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Pisgah Valdez - Pisgah Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pisgah ValdezPisgah Valdez

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

321 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 321
Reviews: 199
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%
Wants: 180
Gots: 20 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Pisgah Brewing Co. visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mikesgroove on 12-02-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 321 | Reviews: 199 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MasterSki
3.96/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

September 2008 Vintage of Valdez, corked and caged. Thanks to Dave Schuster for this one. Served in the same weird-ass conic glass.

A - Tons of foam after a big pop when the cork was pulled. Very similar look to the Odell, with big foam, tons of lace, and a touch of transparent brown at the fringes of a dark brown/near-black body.

S - Still tons of coffee even after a year, roasted malts, cocoa, and a touch of dark chocolate. It's starting to smell a little soapy/dirty but otherwise it's still pretty good.

T - Taste is also a bit faded, but still has plenty of coffee and bittersweet chocolate, some roastiness, and a touch of dark fruit. Finish has a good amount of coffee bitterness

M - Mouthfeel is very smooth, lower carbonation, with a good amount of residual stickiness. Medium body that suits the lower ABV.

D - This is palate fatiguing with the bitterness and coffee flavors. Still the lower ABV makes it pretty drinkable.

I'd like to try a newer release to see how different this is when it is fresh.

Photo of rudylaw
3.73/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another gem from MasterSki, sampled at the CE release. Hey, my GTOM taster is filled again... let's drink!

Pours a blackish tone with some brownish, ruby highlights. We have a solid tan head here.

Even though this is a 2008 bottle, I'm still getting tons of coffee in the nose. Very aromatic. Roasty, chocolatey goodness.

Same notes on the tongue, with some oatmeal perhaps, but this is really thin. Not a prototypical RIS by any stretch. The coffee is faded a bit, and we agree we'd like to try this one fresh for a proper rating in the future. Doesn't seem too complex. Straightforward coffee stout. Almost over-carbonated. I liked it a bit more at the beginning, but got bored with it at the end.

My second Pisgah beer, and while still quality, I'm not really keen on going out of my way for a third.

Photo of ffejherb
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dispensed via growler on 9/28/09. Thanks to Deuane for procuring this for me during a recent trip to Asheville, NC.

A - This stout is one shade away from plummeting into the void of utter darkness. A thin, tan cap sits on top, but dispersed into a wispy veil that eventually disappeared, leaving behind only spots of lace.

S - Freshly ground coffee beans. Pure and simple. As Valdez warmed up, hints of tobacco and subtle leafy hop notes also emerged. Some chocolate and tar-like gunk (in a good way) also creeped out from underneath the coffee beans. For some strange reason, I also got a subtle waft of garage. Yes, garage.

T - Again, coffee dominates with an iced coffee character and abumdance of roasty flavor. Subtle hints of chocolate, tar and tobacco also emerge, but this stout is all about that little dark brown bean.

M - Medium bodied with an icy, watery texture, a little thin perhaps, and very softly carbonated. Finishes with coffee bitterness and mild astringency on the palate.

D - Juan would be proud that this fine coffee stout shares his namesake. Of course, maybe he doesn't drink beer. Well, he does now! This is some serious competition for Planet Bean. Never heard of it? Seek it out!

Photo of charlesw
3.81/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful offblack with tiny dark tan bubbles in a medium high head. Good lasting power on that head.

Smells a lot of dryer chocolates - cocoa powder.

There's more going on than just the chocolate. Light, a little hop tang, the chocolate, of course, but not as a bitter dry one. Hints of coffee.

Light in the mouth for a double. More like a coffee or chocolate porter given the alcohol and body.

Decent and light and easy enough for drinking on warmer days. Rich enough for drinking on cooler days. Not bad!

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Deuane for hauling this back from NC for me. A 2008 vintage corked 750ml bottle poured into my standard shaker glass. The stout appears a translucent dark chestnut color with an inch of creamy ecru colored foam. The head settles to a thin ring and remains until the glass is empty. Nose and flavor consist of medium roasted coffee beans, slightly sour and acidic espresso, quite earthy, nice molasses and caramel sweetness, bitter black coffee, baking chocolate. Maybe a notch better than medium bodied with adequate carbonation. I would have preferred a fuller body, but it's still pretty nice.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.01/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

September 2008 release acquired from mikesgroove courtesy of the Little Guy 2 BIF, so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a large light brown head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of dark malts, black coffee, dark chocolate, some dark fruit and a faint touch of hops, but a bit of metallicness.

T: The taste is chocolaty and has a strong roasted malt character. There are background flavors of coffee and dark fruit. The hops presence is very mild but is exactly where it should be for the style and is strong enough to bring some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, slightly filling, good kick, nice representation of style, this is a very good dark beer to drink for an entire evening if you're in the mood for the style.

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Solomon420 for hooking me up.

Poured a deep, deep brown with a massive tannish head and great carbonation. Nose is chocolate, coffee, grains. Taste is is very similar to most organic brews, with a big earthiness, grain, coffee, chocolate. Mouthfeel is nice and coating but lacking a bit on the coffee department and not that creamy.

Photo of dukedevil0
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to mikesgroove for sending me this 750mL bottle in a trade recently.

A: Pours dark black with a TON and I wish I could stress it more...a TON of khaki colored head (seriously looked like a beer float but no ice cream) and laced the glass a lot as it settled.

S: The dominant smell is chocolate, then roasted malts and coffee in the background...not complex or anything, but smells absolutely delicious and I hope the taste is similar

T: Roasted malts come out way more in the taste, then the coffee and chocolate are in the background this time.

M: I think far too much of the carbonation went out in the pour on this because what's left is a little more thin than I would expect. I even poured carefully so I dunno how to fix this. I get hints of creaminess when the carbonation stands out.

D: Because it's a little thin I could probably drink more than some creamy beers, but the flavor isn't really anything special to me unfortunately. Not really any alcohol picked up which is good. It tastes just like the majority of imperial stouts do. Now, that isn't all bad, because imperial stouts taste good, this just doesn't stand out above other examples of the style.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to ckeegan04 for this trade...January 2009 release. Was warned of Pisgah gusher issues but no such difficulty with this one - slight pffft of the cap prior to the initial pour into a Portsmouth snifter.

This is a solid pour. A full finger of peanut butter/ginger-colored head tops a cool espresso-dark body. This vessel is not one to foster head retention, but it works quite well here and maintains look throughout the lifespan of this bomber.

I'm enjoying the coffee/peanut scent with fine, piney hops and a sweet, almost root beer caramelized malt aroma.

Dryness comes about quite well in the taste profile. Almost slate-like. Decent enough patent tannins emerge without detriment; solid dry coffee grounds create an excellent texture. Dry fruits make an appearance...plums and maybe a little bit of prune. Rustic and rugged smokiness.

Palate feel here is quite nice - spritely for the style. Hop pine meshes with austere chocolate malt and bold coffee to make this extremely formidable and enjoyable. Finish remains even-keeled.

Light enough not to be heavy (OK, how deep is that?) but robust enough to be contemplative. Excellent effort. Extremely well-constructed. As Ron Hawkins' old amp used to say, "Clean enough to be healthy...Dirty enough to be happy." It reminded me of Cadillac Mountain Stout with a solid dry coffee tone. Perhaps it's the Southern love child of Caddy Mount and Wake & Bake? Excellent stuff, regardless...

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

September 2008 bottle.

Deep black pour with an inch of light tan foam that leaves some spotty lacing and stays around for what seems like forever. Looks good in the glass. Aroma is bursting with fresh roasted coffee that's bright and vibrant. Smooth roast underneath with chocolate notes. Crisp maltiness throughout.

First sip smooth, clean roasted malt upfront that's immediately coasted by fresh coffee flavors. Chocolate works its way in along with a velvety smoothness. Bitterness hits on the way down but it's rather mellow. Finishes dry with lingering coffee flavors. Tasty.

Mouthfeel is smooth and medium bodied, a bit on the lighter side but that just makes it easier to drink. Overall, a damn fine coffee stout and organic to boot. Very glad I got a chance to try this. Thanks to dmeadows.

Photo of rhinos00
4.36/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass.

A- Pours a dark cola with zero visibility when held in light. Produced a massive three fingers width of tan head. Over time reduced to half a fingers width of creamy deliciousness. Some retention as the beer was consumed. Reminded of pouring a can of Young's Double Chocolate Stout.

S- Lack of potentcy and a little too one dimensional. Getting lots of espresso and fresh made coffee in the nose...that's about it. For this simple of an aroma, I was hoping for stronger characteristics.

T- Honestly, just imagine a cup of coffee you made on your way to work, but in beer form. What I really enjoyed about the taste is the coffee flavor was controlled. Nothing was overpowering...in a good way. I also was a big fan of the lack of roasted flavors as sometimes this can be way overdone and dominate.

M- Superb. Medium bodied with a wonderful smoothness. Almost reminds of a nice cream stout.

D- The drinkability is laughable. I had to question whether or not I was even drinking a beer at some points. This is by far the quickest I have polished off a coffee beer and I don't even like coffee beers, not too mention it's a bomber.

Overall, if you like your coffee non-roasted with a bit of milk or cream in it, you will be heaven. I have never enjoyed a coffee beer so much. This is one I will definitely be seeking out in the future. To tell you the truth, this is the first time Pisgah has actually impressed me. Well done.

Photo of csmiley
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours nearly black in color. Minimal light gets through at the edges and reveals a medium to dark brown. The tan head tops out at an inch and recedes quickly. It ends up as a nice thick foamy cap that really makes the beer appear more enticing. Some lace remains in the glass but not too much.

S - Coffee really stands out in the aroma at first. Smells like fresh ground coffee to me. It gets very quickly followed by a nice supporting cast of bittersweet chocolate and cocoa. It finishes off with a smokey dark malt aroma. Alcohol is not noted at all.

T - Ground coffee and espresso really dominate the flavor. It pushes the envelope but never gets too out of control. Some chocolate is able to push through midway. It's mostly bittersweet and starts to smooth out towards the end. Other flavors that come in are charcoal, cherry, and you guessed it, more coffee. Finishes off with more of a brewed coffee flavor. Alcohol is almost completely hidden.

M - Light bodied for the style. Carbonation is light. Bitter and chalky at first and finishes a little dry.

D - Drinkability is really good. Alcohol is hidden well behind all the flavors. The coffee comes across as pretty strong but it really does work well. As it warms this beer becomes smoother and all the flavors start working together more and more. The larger bottle (750 ml) works well for this beer. After one pint, all you really want is...another pint. I would definitely have this beer again if ever given the opportunity.

Photo of Bung
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. Almost black pour with a tan head. Not a lot of lacing. Aroma is roasty, coffee and malt, more coffee. Mouthfeel it a little thin, but still medium bodied. Taste has coffee and bakers chocolate all around. Nice roast coffee/espresso finish. A very pleasant coffee stout and drinkable with a low abv for an Imperial. As much as I mentioned coffee it is by no means overdone. Worth trying it you can get your hands on it.

Photo of objectivemonkey
4.21/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Into my Duvel glass, pours a slick dark brown to black, a whopping head of tan foam, sitting around forever, with great big bunches off lacing. Lovely. Aroma has nice dark chocolate notes, coffee grounds, mostly coffee, and thats pretty much it. Simply but effective.

Taste is a bit more diverse, some roasted malt entering the mix, maybe a bit of hop, maybe some cream, but its mostly coffee delight, much like the nose. Again, simple, but delicious. The mouth is smooth, full body, the lightest of carbonation, a nice finish. In all, I did a lot of searching for this one, and it isn't a home run hitter, but it is a fine beer.

Photo of zeff80
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, dark brown color with a tan, thick, two-finger head of foam.

S - This had great java aroma like a great cup o' joe. Some burnt toast aromas, too.

T - It tasted of dark coffee with great roasted malt flavor. It has a nice bitter grassiness.

M - It was soft and smooth. It seemed a little light bodied for an Imperial Stout.

D - This is a great coffee stout. I am not a coffee drinker but I love this brew.

Photo of bhalter8
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am starting to think Pisgah can do no wrong for me. I loved this beer on tap, and had waited to sit down with a bottle to review it. Spot on pour, jet black with a huge 2+ finger, tan head. Decent lacing left from the frothy head receding. The aroma is quite possible the most pungent (but in a very good way) coffee aroma I have ever encountered in a beer. Not quite as robust in flavor (but its not supposed to be I assume, it is not an IS or RIS). The coffee flavor is exceptional, but not quite as strong as the smell would lead one to believe. Some nice malty sweetness helps balance out the bitter coffee flavor. Little light and fizzy in the mouthfeel for my preference in stouts. In the end, a very nice coffee stout. I'd love to see Pisgah take this to the next level and make "Valdez Plus", they are on the right path for sure, just a bit more robust character would complete it for me.

Photo of CoolJosh
3.73/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very generously shared by treyrab at one of our rare tastings in February.

Pours an average black with some lighter brown see-through around the edges. A nice khaki highly carbonated head. Looks alright, I guess similar to that of a coffee stout.

This beer smells very similar to founders breakfast stout. Very airy, with a lot of bitter coffee. A little bit salty. Some bitter roasts but not many to speak of.

Very thin and way too carbonated which is really throwing me off. Not complex by any means but I've come to expect that with coffee stouts (not dissing the style). Tons of bitter coffee and some oats but that's hindered due to the carbonation. If I were to sit this down in the morning and drink a carbonated black cup of coffee, this is what I'd drink.

I don't know if this style is misclassified, but this beer is far from an imperial stout.

Photo of HopHead84
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

There's nothing quite like an Imperial Stout on a 65 degree day in Carlsbad under a 90 degree heat lamp. It's a strange experience, but I wouldn't recommend it. I felt as though my life's blood was being drained from my body, one ounce at a time. Thankfully I had this Pisgah beer to sustain me or I fear I might not have made it. Thanks a lot to Mike for my first Pisgah beer. To be perfectly honest, I've never traded for a beer from this brewery because the name of the brewery has subconsciously irritated me. I'm happy to finally try it though.

Pours nearly black with a one inch, light brown head. The head has good retention and leaves a smattering of lacing as it recedes.

The aroma is dominated by dark chocolate and coffee with some cocoa. It smells quite nice. A low level of alcohol is noticeable. The taste is much like the aroma, centered on dark chocolate and coffee. Though I'm not an avid fan of coffee dominated stouts, this is quite good. There's a medium level of bitterness to the beer, but the hops have really no say in the rich flavor. No alcohol is noticeable, and considering the low percentage (imperial stout?) it's not surprising.

Full bodied with a nice level of carbonation.

Photo of Overlord
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

This will be a day long remembered. Enjoyed this brew with some generous BA'ers.

Poured a muted brown, big tan head. Pretty big head, actually, even when split three ways.

Smells like milk chocolate and coffee ... not really bitter coffee, or espresso, etc., just straight up roasted coffee. Maybe a bit of roasted malt in the aroma.

Taste is primarily coffee, with some roasted malt, and maybe a splash of coffee. This is a fairly straightforward beer. If there's anything unusual about it, it's the lively, well carbonated mouthfeel.

Thanks mikesgroove for the PISGAH!

Photo of srandycarter
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark ass pour, mocha head, thick, reduces to disk.

S - Lots of coffee and cocoa.

T - SO MUCH flavor. Hits all the buttons, but maybe a little bit unbalanced and too sweet.

M - Yes, cloying, at least a little.

D - Except for the unbalancing problem, pretty darned good!

Photo of maximum12
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mikesgroove & ncvbc who offered me up bottles of this during the winter. Happy to try any coffee-upped stout, especially one with such a good rep. This one was bottled in September 2008. Bring me coffee!

Valdez is black, & very bubbly with a significant head on him. Smell is aggressively coffee as soon as the cork pops. Intersestingly, once it settles into the tulip, the nose simmers down quite a bit.

This is what coffee should taste like for those of us who don't dig it! The coffee taste is there, & fairly pronouned, but isn't drowning the baby beer behind it. The carbonation creates a definite bubbling in the mouth...other than that, I can't pick out anything in particular. It's just good. Weird. There's a solid body behind it of, well, something. And it's a good one.

All in all a very good beer. This one comes off as a beer that could be extreme, but's not, & that's just fine. Fits it's style alright.

Photo of stoutfiend27
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber brought back from the source

a-blackish brown with a nice 1/2" espresso colored head that lingered for a while

s- ummm coffee but what were u expecting? this is a true coffee stout lovers dream as far as nose

t- ummm more coffee and what a wonderful coffee this is is...if it were available for me to brew in the morning i would have it everyday....this is by far the best coffee stout i have ever had...i think it tops breakfast stout if you are looking for coffee

m-this is def not a double/imperial stout it is a stout and has perfect mouthfeel for the style

d-i love it...i truly do...i like my coffee stouts in tenure and i wouldnt want to ruin it by drinking too many of these

this beer is excellent in all aspects....great job by pisgah

Photo of lackenhauser
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first sample from this brewery. Pours a deep black color with a huge, huge head. Almsot seems infected by the overcarbonation but I tend to think it is just the beer itself. Head has to be 2 inches thick. Ok aroma-the coffe smell is offset by a somewhat metallic and oxidized tinge. Solid roasted malt and coffee flavors dominate. Sort of grainy. Decent mouthfeel-finish is rather dry actually. A decent enough beer. Lacks whatever is needed to push it over the top.

Photo of rayjay
3.72/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Excited to try my first brew from these guys. I have been known to dabble in organic beers so lets check them out. Poured into a DFH stemmed goblet, my new favorite glass thanks to my awesome fiancee.

Pull out the cork and BANG! One proudly carbonated beer that makes the perfect cap of tight foam, nice black beer. Looking good so far!

Absolutely reeks of coffee dust. Some roasted grain in there somewhere too...talk about a coffee bomb. Very well made aroma.

Tons of coffee on the pallet. Low bitterness and a rather dry finish. Nutty malt characteristics, interesting that pale malt is one of the primary flavors, sort of showing up the sweet and bitter roasted malts. A very good stout but a bit of a let down from the killer aroma. A bit of a jalapeño flavor in the background that I'm digging.

Too much carbonation makes the body seem too light, and makes the beer feel "prickly" and taste like you burned your mouth earlier in the day. Perhaps over-pitched in the bottle.

Drinkability remains above average since the beer is so interesting, but is definitely a bit hampered by the dryness and over-carbonation. Certainly a fine beer though.

Photo of scifan
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

When I opened this thing it let out a loud hiss of carbonation then beer started coming out of the bottle I had to get this into my Pisgah pint glass pronto. Pours black with a light brown head. Smells like COFFEE!!! A big strong cup of java, there are some nice sweet maltiness in there as well, but not much. Taste just like it smells lots and lots of coffee goodness then some nice sweet malts to help balance it out. This one of the more intense coffee brews I've had. If you're looking for coffee then look no further than this one. The carbonation is a little much I like my stouts a little smoother and creamier.

Pisgah Valdez from Pisgah Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 321 ratings.