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Four - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
FourFour

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

263 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 263
Reviews: 142
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 10.83%
Wants: 452
Gots: 47 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: pdoran10 on 02-24-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 263 | Reviews: 142 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by TastyTaste:
Photo of TastyTaste
TastyTaste

Minnesota

4.93/5  rDev +13.6%

A Served in a darkness tulip, which seems apt since it is indeed as dark as that more famous Surly stout. Head is off-white, not too prominent at the time of serving.
S. Sweet espresso, caramel, molasses, dark roasted malts.
T Initially too cold for proper enjoyment from the tap, but the flavors sure come out as the beer warms. Chewy and rich, big coffee flavors abound. A very sweet beer, but it works in harmony with the bitter shot of hops on the back end. Not cloying, no off flavors, this is a well-constructed beer.
M Thinner than most in the imperial stout family, but it works very well with the big flavors that are present.
D Happy 4th Surly, I have been drinking your great beers from the start and this is an appropriate celebratory ale.

04-20-2010 20:09:49 | More by TastyTaste
More User Reviews:
Photo of Schlais
Schlais

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

04-22-2012 23:18:15 | More by Schlais
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

3.18/5  rDev -26.7%

Had on tap at Binny's Tap Room--Chicago

Appearance: black in color with minimal head, opaque

Smell: coffee and roasted malt

Taste: toasted malt and deep roasted dark coffee..the sweetness is more caramel like and appears at the end.

Mouthfeel: light body, low carbonation, sweet start--then the coffee tastes bitter followed by a really sweet end

Drinkability: Not as sweet for a milk stout as I am used to. The sweetness at the end is nice to ease the taste back from the really strong and bitter coffee taste--almost comparable to Bells Java. Not a bad beer, but I have had much better in the style. Worth a try if you are more looking for a regular stout.

08-23-2010 16:01:29 | More by tigg924
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4.43/5  rDev +2.1%

Thanks to chewy08rx for sending me this beer as part of a big box full of Surly beers.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a tan head. The aroma has a ton of strong coffee and chocolate notes, with some light smoke and heavily roasted malt.

The flavor is more complex. I get a lot of coffee and lactose, as well as some roasted malt and some light chili pepper notes. Overall, the beer tastes quite a bit like malted milk balls. The alcohol is very well hidden and the beer is extremely drinkable and enjoyable.

Thick, heavy, full mouthfeel and low carbonation. A great beer. Glad I got to try it.

05-11-2012 15:22:23 | More by Mora2000
Photo of ryancl
ryancl

Minnesota

4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

04-22-2013 18:03:32 | More by ryancl
Photo of bsp77
bsp77

Minnesota

4.68/5  rDev +7.8%

Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Pitch black with thick tan head, leaving lots of lacing behind.

Smell: Espresso beans, molasses, chocolate, cream and a nice whiff of alcohol.

Taste: Dried out molasses, roasted barley, coffee, cream, chocolate and a light touch of citrus hops. There is also a nice level of smokiness and it almost seems as if it was barrel-aged, but I do not believe that it was.

Feel: Extremely smooth, lush body with low carbonation. Highly warming. Quite silky overall.

Drinkability: Just incredible. This gives KBS a run for its money. It may not have the Bourbon flavors, but it is just as rich, complex and delicious (if not more so).

Shouldn't this be classified as an American Imperial Stout, regardless of the Milk Stout base?

06-06-2010 14:12:47 | More by bsp77
Photo of CaptinRedBeard
CaptinRedBeard

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev -6%

A: Poured from a 750ml waxed bottle into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Pours borderline black with a huge mocha colored head and phenomenal lacing, coating the glass.

S: Chocolate, burnt malts and heavy espresso

T: The first thing that seems to hit you is a bitterness from the dark roasted malts and the espresso. This is followed by a nice coffee flavor with hints of chocolate and vanilla. On the back end there is a touch of sweetness from the lactose.

M: Medium bodied, smooth and well carbonated for the style. I'm finding a lot of coffee stouts to be more carbonated than your normal stouts.

D: Pretty good I suppose, since I finished off the bottle myself with no problem. I don't think I would want any more in one sitting though. It's not really a heavy beer but it is a little bit on the rich side.

06-15-2010 10:01:46 | More by CaptinRedBeard
Photo of bpfrush
bpfrush

Wisconsin

4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

08-13-2012 01:37:17 | More by bpfrush
Photo of TKEbeerman
TKEbeerman

Florida

4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

04-07-2012 22:27:20 | More by TKEbeerman
Photo of rudylaw
rudylaw

Illinois

3.4/5  rDev -21.7%

On tap @ Binny's SL

Served in a 10z goblet with a tiny head. Very dark but not 100% opaque.

Tons of toasted malts and coffee in the nose. Quite obviously a coffee bomb.

More of the same in the taste although it the roastiness is almost too much. Burned coffee bean/brownie. Lessens as you work your way through, but it's a palate destroyer.

Thin body with low-medium carbonation. In no chance can I attempt another pour of this. It's just not balanced enough to make me come back. Way too much of a charred character for my liking.

09-04-2010 11:56:00 | More by rudylaw
Photo of glid02
glid02

Georgia

4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Bottle shared by Lance - thanks!

Pours black with a one-finger light brown head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of strong roasted coffee backed by mildly sweet roasted malts. As it warms hints of dark chocolate aromas work their way into things.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Roasted malt flavors with a good deal of lactose sweetness (could also be residual sugars) kick things off. Robust coffee flavors join in shortly thereafter and are followed by dark chocolate flavors lurking in the background. The coffee and roasted malt flavors carry through to a sollidy bitter finish leaving coffee flavors lingering on the palate.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have another.

Overall I thought this was the second-best coffee-themed milk stout I've had behind only Depth Charge (although to be honest there aren't many in the style). It may be a bit of homerism, but regardless this beer is certainly worth a shot.

05-27-2010 03:25:45 | More by glid02
Photo of acurtis
acurtis

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -7.8%

02-10-2013 01:50:12 | More by acurtis
Photo of roostor07
roostor07

Minnesota

5/5  rDev +15.2%

03-02-2013 17:44:20 | More by roostor07
Photo of jh1982
jh1982

Nevada

4/5  rDev -7.8%

11-15-2011 01:00:59 | More by jh1982
Photo of dbossman
dbossman

Nebraska

4.43/5  rDev +2.1%

A: Pretty black with a subtle red tint; fast forming brown head that dissipates rather quickly

S: Roasted malts that smell slightly burnt; coffee/espresso and subtle chocolate aromas are present underneath; a subtle hop presence

T: Milky and creamy espresso; rich maltiness is also prevalent; coffee, vanilla; this is rich and delicious

F: So creamy; a perfect mouth coat

D: So delicious and drinkable; this goes down like chocolate milk; high alcohol is not noticeable at all

06-26-2010 02:35:28 | More by dbossman
Photo of hooliganlife
hooliganlife

Missouri

4.28/5  rDev -1.4%

pours jet black with a creamy mocha head

quite bitter with lots of chocolate and dark roasted malts

again, quite bitter. i was expecting this to be sweet however i found this quite bitter. lots of dark chocolate, espresso coffee, and roasted malts just dominating.

nice full body, bitterness through out, and moderate to mild carbonation

this was not what i had expected but worked out to be even better. this was a chocolate and coffee stout through out.

06-20-2010 01:01:08 | More by hooliganlife
Photo of kkrez
kkrez

Colorado

5/5  rDev +15.2%

11-14-2011 18:56:35 | More by kkrez
Photo of nickd717
nickd717

California

4.15/5  rDev -4.4%

Bomber thanks to largadeer on BA.

Pours black with a small tan head and some lacing.

Aroma is great - espresso, roast, and dark chocolate.

Flavor is really solid. Sweet dark chocolate, espresso, caramel malt, and a little alcohol. Sweet yet dry on the palate.

Medium-full body with average carbonation and some warmth.

This is a really solid impy stout overall, and I know one when I see one. On the sweeter side, but that's what the style is going for.

05-18-2010 14:51:35 | More by nickd717
Photo of djschnabel
djschnabel

Minnesota

5/5  rDev +15.2%

11-14-2011 12:42:34 | More by djschnabel
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev -6.7%

750 ml purple was topped bottle into a couple of snifters. Big thanks go to Stakem for sharing this guy.

Pours black, with 2 fingers of rich dark mocha head. This maintains a sudsy ½ finger or so of froth, leaving back a robust cascade of rich spotty lacing. Espresso jumps right out in the aroma, with some definite backing lactic character and more malty notes of cocoa and some sweeter molasses. There is just a touch of light ripe citrus here as well which helps round out the nose.

The taste is flavorful mix of coffee, green citrus (with maybe even a smidge of darker fruit as well), and then both cocoa and lactic flavors that really give this a smooth milk chocolate feel. This malt, lactose, citrus, and coffee flavors are all in balance and combine to give this a rich twang on the finish that lingers with a dry roasted feel and some lingering stickiness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a touch fuller; with a soft creaminess that puts just some light sharpness on the tongue during each sip. For 10% ABV this is just ridiculously smooth and I never would have guessed just how high this was while we were drinking it. Fantastic!

This was nice, being a big and chewy Imperial Milk Stout with a lot of delicious character to it and a super smooth drinkability that really kept this accessible for the size. I’m glad I got a chance at this one. Thanks again Adam!

05-17-2012 14:02:43 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Sinatra716
Sinatra716

Minnesota

4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

11-11-2013 04:37:01 | More by Sinatra716
Photo of morimech
morimech

Minnesota

4.33/5  rDev -0.2%

What is up with the wax on the bottle. Hard as a rock and difficult to remove. Black in color with a large tan head that had excellant retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy spotty lacing is left on the glass.

Plenty of lactose in the aroma. A lot of mocha coffee as well. Roasted malt rounds out the impressive aroma.

A little led down by the flavor. Has a burnt milk aftertaste that is a little off-putting. Elements of coffee, chocolate, roasted malt, and subtle smoke. Quite a bit of burnt bitterness that balances the sweet lactose. No sign of alcohol.

As good as a stout body could be. Thick, chewy, and a luxurious smooth texture. Exceptinal quality.

Other than a small flavor quibble, an exceptional, double milk stout. The high ABV will slow consumption and limit drinkability.

02-06-2011 18:06:00 | More by morimech
Photo of Tripphop
Tripphop

Virginia

4/5  rDev -7.8%

100th Review!!

Pours a reddish brown color, looks dark but light shines through as the glass is emptied. A tan head quickly appears and fades leaving no trace behind. Aromas are of stale coffee, burnt malt, and carmalized malt. Flavor is nice, lots of roast, coffee flavor is strong but not acidic or overpowering. Malt profile is very dry and burnt, the lactose lingers on the finish with coffee and a mild bitterness. Solid brew, glad I drank it now, this one won't age for much longer.

05-09-2011 04:35:15 | More by Tripphop
Photo of StarRaptor
StarRaptor

California

5/5  rDev +15.2%

02-01-2012 20:43:40 | More by StarRaptor
Photo of claaark13
claaark13

Indiana

4.4/5  rDev +1.4%

Chilled for about 20 minutes and then poured into a Darkness snifter. Charlie, you're a badass.

A - Pours black with a nice light-tan head. Retention appears to be very good, as the frothy head seems to stick around for a bit until it fades into thick lacing. Sticks nicely to the side of the glass.

S - Sweet coffee/espresso. Hints of chocolate come through. The aroma screams for the beer to be consumed.

T - Sweet chocolate and coffee flavor with the lacto-milk backbone pretty evident. Meets and complements the espresso well. Espresso finish is very evident. It isn't a weak Maxwell House flavor. Slight sweetness comes through again. I think the sweetness in the finish helps keep the coffee flavor from falling off.

M - Creamy and slightly silky. Although I would say that it complements the beer well, I would prefer for it to be a little thicker for the particular flavors coming through.

O - This is a great Milk Stout. I've heard that the coffee is actually fading at this point, which makes me have some questions about how it was upon release.

11-20-2011 16:06:01 | More by claaark13
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Four from Surly Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 263 ratings.