thedm (4935) - Fort Wayne, USA - OCT 21, 2003
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
This brew poured a small head of fine to medium brown colored mostly lasting bubbles that left behind a carbonated near opaque dark red-brwon almost black colored body and a good lacing. It had a nice aroma, but not what I expected from a stout. THe aroma made me sneeze and 1/2 hour later, I still have not recovered from it. The aroma was closer to a brown beer than a stout. It was thin and did not have the caramel in it. The flavor was very hoppy and much more hopped than the usual stout. Hop lovers should enjoy this one. The flavor was mixed with a noticible alcohol content and the mouthfeel was carbonated, tingly, and finish bitterly.
jeffin7 (612) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - OCT 18, 2003
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: OCT 27, 2004 Pours black with a thin tan head. Aroma of raisin and coffee, and bittersweet chocolate. Taste of cola, coffee, raisin, and chocolate with some hoppiness on the finish (when fresh). The cola like sweetness with the unique hop profile make for an interesting brew. Excellent nutty mocha finish. One of my favorites.
happy4hops (376) - Bel Air, Maryland, USA - OCT 16, 2003
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 12, 2004 Bottled on 10-9-03.Poured out a black and tease of red at the bottom.Head was soso/brown/some good lace at first but gets lazy.Aroma was medicinal at first(didn't understand the rediculous use of very high alpha hops in this one,it has that Victory hop twang which is such a monster)This beer is backed up by a medium-full body of malts.Roasted to almost burnt coffee.Such hops and slight alcohol twang in charge of the stout.Victory is off the hook.Though the black chocolate stout is in the old-school bomb-style.Unique,Hoppy,balanced,GREAT.Gets better when it warms(the hardcore roasted choco-coffee malts shine,This brew is bright hops w/a great back-up of a great stout.An aged bottle would be better?... Well some batches have a noticable yeast glaze at the bottom of the bottle, while others look like they are not bottle conditioned? Either way way this beer is the real deal,raisins,choco-malt,hops,(this batch was bottled on 2-24-03 and sampled on 10-12-03,ages like the champ that it is.They brew this October through february as far as I can tell.Nothing like an Impy brewed with True German malts!
mkobes (2140) - paramus, New Jersey, USA - OCT 8, 2003
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
A friend of mine has this on tap at his house and it is so fresh. Nice foamy brown head. Very dark colored with a aroma of chocolate. Very malty. Well balanced stout. Very good.
BeanDip (117) - Florida, USA - OCT 7, 2003
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Virtually opaque with a very rocky brown head leaving a slight trace of lacing behind. Aroma is chocolate and and roasted malt - huge floral hop scent. Taste is "over the top" hops from start to finish, followed by sweet chocolate and roasted malts. Smoke and ash on the finish. Texture is creamy and thick. Excellent but not exactly overly complex.
BrianO (138) - Ambler, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 5, 2003
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: NOV 7, 2004 From bottle(Jan 03):
Pours black with tan head. Aroma is of malt, coffee, roasted barley, hops, and slight alcohol.
Flavor is of mellow chocolate with subtle sweetness. Wonderfully balanced. Full bodied but not overfilling. Perfect carbonation for an Imperial Stout. This is the type of beer where the sum is far greater than the means. If there were one beer that I had to drink the rest of my life, this may be it. Itís so hard not to grab it from my fridge whenever my eyes cross its path. And at only $30 a case.
Some batches vary and the March 03 batch was a little dryer with more hop character. Just FYI. I canít wait to see what 03-04 batch is like. I just canít get enough.
scraff (2121) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - OCT 3, 2003
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: FEB 14, 2006 On tap - Brand new batch for winter 03. Freakin phenomenal! Black is an understatement. Bar lights got sucked into my glass. Thick tan head that hung out for a while, but dissappeared about 1/4 into the pint. Full bodied, soft carbonation. Hops rule the day (Ruination like) with great whiffs of expresso shots, roasted chocoloate malt, and a few vinous notes to boot. Taste follows aroma almost to a T. As it warmed this baby offered everything you ever dreamed of in your Imperial Stout. Hops just explode all over the place with an awesome blend of dark roast coffee, chocolate, some butermilk, toffee, and a small hint of tawny port. I have to say the winter seasonal season is off to a great start. Mad props to the guys at Victory. Year in, year out, its one of the best. Find it soon!
BierBauch (784) - Cape Coral Waterfront Wonderland, Florida, USA - OCT 2, 2003
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark and black as night with only a bit of ruby red around the edges if held up to light. A thick head developed in a beautiful fashion as I poured into a pint glass. Tiny tan colored bubbles swirling up to the top looked great. Head settles down but looks as if it has some retention power. Aroma is a sweet, chocolatey espresso roasted malt concoction, and everything an Imperial should be. Has a nice smooth mouthfeel and a full body. Flavor is of coffee, and sweet roasted malt with caramel showing up in the finish. Alcohol is as well hidden as I've seen for this style. Retention is good as expected. Fantastic!
1more4dessert (330) - Upstate, New York, USA - SEP 29, 2003
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
ebony color, rapidly fading head. Nice heavy body - neither too sweet nor too chalky. A unabashed hoppiness appears through the dense malty background
aaronh (201) - McMurray, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 28, 2003
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
An essentially black beer with dark ruby edges that pours with a light coffee colored head. The head is modest and fades quickly, leaving a slight lace. The nose is very sweet and fruity. The mouthfeel is heavenly. Very silky, it just coats your tongue and feels like it slides down so easily. The taste is very complex, with roastiness up front, followed by a little sweetness and bitter mocha-coffee notes. The aftertaste brings dark chocolate covered cherries to mind. The balance of roasted bitterness and malty/fruity sweetness is amazing. Although this is a big beer, the alcohol is primarily noticable as it warms the esophagus.