ChadPolenz (1701) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 25, 2013
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
I poured a 12oz bottle into a goblet. It was bottled on 2/4/13 and cost $4.49 ($0.37 per ounce).
Appearance: Just looks thick and viscous flowing out the bottle. Body is extremely dark with a brown frothy head. It mostly dissipates, but does leave some lacing, which is impressive for such a big beer.
Smell: A strong aroma of dark malt, espresso, and milk chocolate candy. No alcohol presence.
Taste: Otter Creek is a brewery known for making pretty mainstream stuff that you can buy in the supermarket. I’ve enjoyed a few of their beers, but some have been unimpressive. When I heard several people recommend I try their Russian Imperial Stout I was surprised to hear it. Now that I’ve drank it myself I can see why everyone’s raving. This is a quality RIS that can hang with the big boys as it’s robust, complex and highly drinkable.
The first taste I notice is sweet milk chocolate. It almost seems sugary, though I doubt this beer is brewed with any actual chocolate or other additives. Beers of the style tend to have a strong red grape flavor, and while that taste is present here, it takes a backseat to deeply roasted (but not burnt) malt and iced coffee flavor, balanced by a strong hop presence. The label indicates the beer is 65 IBUs, which actually seems a bit low since big imperial stouts tend to be high in bitterness to balance out the intense malty sweetness. I think a lot of balance is being done by the malt’s inherent coffee and roasty flavors. There’s some alcohol warmth and flavor as it finishes, but it actually complements the palette quite well. I have to say I’m floored by how good this beer is, since it can definitely hang with the big names of the style.
Drinkability: A delicious imperial stout is a lot less appreciable if it’s hard to drink. Thankfully, Otter Creek Russian Imperial Stout doesn’t have that problem as it has a soft, comfortable mouthfeel with a velvety texture. It goes down smooth with a slight hoppy bite on the finish, but leaves no lingering aftertaste other than some chocolate notes. It does not nearly feel as heavy its 10% ABV weight. Though there is alcohol warmth, it’s not distracting. That seems to be what separates a great RIS from an average one.
oh6gdx (25472) - Vasa, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottled@PBF VIII. Deep ambery brown to black colour, small brown head. Toasted and some ashes with sweet alcohol. Flavour is quite much the same into a nice roasted and and liquorice bomb. A bit one dimensional
olio (9380) - Tampere, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
65 cl bottle @ PBF 2013.
Pours dark red color with a small off-white head. Aroma of caramel malts, faint honey, pale malts and toffee. Flavor of caramel malts, rye, toffee,licorice and some cocoa. Dry palate.
lusikka (7700) - Tampere, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
650 ml bottle @ PBF 2013.
Pours a pitch black colour with a beige head. Aroma of roasted malts, cream, salty licorice and biscuit. Flavour of roasted malts, biscuit, floral hops, cream, some mild vanilla notes, strong milk chocolate and straw. Full bodied, oily mouthfeel and really smooth and soft finish with roasted notes. Alcohol warms nicely. A bit thin, but really enjoyable.
tiong (6488) - Espoo, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
650ml bottle @ PBF 2013
Pours pitch black with a foamy white head. Aroma of roasted malts, sweet syrup, chocolate, coffee and grainy notes. Taste is roasty, chocolatey, sweetish, syrupy and grainy with notes of coffee and wood. Finish is malty, chocolatey and syrupy with notes of grainy malts and roastiness. Quite good imperial stout.
omhper (23731) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - AUG 23, 2013
2.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Bottled at PBF. near black, minimal head. Citric licorice aroma. Sweetish with full body and clean, rounded mouthfeel. Some grapefruit and tobacco, but most flavours seem contained behind plastic. Big and bold. Dull.
laiti (8084) - Helsinki, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
65 cl bottle @ PBF VIII
Aroma is somewhat sweet with hay, cocoa, some soy sauce and licorice. Flavour has soy sauce, salty licorice and hints of coffee. Also some hay. Odd, but there’s a certain English feeling here.
DCLawyer (2786) - Falls Church, Virginia, USA - AUG 18, 2013
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle->snifter. Black with small brown head. A: coffee, chocolate, roasted malt. T: dark chocolate, roasted malt, ash. Bitter. Good, not great.
reberiii (498) - Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 8, 2013
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Boozy nose, bready background. Poured from 12oz bottle opaque black with slight caramel foam. Small in amount of head, but solid retention. Not super strong on the mouth, bitter hop middle and finish. Booze bite.
Ernesto987 (5607) - Arizona, USA - JUL 6, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle, great rich deep flavors, awesome thickness, another Vermont gem. Roasty with a bitter finish