joet (1990) - Santa Rosa, California, USA - NOV 22, 2001
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark roasted cocoa aromas, complex malt aromas and flavors that are full and roasty without being ashen. Thick and lactic without being sweet and syrupy. To be this big and be well balanced with some brightness in the hops is an accomplishment. The alcohol burn is there for certain but subdued.
Aurelius (3719) - Tallahassee, Florida, USA - NOV 18, 2001
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Complex. Nice roasted rum-raisin flavor. Not overpowering, but I probably wouldnít drink more than 2 at a sitting. Iím going to ding this a little for lacking a stacked head, but otherwise, itís a 4.4-4.5 beer.
muzzlehatch (4424) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - NOV 17, 2001
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: FEB 9, 2004 Nov 17, 2001: On tap at the Map Room in Chicago: I have been singing the praises of McNeills on this site for quite some time; both their Imperial and Reagins stouts are among the best I've ever had. This one equals those fine Vermont products and even reaches new heights. Amazingly complex; I don't know how much I was actually able to get on just one glass. Mostly dried fruits (currents, raisings) in the nose; the flavor was like liquid fruitcake, with a slight smokiness but little in the way of alcoholic overbearing (and at 9%!). A truly amazing beer, unlike any other stout I've had. Could be a top 5 all-time for me.
February 9, 2004, bottled. Worried that my rating was going to drop here, after a douple dozen new Imperials in between, but it hasn't. Surprised that so many comment on the lack of sweetness and massive bitterness -- I thought those were GOOD traits? Anyway for me the massive roastiness and dry-as-hell ending help counterbalance the big maltiness and brandied fruitiness; still my favorite Imperial.
robertjm (718) - Albany, California, USA - NOV 10, 2001
4.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
The best Imp. Stout ever made? Maybe, maybe not, but its the best Iíve had. Richly chocolate taste. Almost stickyness that coats your glass. Wonderful head.
FUNK (120) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 8, 2001
4.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
I had to go on a road trip to get this one and iím damn glad i did. Very dark with a definte alcohal warming effect.
40oz (181) - Newport Beach, California, USA - OCT 24, 2001
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Strong malty aroma with a hint of fruitiness. Smooth, creamy palate and toasty coffee/chocolate taste and rich brown head remind me of drinking the milk left over from a bowl of Coco Puffs. The significant hoppyness and alcohol twang balances the weight and sweetness of the brew perfectly. Great for mellowing out hyperactive kids.
npdempse (933) - St. Petersburg, Florida, USA - OCT 20, 2001
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Nice, creamy mouthfeel, with flavors of burnt coffee and caramel. I found some slightly off-putting sour, vinous notes in the finish, however.
hennes (934) - Fountain, Michigan, USA - OCT 15, 2001
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
OK so Iíve used the words írichí and complex cavalierly before. This is the first beer Iíve had to rival drinking Guinness in a pub on St Pats in my imagination. A heady brandy-like flavour and something else that I can only liken to the pleasant sensation of a fine cigar. Wow. You get the post cigar feeling of genuine well being, too. A tuly magical beer and the finest imperial Iíve ever been in the same room with.
dolemike1 (1288) - Jeannette, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 11, 2001
4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Took awhile to get used to. Started off with an aftertaste, dry and hoppy, that was a little too strong for my liking. As it warmed the rich chocolate and roasted, coffee flavors came through and subdued the aftertaste, as did the high alcohol content. Nice, but i prefer other styles of stout.
bonvivant (168) - Smithfield, Virginia, USA - OCT 10, 2001
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Nice- Got that littles bit of hop on the backend.A little lighter than some Imperials but still good chocolate roasty flavors