Dark Force - HaandBryggeriet

Not Rated.
Dark ForceDark Force

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BA SCORE
88
very good

468 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 468
Reviews: 307
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 11.9%
Wants: 32
Gots: 45 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
HaandBryggeriet visit their website
Norway

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sigmund on 06-17-2007

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 468 | Reviews: 307
Photo of LtCracker20
3.26/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Batch #93. Brewed Sept. '07.

A- Pours a very dark, almost pitch black body with a 3-finger coffee colred head. Head shows some pretty good retention and some decent lace.

S- A big wheaty whiff up front, followed by a big hit of molasses and dark fruits along with some roasted malts and bitter chocolate. Also some sweet toffee and sour cherries that show through.

T- Do not think this should be classified as a RIS. More of a Strong Dark Belgian ale. A lot of the molasses flavor, as well as sour cherries and other dark fruits. Not a bad flavor, but not what I would've expected.

MF- Moderate body with a good amount of caronation also knock this one down as an Imperial Stout.

Photo of mikereaser
3.24/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured on 3/31/11

Pours a pitch black with half of a glass of dark tan from that is hanging around for quite a while. The aroma has a very charred smell to it, not a very enticing smell. Very mineraly, not what I would call enticing. The flavor is where it turns around. Nice rich chocolate and deep roasted malts, though there seems to be an underlying saltiness to it. Enjoyable if you can get past the aroma. Nice creamy mouthfeel with crisp carbonation, maybe a bit too high for my taste. I'd almost want to call this an oyster stout if I was drinking it blind. I'd have to say, not a fan. It has its high points, but the negatives detract too much.

Photo of ICCULIS
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Vintage: 2010 - bottled 06.24.2010

Batch: # 287 - 1080 bottles produced from batch

Appearance: Very black beer with thick caramel/tan head. Head disappeared fast but left lots of bubbles on surface. No lacing at all.

Aroma: A strong, sweet chocolate smell here. A little too sweet for my preference. Faint aroma of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Thin - thinner than anticipated. Good carbonation and kind of silky. Not at all heavy like I expected. I'm digging the mouthfeel here.

Taste: Big chocolate taste upfront but with hints of coffee and a dash of wheat flavor. Not over bearing or overly sweet like the aroma lead me to think it would be. As the glass/brew warms up the chocolate intensifies. I'm loving the taste and delighted that you can't taste the alcohol. Good and bad at the same time as this is begging me to drink more --- 20 min. later and this tastes so much better warmer than it did a bit ago.

Overall: I really enjoyed this beer. It started off as a pretty decent stout but as it warmed up it released a lot more flavor with each passing sip. I drank this 25oz bottle in 30-35 minutes and enjoyed it more and more as found my glass empty.

Photo of eat
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think this bottle was bought by ritzkiss? Thanks man!

Deep, dark brown in colour, opaque with a good cover of espresso-coloured head.

Dark nose: smoke, salty minerals, dark malt.

Really dark brew. Roasty malt, smoke, minerals, subtle dark chocolate and espresso.

High carbonation for such a big stout; too much. Medium body.

Too dark to want much of, I'm left wanting some extra sweetness. Appropriately named.

Photo of thedoubler55
3.43/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500mL bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Pours a vicious opaque black, a serious 2 finger head that never goes away, and some simple lacing around the glass as you drink away.

S - Dark Roasted malts, some caramel, very odd smell nothing to crazy on this one.

T - I tried this one a bit to cold at first, the taste was not pleasant at all. After warming up, lots of strong coffee and chocolate taste, with a bit of caramel as well as wheat at the tail end. This one tasted a lot better after warming up.

M - Full body, mid carbonation.

D - Not to into this brew, probably will not have another.

Photo of DovaliHops
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch 287 Bottled 6/24/10. 9% ABV (not 8.5). Pours a thick, pitch black with a HUGE brown head that doesn't go away quickly...or slowly for that matter. Scent is very roasty. Dark chocolate and coffee are not strangers to this familiar aroma. The nose has some sweetness to it as well...possibly vanilla or brown sugar. Taste is just like it smells, except for a little bit more black licorice. This beer is a sweet coffee bomb. This is definitely one of the sweeter RISs, with a bit of bittering dark chocolate at the end. No alcohol flavors detected. I can't really distinguish the wheat from other beers of this style though, but it sure is tasty. Mouthfeel is not as thick as appearance would suggest, although a bit syrupy. Highly carbonated with a lot flavor. Drinkability is fairly high.

Photo of bobsy
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pretty much a hardcore classic RIS.

Pitch black pour with a mocha head that soon drops to a film and leaves a few spots of lace. Big roast nose - lots of heavy malt, bittersweet chocolate, smoke and dark fruit. Flavour follows this template - big and hearty with loats of roasted malt and a well-concealed alcohol. Medium body and carbonation.

Pretty classic - I liked it.

Photo of ritzkiss
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle from Premier Gourmet in Buffalo, Batch 279 bottled 24/06/10.

Pours a dark classic RIS color with a rich chocolate fudge head which unfortunately settles into placidity.

Real classic take on the style, which is slightly odd seeing as it uses wheat. Anise, honey, loads of roast, rich with dark fruits, molasses, dark chocolate, hints of smoke, good sweetness but balance with the roast and a nice, light drying finish. Even thought placid, slightly higher than average carbonation, perhaps a bit on the lighter side of the style but not out of the range of reasonable.

Photo of metter98
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is very dark brown (nearly jet black) in color. It poured into a snifter glass with a two finger high mocha colored head that took a very long time to die down.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of roasted malts in the nose along with notes of chocolate and coffee.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has some additional flavors of smoke and hints of molasses. The hops contribute a mild amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied, dry and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of warming from the alcohol. The wheat makes this beer feel a bit lighter than you would expect for the style.
D: Considering its strength, the beer is quite drinkable for the style because the alcohol is well masked from the taste.

Note: Batch 290

Photo of Jeffo
2.91/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2.5

Got this at De Bierkoning in Amsterdam.

From a 500ml bottle into a snifter.
Batch 271. Brewed 02. 2010 and best by 02. 2013

APPEARANCE: Pitch black pour makes a three finger, medium-thin, fizzy, mocha colored head with lousy retention. Jet black body and no carbonation evident. Head quickly fizzes down to a half film and a ring. A slight ring remains but leaves no lacing. A nice, thick black pour, but lousy head.

SMELL: Roasted malt, smoky notes, and some definite wheat malt. Light cocoa and coffee notes in the back, as well as some sweet molasses. Clearly an imperial stout with a splash of wheat malt thrown in. Mild in strength, but very nice.

TASTE: Light roasted malts with some wheat malt up front. Kind of lacking initially really. Some roasted chocolate, wheat, and molasses at the finish. A bold and lingering aftertaste is roasted, with wheat notes, bitter chocolate and hints of sweet molasses. A little lacking up front, but it definitely comes through in the end. It's the crappy palate's fault this didn't score higher.

PALATE: Thin body, light, and overly carbonated. Airy and prickly on the palate, goes down airy and abrasive, finishing slightly sticky. This is about as bad as it gets for the style. Would rather it be flat. Not thick or creamy enough, and the aggressive carbonation makes it difficult to drink. Doesn't support the flavors, which was very disappointing.

OVERALL: I've had this beer several times, and it's always the same story. It's way over carbonated for an imperial stout. It's so light, airy and abrasive that it's hard to drink. I actually let the second half of the bottle sit in my snifter for about 90 minutes. It had started to stale a bit by then, but at least the carbonation had calmed down a bit. Luckily this berw tastes pretty good, or it would be completely undrinkable. This is an unique brew with a lot of potential, but it will never realize that potential until the carbonation is taken care of.

Photo of rowingbrewer
3.66/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this beer at a pretty awesome tasting at gordon's fine wine and spiris on main st in waltham

This beer pours black with a nice brown head

the smell is kind of lacking, a little bit of roasted malts but not much of it, and not much of anything else

the taste is better than the smell, nice roasted malt flavor with a decent amount of bitterness.

the beer is better than average for drinkability and has a nice mouthfeel to it.

Photo of oglmcdgl
3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the hulme.

A- got top watch this one pour and what a pour it was. Three finger of dark brown head rises from a proper pour and even crests the top of the glass a good cm or two. Head settles in a bit to leave a few spots of lace and a thin ring on top. Totally black in color with just the slightest bit of light coming through at the edges give a dark brown glow.

S- nose is rather muted and subdued for a ris even after a good bit of warming still all you get is some roast and a light sweet breadiness.

T- a lot more roast in the taste with dark chocolate, black bread, some coffee and brown sugar round things out. For a big stout its very subtle in the flavor department. Surprisingly clean finish.

M- a bit above medium in body with a light carb that makes things feel very silky and smooth.

D- this is a rather mild ris but at the same time its super drinkable. Its the ris you can quaff. Its an intreaguing brew that you really must try.

Photo of eerilychildish
4.79/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into pint glass, served at ~60 degrees

A: rich and dark with a beautiful, thick head at pour. Head disappears rather quickly, however, and there's no lacing to speak of, so it loses a few points here.

S: strong aroma of chocolate malt, with hints of coffee and a stone fruit that I can't quite identify, so I'll call it plum.

T: Smooth and malty with all the chocolate goodness I've come to expect from the style. Enough hops to balance out the malt without being excessively bitter. I"ve never had a stout that tastes quite this good.

M: Rich and smooth with the tiny bubbles you often only get from a nitro tap. The mouthfeel of this beer really exemplifies everything good about the style.

D: I can't say enough good things about this beer, the few points it loses on appearance are more than balanced out by all its good qualities. This is everything an imperial stout should be and more.

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a darkness just bordering on deep brown. 1 finger head, dark rich chocolate brown, semi dense. A bit creamy.

Aroma is sharp dark chocolate, some unripe black plum and hints of coffee. Musky a bit

Tastes like an Imperial Stout. Big dark flavors. Plum, anise, tobacco and chocolate. The fruitiness has a bit of a dryness to them.

Feels lighter than expected and looks. I think to wheat adds to the head and gives it a bit of a fruitness on the end. Darn good beer. Easy drinking

Photo of OtherShoe2
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black with a foamy brown head. A little spotty lacing, some decent head retention.

Big rich bitter chocolate and smoky french roast coffee notes. Some dark fruit in the nose as well.

Great beer with a great balance. Bitter charred coffee bite up front, then you get some dark fruit, like prune, then some sweetness that isn't fruit, vanilla or chocolate. Thick rich sticky finish of pleasant charred malt. Alcohol? Don't even notice it.

Full bodied, and appropriately carbonated.

Great drinking beer. Complex and tasty but not so rich that you struggle with the end of the bottle. Very tasty and worthy.

Photo of LittleDon
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

10 oz. in a tulip shaped glass at Monk's Kettle in San Francisco.

Black. Starts with a beautiful tan head that, once gone, is hard to reproduce. Everything about this brew is understated. Roasted grain is evident in the aroma, but not too strong. It starts subtley bittersweet and continues through the middle and finish, but it's not "in your face". While it does not partake in the one upsmanship of man imperials, it is extremely well balanced. An excellent beer from start to finish. Heavy body.

Photo of corby112
3.45/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From notes:

They don't call it Dark Force for nothing! Pours pitch black and completely opaque with a two finger frothy mocha head. Very good retention, only slowly fading into a lasting cap. Large chunks of soapy lacing left behind.

Huge roasted malt aroma with silky chocolate, caramel, hazelnut, coffee and toast. There is also some faint alcohol sweetness in the nose.

Medium bodied and overly carbonated with a good bit of oxidization. Nice roasted malt flavor with hints of chocolate, lactic cream, oatmeal, toffee and alcohol sweetness. Slightly bitter throughout with a very dry, warm finish.

The appearance and aroma of this beer got me excited ut it was a bit of a let down afterward. I'd like to give it another try sometime but it's not worth the high price point.

Photo of siradmiralnelson
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into Globe glass.

A. Poured a 2+ finger tan head. Good retention, and good lacing. Color is black.

S. Smells pretty much like the name. Smell of an Imperial Stout with some wheat smell. Chocolate, roasted malt, alcohol. Smells kind of like a grassy wheat smell.

T. Taste on first impression is a muted Imperial Stout. Chocolate, roasted malt. Has a wheat taste on top of everything else that is hard to describe. Provides a sweet contrast. Has a pretty nice chocolate flavor. Overall flavor is kinda weak for a Imperial Stout.

M. Mouthfeel is a bit thin. Medium bodied. Medium carbonation.

D. Drinkable enough for a 8.5% beer. Flavor and taste seem to be a bit lackluster for an Imperial Stout, maybe thats what happens when it is made from wheat. All of the right flavors seemed to be there, they just seemed to be duller than they should be.

Photo of weeare138
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #73, brewed in April of 2007...

Appears a dense, dark black with a 2 finger head of light tan that slowly fades. Lots of scattered lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of smoked malt, cocoa, caramel, molasses, raisin, and ripe fruit.
Taste is a mirror of the aroma, though there is just a hint of oxidation that is showing(and expected for a beer that's over 3.5 years old). Molasses, ripened fig, and smoked malt pull through amongst the flavors.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied, creamy, somewhat chewy, and a true sipper.

Photo of MM3
3.62/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I had this beer a few days ago. This review is based on the notes that I made during the tasting.

The beer is black with a dark brown head. The head built up nicely during the pouring, but collapsed soon after to a small solid layer of foam.

The first thing that I noticed about the smell were the fruity aromas. Then the roasted, smokey and chocolate appeared to me.

The beer's taste was a combination of malty sweetness and a roasty bitterness.

The mouthfeel was thin due to the large amount of carbonation of the beer. In my opinion this beer has too much CO2.

Photo of samtallica
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I edited this review because this beer get substantially better as it warms. Much more chocolate, coffee and fruit shine through in both the nose and taste. This beer is deliciously complex at room temp. Original review is below.

A: Pours pitch black with a giant, fluffy tan head. Head dissipates slowly. Lots of nice lacing.

S: Burnt smoke, if there is such a thing. Was scared to take the first sip.

T: Bitter chocolate up front, some spicy phenols. Leaves a burnt, smokey finish. Better than what the nose hints at.

M: Lighter in body than I expected. Highly carbonated for the style. Enjoyable.

D: The 500mL bottle is plenty for me. If not for the price, I could see myself drinking this again if the right mood hit.

Overall this an enjoyable beer. Different than anything I've tasted before.

Photo of zhanson88
2.12/5  rDev -46.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance: Dark Force pours close to pitch black in the glass with a towering expresso head. Retention is awesome, and lacing is fine and pretty abundant. It looks pretty thick on the pour, but not the thickest I have seen. Still, it does look great.

Smell: I get roasted and burned malts. Also a bit of sweetness and soapiness. Not really the most appealing smell.

Taste: Right off the bat there is waves of burned malts and smoke. I feel like there is more underneath that (possibly coffee, slight bitter chocolate), but everything is completely overshadowed by a smoky/burned flavor. This is not something that I enjoy drinking.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Body is definitely not full, probably a bit over carbonated for me. It looks like there is a lot of people that enjoy this beer and rate it highly. By all means, it's probably worth a shot. It's not for me though.

Photo of billab914
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured fro ma 500ml bottle into my Portsmouth tulip glass. It poured very thick and pitch black in color. It also poured with a giant fizzy and frothy head to it that filled 3/4 of the glass. It took about 6 pour and wait sessions before I got a enough to call a full glass. The head finally settled to a thin covering where it remained well into drinking it.

The aroma shows a lot of bitter baking chocolate like flavor coming through. It has some roasty and burnt flavors to it as well. I get a little bit of the smoother and sweeter malt in the background, but it's almost hidden. It's definitely extreme, like the bottle says.

The taste shows a lot of roasted character to it Dark chocolate, coffee and some burnt flavors come through. A little bit of the sweeter wheat malt comes through and gives it a little smoothness. In the finish I get more of the roasted, bitter-sweet chocolate, but a little of that wheat malt is in the background as well with just a bit of a fruit like flavor to it. The dry and burnt flavor lingers for a while as well.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is decent for such a big and extreme beer. it had a ton of roasty and burnt flavors to it but also a bit of chocolate and sweetness to balance it out just a hair. It leaned a bit too much on the roasty, burnt and bitter side of the spectrum to be overly smooth or drinkable though for me. it is a big, bold and a pretty interesting beer to sip on this evening though.

Photo of AkaiOni
4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The appearance of this beer left me in awe. It comes out a beautiful dark black. The smell left me dreaming like was was swimming in a sea of wonderful warm roasty maltness.The pour from the bottle left a beautiful creamy head. With the first taste I could tell this was going to be good. The balance between the roasted flavors and the malty character was excellent, not as much wheat as I was expecting but it came through in the end to leave me with a huge smile on my face. They did a fantastic good using roasted, sweet, and malty characters from the malts. There was little presence of bittering which didn't dissatisfy. Enjoy this, savor this, love this.

Photo of Frosty80
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Color: pours very dark brown. sits midnight with a thin dark brown rim and a small, creamy, mocha head

Smell: aromas combine to give a quick, initial smoked meatiness. good combination of wheat aroma, roast, smoke, chocolate and bright alcohol

Taste: very elegant for an imperial stout, especially one with such an ominous description. great balance of above characteristics: wheat, roast, chocolate, alcohol (warming, not harsh), and a little smoke that peaks through mostly in the finish. bitterness is very low. finish is clean with a little smoke and wheat

Mouthfeel: smooth and creamy full body with medium carbonation

Notes: brilliant brew. the experience isnt quite as big as the description would imply but it doesnt let me down. fantastic beer

Dark Force from HaandBryggeriet
88 out of 100 based on 468 ratings.