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Plead The 5th Imperial Stout - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Plead The 5th Imperial StoutPlead The 5th Imperial Stout

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

3,007 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,007
Reviews: 763
rAvg: 4.31
pDev: 8.12%
Wants: 507
Gots: 720 | FT: 81
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
2010 and pre: white label
2011: white label OR black label with black no logo cap
2012: black label with logo cap
2013: black label with logo cap, ABV of 11% in the top right corner and new government warning

(Beer added by: HopHead84 on 09-27-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,007 | Reviews: 763 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JVan
4/5  rDev -7.2%

JVan, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of 57md
3.6/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is dark brown to black with a thin layer of beige head. The nose was troublesomely reminiscent of wet cardboard. There roasted malt blends well with the creamy consistency. This is certainly a full-bodied RIS. The finish has both sweet and roasted notes along with a very subtle alcohol presence.

57md, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of sacrelicio
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

sacrelicio, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of hopswap1
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

hopswap1, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of mfnmbvp
4.28/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, no apparent bottling information, except for a code on the side. Lucky to have landed this four pack from my local beer store, exciting to have tried it. This is my last bottle, and I probably won't be able to land any more until next year.

Poured into a Firestone Walker pint glass.

A - Pours a thick rich opaque oily black colored body with a half finger of creamy mocha colored head. Looks very nice. I poured this beer like shit, I know it is capable of producing a beautiful mocha head.

S - Smell is of very full, dark roasted coffee beans. Roasted malt / barley smell. Chocolate cake. Burnt brown sugar. Smells luscious and enticing, although it doesn't deviate too far from what your standard Russian imperial stout would smell like. Smell is good, but is slightly underwhelming for what I was expecting here. Very authentic coffee, for what it's worth.

T - Taste follows the nose, smooth creamy bitter coffee bean / hop presence, paired with a toasty malt profile. Bitter coffee beans. Dark chocolate. Very smooth easy drinking for such a high abv.

M - Feel is of hop resins and bitter chocolate covered coffee bean lingering flavors.

Overall, a nice take on the style by Dark Horse Brewing Co., probably the best I've had from them yet, and a nice example of the style. Masks it's high 11.00% abv extraordinarily well, almost too well. Very nice drinking, very authentic coffee / chocolate taste. Doesn't exactly live up to the hype 100%, but a damn fine beer nonetheless, and definitely one to try if you can get your hands on it.

Dark Horse Plead The 5th Imperial Stout ---4/5.

mfnmbvp, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of AndyP612
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

AndyP612, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of tdm168
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to jtd1969 for sharing this one with me

A - pitch black with a short, brown head that has good retention

S - licorice, anise, chocolate, roasted malts

T - roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, licorice, dark fruit, mildly bitter, warming alcohol

M - full bodied, smooth, well carbonated

This is a fantastic beer that has an immensely deep, complex flavor. I am really impressed with this one. Each sip offered just a little something more from the great malt character. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer, and I look forward to trying it again.

tdm168, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of aflyershckyfan
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

aflyershckyfan, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of captainbearcat
5/5  rDev +16%

captainbearcat, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of Kevincredible
4/5  rDev -7.2%

Kevincredible, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of vic21234
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Refrigerated only briefly. This is the current year vintage.

A- Pours black with a small amount of light brown/ khaki head that quickly fades. Not much carbonation going on, and some lacing is apparent along the sides of the glass.

S- Great smelling beer. Nice aromas of roasted malts, coffee and chocolate.

T- The smell carries on into the taste. I get coffee, chocolate, and an overall roastiness. There is also a nice hop presence towards the back of each sip. Very complex with a lot going on.

M- Thick, chewy, low carbonation, the alcohol is noted but not what one would think for 11% ABV. A nice sipper.

This is an enjoyable RIS, especially if you're into hopped stouts. I would love to get my hands on the barrel aged version. A few bottles of this one will be sat down in my cellar to see how it drinks after some hop fading.

vic21234, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of tuckerlikesbeer
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

tuckerlikesbeer, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.88/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from tap into tulip at south park Dayton. Nice deep brown color with tan creamy lacing. Lots of roasted malt aroma...done. its very one dimensional but nice.
Taste is roasted bitter malts with a hint of chocolate and coffee but again its dominated by the roasted malt. Its a bit bitter...super dry but still pleasant. Its a big beer for sure but not my fav of the style. I had high hopes for this...maybe too high. Its kind of like a triple Guinness...if such a thing exists.

DrinkSlurm, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of jderosia603
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

jderosia603, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of Alextricity
4.41/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

*RE-REVIEW 3/27/14*

Appearance: Pitch black with no light getting through. A finger of dark brown head. Doesn't stick around at all like it did the first time I had it, but still a beautiful looking beer.

Smell: As I remember. Still unbelievable, and one of the best smelling beers ever. My last review nailed it as far as the aroma is concerned with coffee, chocolate, caramel, and the cinnamon/nutmeg sort of aroma. I don't so much get any dark fruits this time around, but it still smells absolutely insane.

Taste/feel: Ah, here we go -- was I out of my fucking mind before? This stuff is great! There's a nice mouthfeel that's quite heavy but extremely so (a bit of a surprise given the ABV, to be honest), and the carbonation is a bit higher than what I'd consider mild, which works very well with a beer as big as this one. The flavor of this one is overloaded with massive coffee, roast, and chocolate with dark fruit undertones. The aftertaste is warming with a slight alcohol flavor and lingering roastiness that gives a very slight ash flavor. It suits the style and ABV very well to say the least. Surprisingly, this is fairly balanced. Naturally you get a bold roasty bitterness, but that dark fruit sort of sweetness is definitely there to help out. I'm not sure where I got the hoppiness last time I had this beer or if I was just incredibly ignorant, but anyway, this is a super nice beer and worth the $3.50 a single.

The smell of this beer has to be the best of any stout I've ever had, most especially when the brew has a head on it. The taste is awesome, but strangely, for some reason I can't explain, I want a bit more out of it. There's a good amount of alcohol presence (warms the belly) and a lot of good dark chocolate, roastiness, and some dark fruits in there, but a bit more of a punch would be welcome. At the same time, as it stands now, it's an enjoyable as all hell ALMOST too drinkable 11% bomb of an Imperial Stout. Not the very best Imperial Stout I've ever had, but boy is it phenomenal.

*ORIGINAL REVIEW*
Appearance: Midnight oil with a spectacular two finger head that stays around longer than I'd ever expect out of an 11% beer.The head is brown and super creamy... looks outstanding. (5/5)

Smell: Unbelievable. Coffee, chocolate, caramel, dark fruits, and even notes of ... cinnamon? There's an interesting note in there that I wasn't at all expecting. Smells fantastic. (5/5)

Taste/feel: Monstrous... what else would be expected. Wow. Major bitterness, dark fruits, a lot of roastiness, and quite a lot of alcohol warmth on the finish. The smell was sweet and inviting, but the taste is just about the polar opposite. A lot of roast flavors with plenty of dark fruits, with an odd bitter, and somewhat sour finish. Alcohol is pretty noticeable in the taste as well. The hops in this one aren't there in the aroma, but come out in the taste with the bitterness on the end of each sip. I'm not sure what to make of this beer. It smells very nice (smelled great when I first poured and there was a large, pillowy head), but the taste is barely average. A lot of bitterness, with tons of warmth, and tastes of alcohol and dark fruits. It's certainly not your average RIS. The feel of this beer is actually somewhat thin for an RIS, in my opinion. The beer doesn't coat the mouth very much, but it does have a nice "slickness" to it. (3.25/5, 3.5/5)

I'll have you know that I'm not the biggest RIS fan, but this one is just odd. I had extremely high hopes after seeing it and, especially, smelling it, but Plead the Fifth just doesn't please my taste buds all that much. If you love a big and (somewhat) unusual beer, Plead the Fifth is a must try... it's quite distinctive. Though, I think, not for the best of reasons. At $3.50 per bottle, I'm certainly glad to have tried it (since I like to appreciate a big stout time-to-time), but I'm not sure when I'd have it again... but if I did, I'd keep it in a cellar to mellow it out... this thing's pretty harsh.

3.5/5

Alextricity, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of 4amepiphany
4.28/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Comes close to Expedition Stout for me, which I 'd prefer juuust a little more than Pt5, but I will drink this RIS anyday. Wonderful color. Good balance & mouthfeel, just the right viscosity. Though I felt Expedition offers the complexity that I like.

4amepiphany, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of ryancl
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

ryancl, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of ryanpj
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

ryanpj, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of brewdude1982
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

brewdude1982, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of VsTheWorld1121
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

VsTheWorld1121, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of Localdrinklax
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

Localdrinklax, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of zekeman17
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

zekeman17, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of danoeltico
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

danoeltico, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of mychalg9
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

mychalg9, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of Thurgoft
3.78/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter into two 6 oz portions. No freshness date to be found.

Pours a very, very dark, opaque brown with a loose mocha head that dissipates pretty quickly. Almost no light penetrates this brew. Nose is pretty hoppy for a stout with a prominent alcohol almost solventy smell up front. After a couple more deep whiffs I get a bit of semi sweet chocolate and a bit of roastiness. Taste is smooth with light roast and chocolate but also some subdued hop flavor in the mix. Loooong bitter finish with a bit of heat from the alcohol. Can taste a bit of the solventy-alcohol that I picked up so much on the nose but not too much. Smooth on the tongue with just a little carbonation but actually sort of light mouth feel for a stout let alone an 11% stout. That being said, it is very easy to drink. Second time having this beer, and I enjoyed the first more than this one. Just had a Founder's Imperial Stout last night and this particular bottle did not even come close (perhaps that's influencing my review?). Gonna try to cellar my other bottle for half a year to see if it mellows out a bit. Pretty good beer, but not in a hurry to pick it up again.

Thurgoft, Apr 01, 2013
Plead The 5th Imperial Stout from Dark Horse Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 3,007 ratings.