Narwhal Imperial Stout - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 3,133 | Reviews: 621 | Display Reviews Only:
4.03/5 rDev -2.7%
12 oz bottle. Pours inky black with a big creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.
The aroma is sweet roasted grains, chocolate, and some black licorice.
The flavor is some sweet lactic chocolate quickly followed by a big roast bitterness, some black licorice and a little dark fruit and coffee. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation.
Overall, a solid imperial stout.
02-12-2013 15:02:59 | More by Beaver13
3.98/5 rDev -3.9%
Bottle poured into a tumbler.
A- Black with a quickly dissipating tan head.
T-Roasted Malts, slight chocolate, Alcohol
M- full body, medium carbonation, malty, syrupy and black licorice.
O- Good beer, just had a not-so-great flavor aftertaste. But was worth it, would get again.
02-10-2013 01:54:41 | More by Damian74Shensky
3.89/5 rDev -6%
A - Black with ruby highlights and little if any tan foam.
S - Burnt malt, alcohol, dark fruit, chocolate milk and light alcohol.
T - Bittersweet chocolate, burnt malt, coffee grounds, some herbal hop bitterness, some hot alcohol, molasses, light vanilla and dark fruits as it warms.
M - Full body, appears lightly carbonated until it hits the mouth and then a touch tingly on the way down. Warming.
D - Strong on the burnt bold flavors but still complex. Nicely done.
02-10-2013 00:15:03 | More by brewcrew76
4.55/5 rDev +9.9%
Poured from a cool looking 12oz bottle into a snifter.
A Pours a nice black with a mocha head that has great retention and leaves some nice lacing.
S Lots of coffee and milk chocolate and not too much else.
T By far the best part of this one. Lots of milk and dark chocolate backed up by lots of coffee and some pine like hops in the background.
M A bit thin but still good.
Overall this is an excellent non barrel aged imperial stout by Sierra Nevada that is well worth seeking out. I just wish I had more.
02-09-2013 21:10:08 | More by beerandcycling88
4.45/5 rDev +7.5%
Narwhal opens to a thick, black aroma bursting with ash, coffee, tobacco, and black malt, but these supported by an equally thick layer of heavy cream and caramel. Anise and black pepper dance in the background, adding spicy notes, joined by black breads, yeasty wheat dough, and toast crust. A reveille of dark fruit esters – fig, date, prune, black cherry – joins with blackstrap molasses and cocoa to add a layer of deep sugars, and the hops bring grapefruit rind, pine, pink grapefruit, and light hints of dandelion stem to form a bitter, citrusy buzz that nicely complements the sugars. Though the beer is not barrel aged, there’s a charcoal-and-vanilla bourbon-like undertone as well, adding delicious alcoholic liquor aromas to the mix. On the whole, the aroma is fantastic, being rich, fruity, black, hoppy, ashy, and bourbon-y, offering pretty much everything one could wish for in an Imperial Stout; the only way to improve this would be to actually bourbon barrel-age it.
On the tongue, the beer starts off black, and then gets even blacker, with massive waves of ash, coffee grounds, semi-burnt cocoa, black malt, and tobacco rushing across the tastebuds. Though these dark layers never let up, they are met after a time by a good layer of vanilla-soaked heavy cream, and a nice fruity layer of figs, dates, and prunes. Burnt pecans, toast crust, and heavy black breads add further earthiness, deepening the complexity. In subsequent sips the bourbon-like vanilla-and-charcoal notes gain more ground, adding alcoholic goodness to the mix. Hops are less present here than they were in the nose, but do add pine resin and grapefruit rind, creating some bitterness. The aftertaste is a continuation of the ashy notes, with sugars hanging on for all they’re worth, and at least the ash lingers on the tongue for a very long time. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.
Overall, this is a fantastic Imperial Stout, though it should be noted that it’s not for the faint of heart. This is mostly due to the tobacco ash and black malt notes, since at times they were so powerful that I felt like I had a mouthful of cigar smoke – especially in the aftertaste. But for fans of the style, there’s really not much else one could want in this beer, except perhaps some barrel aging. I did find the mouthfeel more watery than I would have expected, but almost everything else in here is excellent. Well worth trying.
02-09-2013 19:29:08 | More by jondeelee
4.25/5 rDev +2.7%
Generous light brown head fills the top of the glass then quickly falls on top of a pitch black ale.
Aroma of dark roasted grain on top of a rich malty base, solid raw-grain bread scents with no hint of alcohol. Balanced hop bitterness with the first sip, pronounced american (citrus?) hop flavors quickly washed away by sharp roasted grain taste. Thick and lucious body carries the astringent roasted grain through to a dry finish.
Great balance in the finish, deftly pairing strong roasted grain with a thick and full malty body. Alcohol is well hidden behind this very solid malty RIS. This is a straight shooter that doesn't fool around with quirky flavors and nails the balance of drinkability just right.
02-09-2013 18:12:37 | More by neophilus
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,133 ratings.