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Black Flag Imperial Stout | Beer Valley Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
86
very good
145 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
145
Ratings:
231
Avg:
3.82
pDev:
15.71%
 
 
Wants:
24
Gots:
23
For Trade:
0
Black Flag Imperial StoutBlack Flag Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Beer Valley Brewing Co.
Oregon, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by hopsaplenty on 11-09-2006

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 145 | Ratings: 231
Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: snifter. pours a black-like brown. nice half inch dark tan head. great retention level and wonderful lacing.

S: coffee, toffee, some bitter chocolate, huge roasted malts. some big hop bite in the nose.

T: very sharp bite with this one. tons of roasted malts, coffee, toffee, very bitter but pleasurable. great bitters from the hops.

M: big and bold, full-bodied brew. carbonation is a little higher than I would like.

D: at 11% more than one would be rough, but it is very enjoyable if you like hoppier stouts.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque darkness with a huge double finger stiff tan head that decomposes like an ice cream float with sheets of lacing in it's wake. The smell borders on timid but is classic double stout with rich malty roasted characteristics and boozy cherry vanilla notes. Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is full bodied with a solid tangy barrel aged character. The 11% ABV is apparent without being distracting. This one will certainly get you there. Really glad that i had the opportunity to consider this one from Jubilation Liquors in ABQ, NM.

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Photo of katan
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage - how did this one get lost in the cellar?

A - Pours black - simple - no highlights. Mocha colored head formation, about 1 to 2mm - lots of lacing.

S - Bittersweet chocolate, a little bit of roast. Overall fairly restrained.

T - Starts off light, sweet, smooth, some chocolate flavors and just a hint of grainy/husky flavors. Mid-stream brings it into balance, a little bit of bitterness but not much hopping. Still very chocolate like. Finishes sweet, sticky, and a hint of alcohol in the aftertaste.

M - Full bodied with light to moderate carbonation. Very sticky, huge malt bill here. Alcohol warmth is there but light for a 11% beer.

O/D - A worthwhile stout - I like it. Now I wonder what it would have tasted like if I hadn't let it age so long. Not very filling, a surprise for the size of this beer.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
4.02/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22oz brown bottle, 240706 21 D1 1855 inkjetted beneath the front label.

Imperial Stout, American Style. Brewed and bottled by Santa Fe Brewing Co., Santa Fe, NM. Beer Valley is currently contract brewing their flagship beer while awaiting the arrival of their brewery equipment.

Thick, viscous pour of solid, oily black. Minimal group of soapy, off white and caramel bubbles. From the depths of the glass a shimmering, oil slick color arrives on the surface before transforming itself into a fine cast of head dust. Gauzy lace spiderwebs the glass. Rich aromas of coffee, bittersweet chocolate, granular sugar, and toffee. Viscous and sweet, deep roasted coffee spiked with liquid sugar up front and a long lingering sweet bitey roasted bitterness in the finish. Warming alcohol underneath it all pushes along the bitter chocolate. Whole pine cone sappiness meshes with the roasted bite in the finish. The carbonation is severely lacking, as in virtually nonexistent, and this lends a slackness to the otherwise full bodied chewiness. This is big and bold, but perhaps a tad sweet. Had the carbonation level been bumped up, it would have worked to address this. Black Flag is not inexpensive, $11, but has lots of promise and I admire the balls it takes to lead out with an Imperial Stout as the flagship. I am looking forward to future bottles if the carbonation issue is addressed and am wondering what Beer Valley has in store next.

Big thanks to the AW from Oro Valley, AZ for securing the last bottle on the shelf. You know who you are.

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Photo of Reappropriated
4.01/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This is a very good beer, with layers of solid flavor that is often lacking in other stouts. I would definitely recommend this beer, as you get hints of chocolate and spice, with a little earthy vibe, then the a definite hoppy flavor on the back-end. One of the things I complain about is stouts sometimes being boring and one notes, but this is not one of them, this is loaded with flavors, both subtle and not so subtle.

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Photo of sprucetip
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes. Black but with ruby highlights when backlit. Active, decent tan head, some retention, no lacing. SMELL Roasty, black patent, coffee, floral and fruity, hint of caramel malty sweetness. TASTE black patent, coffee, strong roastiness, molasses, hoppy and roasty bitterness, and a big sweet malty base trying to be noticed but mostly being dominated by the aforementioned bold flavors. FEEL med fiz, thick, rich, creamy and luxurious but wit hmoderatly sharp hoppy bitter finish. A bit out of balance, but I appreciate the boldness. Obviously one to savor at 11%. Glad to have tried it.

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Photo of DogFood11
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One odd case of bombers on top of a bevmo shelf. I pulled it down and sure enough a brew I've yet to see or sample. Black Flag Imperial Stout. No price tage but later found out they are $10 bucks a pop. Should I have grabbed 4 bottle so blindly?? The verdict is out.

Poured into a chalice it took an aggressive pour to get any bubbles at all. The cap looked like a hand bottler as it was depressed in the middle and just looked amatuer. First whif and I could tell this beer was not spoiled in the least bit. Heavily burnt malts not only lead this beer into the hell depths but gives it a hardy charred bitterness. The charcoal lingers a bit and then fades gracefully. Ground Coffee type dryness on the backside.

Notes: Lifeless start but who cares the taste was very good. Big Big Big problem here is $10 bucks a bomber is out of control. They have some extremely tough competition in STONE at $4. Nice to see this though and I wouldn't hesitate to buy a bottle again when its around.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Black Flag came out as dark as night with an aggressive pour and head profile. It came through as a 3-4 finger head with some good retention. It gave the appearance a little later of the root beer float of the ice cream floating in the top of the liquid. Pretty cool.

The aroma was a dominant coffee smell with some hints of chocolate in the back drop. The taste was again up front dominated by that bitter coffee maltiness. It has a really sharp bite in the mouth for the feel as it lets you know who is boss on the way out. The abv is pretty apparent in this one. Not a bad brew but did not provide the depth of flavor I look for in a an Imperial. Definitely worth the look over though.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to sirhc.

22oz. Bomber

Poured into a chalice a black color, some carbonation, no head (at least first pour), no sticky lacing at all. The nose is malty, big on the toffee/caramel/chocolate, some roastiness, and vanilla. The taste is malty, good dose of the big three toffee/caramel/chocolate, some sweetness on the lips from the vanilla. The finish is slightly dry. Alcohol is hidden pretty well, but does warm the tummy up. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a pretty tasty brew, it does kick some ass with the taste and ABV, recommended.

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Photo of birchstick
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black color without much of a head on it. Smells of dark chocolates and some roasted notes. Taste is similar to the nose. Starts with dark chocolates and these dominate the palate. There is a subtle amount of vanilla and roasted character toward the backend. Finished with dry dark chocolates. Medium, creamy body and finishes dry.

Pretty solid RIS. Lots of dark chocolates make this a perfect dessert beer.

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Photo of bovinecrusader
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz bomber into a oversized wine glass.
Note: Stamp on bottle mentioned 2008 Hop Harvest Edition

Pours a fluid molasses color, with almost zero opacity. Great head retention, leaving a light khaki crown of decent lacing. Nose reminiscent of shortbread with a thin layer of milk chocolate, with light hints of fresh cherries hinting at the hop forward nature of the stout. Palate is very surprising... Hops add pepper, pine, lots of espresso, with a hint of raspberry acidity. Malts are secondary, adding a graham cracker-y, toasty support for the hops. Finishes dry, yet smooth, with lingering fruity hops on the back palate.

Drinkability? Well, I'm very impressed...most failed attempts at Imp. Stouts leave so much cloying residual sugars that it becomes warm, room temp coffee. However, the hops really help lift and lighten the stout, making it almost crisp with its delicate hop acidity. Drinks more like a hopped Scotch Ale, or a hopped Porter...

Great find and very surprising beer. Furthermore, everytime I've seen it in stores, its under $4.99 a bottle. Ain't nothin' wrong with that.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by slasher007.

Pours dark brown with a nice sized khaki head. Aroma is quite a bit of citrus hops as well as some roasted malt. The taste is roasted malt with a solid hop presence. A different take on an imperial stout that I do like. The mouthfeel is where I don't like the beer, as I feel it is too thin for a beer of this style. Overall, it is a very good beer I just wish it was thicker.

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Photo of rtaps
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black, 1 inch khaki thick head. Great retention leaving a laced rim around the glass 

Rich chocolate, roasted malts, nutty.  I think i smell maple mixed in there

Not really picking out any specific flavors initially but leaves a very nice after taste of rich chocolate, smokey, nutty, and coffee.

Mouth feel is nice full body creamy and smooth like a stout should be

Overall I'm happy with this stout, has a nice aroma and a good after taste 

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Photo of felipe2toes
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep and brooding black, with a thick 2-finger pillowy and khaki head.

Smelled of roasted malts, milk chocolate, and vanilla. There were even leather and wood aromas after the beer warmed up a bit.

Lots of bitter chocolate and coffee on the palate, but the bitterness wasn't overwhelming--nice balance of malty sweetness. Also faint notes of bourbon and vanilla.

I liked the carbonation on this beer, nice bittersweet finish as well.

Although there wasn't much hot alcohol in the flavor, the 11% abv was noticeable after finishing the entire bottle.

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Photo of younger35
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received this beer from Gibby in a trade. I've had this beer many times on tap when I lived in Boise but never got around to reviewing. Drank from my Darkness snifter.

Appearance- Pours a dark brownish with hints of black with a one finger medium tan head. Surprisingly "light" colored for an Imperial Stout. A thin collar along with a spotty cap remain and manage to leave behind a fair amount of spotty lacing.
Smell- Supremely roasty and chocolaty with a rich milk chocolate nose. Some darkly roasted coffee hides amongst the chocolate as does some lightly sweet caramel. The nose is just really rich and thick smelling with a sort of lactose like sweetness. The hops are noticeable, mostly citric, but the supreme richness of the roast seems to rule the nose.
Taste- Well... The hops that get overshadowed in the nose are MORE than present in the taste. It starts with a big citric bite that holds in it lemon and pinches of grapefruit. Way more than I was expecting, or remember, that's for sure. The malts make their appearance a bit later and the sweet milk chocolate I got in the nose are in the form of raw bitter bakers chocolate. The beer isn't sweet in the least as the coffee is actually more prevalent than the chocolate. The finish is choked full of a charred roast that seems to linger forever with a bit of citric/roasted malt bitterness.
Mouthfeel- Sort of thin for the style but still near medium. The carbonation is super light and the beer has a crazy oily feel. Amazing that this is 11% though because it's not noticeable at all.
Drinkability- Overall not bad. I've had this beer many times but I swear I don't remember it being this hoppy. Maybe this is fresher than what I had? Maybe I just didn't know what I was tasting. Either way I love hops, just not necessarily in my Imperial Stouts (see Darkness). But, saying that, I do like this beer. Maybe it's just a nostalgic thing but who cares. I enjoyed the hell out of it. Thanks Jeff!

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Photo of TheBeerCarl
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This stout poured out with a nice deep brown headwith reddish tint. The beer it self is practically a black hole with no light escaping.

The smell hits right away with strong coffee and notes of brown sugar. While the beer is 11% ABV, there is next to no heat on the nose

The first flavor to hit my tongue was vanilla, and then coffee, whiskey, coffee, and a hint of cherry. Also this stout definitely has its fair share of residual sugar. Be sure not to spill any down the side of the glass or your hand will be stuck there permanently the next time you go for a drink.

This stout had way too much carbonation. The mouthfeel could be a lot smoother. The carbonation takes away from the flavor.

All in all, it is a decent stout but I'm not sure I'm gonna spend another $10 on it. If they tone down the residual sugar and the carbonation, I'll consider it though.

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Photo of qchic
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No light passes through this black beer, and the couple of fingers of foam are the color of chocolate ice cream. Smells roasty, strongly of vanilla, with some bittersweet chocolate, smoke, and alcohol. Boozy and bitter on the tongue. The malts and hops are duking it out, and for such a big stout I was looking for the malts to dominate here. Still, some good flavors such as vanilla, chocolate, nuts, and smoke. As it warms, I get even more vanilla, toffee, dark fruits, coffee beans, and bready malt. Full bodied with ample carbonation. Stays dry on the palate so that the bomber can be sipped, and the abv will be noticed, perhaps even appreciated on a cool evening.

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Photo of Bludgeon
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love this stout. I bought a 22 oz bottle and split it with my pops. I poured it into frozen pint glasses.

The appearance was dark brown, almost black and very inviting with almost two fingers of beige foam and lots of lacing.

The smell was malty and woody. I could smell the high alcohol content.

The taste was also malty with a bit of a smokiness and again I could detect the high alcohol content. It had a rather woodiness to it as well. Nothing a long the lines of chocolate like a lot of stouts but just a slight hint of coffee.

The mouthfeel was nice but only if you like tasting the alcohol, this beer did not hide or disguise its high alcohol content very well but I like that about it.

The drinkability was very drinkable but again, only if you like a beer that you can taste the alcohol.

I really like this stout, a strong dark smokey American Style Imperial Stout. A very good drink, but again, for the millionth time, only if you like beer that does not hide its high alcohol content folks! Sorry if I sound like a broken record but the 11% alcohol is a characteristic of this beer that cannot be denied.

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Photo of shivtim
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle At Lee's in Vegas. Had never head of this one, but it looked like it was worth a go.
Nice simple bottle, black and white and very piratey. Brewed by Santa Fe Brewing for Beer Valley in Oregon? Huh? Oh well.

Pours out deep black and brown with a rich head that instantly fades. Nose is a cascade of smells, with chocolate, sweet fruity malts, and slight alcohol. Taste is syrupy roasted malts. The 11% is fairly well hidden. Mouthfeel is good. Drinkability is not bad. Nice little find, if I do say so myself.

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Photo of whatthehull
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snifter

A - pours a deep dark brown/black, one finger very tan head and very little lacing

S - molasses, a light vanilla, tons of roasted/toasted malts, slight booze, very nutty, slight dark dried fruits, huge coffee, a nice slight hop, very nice very dark chocolate, wood, soil and some anise

T - very bitter chocolate, nice sweet booze, roasted nuts, toasty malts, nice citrus rind bitterness, vanilla, nice coffee and molasses

M - full bodied, decent balance, medium plus acidity (from the coffee), nice complexity and very long finish

D/O - huge, huge stout. Booze doesn't seem as high as it is. Tons of bitterness, coffee acid and sticks around for a while. If stouts isn't your thing, look else where

Final thoughts - $9 a pop and 11% abv. This beer smells amazing tastes swell and will age very, very awesome!

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Photo of russpowell
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black as night with 3 fingers of brown rocky head into a chalice. Superior head retention, & near perfect lacing

S: Chocolate, coffee & a bit of booze, plus husky grainyness

T: Baker's chocolate, a bit of iron, some oaky & vanilla notes up front. Slight dryness, some cakey notes, figs, some toasted grain, hints of raisin bit of leafy hops, & coffee as this warms. Finishes with a bit of boozeyness, pronounced dryness, some figgyness, & a bit of chalkiness& a bit of coffee grounds

MF: Medium bodied, oily; a bit of silkyness with low carbonation.

Drinks great for the ABV, one to age, a lot of subtleties are muted. But not a bad Imp Stout at all.

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Photo of weeare138
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears pitch black with a thick, 2 finger head of dark tan that retains nicely. Scattered streaks of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of roasted grains, cocoa, vanilla, coffee, and some ripe, dark fruit.
Taste echoes the aromas with more of a raisin flavor coming through, along with the husky graininess that carries some charred, roasty flavors.
Mouthfeel is somewhat bitter with the roastiness dominating the palate that is already on the thick, chewy side.

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Photo of Beerbuddha
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out an oily black color with a thin tan head which disappates rather quickly. Lacing was present throughout. The smell was smoky, chocolatey and coffee. The taste was very similar with more of the chocolate coming through. The mouthfeel was extremely heavy with little carbonation. Overall a great stout. Probably a little much at the time. When its hot outside a stout just doesn't feel right.

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Photo of RustyDiamond
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from Liquid Solutions. No best-by date on bottle.

Poured super black, without any ray of light shining through. Poured @ 90 degrees, with yielded a smallish 1 finger of tan head with frothy, tiny bubbles.

Aroma- Super chicory, Whoppers, raisins

Taste- Very subdued nose...slightly creamy with dried cherries

Mouthfeel- This is where the beer got interesting. Very gritty mouthfeel...like the bottom of a hot cocoa mug. Somewhat of a hop taste in the bitter finish.

Not sure if I could drink another

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, served in a standard pint glass.

A - dark black color with a good sized brown head of foamy bubbles that fell to a layer, leaving some lacing spots.

S - bittersweet chocolate and roasted coffee bean aroma.

T - rich roasted flavors, espresso coffee, bittersweet chocolate, black licorice, finish is bitter with some warming of alcohol.

M - medium/full bodied, creamy textured brew.

D - a better than average glass of Imp Stout.

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Black Flag Imperial Stout from Beer Valley Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 145 ratings.