I’d been sitting on this for a while. 660 mL bottle purchased at Brawleys, Charlotte, NC, USA back in January of 2006. Michael was kind enough to get this from “the unadvertised stash” that he often has.
Bottled in August of 2005. In a unusually pleasing scenario, the notch system for dating the bottle had been replaced by what appeared to be a Sharpie type mark – certainly very clear, I suppose it has the potential to be “false”? It cost $16 + change.
Having drunk some Oskar Blues RIS (the Ten Fidy with the cherries) last night, I was inspired to continue on with the “BIG stout” theme this evening.
Poured in to the Brasserie de Abbaye des Rocs chalice (also purchased on the same trip to Brawley’s) it is jet black in body and virtually opaque. Smallish head, but nice espresso type thin, fine carbonated lace and a thin film on the surface of the beer. Great looker.
Very big coffee in the nose, but even bigger in the taste. This is nothing if not coffee based. If you don’t like coffee based beers and stouts, this is most definitely NOT for you. There really isn’t much subtlety here. Dark roasted beans with a mild smoke finish completes the coffee immersion experience. I was a little surprised at the lack of alcohol presence too.
For such a huge beer the mouthfeel was surprisingly small. It would be a stretch to say “thin”, but it wasn’t as I expected.
A bit of a struggle to get through 22 oz on my own, definitely would have been better off sharing this one. Drinkability is hampered a bit by the overwhelming coffee experience which simply doesn’t let up, AND has nothing else to off-set or complement it. I wouldn’t mind trying this again, but it would have to be; (a) on-tap, (b) fresh, and (c) a little cheaper for me to be tempted again.