DMarra (9) - IRELAND - FEB 18, 2013 does not count
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
A delicious beer! Completely black in colour with a head the same colour as the crema on a good espresso.
Most Russian Imperial Stouts I’ve had are stronger than this beer’s 7% and many are sweeter, so don’t expect a stout of the "chewy" variety. This is a relatively dry example with a nice, but not overpowering hop structure. The real star of this beer is the intense heavily-roasted malt profile. I’m thinking very dark roasted barley & black malt over chocolate malt. The level of roast here is really astonishing and without a balancing caramel aspect, the roasted flavours really come to the fore. There is also a delicious flutter of smokiness - this could either be from a very small proportion of smoked malt, or from the heavy dark roast of the unsmoked malts - really enticing.
People who prefer the uber-ageworthy and sweeter 12% abv imperial stouts might not find what they’re looking for here, but, make no mistake, this is a delicious beer. This is definitely in the top handful of stouts made in Ireland today.
garthicus (2693) - Dublin, IRELAND - DEC 25, 2012
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
One of my drinkstore.ie orders for Christmas Day. Appearance: pitch black, mocha brown head. Aroma: quite mild, coffee, chocolate, chicory, a little spice, milk. Flavour: oh. Decent smoke at the start, lovely coffee and chocolate backbone but the smoke really pushes through. Long bitter coffee and smoke finish. Slight hint of the alcohol strength. Tastes great ! (Not what I’d class ’imperial’ but damn good)
Beersiveknown (3072) - NORTHERN IRELAND - SEP 12, 2012
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours dark black with minimal white head formation. Tobacco and milk chocolate on the nose. Surprisingly light bodied for 7% with little sign of the alcohol (drinks like a mild!) Chocolate, coffee, a touch of chicory. Want to try this again to see how it develops!