Taste is ... a little disappointing, weak, a bit sour and light - roasty, but not strong, with sour cherry (and persimmon?) and syrupy sweetness building as it warms. Canít really taste the alcohol - tastes more like a mild dry overly fruity beer, not all that stout-like. Iím pretty let down. *Original rating 8/4/6/3/13=3.5, shared with blankboy and Dave B, Daveís bottle*
gwfrankpsu (231) - McKinleyville, California, USA - NOV 23, 2005
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Poured dark with a tan head that quickly went away. Slight roasty smokey aroma. Found the body light and thin, not what I expect from an Imperial Stout. Taste is also thin, soapy , hard to explain not much character - no roasty, coffee or chocolate flavors, found the taste bland. This is a very disappointing beer, not like anything Iíve had from this brewery.
BŁckDich (5464) - McCall, Idaho, USA - NOV 21, 2005
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
When I think of how an imperial stout should look, I envision high viscosity, jet-black sludge that roars when you pour it into the bottle. This seems more shy, even showing a red blush color with exposed to a little back light. The head doesnít really stand prowd, just quickly balds and tries to combover with whatís left around the edges. Oh well, it still looks extremely potable. The nose contains red grapes, soy sauce, pomegranite and salty smelling nutmeg. The flavor is a bit better than I was expecting. Mellow but distinct sweetness balances with, full yet dry roasted character and a mild hop bitterness. A bit of solid maltiness and other chocolate/coffee notes. Finishes dry, makes me thirsty. Overall a good tasting imperial stout but needs more improvement in the other areas.
MartinT (7779) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 14, 2005
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Lots of foam to cover a fat, shapeless sweetness. Fruitiness is perceived, but again is non-distinct. Rather boring approach for something "imperial".
Roasted malt somewhat clashes with brown sugar and fierce carbonation (stout soda?). Some caramel exists within the fruitiness, but there are much better examples of the style in the 7-8% category.
The trees are nearly leafless now.
Pailhead (4741) - Brownstown, Michigan, USA - NOV 7, 2005
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle: Courtesy of Styles. Great chocolate and roasted coffee aroma. Pours a dark brown with hints of red along the outer edges of the glass when held to the light. Small off-white head. Chocolate and fruit up front with a moderate roasted coffee finish. A tad thin, and not the most complex Imperial, but still tastey. Chocolate presence increases as it warms.
Dough77 (821) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - NOV 1, 2005
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark dark brown pour, borderline black but not quite. Nose of chocolate, malt, coffee, with hints of smoke and vanilla. Flavor is not quite as robust as I shoot for in my imperial stouts, but is steady enough for tonite.
Frank (2814) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - OCT 13, 2005
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Much more brown than black, not even a nice garnet either. Almost no head. Just not what I like to see in a stout. Very malty w/ a touch of some floral hops. Chocalate, hay and dried cherry. More a big porter than a stout, really. I like it but I find myself craving more.