heemer77 (5357) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - JUN 8, 2008
Let me preface this rating with two statements. First, I really like Shorts. Second, I absolutely love black licorice and anise flavors. The body was black colored, looked almost like a schwarzbier with a khaki head. The aroma was obvious with tosn of licorice and some cola. There was also some woody charater. The taste was more black licorice with some roast notes and coffee. Excellent, but you need ot like black licorice, otherwise you will hate this one. ChainGangGuy (4894) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - JUN 8, 2008
Appearance: Pours a near black body with a small, fizzy, khaki-colored head.
Smell: Aroma jam-packed with distinct-smelling black licorice and lesser notes of chocolate, roast, spearmint, and a vague fruitiness.
Taste: Sweetish black licorice flavor is quite heavy, with a lesser taste of semi-sweet chocolate. Slight hint of roasted malt. Tiny taste of chopped mint leaves. Thin measure of fruitiness. Lightly roasty finish with a lingering taste of root beer. All of the flavors and tastes combine beautifully to present a taste truly reminiscent of root beer.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.
Drinkability: Recommended. The best root beer I’ve had in a coon’s age. Yet another wonderful creation by Short’s Brewing. arjoseph (642) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 22, 2008
GABF 2007. It was tough for me to decide whether this or the Spruce was better, as I stood at the Shorts booth for what seemed like a solid 20 minutes getting refills with cquiroga and awaisanen. Nice head, even in the small tasting glass. Smells like ouzo with toffee. Smooth lactic sweetness in the mouth, craisins without the tang, and of course anise (although this is much more pronounced in the smell than in the taste, where it is more of an echo counterpoint in the finish). Great and unique beer; kudos to the guys at Shorts. sebletitje (10080) - Enghien, BELGIUM - AUG 16, 2009
courtesy of the Shorts tasting night group. early ’07 bottle.
pours blackish, oily black goodness with beige head.
Aroma is loaded with licorice and mostly a strong chocolate scent followed by small hints of vanilla and mint / anise freshness.
Flavor, overall the chocolate was very upfront and thick followed by light bourbon touch of vanilla and faint hints of mint / anise giving the overall palate a refreshing mouthfeel.
Very original, extremely drinkable after 2+ years finished on a strong black licorice note. Never thought I would enjoy a fully loaded licorice beer that much. flatmatt (1576) - Northville, Michigan, USA - JUN 4, 2010
12 oz bottle. Pours deep brown with a receding light tan head. Aroma, as advertised, black licorice through and through! Black licorice leads the flavor as well, with some coffee and peanut flavors figuring in as well, a little coolness from the mint perhaps. I love this beer.
ngeunit1 (1555) - Waltham, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 12, 2012
A - Pours a dark black color with some brown around the edges and a thin covering of frothy chocolate colored head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some light lace.
S - Aroma is a mix of roasted sweet chocolate malts with some anise, bourbon, vanilla, and mint. Really nice and complex nose.
T - Starts out with a mix of sweet roasted chocolate malts with some mint and anise in the background. Through the middle, some vanilla and bourbon come through alongside some more mint and a touch of burnt malt. The finish is a mix of sweet roasted chocolate, anise, vanilla, and a hint of bourbon booze.
M - Medium-plus bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a warming dry finish.
D - Very drinkable. Really big an bold flavors, but they come together really nicely and taste balanced. I really like the vanilla been and anise combination. chimay67 (41) - hunt sta, New York, USA - OCT 14, 2007
On Tap at the GABF, thanks to JasonA from BA for tipping me off to this one. Black, complex, malty, sweet and not too much anise. It would go just as well at a summer picnic as a post snow shoveling warm up session. Go find some! awaisanen (1304) - Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, USA - NOV 20, 2007
From a 750mL Bottle, #67/744. Mostly transparent dark brown, borderline black colored pour with edges of milk chocolate and a thick head of fluffy tan. Smooth, supple, rich nose of chocolate, vanilla, and a fabulous dose of licorice. I love how the licorice is so prominent, but maintains this silky soft character without getting to edgy or harsh, allowing it to work with the rest of the beer remarkably well. Hints of toasted caraway seed add some subtly spicy complexity. Medium bodied, shimmering carbonation that melts softly across the tongue. Chocolate licorice stick. Some roast coffee comes through, but smooth and chocolatey soft. More licorice, along with clean, fudgy dark malts. Amazing interplay between the licorice, chocolate, roast, vanilla and spice. This needs to be brewed again. jasonm (22) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 31, 2008
Pours a dark, reddish brown cola color. Topped with ~ 3 inches of frothy light tan colored foam. Recedes to leave a patchwork of sticky lacing. With the aroma, the first impression is the anise, with a spicy black licorice aroma although a little more earthier and not as sweet. Maybe a bit of celery seed? Secondary aroma of chocolate and herbal mint linger in the background. Taste starts off with sweet chocolate and vanilla but is countered nicely by the spiciness of the anise and a touch of bourbon. Bittersweet chocolate returns on the finish, which is dry with earthy hops. Kind of reminds me of a dopplebock combined with cola, in a good way. The body has a medium feel with some slipperyness throughout and a bit a carbonation sting on the back of the throat. I mentioned this has a cola like presence to it, which makes it very quaffable even at 8%abv. I also enjoyed how the anise didnt steel the show, but married well with the chocolate and vanilla. I really love what Short’s is doing with their Imperial beer series. nbutler11 (1267) - Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, ENGLAND - FEB 24, 2010
One of two bottles still standing when I showed up at the end of Woodshop 5. Pours a chalky shade of black with a nice brown head. Smells of roast and ccocoa. Tastes of both with added notes of vanilla, black licorice, and mint. Much more balanced than I was anticipating -- nowhere near being overwrought with black licorice. Very nice, and one of the finer Shorts beers I’ve tried.