1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Teddy Bear Kisses - Upland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Teddy Bear KissesTeddy Bear Kisses

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

348 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 348
Reviews: 118
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 15.75%
Wants: 75
Gots: 76 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Upland Brewing Company visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Verecund on 11-14-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 348 | Reviews: 118 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of youradhere
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours black possessing ruddy edges and with a soft, weak, tan head that disappears quickly. Smell is a little subdued but consists of chocolate and coffee, with some anise twang. Smells nice, but much like other imperial stouts. Cocoa flavors, licorice, coffee, roast malt, black berry, vanilla with a residual bitterness. Mouthfeel is a bit light, but still good for the style. Drinkability is pretty good, as this bottle won't last long!

Oh ya, bottled on Sep. 2010

youradhere, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of blackie
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a: unibroue tulip, pours a murky brown in color, essentially black, with a nice mocha head showing average retention

s: solid roasted barley nose - lots of dark chocolate notes, roast char, slightly sweet under, some citrus rind hops, more dark cocoa, sweet alcohol after warming

m: lightly carbonated, body rides the line between medium and full

t: big on the barley roast, burnt grain and bittersweet chocolate, smoky coffee notes after the swallow, full citrus pith hop flavor and a full bitterness, a little piney in the finish with very heavy char, decent flavor set but nothing out of the ordinary, fairly unbalanced towards the harsh char

d: drinks well enough for the elevated abv, it's a passable ris if without anything to set it apart from the pack

bottle from dirtylou paired with some basketball (in)action

blackie, Feb 03, 2011
Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a one-finger, tan head of foam. It had good head retention and left some sudsy trails of lace.

S - It smelled of chocolate and mild coffee notes. Some toffee and caramel, too.

T - It tasted of chocolate, coffee and burnt molasses. Carmal and toffee flavors are faint.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - This is a good RIS. The coffee flavors are not as strong as I hoped.

zeff80, Feb 01, 2011
Photo of JamesS
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an excellent deep midnight black with excellent head and lacing. Very nice deep malty scent, good roasted grains, nice slight coffee aroma, and fantastic chocoloate tones. Very nice flavor as well, with a huge deep malty kick and slight roasted grains under a huge semi-bitter chocolate taste. Goes down quite smooth for such a high ABV brew, although there is a bit of alcohol heat in the finish.

JamesS, Jan 31, 2011
Photo of Urbancaver
4.08/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a bit of frothy tan head. Looks very pretty.
Smells strongly of dark chocolate goodness. Not too sweet.. like a 70-80% Dark Chocolate bar. Tastes a bit bitter and dry but very chocolatey with some roasted malts coming through. Bitter on the tongue but very clean on my palette. Improved as it warmed... very nice

Urbancaver, Jan 30, 2011
Photo of kfsv034
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Rolandolopez for this one

A - pours a mud brown color with very little head. Slight lacing and a ring or foam around the edges of the glass.

S - Burnt roasty malt, chocolate, bourbon alcohol, slight vanilla and coffee smell.

T - Burnt acrid flavors, chocolate, definite alcohol presences.

M - Thin mouthfeel. residuals left in my mouth.

D - its ok not my favorite

kfsv034, Jan 14, 2011
Photo of GoGriz
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Uhhhh....am I drinking the same beer that other reviewers have had? I mean, it isn't mindblowingly awesome but it isn't bad. In fact it is perfectly drinkable and pleasant. I myself tend to like a slightly sweeter RIS and this one has more of a bitter chocolate flavor to it as many have said. Also notes of roasted malt are present but not overly so. That being said, I still like it. Nose is muted. Everything is slightly better than average actually but not phenomenal.

It drinks like a RIS and is not nearly as bad as some of the reviews read IMHO. If you are on the fence, give it a shot.

GoGriz, Jan 10, 2011
Photo of BarrytheBear
1.65/5  rDev -54.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

22 oz bottle

Dark brown into a snifter with a short lived half inch tan head

Equal blend of milk and dark chocolates, coffee, and plastic. Who ordered the Saran Wrap?

Whoa, SWEET Jesus. This is messy. It's thin and way too sweet. Imperial Stout....uh, no way. A pummeling sickly dark fruit experience coupled with an odd cooked cabbage bitterness. Cocoa nibs really do add anything assistance to a beer in serious need of some sort of overhaul or resuscitation. Flatlining, here... won't somebody help please? What's most disconcerting is that the aftertaste sticks around forever and just begs for some sort remediation. Yuck.

Burned again by the Upland flame.

BarrytheBear, Jan 07, 2011
Photo of burnheartsMKE
4.33/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I was a kid my favorite book, The Chocolate Touch, was about a kid, John Midas, who loved chocolate so much he was granted/cursed with the wish of turning anything that touched his lips into his favorite treat. Toothpaste, peas, meatloaf and onions instantly lost their lackluster and became that intoxicating flavor so deeply revered. I believe it ended with him kissing his grandmother and, well, you get the idea.

There's a reason why conquering armies win over the admiration of their captive's children with bits of chocolate, it fucking rules! So then, why shouldn't we as consenting adults add our favorite childhood flavor (and let's admit right here that that love never died) to our favorite beverage? We shouldn't!

Upland did it right. They present us with an Imperial Stout that is neither cloying nor deficient of that righteous bean. There is no John Midas touch here. Instead, it is kissed lightly, without being aggressive or greedy. There is a wink at a Turkish coffee sweetness and a bitter hop counterbalance. It is a little boozy at 10.2%, but that hotness waits around the corner until your hand warms the last couple sips. I am very happy that I have another bottle waiting in the cellar.

burnheartsMKE, Jan 05, 2011
Photo of jrallen34
2.9/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into my Darkness glass...A dark brown, just not yet turned black. A nice big creamy mocha head of at least three fingers, good retention and great lacing. Way to start!...The aroma is so strong! Burnt cocoa nibs and alcohol, this is just charred and not good at all...The taste is even worse, charred, burnt destroyed cocoa nibs. Bitter bakers chocolate, so bitter I can't even drink this. As it warms its slightly better, but not much.

This is really bad, big avoid unless you like burnt cocoa.

jrallen34, Jan 05, 2011
Photo of RunForYourBeer
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottled September of 09. I'm a bit unsure about the date.

A: Pours black with a tan head that quickly dissipates.

S: Strong on chocolate with hints of roasty coffee and brown sugar sweetness.

T: Starts out with chocolate and dark fruits and finishes with some roasty coffee and light alcohol warming.

M: Full with low carbonation.

D: High abv hurts this one.

Really enjoyed this beer. It has the basic elements of an RIS with some added chocolate. One of my favorites of the Upland beers I've had.

RunForYourBeer, Jan 03, 2011
Photo of Bmoyer0301
2.4/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Smell:

Roasted malts, and cocoa powder are the main event here. Some ashy undertones followed by chocolate and raisins. As I left my mug warm up a bit there are lots of dark fruits shining through and some rum-esq aromas. In the middle I am pulling out some light roasted coffee maybe a iced coffee smell with some heavy cream. I am liking the faint sweetness that rounds out the roasty bitterness. The hops are bright and noticeable throughout all the aromas going on, pretty sharp and earthy smelling. Not overly charred and cloyingly sweet so far so good.

Taste:

Right off the start I am noticing something that remind me of burnt toast that has a fair amount of bitterness to it. This really has a reminiscent of Bell's Batch 10,000 which was a little over the top for me. There is a fair amount of chocolate and burnt ashy notes going on that are kind of like smoking a cigar. The mouth feel this is really thin for being a imperial stout... almost too thin and I would really like some more body. Also there is a weird red wine flavor going on that makes the finish sharp and tangy. Also, I wanted to call attention to the hops because they are certainly there and add a sharp mossy earth flavor that kind of fight the sweetness. A very dry long finish that leaves a lingering taste that I am not very sure of.

Drinkability:

I don't know what to think about this one. Is this really a imperial stout or is it a black strong ale? I am not sure if this is a bad bottle or if this what they all came out like because when you check out other peoples reviews they are really up and down. I am thankful that I had the opportunity to give this a try but also very glad that I didn't trade for it. This one is just a little off for me and I don't think I will be trying to search it out again. If you come across it, hell give it a shot maybe your bottle will be better than mine and for $7 it's not that hard of a loss if you don't like it.

Bmoyer0301, Jan 02, 2011
Photo of alpinebryant
4.15/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Brewed Sept. 10
Pours a dark chocolate with a light tan head that within a few minutes ran to the edges.

The aroma on this is fantastic, strong milk chocolate cocoa flavors overflowing from tulip along with a nice rich roasted aroma.
Taste is also very nice . Good caramelized sugar presence; a slightly milk stout mouthfeel, rich and light milk chocolate flavors, rich dark malt flavors. All in all, I liked all of the flavors in here. Some people said that as it warmed some of the more astringent qualities came out. In any case, I agree a little bit with that statement, but this is still a nice stout that I am definitely enjoying. There is a light mouthfeel for the style and a light carbonation level. I have no idea where the 10.2% is, because it tastes like it could go down extremely smoothly.

alpinebryant, Dec 29, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
3.45/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Azurelimits for sharing this bottle. Served in a tulip.

Pours black with a single-finger tan head. This quickly recedes into a thin collar around the edges, though no lacing remains on the glass. The nose brings quite a bit of dark chocolate as well as some roast. A bit of a creamy, milky character in the nose as well. The taste brings some more chocolate and a lot of roast. The feel is quite dry with a roasted finish. It's also a bit harsh with some bitter astringencies there a well. Oddly, this actually gets less appealing as it warms and I didn't particularly wish to finish my pour.

Thorpe429, Dec 20, 2010
Photo of steve8robin
3.35/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this in the Secret Santa 2010 BIF. Glad to get to try this. 22oz bottle. Bottled September 2010 poured into my new Dogfish snifter...

A: Super dark with absolutely no light shining through. A small tan head that fades quickly to tiny bubbles atop the brew. Good.

S: Some roasty hops upfront with black licorice and coffee scents quickly followed. Some cocoa and vanilla in the middle. Decent.

T: A watery roast upfront. Some grassy cocoa in the middle blended with some faint vanilla. Some watery booze on the backend. Ok.

M: Thick body with a good carbonation feel. A nice boozy clean finish. Good.

D: Goes down a little harder with the strange blend of flavors. Decent.

All in all, this is an ok brew. Many better stouts out there, so I wouldn't worry about it. Good to try if you have access, but otherwise, don't bother hunting.

steve8robin, Dec 18, 2010
Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.28/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance -- Pours a deep, dark brown with a slim khaki head. Hazy head and dirty halo persist.

Smell -- Roast malt, toffee, sticky buns, maple sugar, and some menthol-like hops. The chocolate in the nose is surprisingly weak considering. Blindfolded, I'd be inclined to think this was a Barleywine.

Taste -- Burnt bread crust, dark fruit, and toffee, are the most prominent flavors. Hop character is pretty pronounced lending some leafy and herbaceous character. The chocolate flavor is so far in the background that I'd just as soon think that it wasn't there. Lingering flavors of burnt toast and molasses.

Mouthfeel -- Medium body with slightly harsh carbonation. Not terrible, but doesn't compliment the beer much. Definitely the low point of this beer.

Drinkability -- With a name like Teddy Bear Kisses, I expected this to be a soft, gentle, easy-drinking RIS. What I found is one that is a bit thin, too highly carbonated, and with a flavor profile that was surprisingly lacking in chocolate flavor despite the addition of cocoa nibs. Overall, it's okay, but not something I'll be seeking again.

One thing I will say: once I started thinking of this as a dark American Barleywine I started enjoying it more.

yeahnatenelson, Dec 15, 2010
Photo of HosP
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a few bottles of this. Pretty excited getting to try a new Upland beer.

A - Almost opaque. Some dark brown around the edges where the light comes in. Nice tan head sits atop this drink.

S - Roasted malts with a cocoa nose upfront. Some coffee notes hidden at the end.

F - Nice roast flavor to the beer. Chocolate and cocoa malts are most evident. Nothing to overpowering though, neither stands out. Some bitterness at the end. As it warms, more alcohol burn comes out in it.

M- Medium body with good carbonation.

D - Good beer. Left me wanting a little more from it though. The flavor was good, but nothing that really wowed me. Still would pick up a bottle here and there.

HosP, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of GabrielM
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared in '10 Secret Santa from SuperNova777. Thanks again, Josh! Poured into a tulip.

A - pitch black like an imperial stout should be, with a coffee color head that dissipated quicker than expected.

S - chocolate, a bit of vanilla, espresso.

T - same as nose but with much more coffee and much less chocolate than the smell indicated. A slight alcohol warmth is there as well.

M - pretty decent on the palate, but still a little warm for my likings.

D - it's a good beer and I'll enjoy my share of the bottle, but then on to something about half the ABV.

GabrielM, Dec 11, 2010
Photo of cetherid
4.22/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

poured into a tulip

A.

pitch black. About 3 fingers worth of foamy light brown head. Lots of lacing on the glass too.

S.

The smell is dark roasted malts. Nice chocolate/cocoa and coffee smell. Perhaps the cocoa smell is more dominant, but not too much.

T.

bitter chocolate and slight coffee presence. A touch of sweetness and roasted notes in there. The alcohol taste is subtle, but it's there.

M.

full bodied with great carbonation for an imperial stout.

D.

pretty good IMO. A little difficult to find up in NW indiana however. I could easily drink the whole bomber myself but I'm sharing it. I plan on saving the other bomber I have to cellar.

cetherid, Dec 09, 2010
Photo of karengarys
4.28/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours, ooh yeah, nice and dark and thick and the foam on the top is medium dark caramel color. Admittedly, a bit too cold for the style - about 35F/2C.

Smells sweet and licoricey, come cocoa, it is nice and rich and smooth. [update: it did warm up slightly, and some coffee scent came through...]

Tastes of licorice, chocolate and there is a tawny bitterness, perhaps molassis? There is a slight edge on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is rich and creamy. I did pour this very slow, though.

Nice rich body to this, as you would expect with the style.

Alcohol is hidden well.

It is quite drinkable, but, of course, it is to be sipped.

This is a great beer. It represents the style well, with enough personality to give it a try for its uniqueness. Though I'm sipping it, I like it enough to sip so fast that I never got a chance to let it warm up!

karengarys, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of Another6Pack
3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got the last bottle in the cooler at Kahn's in Indy. Minutes later a group came in looking for it. Beer karma been very very good to me.

A: Nice and black. No light is getting through this one. Thin but persistent head. Cocoa-colored lacing. Appealing start!

S: I'm no expert on the style, and it was nothing good/nothing bad. Playing fair and going with an average rating.

T: Live review...fresh out of the fridge there seemed to be little there; no cocoa, no coffee, not much of anything except, well, bread and mushrooms. Second glass out of the bomber and things are getting better. Picking up the cocoa now, a little smoke flavor...starting to remind me of Left Hand's Fade to Black II. NO alcohol burn, which I expected given the ABV.

M: Improves with temperature too. Perhaps I should/could have known that going in? Bumped up a half a point to 3.5 by the end.

D: Slightly above average. Could have split this one and been happy enough.

Another6Pack, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of Charlotte09
4.22/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Beer is almost black with a thin head full of cream coloring and brownish hues. Looks very appealing.

S: THis beer fills my nostrils with a smell is of caramel and a hit of cocoa. The smell is fairly strong and enjoyable.

T: Taste is sweet but somewhat bitter at the same time. Has some caramel notes along with a slight coffee taste. Can definitely taste the malts, almost has a slight burnt/smoked flavor. The aftertaste is a little odd, leaves a bitter/tangy flavor in the back of the mouth.

M: There is slight carbonation but when you move it around the taste buds turns into a light foam, its quite nice.

D: Wouldn't be able to drink a lot of this beer at one time. Kind of a desert beer to enjoy every once in a while.

Charlotte09, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of wrightro07
3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: It is a pitch opaque black with a mocha coloured creamy head. The head retention was just fine on TBK. I just wish that the head would form easier. I was not able to forum a large enough head in my opinion.
S: The smell is of coffee, vanilla, malts, and chocolate. I really enjoyed the smell of the RIS. It smell just as it should rich with coffee chocolate aromas.
T: The taste is a little burnt bitter in my opinion. I was hopping for a smother coffee taste and a little sweeter side with the vanilla.
D: The overall drinkability is satisfactory. It would not be a brew that I would go out of my way for again.

wrightro07, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of Jwale73
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to jdiddy for sharing. Pours the color and clarity of cola with a rocky, khaki-colored head embedded with bubbles. Nose is roasty and earthy and also expresses a trace of cooca towards the back. Taste expresses a burnt/acrid quality as well as cocoa and roast. Mouthfeel is medium-light, with an even carbonation. A nice traditional RIS. Many current examples of the style tend to be more towards the sweeter side of the spectrum (which is actually more to my preference); however, the burnt/charred character really contributes nicely to the character of this beer.

Jwale73, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of AaronHomoya
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Imperial Stout aged on Fair Trade Cocoa Nibs.

Nicely drinkable, as I easily finished the bomber by myself. Not as pronounced chocolate aroma or flavor as I was hoping from the aforementioned cocoa nibs. Nice coffee, stout flavor though. Would try again.

AaronHomoya, Dec 02, 2010
Teddy Bear Kisses from Upland Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 348 ratings.