Narwhal Imperial Stout - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 3,122 | Reviews: 620 | Display Reviews Only:
4.53/5 rDev +9.4%
12oz bottle. About 2.5 months old. Served a bit below room temp.
A: Pours straight black, a thin but thick light brown head forms and sticks around for a few minutes. No real laving.
S: MMM. Dark Coco, espresso, raisins, maybe some vanilla. Pretty aromatic out of the bottle, enticing.
T: Not as viscous as I would have thought. A mix of dark coco nibs and espesso, some vanilla oak and maybe even coconut. Some caramel maltiness linges on palate. There seems to be some substantial hops trying to fight through, cascade perhaps, something with a very slight hint of pine. Primarily chocolate, with some cherries and honey too. A little bit of heat, but not much.
M: Super thick mouthfeel. Real chewy, very heavy, very creamy. One of the richest bodied beers I've ever had. Low carbonation.
O: A really smooth velvety brew, definitely well executed, I'd love to see how this ages. A great sipper to have on a cold winter night. Probably the best value RIS I've had to date. I will have to buy this again to drink and cellar. Try it if you can, a real winner from SN.
01-06-2013 02:50:57 | More by BigCheese
4/5 rDev -3.4%
A: Pours jet black and opaque, with minimal reddish-brown head and minimal lacing.
S: Malty with chocolate and coffee scents.
T: Chocolate and coffee dominate. Not boozy. Slightly bitter finish.
M: Good full body, low carbonation.
O: A solid RIS, but not great.
01-06-2013 02:29:26 | More by Wishdiak
4.93/5 rDev +19.1%
Sierra Nevada Narwhal Imperial Stout has a thick, creamy, tan head, lots of thick lacing left on the glass, and a very dark brown appearance. The aroma is of dark-roasted malt, and the taste is of black bread, chocolate, coffee, licorice, toffee, charcoal, bitterness, and black cherries. The mouthfeel is thick and velvety, and Narwhal Imperial Stout finishes semi-dry, heavy, warming, and smooth. Overall, this is an outstanding beer, and I recommend it in the strongest way!
01-06-2013 01:44:54 | More by RonaldTheriot
District of Columbia
3.78/5 rDev -8.7%
Beer pours black with a fluffy brown head. Smell is quite nice, a mostly chocolate and cocoa with hints of roast. Flavor doesn't come together as well as I'd hoped after the nice nose. It's got a lot of flavor with a lot more roast than I had expected. It starts out smooth and chocolatey, but halfway through it punches you with a bitter roastiness that overwhelms the flavor. Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with nice carbonation. This is a nice stout, but the balance could be better, and the overwhelming roastiness in the finish is a bit much. It leaves a not-so-great flavor lingering on the palate as well.
01-04-2013 22:28:12 | More by starrdogg
3.98/5 rDev -3.9%
Well, a gold medal winner at this years GABF, I couldn't wait for this to go down. Here goes....
Poured from a 12oz bottle into a goblet
A: Pours almost black in color with a frothy khaki colored finger worth of head. Head recedes rather slowly leaving behind small traces of lace, no light coming through whatsoever, carbonation is faintly visible under the head. A very nice looking RIS, so far so good.
S: Nose is of big chocolate notes, cocoa, black licorice, and a small touch of alcohol. At the end of the nose I'm getting more bitter chocolate, even some ash. Great nose, I wasn't expecting so much complexity.
T: Wow...nose translates to taste! Big bitter chocolate notes, cocoa, even the licorice. Middle of the tongue I'm getting the smokiness with the some alcohol. I'm impressed, I was not expecting this at all.
M: Medium bodied; even though the tongue and cheeks are coated with an amazing coat of malty goodness, the alcohol definitely cuts through and cleans the palate. I'm definitely getting a warming effect from this brew, but at 10.2% ABV, I wouldn't expect anything less. Overall an amazing brew with complex notes of bitter chocolate, black licorice, and some ash. The alcohol was a bit hot, but needed to clean the palate. I recommend this beer and can easily be paired with a good maduro. Cheers!
01-04-2013 04:05:32 | More by lazjuarez
3.98/5 rDev -3.9%
Pours a darker caramel mocha colored creamy almost 1 finger head that fades slowly with nice lacing, over pretty much pitch black beer, and decent legs to go with the lacing.
Nose has plenty of dark malts, black malt, some roast, hint of charred almost acrid roast, a little espresso from the roast not from actual coffee, light fluffy nougat but no chocolate. a bit of earthy hops, some caramel and booze round off the nose.
Taste starts with burnt char, really charred roasted malts, and black malts that seem like they will get acrid but don't, at first. Dark malts is the key, tons of roasted malts that start to get a little soy sauce like as acrid flavors do start to come through, so much black malt and roast, with a bit of espresso from the roasted malts again. A bit of caramel and nougat again, as well as the complete lack of chocolate. Also some light earthy hops add to the bitterness that comes initially from the roasted malts. Some warming booze in the middle. Finish brings a decent amount of bitterness, some earthy spicy hops really come through on the finish, as well as bitterness from the char, a semi sticky sweetness, little syrupy, and some booze warmth on the back end, as well as plenty more black malts and roast.
Mouth is fuller bodied, slightly creamy but a bit syrupy, some booze warmth, fluffy nice carb.
Overall mixed, it has some good points, the hops come in nicely, the fluffiness, booze is hidden fairly well, and it will surely age well. However, too much roast and black malt flavors for now, a bit acrid, little soy sauce, etc. However, I think this will be a great beer in 2-3 years so I'll probably bunker a few down in the cellar.
01-04-2013 02:17:28 | More by jlindros
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,122 ratings.