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Atwater VJ Black - Atwater Brewery

Not Rated.
Atwater VJ BlackAtwater VJ Black

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

166 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 166
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 13.33%
Wants: 6
Gots: 15 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Atwater Brewery visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: DrDemento456 on 04-09-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 166 | Reviews: 64 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mvanaskie13
3.38/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured into sam adams custom glass: color is black, head is tan, 1/2 inch thick, lacing on the glass.

Smell is vanilla, over done and not pleasant for a beer of this type.

Taste is vanilla forward, chocolate malt and chocolate syrup. Hides the abv well, but it does not taste that great, malt backbone is not definitive, maybe some roast.

Mouthfeel is very dry on the finish, surprising its not sweeter for its size, but again i dont like this beer for its style.

Overall an odd beer for this style, too much vanilla to try and cover its strength, chocolate flavor is intense as well. I like it when the stronger stouts let the flavors fly and give you a big roast or hop experience, this seems out of place.

mvanaskie13, Feb 22, 2014
Photo of AndyEdgar
2/5  rDev -48.7%

AndyEdgar, Oct 13, 2014
Photo of jmdrpi
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

jmdrpi, Oct 12, 2014
Photo of Stevedore
3.29/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle, about 1 year old. Poured into a snifter 9/27/2014.

A- Dark brown body, half finger light brown head that settles quickly. Not much carb.

S- Burnt malt, dark chocolate, a little vanilla, a bit of brown sugar. A little bit of oxidized sherry. Overall smells quite a bit less intense than fresh.

F- Chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roast malt, small bit of brown sugar and oxidized dark fruit sweetness. Very straightforward RIS.

M- Medium body, on the thinner side for a RIS. Low carbonation, sticky. Not bad, still a sipper after a year in the bottle.

O- Decent RIS, nothing to clamor over. Age didn't do this any favors, so I would recommend trying this fresh.

Stevedore, Sep 29, 2014
Photo of Dactrius
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Dactrius, Sep 28, 2014
Photo of Dr_Bahmbay13
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

I am really struggling on how this is an Imperial stout?I don't know though ? might change my rating but its seems kinda thin for a Impe. alcohol well hidden. Mouth feel is not there either, maybe its me like i said. It just does not have that full to medium full mouth feel which to me is all about the Impe. Now don't get me wrong it taste good but it just feels watery in the taste? as it warms you pull out the java and vanilla . To me this is just there Vj porter with kicked up abv. which is fine but imho this not Imperial stout but imperial porter!

Dr_Bahmbay13, Sep 26, 2014
Photo of NYR_Rob
4/5  rDev +2.6%

NYR_Rob, Sep 21, 2014
Photo of addiwilliams
4/5  rDev +2.6%

addiwilliams, Sep 10, 2014
Photo of Durge
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Solid black gold with a little bit of malt chewiness that features charcoal and licorice. Quality brew that goes down too easily.

Durge, Aug 28, 2014
Photo of Tone
3.66/5  rDev -6.2%

Pours a clear, dark brown color. 3/2 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of alcohol, sweet malt, roasted malt, yeast, hint of chocolate, hops, and pine. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Fits the style of a Russian Imperial Stout. Tastes of sweet malt, hint of roasted malt, slight yeast, slight caramel malt, slight hops, hint of pine, and a hint of nut. Overall, great appearance, good aroma, body, and blend.

Tone, Aug 25, 2014
Photo of DrunkinYogi
4/5  rDev +2.6%

DrunkinYogi, Aug 11, 2014
Photo of Arch578
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Arch578, Aug 05, 2014
Photo of lochef81
4.25/5  rDev +9%

lochef81, Aug 05, 2014
Photo of Lordhelmit
4.56/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Great beer. Pours dark not quite black more like a very dark very deep mahogany. Persistent head/lacing. Smell was strong but describing it is a bit tough. I always struggle with the nose. Smells good, sweet, pretty much like a Hershey's bar melted inside a vanilla coffee.. Taste is wow. Hits your tongue quite aggressively! Immediately get a dark chocolate flavor that kind of spreads from your tongue to the rest of your mouth and finishes with the same caramel/chocolate taste but with a good bit of bitterness left in your mouth. The bitterness is perfect. What a great balance. This is a great brew,

Lordhelmit, Jul 24, 2014
Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

DrBier, Jul 14, 2014
Photo of johng90
4.25/5  rDev +9%

johng90, Jul 12, 2014
Photo of TheBeerDad
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

TheBeerDad, Jul 07, 2014
Photo of woodychandler
3.69/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Ah, trials and tribulations of my bottle backlog! I recently bought a bottle of this, brought it home and then realized that I already had one held in abeyance.

From the bottle: "Beer Is good. Enjoy responsibly."; "Single Batch Series"; "[bottled] March 2012".

Two-year old RIS from my favorite hit-or-miss brewery?!? Hee hee. The pour proved that time has not hurt this bad boy. I got a finger of dense, deep-tan/moch colored head that sat there and defied me to move. Color was truth in advertising - Black (SRM = 44)! Black as night in the middle of the IO, black as my morning coffee, black as a witch's heart. Nose smelled of sugary dark chocolate. Yes, very roasty, but also a lot of residual sweetness. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full with a very nutty, dark chocolate flavor on the tongue. The nuttiness was unexpected, but it cut some of that pervasive charcoal/burnt/smokiness that I was also getting. It suddenly hit me - Nutella! I am not a proponent of this style, but this was striking my fancy, plus I am not a fan of style mavens, so what I like may not be for everyone. The finish was straddling semi-sweet and semi-dry and I am going to let my new bottle age somewhat before I bring it out of hiding.

woodychandler, Jun 29, 2014
Photo of nineworldseries
4.25/5  rDev +9%

nineworldseries, Jun 08, 2014
Photo of NCStateAE
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

NCStateAE, May 31, 2014
Photo of MikeWard
3.81/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. Bottled January 2014

fairly agressive pour led to a nice looking pint, jet black body with a small pale oatmeal head.

Lots of aroma here, coffee, some chocolate, heavily roasted malts

Very much coffee forward drink, roasted malts leave a bitter wash in the mouth. not finding the chocolate, or any real evidence of it being an 11.0abv

Mouth is a bit below medium. Bitterness remains for quite some time.

Overall, okay I guess. Enjoyed the first one of these a bit more, but upon reflection and more time taken with the second a few weeks later, this comes up just a bit short. Perhaps a bit more time on it would soften up the roasted almost to the point of burnt malts.

MikeWard, May 26, 2014
Photo of rypkr
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

rypkr, May 22, 2014
Photo of Fitze
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Fitze, May 11, 2014
Photo of Pbody
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dark smokey imperial stout with good depth, hints of chocolate and coffee. I don't typically buy from Atwater Brewery but this is a pretty well balanced imperial stout from their single batch series, also has a pretty nice kick to it at eleven percent. Would definitely recommend this beer in low doses lol.

Pbody, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of Markus98
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Markus98, Apr 14, 2014
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Atwater VJ Black from Atwater Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 166 ratings.