RATINGS: 100   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.93/5   EST. CALORIES: 324   ABV: 10.8%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
an exceptionally rich, powerful stout in the style originally brewed in England for the Tsars of Russia...warming and complex with flavors of dried fruit & chocolate...a silver medal winner at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, CO in September ‘01

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3.8
DarkElf (3067) - La Jolla, California, USA - MAY 8, 2005
(22 oz bottle filled from growler: Obtained in trade with jeffin7, thanks Jeff!) I’m always leary of rating beers from growlers or hand-filled bottles that are then shipped across the country. Usually doesn’t do the beer justice, but this one seems to have traveled very well. Moderately sweet and very chocolaty, but the floral aspect of the nose has caught me off guard. Didn’t expect that. First word that comes to mind when tasting the beer is ... sweet. Very sweet, almost sugary sweet. After that, lots of chocolate and moderate roast, but the roast is not as much of a factor as with many other Imperial Stouts. Lightly hoppy, fairly bitter. The bitterness doesn’t really emerge until late, so the sweetness has a few seconds to rule authoritatively until order and balance is restored. Black, fully opaque, about as impenetrable as Bell’s Expedition, but not nearly as viscous. Not to say that this is a watery beer, just that it’s not thick and viscous like oil. Given that this was hand-bottled from a growler, the carbonation level is quite satisfactory. The tan head is fairly small on the pour and fades to a thin circle, leaving hardly any lacing on the glass. The small head is excusable, though, after what this beer has been through. A solid beer from one of my old hang-outs, but I think it’s a bit too balanced toward the sweetness, and this would be solved by a bit more roast and hops up front.

3.8
BuckNaked (1230) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - DEC 30, 2005
Growler: Opaque near-black, dark brown with a small, well-retained, brown head that fades slowly to a small ring around the outside of the glass. The aroma is burnt roasted malts, thick dark coffee, bitter chocolate, with hints of alcohol and fruit. Taste is big roasted coffee and malt, dark burnt malts, espresso, light hops that come out fruity and piney, then some late wood notes. Full bodied, creamy, thick mouthfeel, moderate carbonation. Finish is long with dark roasted notes lingering. This is a nice example of the style.

3.8
Mangino (1027) - Mississippi, USA - MAR 26, 2006
Huge thanks to Joel for sharing this badass brew. Hand-bottled. Pours a pitch black color, no head. Smells of sweet chocolate, just a little coffee with some booze too. Flavor is sweet, lotso f chocolate and roasted notes. A little burning plastic (boo) bourbon, sharp. A touch of oxidation. Overall tasty stuff.

3.8
spector (906) - Lancaster, Ohio, USA - APR 29, 2007
Roasted malt and choclate in the aroma.Pours black with a light to medium tan head.Lots of roasted malt stood out in the flavor.Medium to full mouthfeel with a smooth creamy finish.

3.8
Odeed (1806) - Bakersfield, California, USA - FEB 29, 2008
(growler from kmeaver.thanks man)awesome appearance as far as impy’s go.jet black with a dark thick brown head.the aroma boats loads of pine hops,molasses,roasted coffee,roasted malts,and alcohol.the flavor does much of the same along with some brown sugar,burnt coffee grounds,and chocolate.not bad,but not great either.

3.8
Immy (1958) - Virginia Beach, USA - JUL 3, 2008
Richmond Gathering. Growler shared by maniac. Black with no head. Big coffee and wood smoke nose. Fleshy fruit and grape flavors under coffee and woody smoke flavors. Nice!

3.8
MadRobin (2989) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - FEB 3, 2014
On tap 6 oz. sampler at Sweetwater Tavern in Centreville, VA. Opaque, mahogany-black with a thin tan head and very modest lacing. Aroma of roasted malt, charcoal, bourbon, toffee, molasses, prunes and caramel. Taste of dark roasted malt, charcoal, toffee, molasses, prunes and caramel. Full body and medium/low carbonization. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.7
MilkmanDan (1942) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - JAN 15, 2004
Dark with a thin bubbly head. Smells of cocoa and chocolate, a bit sweet. ABV is quite well-masked, not strong-tasting at all. Has a bit of chocolate and a slight scotch character. Finish nicely dry. One of the better offerings I've had from Sweetwater.

3.7
tiggmtl (4543) - East York, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 21, 2005
Chocolate covered berries are counterpointed by roasted malts with notes of soy, vanilla and herbal, leafy hops. Opaque black body is topped by a low but lasting, fine bubbled, off white head. Berry-like fruits and chocolate are very pleasantly balanced by strong roasted malt bitterness with hints of smoke and warm spices. Medium full body is somewhat syrupy with soft but lively carbonation. Sampled on the PA trip 2005.

3.7
mgumby10 (1856) - Jupiter, Florida, USA - FEB 17, 2008
Courtesy hopscotch. Growler. Pours jet black, with a small swirly light brown head. Smells a little musty, but had some good chocolate malt, a little roast, and an intriguing bubblegum scent as well. The flavor had a pretty sharp bite to it, and had an unfortunate metallicness to it that could have been from a leak in the growler. Still didnt take away too much from it, as it still had good chocolate flavors, and syrupy dark malts. The body ewas still strong on the palate. Good beer, might have had a growler leakage for some of the traits I got in it.


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