BeerandBlues2 (9003) - Hanover, Maryland, USA - JUL 27, 2011
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. Pours opaque black with a large, fizzy and frothy dark brown head, long retention with great lacing. Aroma is perfume anise (licorice), faint vanilla, oak notes, roasted malt, and light coffee, burnt notes. As the beer warms, alcohol and floral hops become evident. Flavor is moderately sweet licorice with phenolic notes, medium-hot alcohol, and roasted, charcoal malt. Dark fruits (prune, fig, raisin) peak through leaving a tart, sweet, dark malt coating on the tongue. Full body, high warmth, average carbonation, and a dry finish. The alcohol really dries out the residual sweetness that would otherwise leave this beer cloyingly sweet. It will be interesting to see how this beer ages; it will likely become oxidized long before the beer really gets a chance to develop. This beer leaves me wanting some fruit cake or other Christmas-like desert.
Ratman197 (8857) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - AUG 21, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bomber poured a translucent dark brown with a lasting brown head. Aromas of anise, roasted malt, dark chocolate, light oak and a hint of vanilla. Palate was medium to full bodied and smoth. Flavors of anise, roasted malt, dark chocolate, smoke and light oak with a smoth lingering chocolate anise finish.
hopscotch (8460) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JUN 24, 2011
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: JUN 25, 2011 Draft... Pours nearly black with a small, creamy, beige head. Decent retention. Anise is very prominent in the aroma with everything else taking a backseat, although banana, light clove, espresso and burnt malt are also players. Medium to full-bodied with a slick mouthfeel and stinging carbonation. The flavor is bitter, burnt and loaded with anise, brewer’s licorice and charcoal. Finishes carbonaceous, medium bitter and mildly acrid.
hopdog (8450) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 9, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
22oz bottle. Poured a dark, dark brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of roast, chocolate, fruity, Belgian yeast, and dark fruits. Tastes of the same fruitiness, chocolate, dark fruits, some spiciness, and roast. Alcohol content overall well hidden.
daknole (8330) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - JUN 9, 2011
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark pour, tan head. Roast, prunes, coffee, carob and and odd caraway seed aroma. Flavor has lots of anise and chocolate. This beer really suffers if you drink it too cold.
JoeMcPhee (8168) - Toronto, ON, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 19, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Deep black pour. The nose is quite peppery and licorice-like. Roasty and peppery on the nose. Lots and lots of ethanol. A little bit of fairly muted dried fruit. Quite Belgian tasting. Soft fruit and pepper over a dry roasted barley base. Fruity as it warms up as well. Really quite unique. Dry and well-attenuated with a lingering spiciness on the finish. Warming, unique and pretty good. It definitely needs to warm up to really appreciate it though.
NielsenRatings (8096) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - MAR 26, 2012
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle @ home. I’m really not a big fan of stouts brewed with Belgian yeast, but I’m trying to keep an open mind. Here goes. This has a deep brown appearance with a nice, dark brown head. The aroma is full of anise and black licorice, light wood, chocolate, and roasty malts. There’s some fruity esters in the flavor along with a bunch of anise, dark chocolate, plum, raisin, and a bit of roasty coffee. Better than I was expecting but still not as good as the original in my opinion.
Drake (7842) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - SEP 23, 2011
2.4 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
UPDATED: SEP 24, 2011 It was hard for me to purchase this, as I think the regular Stone IRS is overrated, and I’ve heard it described as an anise bomb, which doesn’t sound appealing, but alas, it never showed up at a tasting as I had hoped, so here it is now. Bomber from Wine Warehouse in Charlottesville, VA. Pours pitch black with a thin brown head. Decent head retention. Aroma of hugh anise notes with a bit of roastiness. The taste is big anise notes, licorice, other spicy notes, chocolate, roasted malts and a hoppy finish. Medium-full bodied. As I’ve heard, this is an anise bomb, and while this fits the bill, that means I don’t find it pleasant. I think I’ll be able to finish it, but I’m not 100% sure. It does get a tad bit better as the anise fades a bit near room temperature.
BMan1113VR (7773) - Los Angeles, California, USA - OCT 7, 2010
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: JUN 13, 2011 On tap. Pours with a black body and a tan head. Aroma is of raisins, grapes, dates, cardboard and licorice. What a huge difference yeast makes! Flavors of chocolate, raisins, prunes and coconut. Medium to light bubbles. Sweeter and less bitter than normal. Bottled version was a bit more palatable.
3fourths (7770) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUN 6, 2011
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
draft. black body, brown head. nose is medium-heavy roast and chocolate malt, some soy/licorice black patent, little to no oak, very small amount of anise and nearly unnoticeable belgian yeast esters. rich, mildly chewy, mildly sweet, moderately bitter with medium-low acid. rich and decadent without being sweet and syrupy. fairly decent stout, though the ingredients list doesn’t exactly match with what i’m smelling and tasting.