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Pisgah Valdez - Pisgah Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pisgah ValdezPisgah Valdez

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

304 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 304
Reviews: 193
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 176
Gots: 18 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: mikesgroove on 12-02-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 304 | Reviews: 193 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Falcone
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Falcone, Dec 28, 2012
Photo of wedge
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

September 2008

Black with a slight sliver of brown at the bottom of the glass. Tall, loosely foamy brown head. Coffee, milk, and sugar aromas upfront with some chocolaty roastiness. Roasted coffee and cream flavors...sweet and tasty...but there's no depth. Take away the coffee and would this be a quality stout? Medium bodied and way too carbonated for the style. A slight bit of warming in the throat which is confusing considering the low ABV.

I love coffee, I love coffee stouts...this one was disappointing. Not anything remotely close to an Imperial Stout either, though I don't think it's supposed to be. Maybe it's just this batch, but this beer is highly overrated.

wedge, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of thewimperoo
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

thewimperoo, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mikesgroove sent this bottle my way in a recent trade, so thanks go out to him for the chance to sample this beer.

The appearance is a almost black, with hues of very dark brown around the edges. Big brown head that has moderate retention but no lacing is left behind.

Smells a whole lot like coffee. For a coffee stout, I would say that is a good thing though. Lots of malty sweetness in there too. Smells pretty damn good.

Taste is of course very coffee oriented. Sweet, roasted flavors run throughout. Fresh roasted coffee with loads of sweetness are noticeable. Finishes with more coffee that makes the mouthfeel very dry.

This is a nice stout and is pretty drinkable. Great beer overall, glad I got the chance to try it.

Hojaminbag, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of sulldaddy
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampling at room temperatrue poured into a snifter. The beer pours a dark cocoa brown with foamy tan head of 3cm even with a gentle pour. Aroma is lite coffee grounds and roasted malt. Some brown sugar mixed in the background. Predominantly a roasty nose. First sip reveals an average body with silky smooth texture and mild rolling carbonation. Flavor is sweet malt and roasty with again brown sugar. A little coffee bite but no hops or ABV show up for this dance. Very easy smooth drinking beer. Aftertaste lingers for a little bit but then is gone, maybe a little chalky on the finish. OVerall a nice beer that isnt amazingly robust but does drink easy and taste good.

sulldaddy, Nov 03, 2009
Photo of Jeffo
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber of this one provided by jbeatty. Thanks for the trade man!

From a bomber into a snifter
Vintage: 2010

APPEARANCE: A dark brown pour yields a two finger, medium looking, noisy, crackly, dark tan head with decent retention. Black body, opaque and medium carbonation evident. Head fades to a full film on top. A half wisp and a ring remain until the end leaving some nice lacing down the glass. Very nice looking beer, though noisy heads are never that appealing.

SMELL: Medium strength nose of roasted malts, roasted coffee beans, sweet cream and vanilla notes. A hint of caramel as well. Like a latte or a very milky, creamy coffee. A very nice nose for the age, though is has mellowed quite a bit at this point I fear.

TASTE: Some roasted and caramel malts up front with sweet cream and milky, roasted coffee through the middle into the finish. Sweet cream and vanilla mesh well with the coffee flavors, making it much like a latte, as the nose had advertised. Milder aftertaste of sweet cream, roasted coffee and a light bitterness lingers nicely on the palate. Very nice and appealing, but much like the nose, this has probably mellowed quite a bit over time.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Light and creamy smooth on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes slightly dry. Nice and creamy feel.

OVERALL: I wouldn’t call this an imperial stout, but as an American coffee stout, this one is quite nice. I would think the nose and flavor profile was much bolder and forthcoming when the beer was fresh, but after over a year in the bottle, it’s certainly a nice drink; people who enjoy coffee stouts that are more restrained will definitely be extremely pleased with this. I certainly enjoyed this one and the bomber disappeared far too quickly. Thanks again for the brews jbeatty!

Jeffo, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of Overlord
4/5  rDev -3.4%
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!

Overlord, May 02, 2009
Photo of grub
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

ncvbc hooked me up with this in a recent trade. thanks walter!

64oz growler. sampled april 26/08.

pours very dark brown, nearly black. not quite opaque with a bit of orange showing at the edges of the glass. a big light brown head forms, dropping slowly and leaving spotty lace behind.

aroma is great. lots of coffee. dark chocolate. hints of light citrus. lots of earthy character too. nice light roast, more toasty than burnt. light alcohol. solid malt base.

taste is great. can i get some beer with my coffee? this is definitely a coffee lovers dream beer. lots of coffee. dark chocolate. bit of milk chocolate too. light alcohol. huge cracker and bread malt. caramel. bit of dark fruit too. nice earthy character level. fairly low bitterness level coming across mostly as coffee.

mouthfeel is good. medium-low carbonation level. medium large body. silky smooth.

drinkability is great. nicely balanced. lots of chocolate and coffee. i think you really need to like coffee to appreciate this one. at times the coffee does overshadow the stout beneath, but overall i'm happy with it. it reminds me of mill street coffee porter, but at a slight level above. good stuff!

grub, May 05, 2008
Photo of wagenvolks
4.68/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Much is owed to atsprings for the share.
Growler poured into a brandy snifter.

A semi-vigorous pour forms a voluminous head, two inches off the dark body and excellently retained. Head color is a tan-custard hue, and the foamy mass looks solid enough to pluck out of the snifter and throw it across the room. Body is pitch black and opaque, although some transparency is evident when the snifter is tipped and held up to the light. The aroma is equally as enticing, packed with notes of fresh-baked cookie dough, gingerbread, caramel-infused coffee, and fresh ground coffee beans.

Valdez lives up to its name, as it coats the palate with an oily-thick, utterly creamy body that requires substantial chewing with every sip. The flavor is like lukewarm, creamy coffee that has been deliciously fermented. Hazlenut roast rounds out the malt profile, while a perfect bitter coffee bite leaves a lasting impression. The drinkability of Valdez is superior for its style. The complexiy and flavor are almost unparalled (although Big Boss' Coffee Stout runs a close second), and as the beer warms it becomes increasingly delicious. A must try for beer-lovers everywhere.

wagenvolks, Mar 19, 2008
Photo of dfhhead25
4/5  rDev -3.4%

dfhhead25, Oct 01, 2014
Photo of Crosling
3.55/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Black colored ale, with ruby edges. Very frothy head varies in color from light tan to dark tan. One dimensional nose smells of espresso, but lacks malt aromatics. Flavor has some complexity to it and tastes nice, but is still dominated by the coffee addition and doesn't have much malt depth. That being said, it's suave and has some finesse to it. It even finishes pretty well. It's a nice ale.

Crosling, Nov 15, 2008
Photo of atsprings
4.97/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice jet black with a decent tan head that diminishes to a lasting thin layer. Aroma is dominated by fresh ground coffee, just a hint of chocolate tries to poke through, but really cannot surpass the coffee at all. The taste is a coffee lovers dream. As others had said in their reviews, it's almost hard to tell that this is beer. The mouth has a great dryness and is very smooth with only a slight alcohol presence. This is an absolutely spectacular beer, another great one from the guys at Pisgah.

atsprings, Mar 19, 2008
Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev -3.4%

tclapper, Dec 03, 2011
Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
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.

ClockworkOrange, Aug 31, 2009
Photo of lackenhauser
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
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.

lackenhauser, Apr 12, 2009
Photo of ktrillionaire
2.42/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

A - It presents an appearance no dissimilar from black coffee; there is not much head, it is a deep brown that appears black, and it has that coffee sheen.

S - This beer smells like straight-up burnt coffee, nothing else. Not espresso, not dark roast; this is ooops! I burned the coffee! And I don't like my coffee burnt, so I am not a fan of this one-dimensional aromatic.

T - Unfortunately, not much is different about the taste, as compared to the smell. I am still getting very little other than straight-up burnt coffee. The beer is also lacking body, and seems to have an acridity that I find disquieting. Also, the beer hiding beneath all that coffee tastes like it would be a bland watery brown ale.

M - The thin, flaccid nature of this brew is the nail in the coffin. The feel is absolutely horrendous.

D - I am not impressed here. This is one of the most ham-handed executions of a coffee beer I have seen. It evokes comparisons, in terms of ineptitude, to Fuel Café...

ktrillionaire, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of jampics2
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler into a snifter. Thanks to Kevin for bringing this back from Pisgah. I've wanted to try this for a while.

Is it named for the coffee maker or the oil tanker?  Maybe both!  Valdez is a pitch black beer with a dark tan head. It has good retention considering its a coffee stout (I find it's really hard to get the foam to stick due to the oil from the coffee beans unless you are Surly, but Coffee Bender is a freak of nature); we are left with a ring and film with spotty lace after a while.  A swirl reawakens the head.   

Valdez smells prominently of coffee, really rich and strong coffee. Some earthy character is reflected in the grounds, but this is super fresh and pleasant not stale. A bit of caramel sweetness, chocolate and just a hint of creamy vanilla compliment and round out an excellent nose.    

Valdez is full of great coffee through and through. Some dark French roast espresso reaches a peak of bitterness then sweet chocolate, vanilla, and caramel come in the picture.  The powerful tasting experience finishes with lingering swetness and a touch of lingering coffee bitterness.  While this is well above average, it falls short of the top tier - simply put, I just would like more roast from the malt. Otherwise, the coffee and sweet malt are nice and this is very good!    

This beer is a touch thin but nice overall. It has medium body with medium to heavy carb for a stout. For a 6.5% stout, this is probably acceptable but for the 'Imperial/Double' style I expect more creaminess. The finish is sweet and bitter and a touch dry. Overall, Pisgah Vortex is an excellent beer. I had a growler basically to myself with just a touch of help from the wife and it never got to be a chore.  A great coffee beer - straight-up, no gimmicks, very expressive and very pleasant.  Now there are three famous Valdez's - Juan, Exxon, and Pisgah!    

jampics2, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of sholland119
4.68/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I first tried this beer in a bottle and, while I liked it, I had no idea what all the fuss was about. But after trying this on tap at Barley's in Asheville on 2/5, the scales have fallen from my eyes.

A-Pours black as night, deep and opaque with a thin tan head and good sticky lacing.

S-A blast of fresh roasted coffee starts things off, with some nice roasted malt and cocoa behind it.

T-Delicious. Starts with a delicious roastiness, follow by a nutty maltiness, finishing with a crisp bitter hop burst and more roasted coffee. Plenty of coffee flavor but still tastes like a beer. Outstanding.

M-Medium bodied with a nice lingering finish.

D-Yes, please I would like many more. Outstanding!

HV

sholland119, Feb 19, 2010
Photo of aerozeppl
4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to unclejedi for this via trade.

A: Just about black with 2 fingers of mocha head.

S: Coffee big time. Big roasted smell balances thing out a bit but make no mistake this is a punch of coffee in the face.

T: Coffee up front. The tricky thing with coffee stouts is that they taste fake. This was a nicely balanced coffee stout. The roast balanced it out much like the nose.

M: Nice and silky. Perfect carbonation.

D: Very nice. This would be an amazing session beer. Great big beer taste in a 6.8% ABV package. Again thanks to unclejedi for this great beer.

aerozeppl, Nov 16, 2008
Photo of richkrull
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

richkrull, Mar 31, 2013
Photo of CrellMoset
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Bruisin' Ales in Asheville, NC. Poured into a 22 oz. Terrapin snifter.

Appearance: This beer looks like coffee. A nice head of froth - latte-esque, fine-bubbled, beige, tan, chocolate, creamy, milky, frothy, foamy - settles and sticks around for quite some time.

Aroma: Perhaps the most authentic freshly ground coffee smell I've ever gotten out of a beer. It's the perfect medium-to-full roast, but that's not all there is. There's sweet, milky chocolate notes, hints of

Taste: I think I detect a hint of coffee in this beer. But seriously, wow. A really great, strong earthy coffee note - no, not a note, a really great, strong earthy coffee backbone, foundation, basis. There're grassy notes, light citrus notes, and tons of roast, dirt, and light smoke. "Coffee-tastic." Pungent, too - I could smell it halfway across the room.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied, oily, milky, creamy, smooth, medium-bubbled. A little too big-bodied and fluffy, perhaps, but it works well with the light, delicate nature of the taste and the low alcohol content. Not cloying, sticky, or filmy, but very clean and crisp.

Drinkability: A fantastic all-around coffee beer, and the low abv% makes it even more drinkable. It's crisp, fresh, tasty, refreshing, AND it's organic ... what's not to love? Seriously though, it's one of the most authentic smelling/tasting coffee beers I've ever had the privilege of, and I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys their morning coffee strong with a half cream/half sugar. Very well made and very enjoyable.

CrellMoset, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of n2185
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours black with about a finger of chocolate-colored head that quickly recedes into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: There are some roasted malt and chocolate aromas in there, but mostly it's just coffee. Full-bodied, rich, dark-roasted coffee.

T: Very similar to the aroma, this beer is just bursting with rich, dark-roasted coffee flavors. There are touches of roasted malt and chocolate, but mostly coffee. The finish is surprisingly smooth and not bitter.

M: Medium-thick body with low-medium carbonation, this beer is thick and creamy.

D: This beer goes down very easily. It's a pretty simple beer, tasting more like a glass of high quality iced coffee with carbonation than a beer. Very straight-forward, but very good as well.

n2185, Mar 02, 2011
Photo of WeisGuy
4.53/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had the last pint at Barley's in Asheville on Friday, reviewing from a growler.

a - pours nearly black with a two-finger tan head, decent retention, great lacing

s - intense aroma of bittersweet chocolate and espresso...chocolate covered espresso beans, dried blueberries and hints of cherry, no alcohol evident

t - espresso and dark chocolate as on the nose, bitterness and sweetness nicely balanced, mid-palate has more bitter chocolate and espresso with some blueberries thrown in, finish kind of falls off in intensity, but espresso and dark chocolate flavors linger lightly on the palate for quite awhile, along with a cola flavor, not much alcohol detectable

m - medium-bodied, a bit too light bodied for my taste, but not by much, moderate carbonation, finish is well balanced on the palate

d - pretty drinkable for a coffee stout, taste is balanced and complex, relatively easy on the palate, alcohol doesn't overwhelm at all

Excellent coffee stout all around from Pisgah. It'd be nice if they made this a regular release.

WeisGuy, Apr 01, 2008
Photo of brewandbbq
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from January 2009.

Pours opaque black with mahogany edging and a tight beige head. A partial skim coat and roped lacing throughout the glass.

Aromatics lead off with roasted malts, coffee grounds, bitter chocolate, and Oreo shells. A hint of char and smoke follow through.

Medium bodied with a slight chew. Thinnish for the style. The mouthfeel is soft and a bit creamy.

Brownie bits with espresso and chocolate malt start the palate. Medium roast coffee steps forward as well as bakers chocolate and a hint of Kahlua.

Finishes with shades of coffee, chocolate, and a bit of char.

Tasty enough, but I'm left wanting more of everything. The coffee character is a bit meekish and the stout base is rather average.

brewandbbq, Feb 28, 2011
Photo of Onenote81
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Super excited to try this big beer from the boys at Pisgah. Poured into a snifter glass. Pours a thick viscous black with no head on top at all. Nothing. Big roasted coffee scents burst out. This is strong right after popping the cap. Lots of espresso, some milk chocolate, cream, toasted sugar. This smells great. A very good lead-in to drinking this bad boy.

The mouth is very crisp and bubbly...too much so. For this style I prefer big and heavy, as this one is, but it needs to be smoother and a little creamier. Too much carbonation going on. Great roasted coffee flavors all over this. Excellent bitter black coffee balanced with a creamy milky chocolate on the end. Slight grassy hops noted on the finish as well. I like that touch. It claimed to be a coffee beer, and a coffee beer it was. Wow.

*Note: This was my third "coffee" beer in a row (all different styles), and this one was my favorite for sure. One of the best coffee beers I've had in awhile.

Onenote81, Apr 23, 2010
Pisgah Valdez from Pisgah Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 304 ratings.