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Siberian Night Imperial Stout - Thirsty Dog Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Siberian Night Imperial StoutSiberian Night Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

846 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 846
Hads: 1,770
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 13.73%
Wants: 150
Gots: 248 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Thirsty Dog Brewing Company visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Dogbrick on 01-13-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Siberian Night Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 846 | Hads: 1,770
Photo of RedHaze
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black with some red highlights around the edges when held up to a bright light. There’s a quarter inch head that recedes leaving a thin ring. Only minimal lacing.

Smells; dark chocolate, bitter coffee, roasted malts and dark fruits.

Taste; initially a litlle sweet, with chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and there’s a bit of plum in there. There’s only a little bit of hop bitterness in the finish, and only a hint of alcohol. It has a thick and chewy mouthfeel, really nice. Although this is an imperial stout, it tastes so good I could drink more than one a night.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours carefully with only a wisp of a brown head, when roused a rich chocolate brown head foams up and then slowly settles back down again. The color is opaquely black, yet showed a clear deep brown color as it was poured into my glass. The aroma is thick and fragrant with notes of burnt coffee, concentrated malt, sweet dark chocolate, and a dry slightly acidic finish of espresso roast. The beer is smooth and creamy on the palate up front, but then as it crosses the palate a hint of liveliness is picked up from the subtle carbonation and it melds with the bitterness in the finish that is a mix of hops and concentrated burnt roast notes. The beer has a concentrated malty sweetness to it that is cut by the darkly roasted coffee notes, notes of dark chocolate and the bitterness in the finish. This beer is quite rich and flavorful, yet not cloying and too rich like some Imperial stouts. Don’t get me wrong this is a sipping brew, but I don’t get the sensation of getting full while trying to work my way through this beer. There is a nice hop character here as well, it is second fiddle to the concentrated malt notes, but it adds a nice backdrop, and a nice foil to the other flavors that are here. This is definitely a solid example of and Imperial Stout, one I would be happy to try again.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
4.92/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle, label says brewed by Frederick Brewing for Thirsty Dog.

Pours out creamy black with a cocoa head. Head thins, but never fades. Thick lacing on the glass.

Smells heavenly. Rich roasted grains with chocolate and coffee dancing about. The smell makes my mouth water as if a big, juicy steak was just put in front of me.

Taste is phenominal - just like it smells. Dark & roasty with plenty of chocolate and coffee. A hint of smokiness in the aftertaste. The alcohol is an afterthought, which is surprising for a 9% ABV. Extremely smooth.

Full bodied and quite creamy. Not quite a syrupy as some imperials can get.

For an imperial stout, this guy goes down way too easy. You would never know it's 9% by the taste and body. I love this beer.

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Photo of sacfly
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours like syrup. Motor oil. A small head of dark brown. Small bubbles fade quickly. Opaque… completely. When the glass is tilted, only a hint of brown is visible around the edge.
Smell is a contrast between sweetness and roasted barley. Full, thick mouth feel. Not as syrupy as the pour lead me to believe. Dark caramel sweetness upfront that fades into a burnt grain/toasted bread/coffee flavor. Finishes bitter, but more from the roasted grain than the hops I think…
Alcohol is well hidden in this 9% monster. A world class beer.

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Photo of lostbearbrew
4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Like all good imperial stouts, this beer pours an opaque black, with a density to it's pour that suggests day old coffee or perhaps motor oil.

Didn't seem to be that much of an aroma to this but what was there was nice - malty roasted grains, with some fruit coming through - plum or fig? Seemed a little low in the nose for an imperial stout, but nothing offsetting, either.

Sweet, mellow taste begins to flow back over my tongue and work it's way to my throat. Coffee sensors go off as the dark liquid reaches midway. As the velvety nectar reached the waterfall point, heading down the throat to Lake Stomach, this one erupts in hops and toffee on the back of the tongue and then throughout the mouth. Quick, please, another sip. WOW!

I'd place this on a select pedestal with Storm King, and Speedway and a few others that would always be welcome in my home. Superb beer

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

i got this beer from someone out in the midwest.. thanks for it. cant really remember who.

cool label.

this beer pours a familiar oily black with brownish tan ends. some light gets through around the edges here, and it sits in the glass like a big whiskey. vanilla nose with fudge swirl.. roasted malt nuttiness in a desserty fashion. marzipan and brandied, candied plums. holy hell this smells delicious.. taste holds up to my expectations.. starts sweet with dark fruits and heads directly for the creamy coffee stoutiness. slight bite of alcohol in my sinuses, but overall a tasty and smooth beer. once you think you've had a sip of a fine, flavorful velvet sipper, the hops and bitters in this beer explode in your mouth to remind you of how evil this particular dog actually is. even some notes of a salted sourdough hard pretzel emerge here.. boy this is a complex beer- considering my expectations were so low. loved this beer and now i see that most people agree with me.

i would love more bottles of this.. despite its intense deep flavor, i could surely drink one or two more of these. beyond excellent.

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Photo of burnstar
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a nice brown head that dissipates leaving some good lacing and froth around the edge- pretty good for this style. There is a lot of chocolate in the nose also some carmel and roasted malt. Tastes wonderful- sweet and chocolate malt is balanced just about perfectly with bitterness from the roasted malt. There's also some great hop flavor in the finish that rounds out this beer beautifully. My only complaint is that the chocolate flavor is maybe a little too dominating. Still this is very delicious. Nice full bodied brew has some good carbonation and feels great in the mouth. I could definitely drink more than one.. wish I had more.

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Photo of deejaydan
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Holy cats! I think I see this beer absorbing light. That's how dark it is. Some lacing is present, head retention isn't great though. Aroma is upfront chocolate malt, perhaps some milk chocolate as well. Taste has a touch of the sharp burnt flavors of black malt. So smooth and easy to drink for a beer of this gravity. A fine example of the style.

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Photo of rabidawg
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an inky, opaque black. Small head coaxed from an aggressive pour. Specks and spots of lacing. Very lightly carbonated.

Smell: Initially sweet with vanilla notes. Sweet chocolate aromas. Reminds me of chocolate shake. Some charred and caramelized confectionery notes.

Taste: More reminiscent of a Baltic porter than an imperial stout, with its smooth vinous booziness. Slightly thin in the mouth, with a very smooth chocolate character. Not extremely roasty, but occasionally a dry carbon bite comes through. Rather acidic, with alcohol apparent after the swallow. Nicely hopped but not overly leafy, a good contrast with the overarching malty sweetness.

Thanks to cmaruschak for sending me this interesting Ohio beauty!

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Photo of egajdzis
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

GABF2004... Poured an opaque black color with a medium sized tan head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of roast, chocolate, dark fruits, smoke and toffee. Taste was nice roasty and toasty chocolate, anise, and light figs. Full and round mouthfeel. I used my 6 oz pour on this one.

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Photo of mentor
4.62/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've had this bottle in the fridge for a long time, waiting to share...but I finally couldn't resist anymore. Bottle obtained from the Iowa Beer Cache sometime earlier this year (April 2005?). Thanks to HopHeadKen for starting the cache!

Pours, oh my. This is a very thick and dark beer. Pours more like motor oil than beer. Really amazing. A hard pour created only a thin ring of tiny bubbles around the inside of the glass, no head to speak of. Appears, uhm, pitch black, you idiot. No edging, even when held to a bright light. I'm bracing myself for a really roasty and/or really sour dry stout.

Smells black patent sour (many call it cherry sour), some coffee roast, and an underlying sweet caramel and chocolate. Plums and oak tannins as the beer warms. Tastes amazing. Yes, it's got some black patent sour and roasted grain coffee and bitter, but the supporting caramel and chocolate flavors really balance this beer. It comes across as a rich coffee mixed 50/50 with a hot cocoa made from fine chocolate. I almost want to say molasses, but that's not quite it. Maybe some raisins and plums, but these esters are a *very* short moment between the sweet start and a strong finish. The finish is oaky, like this beer was aged in barrels a very short time or was mixed with an oaky red wine. This oaky is tamed by sweet toffee and a moderately dry cocoa chocolate.

I'm a homebrewer and this is the beer I picture making when I think about wanting to make a Russian Imperial Stout. Chocolate pudding with a some coffee and burnt raisins. Any sweeter and the beer would not come off as well. As it stands, the strong sweet is saved by the dry cocoa finish in the back of the throat. Meanwhile my tongue is still coated with a wet chocolate that stings ever so slightly because of acrid carbonation (or maybe it's alcohol?). My palette is obliterated and coated in goo. That's it for tonight.

Heavy in the mouth and thick creamy mouthfeel. Hints of carbonation on the back flat of my tongue and back roof of my mouth. Ken, I can't thank you enough for sharing this divine beer. I hope the beer cache continues to benefit many others the way it has for me tonight.

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

Pours into a pint glass creating a Black Monolith reminesent of 2001 A Space Odyssey (I can practically HEAR Ligeti's music -

In the artificial light the black mirror surface eventually reappears as the 20-25 mm covering of chocolate brown dense bubbles give way to the well hidden 9% abv. surface tension destructive forces. With such a dark head it doesn't seem logical to hold it to the bright light of the closest star - nothing will penetrate the monolithic darkness. The darkness of the head was evidence enough.

The Odyssey begins as you feel the accelleration of aromatic coffees, you continue to accellerate through flavors of dark candied fruits. Dates.
Brown sugars evolving into heavy molasses - always tempered by the strong nearly burnt malts.

Siberian Night reveals its secrets as it warms and looses carbonation - along with a lot of its mouthfeel. Strong super roasted malts (barely balanced by the 58 IBU hops) continue to support the higher alcoholic taste that slowly pull the memory modules from your brain. . .

"I'm afraid. I'm afraid, Dave.
Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it.
I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it.
I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I'm a... fraid.

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Photo of weeare138
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to sckressler for this one.
Appears blacker than crude oil. Pours with a decent 1 finger tan head that fades after a moment. Some scattered lacing is left within the goblet.
Smell...can we say chocolate? Along with roasted nuts and ripe dark fruit.
Taste is of blended chocolate, cream, rich dark fruit, and bitter hops.
Mouthfeel is smooth, rich, bitter, and slightly oily on the tongue. A full bodied, rich, and roasted brew.
Drinkability is nice for an Imperial Stout and very well blended.

Finger licking good.

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

Ebony espresso. Frothy and loosely bubbled medium sized hot chocolate head. Oily residue coats the glass with some dots and blotchy stringy lace strewn about. Keeps some bubbly stuff once it melts.

Aroma is nice and chocolatey; quite fresh like being in a chocolate candy store with some fine tuned almond, cashew, maple, milk, and vanilla. Softly roasted underneath with mocha java and a stretched out milky, vanilla sweetness.

Wow, this stuff just glides down, nothing very big here, but does transend a chocolatey smooth, silky, and meanderingly soft disposition. Mainstay of fresh chocolate, touches of espresso, caramel, and nuttyness. More of an oatmeal stout-like sweetness keeps creeping in sip after sip, which is intriguing in and amoung itself as the chocolate just slides off with ease revealing a slight burntness of hop bitterness and espresso deepness. I find as it warms it has a smores-like effect of graham crackers, burnt marshmellows, and chocolate. Pretty good stuff.

Feel is remarkably soft, subtle, silky, and velvety slick. Not all that full or robust really, but damn fine to comprehend as this stuff goes down way too easy. And I mean, way too easy. Wow, I could drink this for days, or at least until the 9% catches up with me. Probably, and most definately, the best part of this drinker of a stout is just that, it's a dozey of a drinker! Oh, and the chocolate is pretty damn nice too.

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Photo of Higravity
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice ruby black with a decent dark tan head that drops back and leaves a little lace in the glass. It has a decedant smell of layer roasted malt, chocolate, and coffee. The body is full and creamy and adds to the taste which is a rich blend of roasted coffee and caramel chocolate. It is very low bitterness and is easy drinking.

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Photo of kegerator
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this was by far the darkest brew i have had to date. poured out pitch black with no hints of any other color and it had a nice 1 1/2 inch head that was brown coffe color and left decent lacing throughout.
the smell was dark chocolate, roasty malts and sweet carmalized brown sugar. no hops detected in the nose which is fine with me.
taste was much the same with a great smoky, chocolatey, sweet flavor with a slightly dry finish that was then followed by that sweet syrupy alocohol at the back of my throat. quite warming and very very tasty.

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Photo of eclectic
4.36/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a thin tan head that quickly retreats to the edge of the glass (but stays around till the last drop). Thick and syrupy, goes down way to smooth for such a big beer...can see getting into trouble with this one. The nose is mild but complex.. a sweet, roasted aroma... tastes of bittersweet chocolate and roasted coffee. Could definitely drink this often.. too bad this is the only bottle I have.

Thanks to kmpitz2 for sharing this exceptional brew

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

Thanks to kmpitz2 for this bad boy...luckily I received one more in another trade (thanks to you too cmaruschak). It makes this one that more enjoyable knowing I have one more to savor down the line.
Pours pitch black w/ two full fingers of cocoa colored head...looks like a chocolate shake from top. Slowly recedes w/ thin lace.
Aroma is very nice...tons of chocolate, a hint of coffee and an almost oak-like characteristic. No alcohol detected in the nose.
Taste is extremely enjoyable...more coffee in the flavor w/ that same hefty dose of dark chocolate. Very juicy mouthfeel w/ a medium body for the style. Alcohol, again is well hidden and the drinkability is good for the ABV 9%...I could enjoy a few of these in an evening.
Thanks again Kev...a real treat.

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Photo of Maestro
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

After being thoroughly miffed by their Old Leghumper, this baby was up for the task! I picked up a six-pack previously to going camping. After setting up camp and getting firewood, I cracked one of these and found pure enjoyment. This rich brew had an incredibly thick, foamy head that probably would have left a great lacing, but I was drinking out of a 16 oz. opaque cup. The brew was rich in chocolate and coffee tastes with some amazingly rich, roasted notes. The alcohol is not noticeable to the palate but the mouthfeel is quite good. Lots of flavors and a perfect carbonation make this a highly drinkable imperial stout. Cheers to Thirsty Dog for changing my opinioin of them.

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

Aroma: highly roasted barly and lots of malts. low hop aroma. Is there a cherry in there?
Appearance: Thick, dark, and Black. Nice 1" head that lingers. Bubbles are tight, creamy, and light yellow. Can't wait to dive into this one.
Taste: Very bold, well balanced, well hopped, gains a bit of bittering from the roasted barley. Maybe a bit grainy, but not a bother. A lot of flavor, cherries, coffee, chocolate, a very 'chewy' and creamy beer.
Aftertaste: slowly disipating sweetness, coffee, chocolate. Increasing heat from the now pronounced alcohol.
Impression: A well bodied, well balanced, heavy stout. Just what you would expect from an Imp. You've got to like 'em rich, thick, heavy and sweet.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours from the green eyed bottle a deep dark black with a small semi bubbly tan head on top. A sliver of light is all that can escape this one. Aromas of dark, charred toasty malts, hunks of rich chocolate, cherry fruit tones and molasses. Quite a nice treat to just sit back and smell.

First sip brings a creamy, viscous dark charred malt body with a hefty dose of chocolate flavor. Hints of dark fruit (cherry again) pop out on the way down along with a slight smokiness. A hint of burnt coffee and just a hint of bitterness end this one. A nice, warming imperial stout.

Mouthfeel is creamy with a nice big body that shows its strength with each sip. Drinkability here is pretty good...only knocked down a bit by the abv. Otherwise, this is a rich, tasty imperial that would be quite enjoyable on a cold night (hell...it's enjoyable on this hot summer night!) This one is worth a look into!

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Photo of santoslhalper
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appereance: Pours a wonderfully dark, rich black with a huge creamy chocolate head that lasts forever.

Smell: The smell is a mix of rich coffee, bittersweet chocolate, and roasted malts.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The taste is luciously rich and jam packed with flavor. The coffee and chocolate notes are huge and complex, and balanced out by a nice alcohol kick. The rich taste is boderline overwhelming, but it manages to maintain perfect balance. The mouthfeel is thick and creamy.

Drinkability and Overall: This is a strong, rich brew that is definitly not for the faint of heart. It's full of flavor and complexity, with enough alcohol to keep you warm for quite some time. One of the better Imperial Stouts I've had in some time.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This review is based on a bottle that was contract brewed at the Frederick Brewing Company in MD.

Appearance: Typical Imperial stout appearance with a long-lasting head but limited lacing (which is actually typical as the higher alcohol level tends to help kill the head).
Smell: Dark fruit (but not quite the normally associated burnt-currant, and some orange?!); rich and dense, lightly sweet chocolate cake; sweet mocha java. Nice.
Taste: The flavor offers all that the aroma does and more, with some additional caramel and nuttiness. It's sweet but bitter, and chocolatey and coffee-ish with a fruity side. It finishes with a long-lingering combination of the dulled components of its flavor.... leaving a kind of perfumey (from the alcohol and hops, perhaps?), molasses-like-burnt-caramel-residue flavor that's roasty and lightly-smokey, and even anise-like in flavor about the mouth.
Mouthfeel: Fairly full-bodied, creamy, and smooth. Nice!
Drinkability: It's certainly drinkable as in "approachable" and "enjoyable"; but I'm not sure that there's enough richness or complexity there to create the desire to have more than one.
Overall: As far as Imperial stouts go it's not bad but it's not overly great either. The acohol is, for the most part, well-cloaked - which is nice; and the fruitiness is good, and it's very well-balanced... but there's not quite enough of everything else there to bring it full circle.

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Photo of Dithyramb
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: The eerie label with the wolf staring at you intently. Brewed and bottled by Frederick Brewing for Thirsty Dog.

View: Incredibly pitch black brew, poured like motor oil, beautiful carbonation and a dark tan head on top. Excellent retention and lacing.

Aroma: Bitter chocolate, espresso, and some dried fruits

Taste: Amazing, everything one would expect from an imperial stout. Bitter (chocolate, espresso), sweet (dark roasted malts and a bit of molasses) with a touch of alcohol esters and a bit of dried fruits in as well.

Mouthfeel: Actually, this could define what a heavy mouthfeel would be. Washes over very nicely, leaving a bitter trail in its wake. The 9% is deceptively hidden, though there are some alcohol notes poking around in the flavor. There is a nice bit of warming as well.

Drinkable: Oh, yes.

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

Appearance: Utterly black, with a small dark tan head, no apparent carbonation, lots of broken lace.

Aroma: Bitter coffee and chocolate aroma, with some toffee notes as well.

Taste: Bitter chocolate and coffee utterly dominate the taste from start to finish, a lingering note of bitter chocolate carries on well past the end of the taste.

Mouth feel: Smooth and extremely full, with a hint of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Simply excellent, though with its high ABV, to be consumed slowly and with due respect.

Thanks to my friend and fellow BA HardTarget for generously sharing this great beer.

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Siberian Night Imperial Stout from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 846 ratings.