Stuedmaster (352) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 14, 2009
OMG, this was worth the wait. What a chocolately, caramelly, coffee delight! Pours oily dark brown, almost black, the head was small on this one, probably too young, but did leave nice lacing. Flavor is rich bittersweet chocolate with coffee and roasted nuts. So smooth for such a high ABV, with very little alcohol burn. It warms me up and sends tingles up my spine, what a treat! keidjxz (184) - Fullerton, California, USA - NOV 13, 2009
Pour’s black with a dark brown head and an aroma of strong black coffee. Sweet flavor with an intense bitter coffee aftertaste that grows and grows as it is enthusiastically consumed. heavy (2911) - Split, CROATIA - NOV 13, 2009
31/10 A 0.75 l bottle courtesy of ogivlado, huge thanks for sharing this! It poured oil black body with medium brown head. Weaker, but nice aroma of some caramel and coffee, ranging from roasted to sweet cappuccino. Unbelievably good coffee profile in the flavor, enriched with caramel and toffee. Not overly complex, but it doesn’t change its quality. Very slight alcohol noted here, somewhat more in the finish, but at this ABV it should be felt more. Dangerously drinkable, yet full bodied with oily palate. Long and pleasant finish, bittersweet, again with that amazing coffee. I didn’t hear for the beer before, so was really objective, coffee things in beer aren’t really my thing, which makes this even more fantastic! wavers1 (916) - Notown, California, USA - NOV 10, 2009
speedway stout, one of the greats, it is what it is, nuff said. i put a fresh nug in this one and it added a nice dimension to the brew. some extra ’hoppiness’, though it may have masked a part of the aroma. Tripplebrew (778) - Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA - NOV 8, 2009
Pours a dark chocolate brown with a thin tan colored. Aroma i very chocolatey and whiskey. Flavor is chocolate, whiskey notes. Malt flavor present. Palate is creamy with high carbonation.
MJGG (952) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 6, 2009
Bouteille de 750 ml. Arômes très complexes de café, de chocolat et de malt torréfié. Robe noire et opaque, peu de mousse et effervescence assez faible. Très ronde en bouche, la bière montre un côté malté très complexe, avec des notes de caramel brûlé et de chocolat. Le café est présent, mais bien intégré aux saveurs maltées. Finale relativement sucrée où pointe une amertume de torréfaction. Très bien équilibrée pour une bière de cette amplitude. Excellent ! ksurkin (1021) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - NOV 5, 2009
UPDATED: OCT 24, 2010 *re-rate* 10/16/10 ON TAP @ AleSmith! wow, this beer is absolutely incredible fresh from the tap that i had to bump up my rating. huge, fresh roasted coffee notes, more chocolate cake notes, smoother, more silky mouthfeel. definitely world class. madvike (3302) - Middleton, Wisconsin, USA - NOV 4, 2009
750ml bottle from south bay for rating #350! pours a beautiful, oil-slick, black with a big, fluffy, dark beige head and amazing lacing. aroma is wonderfully rich with huge, dark roasted coffee, dark chocolate, massive toffee notes, with hints of marshmallow, toasted coconut, dark fruits, and mild, woody bourbon. flavor is simply outstanding with fresh, dark roasted coffee, espresso beans, and pure, bitter cacao chocolate notes up front joined seamlessly by big flavors of caramel, toffee, and roasted nuts with hints of fig, raisin, vanilla, and charred wood rounding out the sip and leading to an epic, roasted coffee and toasted caramel finish with a hint of warming alcohol. palate is truly full bodied, thick and viscous, but amazingly drinkable. overall, a absolute marvel of a beer.
Bottle shared by MrPickles - So this stuff is pretty good. Pours deep black with a creamy tan head. Smell is rich and sweet, with milk chocolate, light whiskey, cinnamon, and prunes. There’s nice roast in the taste, with sweet toffee and caramel, and coffee that stays through the finish. It’s powdery and smooth in the mouth, with a medium-full body. Really well-balanced and easy to drink, and only a little alcohol burn--amazing for a 12% brew. Pretty impressive stuff. ricke (476) - Malme, SWEDEN - NOV 4, 2009
Pitch black, decent viscosity and a medium sized pale brown head that settles rather slowly actually and leaves espresso-like lacings. coldmeat23 (232) - Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA - NOV 3, 2009
The smell is amazing. Rich, powerful and very balanced. Big coffee notes of espresso and freshly ground hard roasted coffee beans. Hints of soy sauce, salt licorice and dark fruits. Delightful notes of dark chocolate. Just a hint of tannins and slightly acidic roasty aromas. This is really impressive.
The taste is dominated through and trough by rich coffee flavors. Freshly ground coffee beans and espresso blend with wonderful flavors of dark chocolate and some nutty aromas. Notes of dark fruits. The sweetness is restrained in favor of bitter roasted flavors. The malty backbone is present, but hard to detect beneath all the coffee flavors. In the middle, the roasted character is accentuated further towards a taste of almost burnt coffee and malts. At this point, the beer actually gets a little too much and doesn’t manage to keep everything together. But this is just a minor slip, and hardly of importance for the overall impression. Further, i notice a nice hop flavor that works really well with the coffee character. Notes of wood and fresh earth. The finish has a real coffee- and hop bitterness to it with notes of soy sauce, salt licorice and vanilla. Long lasting coffee notes lingers in the mouth. The alcohol is almost completely absent except for a pleasant warming sensation. This is just oh so tasty.
Very smooth but it still manages to leave a nice sticky sensation in the mouth. The body is not as big as I had expected, but I think this suits the beer well.
This is just a fantastic beer. Great flavors, big complexity and very balanced. It’s really nice to come by a beer that manages to hold such bold and rich flavors together as this one does. And as this wasn’t enough, it’s really really easy to drink, I went through a bottle way to quickly.
Serving type: bottle
(Copy of old Beer Advocate review)
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees
This pours the expected jet black color. An easy pour produces a four-finger head of creamy, dense, dark brown colored foam. Retention is great. Lacing is thick and very sticky.
Huge nose, full of roasted malt notes. Loads of milk chocolate notes and traces of some dark chocolates in there, as well. Mild notes of dark coffee presence. Brown sugar sweetness and hints of toasted caramels. A very light touch of booze is detected, but not nearly the amount that one would expect far 12.00%abv beer.
Big notes of roasted malts. Lots of dark roasted coffee flavors, along with some dark chocolate notes that I’d say are somewhere in the 80% to 90% range. Very dark and with a slight touch of bitterness. Nice touches of toffee and caramels and a hint of brown sugar give this a mild sweetness that balances the dark roastiness out quite nicely. The finish, while on the dry side, is long and delicious.
This one is very full-bodied, almost qualifying as thick. Carbonation level is on the high-end of medium. This provides a great level of creaminess but, unfortunately, retains a slight roughness around the edges. If they smoothed it out just a touch more, it could be perfect.
The booze, which made a minor apearance in the nose, is nowhere else to be found in this beer. That, combined with the great flavor, make this a very tasty and drinkable beer.
Worthy of the hype and worth the wait and the effort to get it.