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Frost Monster - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Frost MonsterFrost Monster

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

48 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 327
Avg: 3.94
pDev: 26.65%
Wants: 19
Gots: 51 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-11-2013

Imperial Stout aged in Apple Brandy Barrels
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 327
Photo of metter98
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin off white collar around the edge of the glass—this died down and eventually completely faded away.
S: Light to moderate aromas of dark and roasted malts are present in the nose.
T: Much like the smell, the taste has flavors of dark and chocolate malts along with light hints of licorice and a slight amount of bitterness. No alcohol is perceptible.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer feels a little lighter in body compared to other Russian Imperial Stouts. It is very easy to drink since it hides its alcohol well.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma consists of roasted malt with light dry coffee notes and black chocolate notes also noticeable. Taste is also a mix between some roasted malt notes with light dry coffee and some black chocolate notes. Body is quite full with nice smooth texture and ABV is well hidden. A bit short on complexities but still an enjoyable imperial stout.

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Photo of jlindros
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this for a while, dated 12/01/2014, so almost a year.

Pours a huge fluffy thick frothy 1.5 finger dark mocha colored head that fades semi slowly, nice thick lacing, pitch black thick beer.

Nose is pretty nice, big caramel, dark chocolate, powdered cocoa biscuity cookie, lots of fluffy nougat, a little roast and dark roasty charred like malts, but not acrid burnt roast, touch of earthy hops, lots of dark malts, and touch of vanilla.

Taste brings dry stout flavors, roasty dark malts, again not acrid, dry bitter stouts, with a mild earthy spicy hops, a little tea like hop note, with bitterness from the roast and hops. Dark caramel candy, charred malt notes, not acrid, chewy nougat, fluffy nougat, dark chocolate and a little roasty coffee, little fudgey even. Finish is quite bitter, very sticky too with fair sweetness, little roasty char, dark malts, fudgey cocoa, caramel, and nougat all lingering nicely.

Mouth is full bod, chewy rich, nice fluffy carb, just a hint of booze barely there.

Overall pretty nice, def a nice dark malt with spicy hop combo, good malt characters, roasty without being acrid, nice dark chocolate caramel and nougat, booze hidden well, a bit too sticky and sweet on the finish.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.88/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Truncated notes below. Full review to follow. Served cold into a tulip in NYC and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

A: Creamy khaki-tan colour. Retention is good - about 4-5 minutes. Leaves no lacing.

Opaque solid-black.

Sm: Dark and chocolate malt sweetness. Cream. Needs roasted barley, but lacks it. Some raisin. Sassafras. Rum-soaked fruit. Molasses. Definitely on the sweeter side.

Has no hop profile, yeast, or alcohol.

T:/Mf: Creamy, with a dark malt and chocolate malt backbone. Sweet. No yeast character, alcohol, or off-notes come through.

Smooth, wet, full-bodied, aptly thick. A bit overcarbonated.

O: Drinkable and enjoyable, but admittedly middle-of-the-road for the style. In a world in which Storm King, Yeti, and Ole Raspy are available on the shelves across the nation, this won't see mainstream success. Average at best. You need to bring more to the table to create a world-class imperial stout.


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Photo of chinchill
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle into a Belgian snifter. 1-Dec.-2014 bottling date.

Pours very dark, looking essentially black and opaque in the glass. It looks thick and the mouthfeel confirms this.

The aroma and flavor fit the look being very rich and malty, perhaps even for the RIS style. Lightly smoky with hints of black licorice and black coffee in the finish and aftertaste. Still, just mild bitterness. High ABV is partially hidden: this drinks more like 9% than like 12%.

O: recommended.

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Photo of Billolick
4.16/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

4 packs of 12 ouce bottles released today and purchased at the brewery. Bottled on 12062013

Enjoyed at near room temp. Pours black the expected black, slight mocha head, film and collar.

Nose is of dark chocolate and coffe grinds.

Dense dark malt flavors along with more coffee, more dark chocolate, more roasted malts and burnt, smokey notes. Delicious...Richly flavorful, oily and viscious in the mouth.

Fine winter sipper. Less then a week in the bottle and this one is drinking like a world class Imperial stout. I put a few botles away in the beer storage area, but not likely they will be allowed to age much, really no need.

Dark beer lovers rejoice this in a very high quality beer..

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black body. Medium khaki head. Lots of surface wisps.

Smell - Boozy. Licorice. Black patent malt.

Taste - Caramel. Very chocolatey. Molasses. Some licorice in the back end with a bit of coffee bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium carbonation. Heavy.

Overall - Solid imperial stout. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of biegaman
4.09/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Frost Monster is dark and lightless as a winter night and has just a sprinkling of white (or, more accurately, greyish) powder atop. It appears dense as a block of solid ice; the beer is so opaque it refuses any highlighting even when held directly against the lamp.

When it comes to American-brewed imperial stouts, it's fair game to expect anything from bourbon to wood spice to a plethora of hops or espresso grinds (and often all of the above). Somewhat surprisingly, this beer doesn't seem the least bit brutish or obnoxious; it smells strong and rich but showcases, quite simply, nothing but dark and roasty malt.

Mind you, said malts do pack a ton of flavour: coffee beans, dark chocolate, smoke, roast, black licorice and a subtle trace of caramel sweetness. There's also lush notes of vanilla that accompany the chocolate brownie character derived from the roasted grains. It's a straight-forward (read: 'classic') example of a stout but no less strapping or robust.

Frost Monster has the subtle, dark fruity esters and warming anise-like note that is customary of traditional Russian Imperial Stouts (as opposed to modern, American-inspired interpretations that stress the espresso and decadent fudge profile). The mouthfeel marries black currant sweetness with a tarry texture and a lightly lingering roastiness. Alcohol is inferred but not flaunted.

Given the hop-beast that is Captain's Reserve Imperial IPA and the colossus of sourness that is Cuvee De Castleton, I expected Frost Monster to be a mammoth of an imperial stout, an embodiment of all that is rich, indulgent, gluttonous about American craft beer. But instead this turned out to be a textbook example of a classic RIS. It's a delicious, flawlessly brewed beer.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Deep engine oil pour, thick and viscose as was the mocha, 2 finger bready topping that sits above with a well lasting effect. Beautiful stratified layered lacing goes down the glass.

S: Dry burnt barley, and wet coffee grounds with a very low awareness level. Dry cocoa and a soft campfire ash leave.

T: Dark bittering coffee grounds, cocoa, campfire minerality delivers the bluntness the nose lacked. Burnt barley, roasted dark fruit skin with some burnt, leafy hop flower cones. Scorched pine and dry yeasty, breadiness.

M: Roasty dry bittering hold, thick, viscose content with some mineral, roast coating on the tongue. Good amount of carbonation.

O: Big warming dark roasted monster with maybe the exception the nose. Does well at warm temperatures with a wintery cold settting.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.11/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Pours black. Head is a very large, frothy, deep brown color. Mild lacing. Not exactly sure that this is aged in Apple Brandy Barrels. It says nothing of it on the beer's label and that is definitely something a brewer would want advertised. I even checked the site; no mention. Anyway, the beer is very roasty on the nose. Chalky, dark malt. Almost Porter-like. Some charred malt and a tiny wink of dark fruit. Lots of bitter cocoa powder. Root beer and dark cocktail bitters. The flavor is dominated by a mix of dark chocolate baking powder and intense black roast. A very bitter initial hit. Unsweetened chocolate is the most important descriptor. Again, I am brought back to the powerful bitterness. Burnt malt. Light anise. A bit more complex in the nose. Has a good amount of body. Alcohol isn't exactly shy. This offering by Captain Lawrence is supremely aggressive with its designed flavors. It's working for me. One of the more aggressive brews I have had recently.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.32/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one pours a fairly dark black color, with a small head, and no lacing.

This smells like burnt coffee grounds, ashy malt, and heavy duty booze.

My mistake might be having this fresh and not aging it for a few years. However, a beer should be ready when it's actually bottled. If it's for sale, it should be ready to go. As it is now, this is way too boozy and unbalanced. It's got astringent booze, with a burnt malt and burnt coffee that's slightly unpleasant. Not really a fan of this at all. I think some barrel-aging would really improve this one. I'm not one to typically just say everything is better in barrels, but I really think this one would be.

This is medium bodied, with a low level of carbonation, and a low level of drinkability.

Not all that great. Captain Lawrence has done better.

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Photo of tigg924
3.52/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: high carbonation, 3/4 head, clear, dark brown in color

Smell: dark chocolate and cocoa

Taste: coffee grounds, deep dark chocolate, char, and alcohol

Mouthfeel: roasty with a sweet slight bitterness, medium-heavy body, high carbonation

Overall: A slightly above average American double stout. Nice, roasty, and clean, but not as blown away by this one as some of Captain Lawrence's other small bottle offerings. I would get this one again, but I would not rush out of my way for it.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

bottle picked up locally, enjoyed from a captain lawrence snifter.

a - brew poured a watery, yet rich black with a finger of creamy tan colored head that left a coating of lacing on the glass. the head never fully dissolved leaving a thick ring on the surface and a thin skin with some heady islands of foam and bubbles on the surface.

s - frost monster indeed. very roasted black malt...really reminiscent of winter or sitting inside a freezer. big coffee and some chocolate.

t - as the nose suggested, big roast. some black malt and nice coffee notes. nice imperial stout because has the body, but some soft char that gives it a winter vibe.

m - stouty, but with a char.

o - overall, not the greatest imperial stout out there, but worth a try. i'd be interested to see what the barrel does for this...and rum barrel aged, no less. has an interesting twist on the style with all that roast and some of the char making it a lighter side stout.

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Photo of Gmann
3.81/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a black color with a short dense brown head that settles into a thick ring. Very creamy looking.

The aroma is of roasted barley with some char. Bittersweet chocolate and perhaps some cocoa. Some anise. Big beefy stout aroma.

The taste has more of a milk chocolate flavor. The roast is fairly mild but provides a good base flavor. Good woody flavor. Seems to have some oat, as it is quite smooth, but I am not certain. Anise is definitely present. There is a bit of an alcohol note in the finish which is slightly unpleasant.

The feel is full with prickly carbonation that helps break up the body. Sweet and bitter on the palate, good balance. Slightly sticky and chalky in the finish. Bit boozy as well.

I think this is a good stout but the booze presence is a bit harsh. Tone it down a notch and this is a very good stout.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.81/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into a pint glass. 1/30

Pours total blackout. Wispy layer of light brown foam. Cherry fruit nose, boozy too. Taste is a bourbon barrel fused dark chocolate malt. Huge boozy backbone. Car bomb. Bam! Hits like a hammer, feel the full effect of the 12 abv. Proceed at your own risk.

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.41/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Sampling a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a dark cola black with tan frothy head of 3 cm that fades to a sturdy edge layer and streaks of wispy islands on the surface.
Aroma is fairly mild with some roasted malt and a bit of dark chocolate maybe a little earthy malt but the nose is mild.
First sip reveals a average body with fine yet robust carbonation that boosts the mouthfeel of the beer.
Flavor is roasted malt, brown sugar, dark choclate and molasses, I also get some booze and a bit of an earthy hop presence. Also a little anice or black licorice makes its presence known as I ip the beer. Slightly warm as it goes down the gullet.
The beer is an okay imperial stout, but the aroma is certainly more mild than I anticipated when I opened the bottle.
Not a bad or flawed beer, it drinks pretty easy, but I admit to being a little disappointed as I finish it off.

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Photo of micromaniac129
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A big bold booze beer here. Perfect for hibernation season.
It dark with a deep mocha head. It smells with alot of roasted barley.
The taste was pretty booze upfront with a deep roasted barley taste.
Very gritty and very good, but way too potent for me.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a Cigar City snifter.

Pours a rich, 2 finger dark mocha head with decent retention. Beer is pitch black. Lacing is stringy and layered with great stick. An excellent looking beer.

Nose is liquorice, chocolate, smoke, roast, cocoa and fudge. A light booziness sweetens the background a bit. Real solid.

Opens chocolate, cocoa, liquorice and smoke. Roast and espresso in the middle mixed with more chocolate, booze and coarse smoked malt. End is sweet with some hints of dark plum and other fruit. Coarse and slightly hot finish with a sticky chocolate, liquorice, and roast aftertaste. Pretty good.

Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth but a bit boozy in the mouth and goes down rich and warm. Finishes thick and silky with a messy, lingering aftertaste. Solid.

This beer is a pleasant surprise after a couple of misses by Captain Lawrence. Certainly worth trying and one of the better offerings of the style from a NY-based brewery.

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Photo of Kendo
4.06/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from the bottle into a Piraat tulip/snifter-type glass. Body is black in appearance, though not as thick and motor-oil-like as some of this style. A small chocolate brown head settles on top but dissipates quickly.

S: Coffee, roasted barley malt and a touch of chocolate. Alcohol is noted as well as it warms.

T: Roasted coffee beans, roasted malt, molasses and generic fruitiness are all there, as well as the alcohol, which acts as a drying agent at the end of the sip. A bit sweeter than your normal RIS/Double Stout, and there's not really much chocolate - though I get a bit of cocoa powder - which is a surprise given the nose. Alcohol heat and drying impression linger in the aftertaste.

M: The feel is interesting - quite fizzy, carbonation-wise, which makes it feel lighter on the palate than would otherwise be expected, but also provides a certain sharpness or bite (most RIS's, in contrast, are more syrupy-thick and smooth). This one is, however, a heavyweight.

O: This is my second time having this beer; I really liked it the first time I had about a 4-5 oz portion. Now that I'm sitting down to review this, however, I'm finding it less impressive. It's good, but doesn't blow me away like a world class big stout.

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Photo of Roguer
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful black brew, topped with a thick brown head. Good retention and lacing.

Solid roasted barley aroma with a bit of dark overripe fruit. Just a hint of chocolate.

Flavor matches the aroma, with the chocolate slightly more prominent. Very roasty. Slightly sweet. Very grainy.

Sticky full feel, long retention, just slightly hot.

Excellent imperial stout, straight forward and delicious.

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Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a snifter. Not much of a head, but what amassed was a deep tan. Slight lacing. While I've have better stouts, this one holds its own. Some nice chocolate and oaky tones to it.

12%??? Really? Drinks no tougher than 7 or 8%. I always appreciate that in a stout. I'm sure this'll sneak up on me once I'm done.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle with a Bottled Date of12-05(?)-2013. Pours a rich, very dark brown color with a 1/4 inch of brown head. Virtually no lacing. The aroma is earthy and slightly nutty. Molasses, caramel and dark fruits. The taste is earthy as well. Hints of nuts and chocolate. More dark fruits and black coffee towards the end. Earthy, nutty and dark fruits at the finish. Slick mouthfeel. Fairly noticeable alcohol presence. Overall, pretty solid beer.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up at Good Beer in New York a few weeks back, having never given this a go before and fortunate enough to find a single bottle of this. Captain Lawrence doesn't have that wide a distribution here in Jersey and this looked relatively appropriate for the season, even though it hasn't been that cold this week. For a Double/Imperial Stout, this felt amazingly easygoing for something with 12% ABV and was just as drinkable as dark beers that were half as strong. This wasn't complex but had just enough going for it that I'd enjoy it again if I were to come across it the next time I'm shopping for beer in the Big Apple!

The pour to this was as to be expected - dark, somewhat thick, and with a good head. Not terribly full when it came to the latter but it was tan present for a bit before fading away to a thin remnant on top of the liquid. A good amount of bitter chocolate and smokiness to the nose, which were both present in the taste as well. The mouthfeel was full and there were hints of dark fruits like plum and currant as well in here. Slightly cloying, the smokiness led to a good taste to this as the bitterness was similar to that of cocoa powder. This never felt like a chocolate Stout but since the alcohol was so recessed, the flavors came out a bit more and the aftertaste was nice and chewy as well, even though there was never a "motor oil" factor here to contend with.

Like reserved Stouts? Look no further. I could feel the alcohol kick in by the time I polished this off but never could I taste it. Beers like this grow on me quickly since they warm me up nicely without having to be shoved down or endured as I have to process the booze. A nice amount of sudsy lacing and some soda-like sweetness served as a reminder that not all Stouts have to taken so seriously and this was fun to drink. Worth the price and the experience of being subtly knocked over as I restrained myself from downing this too quickly. Recommended for those nice, cold Winter nights!

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Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pitch black tar with a few fat fingers of dark foam head; sheets of lace left behind

S: dark roasted malts and black coffee, some notes of cocoa and charred wood

T: rich and roasty malts, espresso and bittersweet chocolate - almost a smoky element, too

M: medium-to-full bodied, smooth and mellow; slightly sticky and slightly coating

O: nothing cutting edge here, but simply an outstanding Imperial stout, worth a try for fans of the style, the brewer, or new beers

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Photo of ksimons
4.09/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A-a silky inky color with about a fingers worth of tan head that leaves a bit of lace around the top

S-the smell is really nice, lots of rich malt, dark roasted coffee, and dark and milk chocolate

T-taste is similar to the smell, roasted malt and roasted coffee bitterness, chocolate sweetness., and molasses Light alcohol warming

M-medium to full body, good carbonation, dry roasted mouthfeel

Overall I was really impressed with this beer, an above average Imperial Stout, definitely worth a try if you find it

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Frost Monster from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.