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RATINGS: 986   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%
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Our take on the stout brewed by 18th century English brewers for the Russian Imperial Court of Catherine II. The special malted barley in this intense and massive brew delivers rich flavors like dark chocolate, coffee and anise.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
SphinxTX (2876) - Mata Gorda, Texas, USA - FEB 19, 2009
Bottle from Metzlers in Denton, TX. Pours a Black with creamy tan-copper head. Aroma isn’t as good as I would like, not very strong....The aroma is of dark roast and chocolat. Flavor is very nice, dark roast and chocolate. Mouthfeel is full body, silky, low carbonation. Overall, very enjoyable beer.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
PilsnerPeter (3029) - Flushing, New York, USA - FEB 18, 2009
Bottle: Nearly opaque, oily pour with a brown film of head. The aroma is tarry, salty, metallic (iron oxide like most Sam Adams beers), some anise, char, and lots of vegetal. Viscous, not quite cloying. Salty flavor with apparent ethanol, vegetal- fennel, licorice, later peppery ethanol and deep roast on the back. Lacking nuance and subtlety, as well as hard to drink.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
fredandboboflo (1570) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 18, 2009
Bottle. A boozy, medicinal mess of a beer with some odd milky and vegetal notes. I much prefer the BBC reflected in the Boston Lager and many of their other session beers.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
basewars (169) - Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 17, 2009
Pours deep black with viscous motor oil consistency. Fluffy dark head. Aroma is surprisingly muted. Some chocolate and coffee but nothing overpowering. Flavor is mostly chocolate with some bitterness and a bit of hops. Very smooth with hidden alcohol. Pretty good.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Botnik (142) - Fall River, Massachusetts, USA - FEB 17, 2009
Pours Black with a thin brown head. Roasted Malt background. A bit tangy and dry for my taste. Alcohol is sufficiently masked.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
RomanW70 (297) - Providence, Rhode Island, USA - FEB 16, 2009
Pours jet black w/no head and minimal lacing. Looks super thick. Nose is cocoa, bourbon, vanilla, and coffee. Taste comes on a little hot, with a strong roast flavor with strong amounts of licorice. Is fairly thick, but not as thick as it looks. Loses some heat as it warms up and gives additional notes of vanilla and wood. A good Impy stout..

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ross (2122) - weddington, North Carolina, USA - FEB 16, 2009
Bottle. When I see a SA Imperial I usually purchase because their big beers tend to be much better than the lower abv ones. Black colored pour with a huge tan head on it. Smell is roasty, with big notes of vanilla, some coffee and chocolate. Taste is sweet and smooth, very easy to drink; perhaps a session imperial stout. A fair amount of vanilla is present here as well. All in all a good beer, one of the better efforts. I like drinking the better efforts of a mass produced beer company, and this certainly qualifies.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
coharahawk (170) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 16, 2009
12 oz bottle. Pours pitch black with tan head that fades to a thin ring. Aroma is roasty with some smoky and fruit notes as well. Flavor has chocolate, roasted malts, smoke, and moderate amount of astringency. Mouthfeel is probably a tiny bit less than I would expect for the style, but not too bad. Overall, it’s a pretty good representation of the style and very good for a somewhat mass produced beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
hophead75 (2012) - Largo, Florida, USA - FEB 15, 2009
12 oz bottle. Opaque black in color with a medium szed brown head that retains well. Great appearance. Aroma of strong chocolate- fudge brownies, with roast, licorice. Taste has a good amount of roast and chocolate, also get some weird spice. Some light dark fruits and licorice. Body is full - medium to full for the style with lingering roast and a light hop bitterness in the finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
andyhite (308) - Murfreesboro, Tennessee, USA - FEB 15, 2009
first of all, it should be noted that i judge on a curve, and that sam adams needs a lot to get a good rating on a beer, as with most beer dorks. aromas of strong dark cacao and semi-sweet baking chocolate, followed by an underlying layer of robusto coffee smores fresh from a campfire. perhaps this isn’t the best aroma for an IS, but it certainly brings back memories of childhood. this pitch black brew appears to have a rich, creamy taste based on the "midnight lace...and creamy espresso..." head. the aromas also yield a pleasant toastiness and strong toffee and molasses undertone. on the palate, this chewy chocolate-ey stout shows the versatility of a solid stout. roasted malts reveal the deep character, with layers of dark chocolate, brown sugar, black coffee (perhaps with a hint of tia maria shot in there), and just a note of alcohol. sam’s stout is almost a great replica of young’s double chocolate with increased noticed alcohol on the palate. it’s a defnitely a tasty brew, and one that will definitely remind you that there’s no better time for a stout than in the tail of winter. congrats, sam adams (and the BBC), you have made a quality product. this is a first, aside from the extreme series.

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