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RATINGS: 475   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.13   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
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Our rich, roasted black ale inspired by the strong stouts exported by Great Britain in the 1800's to the Russian Czar's court.

Editor's Note: ABV changed to 10.5% in 2008 (was previously 9.5%).

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
HoppyBunny (88) - Temptation, Michigan, USA - DEC 27, 2004
2002 version- Really dark and very yummy. Alcohol burn with bitter chocolate and roasted taste. Black liquid gold. :)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
cquiroga (371) - Tujunga, California, USA - MAY 27, 2004
5/26/04. Poured out of 12 oz. bottle, enjoyed with TAR on RateBeer 5/26/04. 2002 vintage. Head cascades out of bottle on opening-- after 2 years!?-- so Iím pumped and piqued that this is going to be something special. Pours pitch black with dark tan/light brown ring of lacing. Incredible lacing, almost like brussels lace (again, on an imperial stout at 2 years old?!?). An absolutely terrific looking beer. Lacing is dusty, a bit spotty, and overall fantastic-- this is one dead-sexy beer. Aroma is mild burnt malt and chocolate, some fresh grain that Iím not too fond of. Nice enough, but the unmalted barley smell is a bit of a put-off. Flavor pumps things up a bit, crazy burnt charcoal malts and chocolate. Deeply roasty with a bright alcohol burn but very nice, round body. Long, spicy pepper and roasted malt finish. The acrid burnt flavor fades for the finish, but there is still a residual tang. Feels just splendid and very elegant for an imperial stout. The beer is subtly sweet with nice balance of dryness. Mouthfeel presents a lovely fluffy effervescence to combat the punishing sting and potency of the burnt chocolate and alcohol pepper. Sticky like a black marshmallow. A really great beer that Iím looking forward to trying again. Thanks a ton, Jeff and Emily! You da mans.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
cb (810) - Roeland Park, Kansas, USA - MAY 26, 2004
2002. An ode to magnificent charred chocolate malts Not burnt. Minimal acidity. Slightly doughy, berry aroma accentuated by vinous port undertones. Relatively soft, lingering, autumn leaves and dark caramel finish. Every aspect is full of gourmet, decadent dark chocolate, resplendent with cream. One of the best imperials Iíve ever had.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
raindog (560) - Evansville, Indiana, USA - MAR 28, 2003
UPDATED: NOV 25, 2003 2002:Black(brown edges) with a impressive,rocky,tan,head. It subsides but leaves impressive ring and lacework. Complex aroma:vanilla,chocolate,coffee bean,burnt caramel,and rough leather .Soft,creamy,thick mouthfeel is elegant,and friendly and inviting at the same time. Huge dry,roasty,charcoaled, caramel and chocolate flavors.Vanilla and burnt wood are very noticable as well. Burnt caramel comes off as a assault in the finish.Some very slight bitterness adds even more complexity,and makes the finish roasty,and crisp.This is definition creamy/soft/dry and displays wonderfully,defined flavors!I would drink daily it is so drinkable.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
TAR (2468) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - MAR 27, 2003
Bottle: Charred purple. Caramel shade rim of foam. Acidic aroma with traces of cardboard, tar, port, rich butterscotch, prune, manure, leather, dark chocolate, concord grape, mocha, dough, alcohol, grainy traits, and raw vanilla coffee bean. Very subtle melon traces. Superlative feathery, velvety palate. Extremely lush. Vanilla, vinous notes. Elegant complexity: vanilla, soda, fudge, and toasted almond. Afternotes of caramel coffee and rich, yet very smooth chocolate. Lingering vague earthy hop presence followed by chocolate covered raisin, light roastiness, dry. burnt chocolate notes, and a dash of vanilla. Seems to have two finishes; and both are extremely long and complex. Elegant and world class in every fashion.

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