franksnbeans (265) - Columbus, Maryland, USA - DEC 23, 2007
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours out jet black with a huge cocoa head that dies slow and laces big. Smells of chocolate covered fruit, dried plums, coffee and cocoa. Taste is big chocolate, some dark fruit and coffee but all out of sorts. These flavors usually are perfect together but they all seem off. Turned off by the chalky finish. Full in the mouth and the ABV is well hidden. A victim of hype.
MIBRomeo (2570) - Wisconsin, USA - DEC 23, 2007
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Jet black pour huge mocha oatmeal looking head w/ nice thick lacing. Palate is well coated and creamy almost a five but just not quite full enough. Rich roast malt aroma touches of sweet alcohol. Big sweet malty taste molasis and dark milk chocolates w/ a hint of raisens and a touch of butter. Delicious.
illinismitty (2270) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 23, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from Ross via Juelze. Thanks ass lick! I have been wanting to see if this Leinenkugle beer lives up to the hype. IPours an opaque black with a chocolate brown head. Aroma of roasted malts, dark fruit, balsamic reduction, and coffee. Medium to full bodied with a nice creamy texture. Initial flavor of milk chocolate with subtle smoke. Mid palate is sweeter, with flavors of dark fruit and black and rye malts that is countered by a moderate balancing bitterness. Finish has a slight tang, and is short but smooth. I had this in a blind tasting along Bells Expedition 8183 and Brooklyn Black Chocolate 07-08. Of those three, this one was my favorite of the night. While Expedition has more body, roast, and bitterness, I think Expedition needed more time in the cellar for the flavors to meld. With some cellar time, Expedition will probably be a better beer. But for now, Big Eddy pulls off the upset. This just goes to show that the big breweries CAN make a good craft beer. Hopefully others will follow suit.
xnoxhatex (1305) - Grand Rapids/Chicago, Michigan, USA - DEC 23, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Rating #100 for the beer. Bottle thanks to Drewbeerme. Opaque black with large tan/coffee head. Aroma of smoke, roasted malt, dark fruit, dark chocolate sweetness, bourbon vanilla aswell, very nice. Sweet alc flavor with deep dark bitter/sweet chocolate, hoppy, dark fruits, powerful malt/alc balance. Medium to full body and creamy. This is quite a powerful brew, once again another impressive big eddy release. This is comprable to any big imperial stout out there, though the abv is still quite small for such a big alc tasting beer. I agree with Drewbeerme about the similarity to DL.
lb4lb (2587) - Austin, Texas, USA - DEC 21, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Big thanks to Miketd for this much wanted bottle!
Dark oily, black pour with a nice sized brown head. Looks nice in a snifter. Smells of some soy sauce, oatmeal, a bit of roast malt, and unbaked dough. Very interesting. Taste is smoky. Beef jerky, smoke and then some roasty malt and a bit of dark fruits. Nice thick creamy body and mouthfeel. Too smoky at first, but then it grows on me and has some chalky bittersweet cocoa powder notes that I enjoy.
milewide (2076) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - DEC 20, 2007
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Black color and thick body. Some sweetness, but mostly toasted malt. Modest hop bitterness.
holdenn (2110) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 19, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12 oz bottle thanks to andrew for crossing the border to pick me up some of these. Pours a dark black with a tall tan head. Fruity sweet aroma. Dark fruit, ripe fruit, and dark chocolate. Roasted malt/fruity flavors. Molasses, dark fruit, cherries, and roasted malts with a sweet but bitter roast finish. Thick sticky palate. Good beer.
fordest (2470) - Santee/San Diego, California, USA - DEC 19, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
12 oz bottle thanks to Santa. What a beer. Darkest pour with huge tan head. Lots of dark fruit, coffee, chocolate aromas. Flavors were roasted coffee, Mocha Java, Touches of alcohol on the finish. Raisins and Molasses. Good Good Stuff.
boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - DEC 18, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Black from afar, close inspection reveals very dark chocolate browns. The body is totally opaque and appears oily. A thin, dark tan head mostly dissipates rapidly and lightly laces the glass. Chocolate icing covering cooled brownies is the first thing I sense as I raise the glass to my nose. Caramel and sugarplum notes follow, then a procession of glamourous roasted grains of varying degrees of char. Alcohol seems fairly well-disguised, what little emitted takes on the form of dark fruits and mingles cohesively with prickly earthiness from robust hoppiness and toffee scents. Caramel and nougat, with a slight nuttiness all glimmer in the backdrop of pleasant maltiness. Raisin and plum notes are more formidable with warmth. Milder molasses brings up the rear. A conspicuous lack of discernible coffee is noted. Very nice, easy to partake in and so far flawless. This seems to be a nod to the Russian imperial style but is still a distinctly modern version of the style. The nose is full and luxurious, traits I’m glad to see a usually unimpressive brewery pull out of their respective hats. The technology and prowess was there; I suppose someone just needed to give the green light - hopefully we’ll see more freedom along these lines with other profit-driven breweries that have what it takes to get it done. The flavor is fantastic, as was anticipated (but not guaranteed) by the lovely aroma. Roasted malt leads the rambunctious charge and is closely tailed by the now bold coffee, which is neither an exciting nor bland addition. Sweetness is medium-high and fits well with so many dark fruit eccentricities that spring from the crest of each sip. Caramel, raisin and tobacco now noted are of moderate strength and equally grainy composition. Bitterness and perceptible hoppiness are mild and cumulative. Astringency is low. Alcohol is moderately warming in a finish that leaves syrupy semi-bitter chocolate behind, lightly bitter and very lengthy. The mouthfeel is erratically carbonated, prickly bubbles causing a slight distraction from the mellower fine points. The body is heavy on the plate but not exceptionally so, therefore this is very easy to drink and quite satisfying. Very well done.
dmac (5635) - Toms River, New Jersey, USA - DEC 18, 2007
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle shared at Madness. Pours a good looking solid black with a small head. I found the aroma to be slightly off, then again I was way off at this point and seriously smashed. Full bodied yet smooth and creamy. Roasty flavor of tobacco and chocolate. Pretty good stuff but either the aroma needs some work or I need to sober up some, probably the second.