DarkElf (3038) - La Jolla, California, USA - JUN 10, 2005
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
(22 oz bottle: Obtained in trade with Eyedrinkale, thanks Mike!) 2005 vintage.
DarkElf vs. Dark Lord
Iíve been looking forward to trying this beer more than any other beer out there, except maybe a Westy 12. And finally, the fateful evening has arrived when I confidently enter the realm of the all-powerful Dark Lord. Evil abounds in this eerie world, and in the distance, I hear his chilling snarl, but I am unafraid for he is surely no match for the mighty DarkElf! I catch him dozing, and with amazing steath, I cockily attempt to open the bottle, but he quickly awakens and is not beaten easily. The draping orange wax isnít wax at all, but a tough plastic shell that requires a meticulous battle plan to pry off the cap without destroying the orange seal. But I eventually am victorious, vanquishing my haughty foe with unparalleled brilliance and skill. I have won the opening skirmish, but apparently the war has just begun -- as I pour the beer, I can smell the alcohol before I even take a sip. I make a feeble attempt to savor the nose, but with the alcoholic aroma calling me like the Sirensí Song, impatience overcomes me as I rush into the next battle, taking my first sip, unprepared for the assault on my taste buds. This is simply a massive, over the top beer in every respect. In the Dark Lordís lair, nothing is subtle. Whatever I taste, I taste in great quantities. Dark, bitter, burnt roastiness, chocolaty, with sweet cherries juxtaposed by a strong grapefruit hoppiness. And oh, the cursed alcohol! The tide has turned in this battle as Iím beginning to feel a bit light headed after just a few sips. I swing my sword, flailing wildly, missing my target as the Dark Lord taunts me with his deep, evil laugh. Strong roast, chocolate, cherry and alcohol dominate the nose, the massive aromas extending his dominion. Big, thick, rich, full bodied palate, somewhat syrupy, fully coating the mouth with a dense viscosity as thick as his breastplate. Black-as-night color is as evil and sinister as the Dark Lord himself, as dark in color as his demonic shadow. A touch of mahogany at the edges gives me some hope for victory, but with another sip, he silences me with a mighty roar. Light brown head quickly fades to a moderate ring, but he is unphased by this minor weakness. As I finish the glass (which is still only half the bottle), my senses are fogging. I fear I am beaten. Damn the Dark Lord, damn him to hell. I bow before greatness. He is Lord. The mighty Dark Lord, my eternal master.
ecbeerguy (86) - East Chicago, Indiana, USA - JUN 6, 2005
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thgis beer has lots of EVERYTHING, including balance. I get chocalate, molasses, and plenty of coffee from the beer that poured dark as night, with a tight, compacted ( but not small ) head. Itís rich and thick. I get an alcohol burn, but what do you expect for 13%.
Ray1975 (251) - Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, USA - MAY 30, 2005
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Poured black as night with a small chocolate colored head. Aroma was chocolate, coffee, molasses and roasted malt.. Flavor was sweet chocolate, sweetened coffee, and a hint of alcohol. For a 13% beer the alcohol is hidden well.. Very thick mouthfeel.. Almost felt the need to chew.. Very smooth and good carbonation...
jackson220 (136) - new lenox, Illinois, USA - MAY 29, 2005
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
OMG....this is 1 hella of beer...thanks rayboy!Very very dark motor-oil brown with no translucence. The aroma blends potent tones of grape, chocolate, fig, cherry, and molasses. The flavor has an overwhelmingly rich distinction of molasses, chocolate/vanilla, grape, alcohol, and raspberry. The palate is insanely complex and perhaps as full-bodied as you can get. Overall, this is the quintessential "knock-out" beer...WOW, my first beer tasted to deserve a perfect score. but just in case I will, resverve that for heaven.
pineypower (2723) - Pine Barrens, New Jersey, USA - MAY 27, 2005
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 6, 2005 Finally got my hands on some and it was worth the wait. Pours out black and thick with a slow forming brownish head. The aroma is mostly roasted malts and coffee. The taste is very extreme and complex with coffee, roasted malts, vanilla and some burnt fruit. Not much in the area of hops, but they are there very slightly with some tastes of smoke a little bit. This is one serious beer.
MullMan (1099) - New York, USA - MAY 27, 2005
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
2005 bottle. black body. thick dark tan creamy head. aroma is blackstrap molasses, soy sauce, deep roasted malt. flavor is licorice, deep roasted malt, and dry. hoppy and young. very big thanks to Richlikebeer for sharing. now for my rant - why is this the #2 beer in the world??? I was really let down after all the hype, and Iím really hoping that this turns to gold after aging because Iíve enjoyed other Impy Stouts much more than this. If I got the vanilla/chocolate/coffee flavors, hell even if I tasted burnt rubber Iíd enjoy it more.
Darkover (1527) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAY 27, 2005
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark black with a dark brown head. Aroma of roasted coffee, chocolate and some smoke. Really thick body. Flavor of coffee, dark chocolate and some alcohol. Long coffee finish. A little over the top.
Lou18 (1353) - West Paterson, New Jersey, USA - MAY 25, 2005
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Another fav from the Jim invitational. Poured black and thick. Tan head and great aroma of caramel roasted chocolate vanilla and a bit of smoke. The alcohol was well hidden and there was a nice creamy coffee finish. The body was a little watery for such a strong brew. This was excellent. Thanks for sharing.
eboats (1082) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - MAY 25, 2005
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: JAN 7, 2006 Poured pitch black like the devilís soul with a dark brown head. I could tell how thick this stuff was just from pouring it. Like oil. Left tons of lacing on the glass. Aroma was huge coffee, chocolate, and vanilla. The flavor was powerful unsweetened coffee. The coffee dominated every aspect of the beer from first sniff to last sip. Chocolate and vanilla flavors were noticable in the coffee, but was masked by the strong coffee. Creamy mouthfeel with a lingering powerful bitter coffee finish. I couldnít taste the alcohol at all. Dry finish.
MAP (1133) - Lakewood, Ohio, USA - MAY 24, 2005
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Rating Number 666. Beer pours completely black and a nice dark tan, with a hint of red, foam rises from it Aroma is a heavy coffee molasses and chocolate blend. Reminds me of the chocolate crunchs in a candy bar. Taste is a whole lot of coffee, sort of a chalky bitter flavor, alcohol shows up here as well. Flavor is..well... not that great. Iím having a hard time getting past the heavy bite of alcohol and bitterness. Iíll let it wark up and hope it mellows out, but damn, whats with this. After an hour out of the fridge, its still overwhelmed by the bitterness. There is a great taste of chocolate, vanilla, and other sweet sitting at the back but its hard to get to. If this was thrown in a cask for a while, it would be wonderful. As young as it is, its far too abrasive for it to be one of the great beers, but hell, what do I know. Iíll stick with a Stone or an Expedition any day over this.