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Giant Slayer - Tri-City Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Giant SlayerGiant Slayer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

123 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 123
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 3.33
pDev: 18.32%
Wants: 1
Gots: 24 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Tri-City Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: david131 on 01-27-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 123 | Reviews: 44
Reviews by alleykatking:
Photo of alleykatking
2.15/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from 12oz bottle. Thanks go out to VinnieVanGogh for this bottle.

A- Pours a deep black color. One finger mocha colored head shows horrible retention and seems to die before all the beer is poured out of the glass. Hints of speckled lace on the sides of the glass.

S- A little muted on the nose. Roasted malts come through with the help of my nose in the glass. Hints of darker chocolate come next then darker fruits. Light coffee in the backing with a distinct alcohol aroma in the end mixing with some overwhelming metallic tones in the finish.

T- Roasted upfront on this beer mixes with a touch of baker's chocolate in the inital front. The roast follows through as the baker's chocolate dies out. Hints of darker fruit and the first light alcohol note comes through. There is a coffee flavor that picks up from this point (middle of the beer) that welcomes the second coming of bitter chocolate. Darker fruits are on the ending along with a strong metallic flavor that makes me feel like I'm licking a can at first but by the end it is a only a minor annoyance. Alcohol is a little hot on the ending.

M- Light mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Light bitter chocolate, roasted malts, metal, and hints of coffee are left on the palate. Aftertaste is metal, light alcohol, light roasted malts, and chocolate. This beer is a little underbalanced I thought and needed a little more hop presence. A big metallic flavor was the key off flavor and killed a lot of the aroma and flavor profile to this beer. Light alcohol drying on the palate.

O- This beer started off with some thing going for it. That is just about all it had though. A nice try but far from the mark in my book. If I could try this on tap it might be different. The ABV wasn't there which was nice but I'm thinking if the metallic overtones were missing then it might be a different story.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Alextricity
3.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A surprisingly cheap $2 single. Poured it into a shaker pint. Had their Giant Vanilla Slayer at last year's World Expo of Beer in Frankenmuth and thought it was a fantastic beer. How's this one?

Appearance: A half-aggressive pour had to be stopped after three ounces due to an insane amount of foaming. What? I haven't seen that for an Imperial Stout in my LIFE. Huge cinnamon colored head that eventually went down to about half a finger and stayed. A lot of lacing. Pitch black hued brew.

Smell: B-L-A-H. Worst Imperial Stout I've whiffed, that I can remember. I've never smelled one quite so bland. Mild roast, but I actually get a lot of hop character in there. So much so that it almost smells like a black IPA, but not quite. Well, I don't think it's so much that the hops are potent as the other characteristics are just subdued. A shame.

Taste/feel: A medium sort of feel with a moderate carbonation. Not quite what I'd expect for the style, but not bad. That hop character comes through on the start with a weird, surprising wave of... saltiness? This is an incredibly salty tasting beer. On the back there's a very pleasant roasty character with some chocolate and alcohol warmth, but it's not there enough through the sip, or even on the finish.

A decent beer. Considering a single bottle was $2, this is about what I expected. The biggest drawback for this beer, aside from the fact that it doesn't have a huge roasty boldness I affiliate with an Imperial Stout, and the feel is a bit off, is definitely that unusual amount of, for the lack of a better description, SALTINESS that I get on this one. Not a soy sauce sort of flavor or anything, just... salt. So much in fact that for a moment after each sip I take, I swear I feel a slight bit of acid reflux -- and I very, very rarely get acid reflux. In case you're wondering, no, I didn't eat anything recently that'd cause it.

It's a fair value for $2 for the ABV alone... and hey, it tastes alright as well. just don't drink too much of this, because you may end up dehydrated. Not from the alcohol, but from the salt.

(I swear to God, there must be a tablespoon per bottle. Why doesn't it ruin the beer for me?)

Give Giant Salter -- I mean Slayer -- a run for yourself.

Photo of MadScientist
3.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: This is a jet black beer with a medium brown head. The head dissipates to a ring around the glass after a minute.

S: The strong malt aroma take on qualities of coffee, a slight chocolate and some burnt notes. There are moderate dark fruit notes of prune. There doen't seem to be any hops aromas but there is some alcohol.

T: True to style the flavor is deep rich and strong with roasted and dark grain flavors dominating. The roasty grain has flavors of coffee and chocolate with a moderately-light plum flavor. There is a bitter sweet chocolate flavor going on with a moderate amount of bitterness. The alcohol is evident but no too strong. There is a bit of sweetness in the middle but it all comes together with a relatively dry finish and lingering bitterness.

M: This beer is velvety and full bodied with a moderately light level of carbonation.

O: Giant slayer has a rich roasty coffee and dark fruit aroma with an outstanding mouthfeel. The first impression from the aroma had me anticipating a beer brewed with coffee the aroma was that strong. It's a good Russian Imperial, but not my favorite

Photo of SAxDRC5
1.9/5  rDev -42.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

A: pours a black with a mocha head that doesn't stick around for long. leaves an ok lacing.

S: the first thing i smell is coffee then a bit of chocolate, oak, and alcohol.

T: coffee is also the first thing I taste. it ends with a really strong alcohol burn and a strange and disgusting sour taste.

M: very carbonated, alcohol doesn't disguise itself at all, in fact it pretty much punches you in the face. 8.5%abv seems low for a RIS, but it is way to prevalent in the feel of this beer.

D: I don't want to finish this one.

In my quest for trying every Russian Imperial Stout I can get my hands on this is by far the worst I have tried.

Photo of Magpie14
2.64/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: pours a murky brown and black with soft orange amber colors. Collectively a great mass of darkness. A quick and fleeting mocha colored cap did appear. Lacing is minimal. Body is large and in charge, looks like a good heavy stout

S: earthy, bitter cocoa, malts, and some illusive dark fruitiness. Coffee can be detected in the nose as well. Not sure if I have smelled anything like this before...whether good or bad I am not sure

T: hmm. Mostly full of heavy malts, cocoa and coffee beans with a hint of smokiness. These strong flavors bring out a snappy bitterness pulling in creamy nut-like notes and some dark fruit characters. In addition to this is wet cardboard. Warming does not enhance flavors but makes them overbearing, not to balanced this one. Alcohol peeks in as well

M: lush and pretty thick. Mouthfeel has some nice features but these are hampered by the clammy flavors

D: I pass on this one

Photo of Sammy
3.64/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Great head, thick and very bubbly. Black body. Aroma is chocolate and roasty. Taste is coffee and sweet. Rather sweet for a RIS. Rather fair for a RIS, but quaff able. Thanks Josh for sharing. Middling mouthfeel, though a spot acidic.Mouthfeel is tingling.

Photo of Bung
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. Black enough pour, ring of tan bubbles. Fairly calm looking which is fine.

Aroma, A bit phenolic, some more alcohol than one might like. Roast malt, molasses, chocolates peak out around that.

Taste, Quite roasty. Malt and coffee. Maybe considered near burnt, but it's on the border. Still dark chocolate and cocoa finish. Very dry, maybe more like a foreign stout. I had no overt problems with this.

Medium bodied, maybe a tad on the thinner side. Doesn't coat real well, more from the dry nature I think.

In all honesty I thought this was just fine. Maybe more over roasted roast coffee and cocoa than some would like.

All right, so the coffee becomes a little overbearing after a while.

Photo of BierFan
4.05/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Decent sized cappuccino colored brown head and a very black body. Real good head retention for the style. Doesn't leave that great of lacing.

Smell: Lots of roasted black coffee, char, dark chocolate. Kinda smokey.

Taste: Smoke and coffee with an appropriate bitterness. Bitter dark chocolate sweetness comes mostly in the aftertaste.

Amazing RIS for the price I payed for the 12 ounce bottle. I really wasn't expecting much from this beer but it was a very pleasant surprise for me.

Photo of n2185
3.13/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours black with an explosive three fingers of brown head that fades into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: Roasted malts with creamy chocolate and coffee aromas. The finish is smokey and a bit charred.

T: Roasted malts here as well with bitter cocoa and some slight coffee notes. The finish is slightly bitter and charred with an odd sour cherry character.

M: Thick body with mid-high carbonation, this beer has higher carbonation than most imperial stouts, but it works out well.

O: An alright imperial stout overall. It's a bit lacking in depth and I think it might be a bit infected based on the slightly sour flavor and high carbonation.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.34/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter. No bottle date or info.

A - Clear amber brown while it quietly pours, Giant Slayer ended up being as black as night in the glass with a dense two-finger, deep tan head. Good retention with a nice thick collar of lace left on the glass.

S - Soft English toffee blends with the light coffee nose and rich dark roasted malts momentarily before it turned into a rotting, moldy molasses funk as I can best describe it. I love molasses but this is off. Rank with damp cardboard.

T - Oxidized-like stale cardboard notes overwhelm the heavily roasted chocolate malts in here. Bitter chocolate and day-old cold coffee don't compliment well. Molasses finishes out and seems to be the only redeeming quality of this brew.

M - Thick and rich, Giant Slayer is full-bodied but extremely bitter-finishing, dry, and heavily carbonated.

D - Drain pour. This is overly off-putting and gross. It needs a lot of work to be quite honest. It's far too bitter and hard to choke down. This was a bad brew to end my sickness-induced ticking hiatus with.

Photo of djeucalyptus
3.59/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to semibaked. pours a typical jet-black with dark reddish-brown head. a vigorous pour yields half a finger of head that quickly dissipates and leaves no trace behind. not quite on the level of giant slaying.

aroma is heavy on the roast, blackstrap molasses with sea salt, heather, leather and kiwi shoe polish undertones. coffee and some burnt bread. fairly subdued... I feel like I keep waiting for it to brighten up, but it doesn't happen.

taste is heavy on the roast. burnt coffee, wet leather, toffee, cocoa powder. I'm kind of digging it. not as boozy or intense as many a RIS, but certainly enjoyable. again, not quite as flavorful as I want it to be, but for a nice, heavily roasted RIS, I'm liking it.

Moderate body with a hefty viscous finish. decent carbonation for the style helps from being cloyingly thick. Not bad.

All in all, I actually quite enjoyed this one. Not as robust, rich, or boozy as many RISs out there, but I kind of like that. I was pleasantly surprised when i tried it, and even more surprised when i checked the other reviews. Maybe there's something about it that just jives right with my palette, although my other half commented that she wished we had more than the one bottle as well.

Photo of metter98
3.67/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a short mocha colored head that died down a bit but never completely faded away.
S: Moderate aromas of licorice, dark malts and molasses are present in the nose.
T: The taste mostly follows the smell and has additional hints of roasted malts in the flavors, most particularly towards the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation along with hints of dryness towards the finish.
O: This beer feels a little lighter in body compared to other Russian Imperial Stouts, but isn't too difficult to drink.

Photo of ThickNStout
2.58/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.25

12oz bottle from Beer Barron (Detroit, MI). 2.69. No bottling info but I brought it back from MI last June so it's at least 7 months old. Served in a Red Brick snifter.

Pours deep brown, near-black with a quarter finger mocha head that laces a decent amount.

Smells are muted but include cocoa, cream and a little caramel.

Taste follows the nose, including the 'muted' aspect. Cocoa, mocha latte, caramel, toffee and bitter/sour dark fruit skins.

Medium feel with an over sharp carbonation. Long bitter, almost sour cocoa/cherry pit finish.

Not really bad but far from great. As another reviewer suggested, I'm not sure if I'm dealing with an infected batch or just something that just plain isn't brewed to my preferences. At any rate I plan to pass on this in the future.

Photo of JamnesCameron
4.03/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Pours a deep, jet black with two fingers of tan head that drop rather quickly.

Aromas of dark roasted coffee, licorise, roasted malts, and some dark cocoa.

Flavors of dark cocoa, dark coffee, licorise. Finish is long, darkly sweet, with hints of bitter cocoa.

Mouthfeel is big, chewy, malty. Some alcohol warmth.

Overall a good effort. Nothing too aggressive or offensive.

Photo of StoutHunter
3.31/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I picked up a bottle of Tri-City's Giant Slayer a couple weeks ago for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. I have about getting this beer before but have always passed it up for more well known RIS's, but I decided to stop procrastinating and give it a try, so let's see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- The label on this beer looks a pretty good, I like the action shot of the knight, it's fitting for an RIS. It poured a pretty dark black color that didn't let any light through when held to the light and it had a fingers worth of mocha colored head that quickly died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end.

S- The first thing I pick is a pretty noticeable rubbing alcohol like aroma that is followed by some dark fruits and a pretty noticeable chocolate aroma. I didn't get any hops in the aroma. It smells like it's going to be pretty boozy.

T- The flavor starts of with a good amount of medium roasted malts that impart a nice steady chocolate flavor with a little bit of dark fruits thrown in for good measure. Alcohol is noticeable, but not nearly as overpowering as it was in the aroma. It had a slight bitter finish with no hops to be found.

M- Smooth, on the full side of being medium bodied, and it had a light amount of carbonation, that could have had just a little more.

Overall I thought that this was a OK RIS. It had a pretty good flavor that wasn't as complex as I would like it but still pretty true to the style. I thought from the aroma that this was gonna be pretty boozy, but thankfully it was toned down much more in the flavor and that made it pretty drinkable for an RIS. What I liked most about this beer was the flavor, it was pretty on par for the style but not as complex as it could be. What I liked least about this beer was the aroma, the dark malt aromas weren't bad, but the booze really came through and overpowered a lot of the other aromas. I might buy this beer again when wanting and RIS, but there's a good chance I will choose an Old Rasputin instead. This RIS is worth a try but it doesn't compare to some of the best in the style. This beer was good for what it was but it wasn't on par with founders RIS, or Old Rasputin. 2013 I've had this beer a few times since I first reviewed and I think it's a little better then I gave it credit for so I'm adjusting the scores accordingly.

Photo of Gryphon69
3.42/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle
no visable date, purchased 12/13

A- Wow, insane amount of head, with only about half the bottle in the glass before I had to stop head was about 2inchs high lol. Dark mocha colored head, after 2-3 minutes the head fell to less than a finger high, but left crazy amounts of lacing all the way to the top and stays stuck. Beer is near black in color.

S- Was hoping for more after the crazy head. You can smell the roasted malts, some cocoas, small amounts of dark fruits, slight amount of coffee, some vanillas in the finish. Its all there I suppose, but nothing stands out and goes BAM.

T- Real close to the nose, with nothing jumping out to make you want to run out and grab more.

M- Medium body that is more watery than slick. Was expecting more creamy with the head, but no. Carbonations is light and fizzels over your tongue as it coats it.

O- The head is the most impressive part of this one and everything else is rather average, nothing bad, but nothing that makes me want to stock it. It was a good price at under $2 for the bottle, and worth trying just because its affordable. Average beer probably worth trying if you see it on the shelves.

Photo of liamt07
3.91/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle shared by solidfunk (RB), 12oz into a tulip.

Dark brown, medium brown/crimson head that leaves a ring of retention. Nose is chocolatey, earthy, mild vanilla and tobacco. Tastes of chocolate, banana, roasted malts, sweet dark malts anf roast carries into the finish. Medium full feel, low smooth carbonation. Relatively drinkable, and altogether not that bad from a brewery I've never heard about.

Photo of uno99
2.36/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Served at 58 degrees into my Lucifer goblet. I like the sort of cliche' name and artwork, and the fact that there is no ABV anywhere on the bottle.

A: I've never seen a head dissapear faster and leave as little trace. The foamy 2 finger head was almost gone by the time I put the glass down. Looks kind of like squid ink or something sitting there in the glass.

S: Very boozy. I honestly cant detect much else but booze... what a shame. Might be better if there was some head.

T: Well, its boozy... but at least I can taste some malt in there. Pretty bad though to be honest.

M: Medium bodied, pretty sticky on the lips and teeth. a bit harshly carbonated. Could be the boozy nature of this beer making it feel harsher however.

D: This is a beer to avoid.

Photo of aasher
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This beer poured a medium bodied dark chocolate brown in color with a dark khaki lacing around the glass. It looks harmless enough. The nose is full of chocolate with some earthy leather to it. It almost has some salty smoke to it as well. The flavors are light yet effective. There is plenty of bitter chocolate, plenty of dark malt, an ever so slight roast, and that earthy leather again. It's decent. This beer could definitely have more body. It's probably the lightest I've seen yet for the style. It isn't off putting, just below average for the style. It drinks light enough to be an easy drinker, it just doesn't have a lot of flavor. It's definitely not as bold as it could be. It's not bad, just not much better than average.

Photo of ghostwalker
3.21/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap in a MI Whole Foods.

A: Appropriately dark body with a thin finger of tan head.

S: Not a lot of nose. Roasty, malty, slightly fruity.

T: Dark fruits and roasty, in that order. Low complexity and no real hop character. Thin on flavor for the style. What there is is a well balanced combination.

M: Thin, slightly oily. Decent carb level.

O: Solid, but unexceptional RIS. Love the D&D influenced label.

Photo of TCgoalie
3.57/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Kyle!

Pours black with not much head upon pouring. Agitation and an aggressive pour create a very nice mocha looking head. I wish that the beer would keep this keep this beautiful color.

The smell is strange for a RIS. Very malt heavy with a spicy pine smell, I can detect a touch of chocolate and coffee.

Mild chocolate and coffee bitterness round out the taste. Some sweet and spiciness add some flare to make this true to style.

Medium in the mouth, this does not provide much interest while on the tongue. Carbonation is a bit much for this style.

Overall, this is not the best nor the worst RIS. I would say this is low ABV for the style, and the taste shows this in the form of less flavor.

Photo of crossovert
4.14/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle.

It pours pretty much the qiuntessinial way for a RIs Thick, inky black body with a huge fomay tan head that sticks forever before receding to some nice thick-walled style lacing.

The smell is pretty good. It is roasty, it reminds me of a baltic porter in a way, or rather an imperial baltic porter. Not in the yeast but in the overall cocoa, raoastinees, and caramel levels.

The flavor is pretty good. Just what I am looking for in a RIS, not too much cloying sweetness, waves of roasted malt flavors. Think abyss without all the additives.

edit: somehow i was the top score for this. I think there might have been a bad bath floating around out there.

Photo of sweemzander
2.98/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours thick & pitch black that produced an admirable frothy light brown head that initially cascaded for a second or two. Good retention behind the creamy looking head.

(S)- Lots of roasted coffee with even more raisin & molasses with tons of brown sugar & vanilla

(T)- Rather creamy with a big nutty sweetness with brown sugar. Behind that is a fitting roasted background with a light spice. Bits of cocoa & cola.

(M)- A slight higher carbonation than I would like in an RIS, but i guess its not too bothersome. A good balance of flavors. Very sweet & rich.

(D)- An alright RIS that fits the style to a point. The cola flavor is a bit weird. Gets better as it warms up. My biggest problem though is the more I drink of it, the more it strongly begins to taste of peanuts; not a big fan of that, particularly in an RIS.

Photo of BMoney575
3.52/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Sampled on 6-4-09

Pours very thick and black, with lots of yest that I didn't realize was there until it was too late. A thinning head leaves small ring of lacing.

Smell is kind of fruity, tons of yeast, with a nice burnt malt and a decent anise aroma.

Taste is very smoky and burnt, actually rather enjoyable. Surprisingly bitter, the hops come through in a charcoal way, which is rather unique, and a nice twist.

Mouthfeel kills the whole experience, way too thin and watery. A major disappointment.

Drinkability would be better if the mouthfeel helped out a little.

Overall, much better than I expected, but still unfortunately flawed.

Photo of WakeandBake
4/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark black color pour with a big long lasting brown head , leaving lots of sticky lacing , medium carbonation , A very nice looking beer . Aroma is of charred sweet malt , caramel ,nuts , toffee and chocolate . Flavor is sweet up front lots of roast , coffee and chocolate , alcohol is well hidden , some earthy hops (could use a bit more) yet a pretty good level of bitterness seemingly from the malt . full body , big chewy mouthfeel with a long roasty finish . Very drinkable . Not a tun of complexity but still a very good stout , I gave an extra point over all for a kick ass name and label . . This brewery is serious about beer and Im stoked to be able to get this at my local beer store. I have bought this as single several times now and is becoming one of my favorite MI stouts . NIce work Tri City

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Giant Slayer from Tri-City Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 123 ratings.