altonbrownd (5897) - Chevy Chase, Maryland, USA - JUL 10, 2016 ThisWangsChung (836) - Leonardtown, Maryland, USA - MAR 2, 2014
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
12.7 oz bottle into a tulip.
A: Pours an extremely dark ruby color. The head is about one fingers high, with a khaki shade. Retention isn’t very good, neither is the lacing.
S: The main addition (anise) immediately takes the aromatic forefront. Some spicy oak tones come through behind that, with a hint of dark fruits further behind that. And there’s even something suggesting a mild hoppiness. Overall, the anise portion is rather overdone - then again, considering how I don’t like (overdone) licorice/anise in my beer, this is to be expected. Still, I don’t hate the aroma, so some hope about a decent flavor is preserved.
T: Boom. Anise hits the palate immediately. There’s an oaky note on the back end, but this is mostly an anise bomb. Remember earlier how I said I don’t really like anise? Still, it does bring some complex notes - coffee, mint, chocolate, and the like. I’ll give it a 3 because it is well made (if imbalanced): scoring subjectively, it would probably be a 2.5 or something.
M: I really enjoy its mouthfeel. Sure, it’s a bit thin, but it’s relatively crisp and dry without being harsh. In that regard, it drinks quite well. A sweet oiliness is left behind on the palate which serves to quash its dryness. It’s not very tannic or carbonated.
O: Your enjoyment is going to be decided on whether you like anise in your imperial stouts. I don’t, so this is pretty middling for me. The whole idea of this beer interests me - I’d love to see next year’s batch use something like chocolate, coffee, or hell, even coconut.
[Jan 9 2016] Bottle from Bethesda Food and Beverage.Dark black body with tan head. Nose is malty, licorice, spicy. Taste is again of licorice, sweet, malty, spicy, some caramel notes. Creamy texture. Strong finish. HeadyDE (851) - Delaware, USA - NOV 20, 2015
2013 vintage pour..pours a solid black with a 1 finger mocha cream head that fades away..nose is a combo of licorice..anise with some chocolate..roasted nut essence..not getting much of the oak in the nose..but the aroma is solid for the style..the anise does seem to dominate things a bit on the taste but after that this is fairly smooth..light initial mouthfeel that does gain some depth and more complexity as things move along..but a bit dissapointed by the thin profile, was expecting this to have some more punch..however it does hide the abv well..but also lacks depth that is usually found in the style..ok stuff, a little on the pricey side however for essentially a 12 oz bottle.. DocJitsu (2004) - Pensacola, Florida, USA - SEP 26, 2014
Fubark impy stout
Pours an opaque, very dark brown with a tan-brown head that has a reddish hue. The head has a creamy, fluffy quality. A light milk chocolatey nose. Smooth and moderately thick. A lot of lactose I the flavor. Some chocolate and a hint of coffee. ganache (5960) - New Jersey, USA - SEP 24, 2014
Vintage 2013. Nose sweet and anise-y, some chocolate, plum; the pour is moto roil black with a light brown head. Very faint smoke with interesting complex sugar. Taste with faint roast and heavy chocolate, sweet but not excessive, light bitterness, something reasonably lose to balance but still more on the sweet side. Medium body a bit watery at times, but smooth straight through; straight malt lightly warming booze, light fruit sweetness and chest warmth, extremely pleasing slow burn. Faint wood, some licorice and faint anise, turbinado character, no hops (really), all heart. Guess I’m easy to please, but this was a lot of fun! nimbleprop (8476) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - SEP 7, 2014
375ml bottle I picked up a while back at the Franklin’s General Store. Pours a very murky, oily, black with some spitty, frothy beige head. Full disclosure, I wanted not to like this, but I did. Nose has a lot of licorice, some molasses, some black pepper, malt, the faintest bit of coffee. Flavor is sweet, plenty of licorice, plenty of molasses, black pepper is also evident, a little squid ink, some roasted mushroom, a little tobacco leaf. Big, thick, malty finish. The licorice dominates, but doesn’t over power. Probably the best beer they do.
Damico (3147) - Royersford, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 26, 2014
Pours thick dark unclear black with a gorgeous big foamy lacey bright beige head that is plastered all over the glass. Aroma is lighter sweet roasted earthy malts with a whisper of vanilla. Flavor brings lightly balanced bitter roasted malts and notes of dark chocolate on a smooth body which is not rich or thick at all, but still fulfilling and delicious! There is no booziness at all for such a high ABV! Well done! MadRobin (2988) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - JUN 19, 2014
Poured from 12 oz. bottle.
Opaque, brown-black with a 2-finger tan head and excellent lacing.
Aroma of sweet roasted malt, caramel, chocolate, roasted coffee, licorice, vanilla and oak.
Taste of sweet roasted malt, chocolate, licorice, alcohol, roasted coffee and vanilla.
Full body and medium/low carbonization with a rich mouthfeel.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone kramer (6682) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 30, 2014
Bottle. Pours black in color under a one finger frothy dark brown head that faded to a thin film. The nose is heavy on the roasted malt with some rich espresso and chocolate notes. Some lighter accents of licorice, burnt caramel, and light alcohol. The flavor is rather heavy on the roast, but it’s not overly burnt or acrid at all. It’s rather rich and intense without being over the top with the alcohol, even with being 10%. Nice espresso and dark chocolate notes with just a light hint of fruitiness on the back end. Excellent lingering finish. This really kept the sweetness in check, which I think is the key to a nice Imperial Stout. Medium bodied with a slight cling and soft fizzy carbonation. Probably the best beer to date that I’ve had from Pub Dog. jrodooo5 (1681) - DOVER, Delaware, USA - APR 21, 2014
Very good opaque pour w/ a big mocha head that leaves excellent lacing. The aroma is a roasty, boozy delight. The taste is similar. The roasted flavor & alcohol dominate the flavor which leaves a little complexity to be desired. The body is a touch thin for such a big & bold beer. It’s good & w/ a few tweaks, could be great! john_chaney (21) - - MAR 30, 2014
This is a once annually brewed beer. Each year the brewer uses a different specialty ingredient. This year it is star anise. Poured vigorously into a 2/3 pint glass. Pours very dark red brown with a half finger of khaki foam that recedes quickly, leaving behind a small persistent head with light lacing. Aroma is dark coffee and cocoa with a nice amount of alcohol and a roasty smokiness. Flavor is chocolate syrup with a faint trace of cooling mint and nice bitter end. Alcohol is there, but it’s well hidden behind the chocolate malts and star anise. This is a very good beer that succeeds where many other stouts fail. This beer has a very nice mouthfeel and is complex, but, not so complex that the flavors are muddled. Can’t wait to see what they do with this beer next year.