Dickinsonbeer (5074) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - FEB 25, 2010
Tap at RNH. Pours a very deep dark black with a thinning tan head. Aroma is very roasty, almost prickly with sharp roasted malt,s light burn, big syrupy chocolate, burnt toast, green piny hops, and molasses sweetness. Flavor is roast and chocolate with some burnt notes, hints of smoke and pine, licorice and anise as it warms as well as some fruity esters, and tobacco leaf- prickly mouth-feel with some noticeable alcohol as well. A bit rough and too big for my likes. Brigadier (3710) - Chagrin Falls, Ohio, USA - FEB 22, 2010
WisconsinBeer (716) - St. Paul, Minnesota, USA - JAN 24, 2010
This was a bit pricy for a goblet ($8.25) but as soon as I saw it I knew which beer I was going to order. My reward was a fabulous beer that I think rivals Bourbon County Stout as one of the best releases from Goose Island to date. If you happen to run across this order some or hope that it appears in bottles in the future.
Aroma / Appearance - The rich black body was so dense and thick that it oozed rather than swirled around the goblet. A creamy dense sandy head decorated the top like icing on a cake. Vanilla, espresso, oak, and gentle hops surfaced from the symphony of sweet aromas. It reminded me of Old Rasputin taken to the next level which makes me want to crack open a Rasputin X soon to see what it is like.
Flavor / Palate - Creamy and smooth despite the ABV this chewy beer takes a while to process. Starting from anise and dark chocolate the tongue picks up black coffee then roasted malts. Next the chocolate returns with a vengeance. This is one of those perfect desert imperial stouts that would go well with cheesecake. I look forward to its possible return later this year at the Great Taste of the Midwest or another festival.
Tap at Happy Gnome. Pours a black hole deep color with a minimal espresso colored head. Flavor is sweet and roasted malt, deep chocolates, chocolate liquor, and ripe fruits. Sweet but also packs a hoppy alcohol presence in the finish. Thick and intense. infestaxion (22) - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - JAN 19, 2010
From my notes. I’ve had the pleasure of drinking this beer a couple of times. The first time was a growler that heliosphann split with me and Ryan and Woj from Short’s. This time was at the BW3’s in downtown Indianapolis. Thank you very much, Sam, for pouring this for us.
A - Black as night. It’s not real thick but it’s still nice. Tan head that fades before too long.
S - Malty. Not a whole lot going on here. A little bit of dark fruit. Some coffee. Smidge of vanilla.
T - Oh Holy Crap! That is good!(Yes, that’s exactly what my notes said) Molasses and dark sugar stand out. The dry hopping acts as a beautiful balance. There’s some black licorice in there and I believe that this is the first beer with a tobacco tastes that I’ve liked.
M - Good and thick in the feel. The finish is fantastic.
D - The alcohol isn’t overpowering at all. Really smooth going down. I could drink it all night. Or at least until I fell over. tgncc (3136) - Bellmore, New York, USA - JAN 12, 2010
UPDATED: JUN 22, 2010 Gorgeous!! The aroma is milk chocolate, vanilla, roasted malts. The alcohol is well hidden here. The appearance is true to the style, deep brown, tan head. The flavor follows the aroma, sweet, beautiful. Lots of plums, raisins and other fruit as well. Also in evidence is some piney hops. The mouthfeel is thick and creamy, appropriate for the style. The finish is roast, pine hops. Nearly perfect.
taalhiker (190) - Dayton, Ohio, USA - JAN 11, 2010
On draft at Ale Fest Dayton 2009. Pours black. Decent head with good retention and lacing. Roasted malt and loads of hops on the taste combined with dark fruits like plums, raisins and cherries.
cprochak (590) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 29, 2009
On tap at GI Clybourn 7/20/09. Pours jet black with thick mocha head. Coffee aroma dominates with citrus and pine undertones. Nice balanced sweetness with a mild better finish of roasted cocoa on the tongue. Medium bodied with the alcohol hidden well. Gets much better as it warms. kramer (6682) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 20, 2009
On tap @ FFF brewpub. Pours a thick looking black body with some nice intricate lacing from the brown head that fell to a thin ring. Big burnt and roasty nose with some cocoa powder, dark fruits, light hops, and some moderate alcohol vapors. Smells as thick as it looks. Super thick and heavy on the palate with a sticky mouth coating finish, the light carbonation makes it even heavier. The flavor is heavily roasty with lots of burnt malt and caramelized dark fruits. Coffee and chocolate syrup abound. Some hops to cut the sweetness but not what was once there apparently when you look at the earliest ratings from this. Overall it didn’t blow me away, it just got a bit too sweet fo me. JK (6240) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - DEC 11, 2009
Draught at Heritage Liquor. Aroma has lots of malt, a little coffee and earth. Very low carbonation, which is fine. Thick and heavy palate. Rich flavor, a malt bomb, but some hops are there. You know from the flavor and palate that there is a lot of alcohol, but it is well hidden. Comparable to Expedition, but a little sweeter. DalzAle (2038) - Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA - DEC 10, 2009
On tap at Heritage Liquor’s Beer Geek Xmas. Dark black and slightly carbonated pour with a great aroma of booze and chocolate. Flavor was more chocolate, vanilla, creamy and nice & noticeably hoppy on the finish. Very good, but not great.