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RATINGS: 864   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.94   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 303   ABV: 10.1%
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After a one year hiatus the Imperial Stout is back in action. We figured that after catching a bit of flack for its absence weíd have it return with a bang. We bumped up the starting gravity from 20į P to 24į P. This allowed the beer to finish just over 10% ABV. Like this yearís Barleywine, weíve decided to play with the hop character, specifically the dry hop presence. Trying to avoid the fiasco of my previous attempt at adding pellets to the fermentor, I did what any good manager would do: I made Charlie add them. He had the advantage of being able to add the hops directly through a top manway and so his besting me in this challenge is not necessarily a sign of his superior brewing skills but more a reflection of my adventurous, try anything spirit (or at least thatís the story Iím stickiní to). The Charles added 44 lbs of Cascade, split evenly between two batches, or about half a pound per barrel. We then transferred the beer onto seventy-eight pounds of an even mixture of Centennial and Columbus whole flowers, about one pound per barrel. The beer is a little top heavy in terms of the hopping but it seems to be smoothing out a bit as itís aging. Iíd give it six months or so, if you can wait that long. If not, hey, enjoy it anyway.
2014 - 9.4% abv

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
hopscotch (9214) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - OCT 13, 2004
This beer rocks!... Pitch black ale with a small, creamy, beige head. Excellent retention. Very thick, creamy lacework. The aroma is of espresso, dark chocolate, black strap molasses and vanilla. Well-bittered, burnt flavor with big notes of espresso grounds and licorice. Full-bodied with a very silky/creamy mouthfeel and fairly soft carbonation. Lengthy, burnt, bitter, dry finish. World class imperial stout!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
beerhugger (542) - Oshawa, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 4, 2004
UPDATED: OCT 23, 2004 My notes for this one were somewhat minimalist - the main thing I put down was that it was a very solid, traditional Imperial Stout. So then: black and oily and roasted malts and coffee and chocolate and a big rich dark tan head and a smooth rich bitter finish. Mmmm mmm good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
cherr (162) - Rochester, New York, USA - OCT 2, 2004
I had this beer in a bottle. The taste of roasted malt and coffee is dominant. The beer goes down very smooth and seems to be a great beer. I think itís a bit less than the stone imperial stout, but one of the best.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
DocLock (7912) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 1, 2004
I have alwys been a fan of Smutty beers, and smutty women...This oe pours dark brown with a deep tan head. Aroma of big malt, chocoff, dark fruit. Tastes malty, with huge chocoff, dark fruit, slight oats and nuts. Smooth, firm palate, and a ballsy finish. This impy stout is awesome, and is only superseded by the big names of Speedway, Stone, Yeti, and my own discovery, Central Waters. This one kicks ass and takes names.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
jefcon (1400) - Arlington, Virginia, USA - SEP 24, 2004
A black-as-night stout with a milky sweet taste and aromas of chocolate and mocha. Excellent palate for a stout, not acidic at all and very nutty on the finish. A great stout and a fine effort from the folks at Smuttynose.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
shameusburp (171) - Virginia, USA - SEP 23, 2004
The rising tide of change is beginning and smuttynose is leading the change. Becoming a great brewery with selections like their Imperial Stout.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - SEP 14, 2004
Deep dark color, full-on blackness, good, toasty tan froth atop. Aroma is wickedly twisted, rich and darkly delicious, full of anise, espresso, and more, roasty and redolent with all things dark and deadly. Taste repeats all these things and more, thick and roasty, huge and at-large in the mouth. A nearly perfect by-the-numbers Imperial Stout, and the numbers are spot-on, though, make no mistake! Yum, Iím saying, as the booze swills around me..yum, I says, and itís a delightful feeling, indeed. A top-notch example of the IS style...canít see a thing wrong with†it. Smuttynose did it right, like they always do! Fullest body, long, infinitely long finish, in a word, wow, no, actually, "yummy, McYumerSonís" will do quite nicely, donít you think?

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
aracauna (3094) - Georgia, USA - SEP 10, 2004
Very dark body with an OK head. The aroma is VERY roasty. The same follows into the flavor with just enough hops to back up the nice roasted malt backbone. This isnít an exciting Imperial Stout, itís just a good beer. I could drink this one on a regular basis. A bit of chocolate rounds out the whole deal, but this isnít really much different than a typical good stout.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
skaughty (645) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - SEP 3, 2004
Another in a long line of commercial breweries with homebrew quality labels...but I digress...
Flavor is burned and chalky. Maybe some cocoa powder was used. The result is like a milkshake that was heated too long on the stove.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
TChrome (1420) - Bedford, Texas, USA - AUG 31, 2004
Very dark brown with a dissipatin light brown head. Aroma is choclatey and very roasted. Flavor is roasted to the point of being burnt. In fact the burnt flavors overwhelm all else, which is not so good.

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