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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

2,687 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,687
Reviews: 748
rAvg: 4.31
pDev: 8.12%
Wants: 469
Gots: 663 | FT: 73
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: 2,687 | Reviews: 748 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of POTABLE83
POTABLE83

New York

4/5  rDev -7.2%

06-25-2012 14:05:30 | More by POTABLE83
Photo of NateMac13
NateMac13

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

08-17-2012 14:34:31 | More by NateMac13
Photo of theminutemen
theminutemen

Missouri

4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

02-20-2013 22:06:23 | More by theminutemen
Photo of Buebie
Buebie

Minnesota

2.6/5  rDev -39.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I spent the evening bored outta my mind at an art show that involved some of the works with people staring at each other and other weird shit. I was so thirsty for beer by the end of this nonsense I needed the strongest thing in my fridge.

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into an oversized snifter. Off the pour I get a smallish half an inch very dark brown head, cola like, receeding very fast. Leaving very small traces of spotty lace. A colar of retentoion. The beer itself is black, no light penetration.

The aroma holds some boozy warmth, alot of very dark chocolate, all bitterness in the aroma. Some cocoa powder smell in there too. A touch of roasted grain smell.
The aroma is a bit dissapointing overall, with the boozy warmth being the main contender.

The mouthfeel is quite slick with a full bodies creamy mouthfeel, mixed with quite a bit of carbonation.

The taste on this is as the aroma would suggest. Its very bitter, nothing too inviting for an RIS, its more like a really malty dry stout with lots of bitterness. My tastebuds are really overwhelmed here with bitter burnt grain overload here and I'm a bit dissapointed. No warmth suggesting 12% in the taste though, its well hidden. This finishes dry and again, bitter with nothing fun or exciting going on here.
For an RIS I'd have to plead the 5th, rather then say what is really on my mind with this one, as its probably going to offend somone.

Do not want

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2009 02:12:37 | More by Buebie
Photo of alcstradamus
alcstradamus

Washington

4.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this as a gift from beerking721 on a trip to Minneapolis

A--Pours thick as motor oil...a hard pour in my Dogfish Head Signature Glass yields only a sliver of head that left an oily coating behind. Dealing with a monster beer here, that's for sure....

S--Chocolate, prunes, molasses, marshmallows. Extremely potent. I love big beers, but this is starting to intimidate me a little...after all, I just wanted a "nightcap." Should have pulled out something lighter.

T--Very oak-y taste. Dark fruits are there to back it up, along with a coffee-like bitterness (but not much coffee flavor). This is better than I thought it was going to be. HUGE flavor, surpassed only by the absolute top imperial stouts, but still deserving of a 5.

M--Enough body to justify the huge flavor. Full, creamy, and it leaves a nice wood aftertaste

D--This beer being rated an A- is a crime. Rich, complex, flavorful...what is holding people back?

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2009 02:07:50 | More by alcstradamus
Photo of vrbulldog22
vrbulldog22

Ohio

4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

06-25-2012 04:04:13 | More by vrbulldog22
Photo of stortore
stortore

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

07-20-2013 03:43:55 | More by stortore
Photo of Zuidman
Zuidman

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

01-30-2014 01:41:53 | More by Zuidman
Photo of ArchEnemyBrew
ArchEnemyBrew

Washington

4/5  rDev -7.2%

06-26-2013 04:07:19 | More by ArchEnemyBrew
Photo of jayhunter357
jayhunter357

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -13%

04-22-2014 12:15:49 | More by jayhunter357
Photo of beveritt
beveritt

Ohio

3.5/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into an Imperial pint glass. Picked this little gem up in Indiana recently. Not sure if it will be available here in Ohio; it is right at the ABV number past where drinking becomes oh so bad. The label is black and white and depicts a stylistic horse head. If I remember correctly this is the top of a series of labels from stouts that makes a continuous picture. No freshness date.

Appearance: Pours with just 1/2 inch of dark brown head. This settles quickly to a ring around the glass and a very thin and incomplete layer of foam. The beer itself is black as ink. Lots of sludge remains in the bottle.

Smell: Roasted barley bitterness with the added edge of alcohol sweetness. Some soy sauce and chocolate notes.

Taste: Acrid roasted barley bitterness upfront. Alcohol sweetness is barley noticeable, significantly less present than in the smell. Medium hop bitterness begins to appear in the finish, but is still dominated by barley. Long, lingering finish.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation level is average to average plus; a little too high for the style. Body is decent.

Drinkability: Definitely strong, but the many flavors do not seem to meld well together into a nice coherent presentation. Not one I will seek out again.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2009 02:25:42 | More by beveritt
Photo of korguy123
korguy123

Ontario (Canada)

4.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Old black and white label. No bottling date. Purchased at Horrock's in Lansing MI.

A- Dark, inky, oily black pour. Totally opaque with not even the slightest light around the edges. Finger width dark, chocolate milk head that quickly recedes. Lacing is spotty but alcohol clings like there is no tomorrow.

S- Bakers chocolate, molasses, licorice dates, figs and brandy soaked raisins. There is a little coffee and char.

T- Chocolate syrup, bitter sweet chocolate, espresso and black strap molasses. There is a little licorice but not as much as the nose leads on. The dark fruits are non-existent and the brandy is replaced with a touch of bourbon.

M- Full bodied, creamy, sliky with a touch of alcohol and carbonation. Sticky on the lips.

O- This is a monster dressed as a sheep. Big, bad and bold throw in the fact that it's 12% and you get one hell of a beer. Turn it into a beer that drink like none of that and you have danger in a bottle. I don't know if it's the age or the beer itself but it is remarkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2012 00:05:08 | More by korguy123
Photo of e30todamax
e30todamax

Virginia

4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

03-20-2013 21:10:13 | More by e30todamax
Photo of VncentLIFE
VncentLIFE

North Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

What a beauty of a stout. Looks like pitch. No carbonation and no head.

Smell is a lot sweeter than I expected. Thick roasted malts, a bit of cream, Balanced and thick. somewhat spicy and a hint of leather. all odd combination i know. I cant really figure out why it smells like kind of spicy. Maybe vanilla.

Exceptionally roasty and robust, Burnt espresso, black bitter chocolate, and barrel pitch. I know its not BA, but I get that burnt wood kind of charcoal character. Thick creamy milk chocolate comes in somewhere in the middle. Finishes very bitter, with the heavily roasted malt dominating late. Theres this kind of spicy thing going on that I cant figure out. Its like a hint of cinnamon, or some kind of pepper spice. it goes very well with all the chocolate flavors. Hints of vanilla as well.

Feels so thick. Dark Horse had to use lactose somewhere in this. While it still feels overly bitter, th e underlying caramel sweetness is really good.

If it wasnt for Siberian Night, this would be my favorite RIS.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2012 21:03:17 | More by VncentLIFE
Photo of yamar68
yamar68

Minnesota

4.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick, murky black sludge with an edge of copper clarity. A quickly dissipating finger of tan froth sits on top. Nice, subtle lacing. What I first notice on the nose are sweeter malts - caramel, toffee, brown and candied sugars, sweet booze, simple syrups, a bit of cocoa as it warms. The booze is very well placed on the tongue. Taste starts with burnt oak, then black cherries and caramel. Just a hint of black licorice if you really look for it. Really a unique flavor. The feel is nearly perfect and showcases the best of the beers base flavors. Overall, I would highly recommend this. This is one of the best ’non-specialty’ imperial stouts I’ve ever tried. Fantastic.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2012 18:47:34 | More by yamar68
Photo of alamode
alamode

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

01-31-2013 22:52:18 | More by alamode
Photo of gueuzegossage
gueuzegossage

California

4/5  rDev -7.2%

05-05-2012 05:02:28 | More by gueuzegossage
Photo of Greywulfken
Greywulfken

New York

4.29/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: into a flute, black motor oil with a dark brown mousse head that slipped away pretty quickly; sparse lace motes

S: typical roasted dark and chocolate malts, with suggestions of espresso

T: big bitter bite right up front, sweeter and warmer chocolate notes soon to follow; rich maltiness and bitterness throughout, with high points of oak/wood; semisweet chocolate and roasted espresso

M: full-bodied, slightly coating, slightly sticky, some shapness from the bitter hops and alcohol

O: rich, rough, and deeply chocolate, with a bit of the abv peeking through - lots of flavors, does justice to the tradition of the Russian Imperial stout. Dark Horse makes very good beers at a decent price, and this is just par for the course.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2013 19:15:23 | More by Greywulfken
Photo of TheRuss9585
TheRuss9585

Vermont

3.75/5  rDev -13%

11-02-2012 19:50:51 | More by TheRuss9585
Photo of Jordy777
Jordy777

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

07-01-2013 04:48:15 | More by Jordy777
Photo of stumac
stumac

Texas

4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this delectable brew pours up pitch black with a brown head... the nose is composed of wonderful dark chocolate malts... the taste is some alcohol, slight chocolate malts.... delicious!!!If only I could have it my way like at Burger King and order up one of these beers at my local convienence store... that would be quite convienient...

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2008 23:34:56 | More by stumac
Photo of PappyVans
PappyVans

Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

05-19-2014 16:22:36 | More by PappyVans
Photo of BostonHops
BostonHops

Massachusetts

4.38/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

pours a jet black tone while yielding a short-lived 1/4" mocha-colored head; some lacing evident. big wallop of chocolate leads the way in the nose, followed by notes of roasted malt, coffee, and a little dark fruit charcter. all the usual suspects.

flavor follows the nose closely, imparting heavy doses of the chocolate and roasted malt, with secondary notes of coffee, molasses, dark fruits, and a touch of vanilla. alcohol present, particularly in the finish. it's on the hot side - to be expected given the 12% ABV - but a delicious beer nonetheless. full, chewy mouthfeel coats the tongue; adequate carbonation.

overall this is an outstanding imperial stout. not without flaws, but very, very good... the prototype of a sipper.

(originally reviewed: 06-20-2011)

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2012 01:37:32 | More by BostonHops
Photo of djre4orm
djre4orm

Virginia

4/5  rDev -7.2%

05-16-2013 20:51:31 | More by djre4orm
Photo of Rempo
Rempo

Indiana

4/5  rDev -7.2%

11-20-2011 20:37:56 | More by Rempo
Plead The 5th Imperial Stout from Dark Horse Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 2,687 ratings.