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Class V Stout - Kern River Brewing Company

Class V StoutClass V Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

361 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 361
Reviews: 186
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 9.8%


Brewed by:
Kern River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
River rapids are rated by a numeral system. Class V is the most difficult level rapid that can be negotiated.

This non-traditional beer is an Oatmeal Stout, Milk Stout and an Imperial Stout all in one. With a complex flavor profile ranging from coffee to chocolate, the sweetness is complemented with Chinook and Cascade hops to produce an extraordinary finish. But at 8.5% ABV, don't let the smooth taste fool you; this beer is like the Kern at high water - "Not for the Timid".

(Beer added by: mcallister on 03-01-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 361 | Reviews: 186 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A tasty, mostly chocolate 1.5x stout.Roastiness, though understated. Greeted by bittersweet chocolate and a very hoppy beer at 75 IBU of Cascade and Chinook. It all works. ABove average mouthfeel. Pitch black body, with a good amount of brown foam head.
Thanks Augustgarage.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2011 04:22:06 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque pitch black with a huge 3 inch chocolate milk colored head that fades to a small cap. Good latticed lacing on the drink down. Smells of espresso, cocoa powder, and some citrus zest hops. A very tasty beer with roasted coffee/espresso beans, semisweet chocolate, vanilla, and faint citrus hops. This beer is sweeter than I was expecting with the bitterness coming more from the coffee/espresso and hops tastes. Carbonation level is somewhat low which makes for a very creamy and thick feel in the mouth. Overall, this is an amazing stout that I have been sitting on in my fridge for months now. I am glad I finally cracked it open. The price of $4.99 for a bomber is sure to have me coming back time and again to this brew.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2011 02:55:10 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black forest cake with wee glimmers of sepia along the bottom edges and a thick slice of caramel nougat colored cream occupying the upper fourth of the pint glass. Remarkable persistence, continued good looks during the descent, and a lovely array of sticky lace are highlights.

The aroma is incredibly aromatic and features the olfactory wonders of roasted-chocolate malt above all else. Bittersweet chocolate and black coffee are in the foreground, while citrus zesty hops (Chinook and Cascade) are in the background. Very good things are expected.

Kern River Class V Stout is a hoppier than usual American double stout (although right in line with many West Coast versions) that drinks lower than the 8.5% ABV would suggest. Unless the alcohol hits with monster truck force in a few more ounces, I'd have guessed no more than 7.0%.

Most malt lovers will probably complain about too much citrus juicy hop flavor intruding on the roasted coffee bean (espresso) and dark chocolate goodness that beer of this style usually delivers. And they would have a point, since malt power and depth of flavor is a little lacking. Hopheads, however, should be mighty pleased.

Mouthfeel is the biggest reason why CVS seems more like 1.5x stout rather than double stout. It isn't as meaty as it should be, and the carbonation is too subtle besides. More barley and better bubbles would have allowed an increase in each of the final three scores.

Kern River Just Outstanding IPA is incredible beer that fits my preferred American IPA profile to a 'T'. Class V Stout isn't that good, but it's still damn fine ale that is a malt infusion away from being amazing. Recommended if you love the lupulins.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2010 13:34:21 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of womencantsail
womencantsail

California

4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A jet black pour with a small mocha colored head on top. There is very nice lacing on this one, which I wasn't necessarily expecting.

S: The smell is primarily dark roasted malts, but there are nice coffee and chocolate components to this as well.

T: The flavor is a bit more intense than the nose, which is a pleasant surprise. The flavors are fairly intense chocolate, roasted malt, and some mild coffee.

M: The body is a little thinner than I would have liked, but still nice. Carbonation is also quite low, but I like that in an imperial stout.

D: This is definitely not a "huge", chewy, thick beast of a beer. But, it's definitely a solid stout and I found it to be surprisingly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2009 06:45:42 | More by womencantsail
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a viscous black with a thick, milkshake of a head that leaves a lot of lacing behind

Smell: The hops leaves an impression on the nose, though there is plenty of chocolate, licorice and molasses underneath

Taste: Chocolate flavors abound, up front, though the lactose and brown sugar create a very sweet character, in the middle; the hops balance the sweeter flavors out, after the swallow, but the overall impression is a tad sweet

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body; somewhat creamy; moderate carbonation

Overall: This bottle has been in my cellar for a couple of years, so the sweetness may be the result of the hops fading away; would like to try a fresher bottle on another occasion

Thanks to the unknown BA who sent this to me as an extra some time ago

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2012 01:04:16 | More by brentk56
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to overlord for this bottle.

A: Pours a near-black with an initially-large tan head. Settles down into a nice outer ring around the glass.

S: Dominated by chocolate and coffee, in that order, alongside a lighter presence of roasted malt.

T: An explosion compared to the nose. The chocolate, coffee, and roast are definitely there, as are molasses, brown sugar, and hints of vanilla. Extremely well done.

M: Medium body with good carbonation. A bit thinner than I'd like it to be.

D: Very nice. Intriguing flavors and fairly-low abv for the style. This was a nice treat and I'm very glad I got to try it. Thanks again, Mike.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2010 02:06:26 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a black body with a thin, quickly dissipating off-white head.

Smell: Dark malt aroma with notes of chocolate, licorice, and roasted grains.

Taste: Dark maltiness with a high degree of roastiness and a solid semi-sweet chocolate flavor. Hint of licorice. Some earthy hop bitterness, but the roast really provides the balance to the medium sweetness. Touch of acidity. Dry finish with a lingering roastiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: While I wouldn't exactly say it's "the greatest beer I have ever tasted", it is quite a solid stout.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2008 21:05:24 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer served in a tulip, beer is black and forms a thin brown head of tiny bubbles that breaks and gravitates toward the walls of the glass. Head leaves a lot of lacing.

The aroma is sweet and roasty with a hint of alcohol. Maybe some chocolate is in there as well.

Beer is slightly thinner than expect and has a nice sweetness and chocolate notes to it. Really nice. Second taste, the roast on this beer is overall mild and mostly shows up in the aftertaste, very smooth on the palate. I really like this stout. Top notch.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2010 02:54:10 | More by drabmuh
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a one-finger, tan head of foam. It left thin sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - Aroma is powered by molasses, chocolate and toffee. There are some subtle floral notes, too.

T - Great chocolate flavor with some burnt molasses flavors. It had a nice bitterness from the hops to balance things out.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. Medium to full bodied with a very clean, dry finish.

D - This is a really easy drinking Imperial Stout. The alcohol content is lighter than most and makes it a nice brew to drink.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2011 21:59:52 | More by zeff80
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An extremely vigorous but controlled pour produces a three-finger thick, lace inducing, nicely browned, quite dark tan colored head. The beer is quite dark, mostly black, definitely opaque and perhaps shows a touch of deep brown color to it, but only just. The aroma smells richly of toasted whole grain, cocoa, smoothly burnt malt and in the finish a huge, dry, whole grain cracker almost dried hay / grassy note. Underneath this is perhaps a suggestion of anise, a suggestion of round / burnt dark fruit, and a concentrated, though somewhat subtle dark caramelized malt character. The aroma on this stout is exactly what I want right now, hugely malty, but smooth and appetizing.

Dry tasting as it hits the front of my tongue, but it quickly picks up a dark malt sweetness and roast character as it rolls across the tongue. The roast character amplifies towards the finish and there is a nice, pine / herbaceous hop character here as well. The finish sees a nix mix of burnt grain bitterness and hop bitterness that lingers on the palate after each sip. The sweeter dark malt notes contribute notes of molasses, burnt brown sugar, a suggestion of dark chocolate. The hop character here adds a fresh hop character that I wasn't expecting from the nose; there is an ample herbal hop character that has suggestions of citrus (this last, I expect, would be much more noticeable in a paler beer). The hop character is certainly dominated by the malt, and in the middle the dark, sweet, slightly burnt malt character is the most noticeable; the finish though sees an equal mix of malt and hop character provide a nice balance. I like the rich texture of this beer, it is not heavy, and in fact fairly quaffable, but I really like the support that it plays for the hop and malt flavors, it really serves as a cornerstone for the great balance that this beer is able to achieve. A touch of alcohol is noticeable in the oral nasal interface. There actually seems to be a solid vanilla flavor (and perhaps even aroma here) that seems to accentuate the sweetness of this beer.

This beer really strikes a great balance between sweet, concentrated dark malt flavors, the dry, but smooth burnt / roast malt character and the vivacious, but supporting hop character. Can perhaps be a touch sweet at times, but this helps contribute to the over all balance of the beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2011 14:13:49 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured nearly pitch black into my new hand blown Dogfish Head glass, brownd ruby edges when held toward the light. Dark tan head forms nice and thick with chunky sporadic lacing forming nicely between sips and as it settles. Aromatics offer up dark chocolate and coffee roasts with hints of anise and herbal hops in the background. Flavor wise the chinooks were evident with a green spicy herbal leaf flavor amongst te dark creamy chocolate and coffee bursts. A very nice big American stout from the west coast, these Kern River beers are so drinkable this one has a big body but nothing about it hurts the drinkability. Carbonation is smooth and mellow slightly chewy with body being so big, but it never becomes cloying. A beer I will be on the look for if it every comes East or shows up in the Burgh.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2010 07:42:12 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours black with a firm off-tan head, good lacing and head retention.

S: Dark chocolate, roasted coffee beans/espresso, rich.

T: Hops hit immediately, then a decadent dark chocolate comes in with a bitter espresso attack. Great hoppy finish and balanced sweetness overall. Chocolate cake in a glass to an extent, I loved it.

M: Smooth, full-bodied, rich, soft carbonation.

D: Kern River knocked it out of the park on this one, this beer is phenomenal, I'm am thoroughly impressed with the first two ales I've had from them, I must now go to Hi-Times as they are my only supplier of these guys.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2009 22:32:44 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

3.98/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep cole color with a small tannish head. Nose was chocolate and coffee, roated malts too. Prtty straightforward. taste was smooth with a mix of coffee, chocolate and a roastiness from beginning to end. Well rounded stout for sure and really easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2009 13:32:19 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

3.78/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 06/25/11 notes. Bottle shared by nmann08; thanks Nate. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Bruery tulip.

a - Pours a murky, very dark brown color, with one finger of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Leaves some spotty lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, light citrus hops, and floral hops. More hops than I was expecting.

t - Tastes of chocolate, roasted malts, coffee, citrus hops, floral hops, and nuts. A lot more citrus than the nose, and pretty hoppy for a stout.

m - Medium to full body and moderate carbonation. Nice creamy body.

o - Overall a nice, hoppy stout; a lot more hops than I was expecting. Lots of roasted and chocolate notes mixing with citrus. Would have it again.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2011 14:28:30 | More by mdfb79
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.48/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from a nitro-tap into a 12 ounce glass in low altitude Orange, California. Reviewed from notes. I didn't know what to expect.

A: Pours a two finger head of good cream lacing, nice thickness, and good retention. Colour is a solid black.

Sm: Coffee, caramel, nuts, and cream. A moderately strong aroma - and a nice one.

T: Milk, cream, chocolate, and light coffee. Very nicely balanced and built. I quite fancy it. Very pleasant and flavorful.

Mf: Smooth, creamy, and wet. Suits the flavours of the body.

Dr: Very drinkable and of pretty good quality. A lovely nitro-tap stout. Decently priced. It hides its ABV very well. Give her a spin if you're a stout lover like me.

Serving type: nitro-tap

12-18-2011 23:24:40 | More by kojevergas
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear very dark brown colored ale with a tall brown head. This is the nearest thing to light proof you can see through.

Strong chocolate and patent malt, smells a bit like burned chocolate cake. Sweet smelling this is quite cake like in smell.

Starts out sweet and bitter with a strong charred malt taste. Sweet than it seems at first this is mostly char with hints of chocolate and caramel. Hops stay basically hidden here.

Full mouthfeel.

Do you like sweet and bitter beer with a lace of chocolate? The you will like this. I give this an OK+ rating.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2009 02:15:16 | More by Zorro
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.83/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to injuredreserve for this beer.

Pours a black color, nice carbonation, little fizzy light tan head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some chocolate/toffee notes, some roastyness. The taste is malty, sweet, nice touch of chocolate/toffee, nice little roast note. Medium body. Drinkable, a tasty Imp. Stout, but not worth seeking out again.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2011 01:22:43 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black color that's almost completely opaque with the slightest dark mahogany edges when held to a light source. Frothy two finger light beige head with good retention that slowly fades into a lasting cap. Sporadic splotches of lacing coats the glass.

Deep roasty malt aroma with hints of coffee, toffee, oatmeal, caramel, alcohol, burnt toast chocolate and a nice amount of hop bitterness.

Hop forward for an impy stout with a smooth creamy full body with a lot of roasty malt, silky chocolate notes, caramel notes, burnt toast, oatmeal, licorice, coffee, toffee and a pretty prominent hop presence that creates a slightly dry finish. The ABV is very well masked making this a pretty quaffable impy stout.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2009 08:08:34 | More by corby112
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

What has the crew for Kern River have in this stout? On to the beer:

Poured into a full 20 ounce imperial pint glass (because that glass kicks ass!), the beer is black as expected, with a little ruby red hues at the very bottom of the glass. Don't pour the entire bottle in or you'll have orange sediment floating, but my first pour was without the sediment. The head is tanned in color, has very good retention lasting till the end, and the lacing it leaves is good. An impressive nose, a pot of coffee and a feast of chocolate cake. There ya go.

This tastes like chocolate, and chocolate isn't even used! Class V beats most chocolate labeled beers at their own game with a big flavor reminiscent of Dutch chocolate. Cocoa comes around, a hint of coffee rooastings (especially in the aftertaste), and a tiny squirt of the hops. The alcohol is disguised, and it drinks more like a beer with 6.5% ABV, not 8.5%. One chink in the armor though it that it feels more like a 6.5er, with a medium body and good smoothness. One imperial pint down, no problem.

Kern River amazes again, and this is the most amazing one I've tired so far. It's also one of the best stouts I've tasted. Fun to drink without all that palate fatigue from larger stouts. Highly, highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2010 01:59:36 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On nitro-tap @ Beachwood BBQ (Seal Beach, CA) on 3/20/10. Served in a pint glass.

Pours black in the glass, being topped with a finger of EXTREMELY smooth and creamy mocha colored head. Naturally, this stays rich from the nitro, just completely slathering the sides of the glass with rich lacing. The aroma is burnt roast and coffee, with thicker notes of chocolate and toffee giving this some sticky heft in the nose. Hops are present as well, with some earthy, herbal, and a touch fruity, character hanging around in the background. Maybe a touch muted here on nitro but not bad at all overall.

The taste is packed up front with fudgey chocolate character and sticky caramel notes. Dark roast and coffee rears its head a good bit, but the overall profile is leaning more towards those sweeter malts. There is a good bit of earthy hops and citrus towards the back of the flavor profile but the bitterness itself stays at a moderate level, allowing the more roasted aspects of this to do the work for it. Satisfying dry-roasted finish on this that keeps you coming back for the next sip. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with an amazingly smooth and creamy texture to the carbonation here on nitro. I wouldn't have guessed in a million years that this beer was 8.5% ABV based on how easy this drank. Just effortless!

Another awesomely well made brew here from Kern Valley. A Stout this rich, robust, and big shouldn't be able to be drank this easily. The nitro really gives this a killer drinkibility that could easily get you in trouble if you had a few too many.

Serving type: nitro-tap

03-30-2010 19:35:22 | More by Kegatron
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

If you have something that needs hiding, I can promise no one will spot it behind a glass of Class V Stout; the beer has an unwaveringly black colour and staunch, enduring opacity. Plus its head is thick and lathery enough to conceal pretty much anything. The lacing it leaves sparkles, despite the fact that the foam itself is of a wickedly dark brown tone.

Undisturbed, the bouquet seems a little unexciting, but swirl that sucker around a bit and there turns out to be plenty of black forest cake and coffee dessert to go around. Enough chocolate brownie character surfaces to assume the maltiness overpowers the alcohol, although it definitely has the voltage to set it apart as a *double* stout.

Decadent, dark notes of chocolate, coffee and roasted malts are cut with a spritz of citrus, but no leafy, spicy or floral notes factor in. Still, those hops really lighten the load; like a quality cheesecake, it's the kind of thing that would cause calorie-counters to faint, but it's astonishingly light and easy to down considering how sinfully rich its flavours are.

Class V Stout has the flavour of dark chocolate without the bitterness, the taste of coffee without the bean astringency, a pleasantly fruity hoppiness without any acidity and the character of a double stout without the alcohol presence. It is full and decadent in the mouth, like a big slice of black forest cake. Guinness drinkers should feel downright cheated.

A lot of American brewers won't bother with double/imperial stouts anymore unless they're jacked-up to a ridiculously high gravity and aged in a barrel. They need us to keep drinking the cool-aid for their products to keep selling; Kern River reminds us that stouts that are just stouts can be every bit as gratifying. This is a simple yet tremendously enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2011 05:04:04 | More by biegaman
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black pour tan head. Inviting aroma of chocolate and alcohol.

Whoa, there's lots of chocolate in this. And it never goes away, its there throughout the entire bottle and mouthfeel. Rich. Alcohol is not as strong as I thought it would be, melds nicely. No off flavors, mild hopping, but make no mistake, the chocolate is the top dawg on this one. And its lovely. If you like Rogue's Chocolate Stout, this is similar in the immensity of the chocolate, but has a thicker and chewier mouthfeel to it. Good amount of smooth and sweetness to it, this one really does push forward all the good things from a milk and oatmeal stout with the largeness of an imperial and of course, the chocolat!

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2011 01:55:22 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to pmccallum86 for sharing another Kern River beer.

Poured into Surly Imperial Pint Glass.

Pours a half finger of tan/khaki head. Fades to a thinner layer but fine retention after that. Leaves some splattered lace. Color is a dark dark copper brown. Near black. Not as dark as most other double stouts.

Aroma: Rich, silky chocolate. very creamy. Roasted malts, vanilla, and caramel. This beer is money. Very inviting aroma. Well done.

Taste: Rich and chocolaty with espresso. Roasted malts and creamy flavors. Vanilla and sweet caramel. This beer is pretty tasty. Silky smooth.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, silky, and creamy. Medium to full bodied with a medium (but ideal) amount of carbonation. Ends dry and roasted.

Overall, this is a solid beer. I am very impressed. I had no idea this beer was going to be this good. All the flavors that I could want in a stout and they blend so well together. This beer is great. I highly recommend it.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2010 05:34:21 | More by mothman
Photo of wordemupg
wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 29/5/13 cheers MasterSki and Sean9689 for sending the bottle

A dark cola with a two finger foam that has decent retention leaving a few partial rings of lace before falling to a thin film that still leaves random patches deep down the glass

S milk chocolate and coco powder mix well with some faint licorice, leafy hops, and a hint of coffee, I get a just a little prune as it warms

T the roasts a little darker then the nose and slightly more hops and earthy tones, coffees more like espresso and I get a little smoke and charred wood, the chocolate's darker in the mouth too, just a darker in general, straightforward but solid

M not the body I'd expect from and 8.5% impy but has enough bubbles to cream it up an bit and the booze is more or less invisible, dark roasted finish lingers and has a little fruit here and there

O well rounded brew with well concealed booze, about what I'd expect form a session stout but if you tried to session this you might encounter problems. considering the strength I'd like to have a little more intensity but I'm quite pleased with whats in my glass

My first Kern River brew and even though its pretty solid I had higher expectations then one could live up to. I'd drink this again but may make a conscious effort to take a little more time in doing so

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2013 06:15:23 | More by wordemupg
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill

Wyoming

3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from Hi-Times Wines.

This pours from 22oz bottle a near pitch black with a 1 finger head of tan foam.

The smell is of roasted malt, some notes of chocolate and sweet malt, maybe a touch of coffee. It doesn't really have a big and bold nose so it takes quite a few whiffs to draw out what's there.

The taste is more assertive. I get notes of coffee, chocolate, light caramel malt for some sweetness, and some coffee and hop bitterness that comes out near and through the finish. The alcohol is noticeable as I get some warming during and after the swallow but it isn't overpowering by any stretch of the imagination.

Medium bodied, I'd say for the most part, bordering on full at times and at others..almost light(weird?), with a lightish amount of carbonation.

Drinkability? Doing slow sips is the ticket for this one but that can be said for most of the Impy Stouts out there so no big deal. This is a very good all around example of the style.

Oh and lacing is not a strong point but the head retention is above average.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2009 23:33:31 | More by Bitterbill
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Class V Stout from Kern River Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 361 ratings.