tectactoe (2519) - Michigan, USA - OCT 13, 2014
2.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 7/20
Bottle: Thanks, Kevin. Almost black body, hints of dark brown near the edges; capped with a soapy, foamy, bubbly ecru head. Aroma of sweet vanilla extract, baker’s cocoa, light nuts, a touch of chocolate malt. Maybe some light roastiness, too. The flavor has a strange, overpowering dark fruitiness that doesn’t meld all too well & doesn’t mesh with the aroma nicely, either. Dark prunes, raisins, vanilla... Some strangely herbal & heavily floral notes hammer their way in & also don’t seem to jive with everything else. The finish is all tart raisin & prune. Slight nuttiness throughout. A strange beer... Not the best.
Pailhead (5210) - Brownstown, Michigan, USA - OCT 4, 2014
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 9/20
Courtesy of 5000 via trade
Bottle: The aroma consists of dusty notes, light sour fruits, roasted coffee, and faint burnt notes. It pours a dark brown with some faint orange highlights and a small beige head that quickly fades to a thin film outlined by a thicker ring. The flavor starts with a quick dose of chocolate that is quickly dominated by some sour dark fruits in the middle. The finish has moderate roasted nuts, black coffee, and faint burnt notes. It’s light-medium bodied with moderate-lively carbonation. Overall, sour and roasty just doesn’t work for me.
FlacoAlto (3810) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 9, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sampled March 2014
A steady pour into my New Belgium globe glass produces a two finger thick, nicely browned, tan colored head. The beer is a concentrated brown, almost black color that shows a clear, deep, concentrated plum color around the edges when held up to the light. The aroma smells nicely roasted, but has a bright fruit character that leans towards raisins, a soft licorice note, as well as a soft vanilla note that is subdued a bit because the beer does not smell sweet. The roasted notes leans towards a rich, roasted nutty character, and toasted / roasted whole grain toast.
The beer is fairly dry, with a rich roasted character throughout and a soft, lingering vanilla note in the finish. The body is fairly light, but has a bit of chewiness to it, there is a nice carbonation that provides a bit of texture. Despite being dry this still manages to have a rich chocolate note, that supports the more dominant roast character that is nutty, a bit cold coffee like, and some lightly tart burnt character. The fruit character from the nose is here in the flavor, though it is a bit reduced because the beer is fairly dry; notes of roasted plums, and burnt raisins are noticeable. As the beer warms up a bit, I finally start to notice the herbal character; it provides a bit of astringency and woody character to the finish, some fennel notes, and perhaps a bit of rosemary type character.
This is actually a pretty good, the fermentation is more fruit based than having weird spicy notes and overly phenolic yeast character; it works pretty well and makes for an enjoyable beer. Plus, I also like that the vanilla is fairly light here, and the herbal character is as well.
5000 (6299) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - MAY 8, 2014
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle:   Very pale roast, somewhat of a dark brown color, with some tart herbal notes.   Would never have guessed this for a Stout had I tried it blind.   Slightly dry, with some bitter dandelion notes.   Reminds me of dandelion tea a bit.   Pale sweetness, a bit tart, herbal, does seem to have some of the characteristics in the description, but its all so minor.   A very soft example of a Stout.   Dunno about this one...
DuffMan (7147) - the land of bitumen, beef & beer, Alberta, CANADA - MAR 11, 2014
1.9 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
Wow, this sounds good doesn’t it? I thought so. I brought this bottle to a group game night for sharing. What a dud! Medium brown with an effervescent tan head. The aroma is heavy on herbs with a few phenols thrown in, and a hint of vanilla sweetness. The aroma is definitively un-stoutlike, with no roast traits at all. The palate translates to the same: heavy herbal, medicinal character, almost astringent. Thin, watery mouthfeel. Again, there is a sad paucity of malt here-- just the faintest hint of chocolate. Missing the vanilla hinted at in the nose. For all the romanticism in the description, this beer was failure. Half the bottle sat unfinished, among five eager tasters. Sad.