harlequinn (2744) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - JUN 15, 2006
Been waiting a long time to try this one. No light penetration whatsoever, this is black as stouts come. Small dark brown head. Nose is as complex as I expect the flavor to be. Lots of dried dark fruits, some roasted coffee and vanilla as in oakiness. Thick and sweet mouthfeel, with big notes of espresso, and heavy dark chocolate and cocoa. Sits nicely on the palate without being overwhelming for the amount of alcohol is perfectly masked for being 12.7% BrockLanders (780) - Panama City, Florida, USA - MAR 23, 2006
Several samples at the GABF ’05. Wow, this was as dark a pour as you could imagine....black, absolute minimal head. Sweetish, rummy, boozy chocolate aroma. Great deep roasted malt flavor, not without some hop bite to offset things a bit. All the cool impy stout traits jump out...a little vanilla, coffee, woody, etc. Thick and rich....too bad I don’t have some to age. Great beer. imrichbeeeatch (16) - USA - MAR 8, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 29, 2008 Must be a new batch because the chalk board at the pub said 12.7% ABV.
Huge creamy, espresso-like head on top of a opaque black beer. I thought it was a little cold, and might have hindered the aroma, however, it was still nice. Sweet malt, huge roast, alcohol, slightly smokey, righ coco, and a slight hint of dark fruit (plums or dark cherries). First sip is slightly alcoholic, then quickly turns sweet and malty. Rich roast character of coffee and chocolate. I thought it could use more of this character, but as it warmed it came out a little more. Also, as it warmed, the alcohol seemed to go away. The body was perfect. I’ve had a few Imp. Stouts and they almost always feel too heavy, like syrup. This was perfect, present but respectable.
Beautiful beer, but if it is new (which I think it is) it needs a little age. Will be back to taste this next time they put it on. tiggmtl (4545) - East York, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 8, 2005
Roasted malts, soy and chocolate in the thick and sugary aroma. Opaque black body is topped with a low, dense, fine bubbled, tan head that lasts well and coats the glass with lacing. Strong hoppy and fruity flavour. Excellent malts are very dry and roasty. Medium full but dry body with strong carbonation. Sampled at GABF 2005. TAR (2765) - Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina, USA - OCT 23, 2005
Draft: Opaque black. Creamy light-cinnamon head. Assertive scents of charred caramel and malt. Fruity, as well, with dates, plums, and caramelized custard. Voluptuously thick in body. Dry and somewhat fuzzy. Brisk commencement of scratchy minerals over an acrid burnt malt base. Though the maint medicinal twinge is faint and short lived, it displaces the nuanced roast. Touch of blackberry softness gracefully accompanies the piquant black malt sting, but esters are lacking for the most part. Meaty in the center with notes of port and smoke. Finishes light on its feet but elegantly complex with an everlasting sensation of ashy dryness and musty concrete which prolong the astringent burnt cookie aftertaste. Very nice take on the style.
Mangino (1027) - Mississippi, USA - OCT 18, 2005
Sampled @ GABF- Aged 2 Years-Pours a jet black color, nice cherry brown head. Aroma is a pleasent mix of bourbon and chocolate, coffee notes. FLavor is awesome, huge cofee and bourbon prescense (Irish Coffee) coffee, bourbon, figs, puddle of molasses finish. BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - OCT 16, 2005
GABF 2005: Opaque with a firm creamy beige head and very good lace. The aroma has notes of roasted, smoked, and caramel malts; bourbon, woody and vanilla; prune and molasses; and a espresso shot for good measure. A big alcohol bite aggressive attacks the palate and open the way for the fruity and lush malt character of the beer to take hold. Touch of wood and vanilla lead to a final salty, smoky and earthy conclusion. The feel is sticky, lush and inviting till the alcohol punches you about the head repeatly, so I had three samples ’cause I am into pain. Outstanding Impy as it is big and bold. Perhaps still a bit too young and brash. MrRomero (1976) - Nolanville, USA - OCT 16, 2005
GABF 2005: poured black with a brown head. Milk, chocolate and coffee aroma. Coffee and chocolate dominate the flavor with a touch of vanilla. Good beer that is very potent. willblake (2654) - Bel Air, Maryland, USA - OCT 10, 2005
09.29.05 GABF Near black, pretty stuff without romanticizing, even for an impy stout. Aromas are huge, and it doens’t take but two samples to realize this is world class. Rich and deep with huge dark fruits, dried mission figs in steel aged port, and bigtime dark chocolate. Flavors in line with aroms with the addition of chewy tobacco, and by chewy, I mean chewing. This stuff reminds me of some juicy plug. S’mores and smoke round it out. Wow. Palate is rich and coating without being too sticky or too oily. Excellent stuff, great heads up to whoever pointed me towards Walking Man. Rastacouere (6177) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - OCT 10, 2005
Deep dark brown, large lasting tan head. Powerfully malty nose, not exaggerating on the roastiness, but picking on subtler smoky and fruity (plum, date – actually not subtly fruity at all for an impy ) domains instead. The chocolate heaviness, hinting at cacao and coffee loses the flavour dominance game only to the sweet mapleish molasses aura. Nuances its discourse with suggestions of charcoal, cigar and campfire to become a winner. Very full bodied, creamy texture, smooth carbonation, dry palate. Alcohol remains totally under control while the master tells his speech and the roastiness feels like a grilled dessert, procuring a gentle bitterness that is surprisingly soft for west coast, avoiding the traps of astringency. I’m surprised this is not rated higher, the few samples I had I rank up there with my favourite imperials..