holdenn (2116) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 15, 2006
UPDATED: DEC 30, 2009 Vertical from ’06 to ’09.
’06 Really oxidized at this point. Thin head on a oily black body. Oxidized papery nose alcohol fruit and coffee. Light sweetness charred coffee molasses, syrup, and burnt. Slightly hot and papery but I don’t mind the oxidation that much. It brings in another level to it.. Past it’s prime but not bad. 4.0
rajendra82 (1092) - Alpharetta, Georgia, USA - MAY 13, 2006
’07 Nose of phenols, chemicals, plastic with the chocolate and coffee. Chemicals fades to that smoky and coffee notes. Sweet and sugary coffee flavors that are just tough to drink. Thick and sweet, the chemicals dissipate with sometime. This makes it a better beer, but not great. 3.7
’08 Nose of smoky coffee chocolate strong and inviting, not overly sweet, burnt, or chemically. Thick sweet and creamy chocolates with red fruit underneath. Good chocolate and fruit but too sweet in the flavor.. 9/4/7/3/15 = 3.8
’09. Nose of chemicals, phenols, and summer sausage. Chocolate charred coffee flavors with alcohol heat and syruppy sweet. Too sweet tough to drink. 7/3/7/3/14 = 3.4
06, 08, 07, 09
07 vintage on cask at NotLA 07. Poured pitch black and thick with a small beige head that quickly faded away. Nose of yeast sweet coffee and chocolate. There is a lot of coffee here but that yeast gives this a bit of a odd twist. Sweet syruppy flavors, chocolate, vanilla, very fresh. This would be a lot better in a year to get those complexities out in this beer, but at this point, its too syruppy and sweet.
05 vintage - year and half old. Thick dark black in color, looking very oily like with a brown espresso like head. The lacing "clumps up" in certain spots on my glass leaving a many legged unicorn that seems to be screaming with its mouth open and on my fiance’s glass a lochness like monster. (i guess they don’t call it dark lord for nothing). Great aroma coffee, chocolate, fruit underneath, and alcohol. Thick mouthfeel that’s smooth and creamy, delicious as it rolls along the tongue. Coffee dominates the flavor, slightly overpowering at this point actually. With the coffee comes chocolate, molasses, licorice, vanilla, fruit, phenols, and more alcohol. Finishes with a bitter baker’s chocolate flavor. The flavors follow quite a transition in my mouth and i really love every rise and fall of flavor on my tongue.
thanks to drewbeerme for this sample of 06 vintage fresh the day after dark lord day. I drank one glass for well over an hour and the flavors continually opened up with the warming of the beer. Molasses, coffee, roasted malts, a hint of vanilla, beautifully balanced with a surprisingly light flavor of alcohol.
The aroma was a bit lacking, but if you get the chance for a snifter of this hold tight and drink long. 4.8
This rare bottle came to me from BA mentor as a reward for setting up and maintaining the BIF 20 website. The reward certainly far exceeded any effort I put into the site, so I decided to put the 22 oz. bomber away till it was a year old. Now that all my guilt has faded away, and the beer should have mellowed a bit, it is time to get it out.BigBastard (668) - L.A., California, USA - MAY 13, 2006
When pulled out the cellar, the flowing red wax seal looked as impressive as it did the day I got it. Luckily, the wax was soft and easily removed with a pocket knife. The beer poured out dark chocolate brown, and possessed a mocha colored one finger thick head. The body was completely opaque in the tulip. The smell was very roasty and mellow, with coffee being very prominent. Unlike many other brands of Russian Imperial Stouts, this one did not smell burnt at all. There was tinge of toffee and molasses sweetness in the smell, as well as a hint of soy sauce. The taste was quite a bit sweeter than I was anticipating. This sweetness must have come from the molasses Three Floyds put in this beer. The sweetness was supplemented by a little sourness, and chased by an astringent dryness. There was very little perceptible hop bitterness here. The mouthfeel was very thick and chewy, although I did not have the drinking sludge feeling reported by others.
The drinkability suffers in my mind due to the lack of bitterness to balance things out. With a creamy Havarti cheese to cut the sweetness, the beer goes down much more easily.
I liked the beer a lot, although I do think all the hype does this a little injustice. There are better imperial stouts out there that are more readily available, but the laws of supply and demand elevate this one to a more sought out status. After all that hoopla, this still only a beer.
Pours like a crazy tsunami! the tight knit bubbles rose up to meet the syrupy, oily brew. Huge coffee, chocolate and alcohol aroma. Deep chocolate and burnt coffee flavor. ABV is very present and warming. Very good. feedmec00kies (49) - New York, New York, USA - MAY 12, 2006
wow, that’s pretty black. thick, dark brown head. goes down really smooth. aroma is sweet, caramel, raisins, prunes, vanilla. i don’t think i can describe all the flavors... bitter chocolate, coffee, vanilla, some fruits.. i don’t know. good stuff. puzzl (3258) - New York, New York, USA - MAY 12, 2006
UPDATED: JUL 1, 2007 Finally, some dark lord! 2006 gold wax bottle from JCap. Pours a deep, deep black with the darkest brown head I’ve ever seen. Rich and fluffy. Bittersweet aroma of bloody black molasses, bourbon, marshmellow, white chocolate vanilla fluff. But where this really shines is the taste. Starts off sweet and rich and transitions into a bouquet of chocolate and cream, vanilla and mousse. A nice sweetness underlies all of it yet still finishes rather dry. Flavor sticks in your mouth forever. Frighteningly complex. A truly fantastic beer. 9/5/10/5/4.7
Quinten (1062) - zaandam, NETHERLANDS - MAY 11, 2006
2007 bottle, on June 30th 2007: No direct notes, and drank this in a social situation. This was a fantastic beer, but perhaps not as amazing as I remembered it. Fantastically thick body, almost unbelievably so. Almost no head on the pour, and a ton of yeast and other sediment. Absolutely ruined the side of my glass with muck. Rich and powerful, quite bitter, rich and roasty. Still a monster of a beer, but I wasn’t as impressed this time as when I drank the 2006. Perhaps I’m crazy, or perhaps I should’ve drank it a bit warmer in a non-social place. 9/4/9/5/4.5.
Black color, thin foamy head, wow, thick complex one! more partikels than water,..greet one, ..had it to cold at the first time but it went brilliant at 9 a 10 cels.
thanx to peter LtJudge (468) - Muskego, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 10, 2006
2006 vintage.Thanks a MILLION to Brewblackhole for hooking me up with this one I love the cool gold waxed bottle cap,very neet!!Pours a dark tarish black with a small tan head. Has a wonderfully complex aroma’s of coffee,caramel,choclate,vanilla and plums.Upon first sip...wow.You get a wonderful taste explosion that hits you from all sides.Massivly complex flavors of coffee,plums,caramel,burnts,and licorice. And the flavor stays with you for a long time.WoW. Wonderful stuff!A perfect brew for my 100th rating! kingdavid (18) - Nebraska, USA - MAY 10, 2006
landseer hooked up one of these for christmas ’05 so I good give my grandma something to enjoy.
put away uncle after uncle with the dominaton that is the dark lord. a solid punch to the face with this one. McKnizzle69 (89) - Machesney Park, Illinois, USA - MAY 8, 2006
2006 Vintage: This beer has so much going on. Very Complex. Pitch black in color with red orange rim in glass. Slight lacing with heavy legs once brought to room temperature. Flavor is amazing can’t really explain: Caramel, coffee, char, dark chocolate, black licorice. This is defiantly a top 50 beer for a reason. YOU HAVE TO TRY THIS ONE!!!! Thanks to TannerTavern boys for the sample. jimvy (131) - O’Fallon, Missouri, USA - MAY 7, 2006
2006 Vintage. Pours deep black with a fantastic creamy, tan head that last. Aroma is full of complexities--burnt caramel, cherries, plums and roast. Flavor carries these same complexities...surprising how strong the cherry is. Missing the roasted barley flavor that is typical for this style...could almost be described as a monster porter instead of a RIS. Very hot in the finish...so much so that it detracts from the rest of the beer. Overall, a very good RIS that needs significant time aging to mellow into a truely great beer. I look forward to coming back to this one in the next couple of years to see how it’s changed.