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Yeti Imperial Stout | Great Divide Brewing Company

1,735 Reviews
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Yeti Imperial StoutYeti Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by cokes on 08-09-2003

User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,735 | Ratings: 5,204
Photo of spartan2k
3.89/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

My first Yeti out of a bomber. Have an OA version in waiting, but figured it would be best to start with the original.

When reading about the "legend" of the Yeti on the bottle, can't help but thinking...
Scientists have proven that the Sasquatch, he is real.
Take a look at the plaster cast of his foot, now you know he's real.
Listen real close to the audio tape, not human no you know he's real.
Couldn't be a man in gorilla suit, no way.
No, you know he's real.
Real, real, real real, real, real, really real, real.

On to the beer...

Pours black. Thick, viscous, black. Head forms after pouring, looks like a delicious brew.

First taste was relatively unimpressive. Beer was in the fridge, so I assume that the cold is masking the flavors. As the beer warms, the experience is much more pleasant. More than anything else, the hop presence (especially at the end and in the aftertaste) is what is really surprising. Not necessarily bad, just unexpected. Almost reminds me of a barleywine aftertaste. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, but there is a hop bitterness at the end that makes the beer really interesting.

Overall, a nice BIS. The hop presence grows on me as I drink the beer, but doesn't seem to match the creamy-ness of the beer. Excited to move on and taste the variations.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.89/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a 12oz bottle
Dated August 25, 2011

Pours a pitch black color with a perfect sized light brown head, the head is as dark as some brown ales haha, fades at a slow rate to leave some patchy lacing on the glass.

Smell is primarily roasted malt, hints of bitter cocoa and coffee, touch of burnt malt.

Taste has a strong roasted malt front, coffee lingers in and finishes with a burnt bitterness, decent thickness and approaches chewy, the heat is very evident though and definitely could have used some age, rough around the edges.

Not as refined as Old Rasputin but it also seems a bit larger as well.

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Photo of NickSMpls
3.89/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled on 1 Dec. '14 and rated on 16 Jan '16, so it's aged a year in the cooler. Absolutely the thickest beer we've ever poured. Pitch black with a rich brown head. Roasted grain aroma. Taste is malt, toffee and expresso. The IBU of 75 seems high, but perhaps it's the aging has mellowed them out. Lingering bitterness and a hint of licorice.

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Photo of Floydster
3.89/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 ounce bomber purchased from Liquid Solutions for about six dollars

Poured into my Aventinus glass with an opaque black color and a 3/4 inch foamy mocha-colored head, left sticky lacing until about halfway through

Smell had a few different things going on, some vanilla and milky aromas, lots of cocoa, toffee, molasses, and also some hoppiness

Taste was very good and had tons of chocolate right off the bat followed by a surprising amount of spice that faded into a sweet hoppy bitterness, as it warmed the chocolate really started to come out but the finish remained dry and full of hoppiness, tasted as if there was nutmeg or coriander in this even though there probably was not, spiciness made this one unique and worth trying again and potentially aging in the future

Not much carbonation and a super thick body, taste lasted a pretty good amount of time, heavy mouthfeel

Could drink a couple bombers of this until the nine plus percent alcohol would catch up to me, not too filling for how much thickness there is throughout,

Cannot wait to try the Oak Aged version sometime soon after seeing how good this was, highly recommend, especially for the low price, luckily they also have this at Walnut Liquorette near me if I need some more bottles in the future

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Photo of Homebrew35
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle date May 2011
Pours a quarter finger of a milk chocolate creamy head. Blackish brown body with mahogany coming through at the edges.

Smells of milk and dark chocolate, coffee, roast, fruity esters and some sweet carmel.

Tastes of dark chocolate, rum raisins, carmel, coffee. Alcohol is well hidden. Some fruity notes are mixed in, probably from the english yeast. The finish is lightly bitter with a sharp acrid roast which detracts from the overall beer quite a bit for me.

Medium full bodied, low carbing. Quite smooth and creamy on the finish.

Overall this is a tasty RIS, big chocolate and roast with some nice fruity qualities. Again the roasty acrid note on the finish detracts from the overall beer. I'll try it again to see if it was a batch variation.
$3.50 a single.

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Photo of cfrobrew
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a Yeti tulip style glass

A - Dark with a dark brown small head

S - Strong malt flavor, strong chocolate and cocoa, heavy alcohol smell.

T - Very rich chocolate taste, strong malt and alcohol. Similar to smell.

M - Heavy and thick but carbonated.

O - One of my favorite Imperial stouts, solid go to and not too expensive.

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Photo of fank2788
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle filled Feb 07 poured into a pint glass
I was pleasently surprised to see my local beer store carrying great divide beers so I just had to pick up a bottle of Yeti to try
This one pours an inky black with one of the darkest brown heads I've ever seen on a beer, too bad it doesn't stick around much. When cold the smell is dominated by american citrus hops as it warms the malts move to the foreground led by chocolate and other roasted malts, the smell stays a bit on the weak side. The taste starts out bitter both from hops and bitter roasted malts, there is also a good deal of dark chocolate like flavor from the malt along with caramels, black coffee and a touch of alcohol spice. Mouthfeel is good nice and full low levels of carbonation however it is noticable the finish is fairly dry but there is a somewhat strong bitter aftertaste with some warming from the alcohol. Drinkability is above average I tend to be a bigger fan of the english style RIS's where the malt is in the forefront with little to no hop contribution this is good but I think I have had better.

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Photo of alenonbeeradv
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - jet black brown with creamy head, the little that there is, and a reddish/copperish hue near the edges (thanks to a previous review for this description). the head kinda has this same color.

s - soil, faint cocoa, a bit of coffee. slightly smokey.

t - yeah, a lot better tasting than smelling. way more chocolate at first, then finishing to more coffee. still a little bitter like dirt.. but its more acceptably earthy than nasty. pretty strong coffee bean aftertaste. hmm and something else i cant put my finger on. almost a little metallic/rusty tasting?

m - more carbonation than expected. nice though kinda brings all the nicer, sweeter flavors forward a lot quicker. pretty damn smooth and creamy.

o - yeah ill buy it again. id much rather go with the oak aged or espresso oak aged but what are you gonna do when you dont have those extra couple of bucks to your name? nice one.

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Photo of zeledonia
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black and syrupy, with a one-finger coffee-colored head (one of the darkest I've seen) that slowly relaxes to a film. Smell is all roasted malts, chocolate and coffee with some sweetness. Taste starts out very malty, but rolls into a strong hop-bitter finish. Much hoppier than most stouts, which adds complexity to the beer, but isn't my favorite. Mouthfeel is pleasantly thick and heavy, as expected. Good beer, just a little more bitter than I like.

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Photo of gomejar
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: Jet black with a very creamy, thick tan head that doesn't want to go away. Good lacing. This is what a stout should look like.

S: Lots of roasted malts, chocolate, coffee. I smell more chocolate than coffee. Secondary aroma of spicy hops and alcohol also comes through.

T: Upfront it's loads of chocolate malt with coffee tinges. Hop flavor does a nice job supporting but certainly plays second fiddle. Aftertaste is of burned grain and bittersweet chocolate. Slight alcohol burn also.

M: My favorite part of this beer. It's exceptionally creamy; the mouthfeel reminds me of an ice cream float. Only thing that hurts it is that it's a little too carbonated.

D: The higher ABV and alcohol spiciness make it hard to have more than a couple of these at a time. Still, as far as Imperial stouts go, this is as drinkable as they come.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to angrybabboon for sharing the bottle.

Appearance: Pours a dark black with some.deep browns and reds at the edges when held to direct light. No head. Very still. Tiny collar of dark tan creaminess.

Smell: Super roasted. Chocolate and caramel malts. Tons of dark fruit. Cherry, plum, and raisin. Chocolate everywhere. Sweet milk.chocolate, cocoa, bitter baker's chocolate. Leather, some huge malt sweetness. Lingering alcohol. Seriously roasted. Burnt, with some lingering meaty char. So much raw chocolate.

Taste: Crazy burnt. Char and burnt meat ends. Roasty sweet. Fresh leather and dark fruit. Loaded with dark cherry and raisin Chocolate. Bitter baker's chocolate. Tons of cocoa and some milk chocolate sweetness in the back. Sweetness builds with some smoky notes. Burnt and more burnt with enough sweetness to compliment and counter.

Mouthfeel: Full without being syrupy. Creamy and heavy with a weird smoothness tempered by the bitter cocoa.

Overall: Ughgghghahahghhhuhggg

Yeti is big. Yeti is strong. Yeti could live in cave, get old, be wise.

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Photo of aayooper
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Pours black with a one finger head which is maintained for an appreciable amount of time. A bit of a syrupy feel, but to be expected for the high abv of 9.5%. Starts out a little bitter but then hits a chocolate note and then hardens too a nice coffee finish. One bottle put me in a good frame of mind. Would I have a second, most definately yes, but not tonight.

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Photo of mtschmitz
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A) dark. Completely opaque. Nice head that dissipates quickly

S) good imperial smell. Hops balanced w Malts w a licorice scent like anise

T) excellent taste comparable to a stone imperial but with more malt. Smokey, toffee,spicy

M) bold a bit chewy. Leftover malt on the back end

O) overall I was pleased. Surprised by the hoppiness of this imperial stout, well balanced though. Tasty and enjoyable

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter at cellar temperature.

L - Pitch black color with a 2-finger bubbly brown head. Pretty good retention that fades into a nice thin cap over the beer that leaves behind some of the best lacing I’ve seen in a stout.

S - Roasted barley aromas with a hint of coffee and a strong presence of sweet aromas with vanilla, cocoa, plum, and raisin notes. Possibly a hint of hops. Smells great.

T - Milk, cocoa, and vanilla sweetness fades quickly into surprising floral, maybe even citrus, hop bitterness. The roasted malt bitterness is there as well, but it’s mostly from the hops. I know the bottle says that it’s brewed with “an enormous quantity of American hops,” but it’s still surprising.

F - Full-bodied, not much carbonation but fitting for the style, creamy and sticky mouthfeel, with a bitter finish that lingers for a while. A slight warming sensation from the alcohol but that fades quickly.

O - This is a pretty unique imperial stout. At first glance and sniff, it seems like it’s going to be par for the course. However, upon tasting this thing, you realize that it’s not like most other imperial stouts. There’s a tremendous amount of hop bitterness for the style. After thinking about it, those plums and raisins that I caught in the aroma may have actually been fruity and floral hop aromas. Normally, I’m a total hop head, but it just doesn’t seem to fit here. This is a still a good stout that looks great and has a great mouthfeel. Definitely worth a try. I’ll have to get around to trying all of the variations of this beer that Great Divide puts out.

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Photo of SolsticeDreamer
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a large sniffer: Deep dark black body looks like a beautiful shot of espresso with a creamy brown head. Light will not pass through the body of the glass and the head laces the glasses fairly slowly.
Fruity hop aroma with sweet chocolate-ness.
Beautiful chocolate flavor with a sweet citrus middle and bitter finish. Digging deep into the beer one finds toffee, caramelized sugar and cocoa and a hint of licorice. I'm overwhelmed by the modest amounts of hoppiness that pour out in the aroma and flavor. The strong roasted flavors of the grain are muted in comparison.
A very medium-heavy body with a delightful nature, hides the 9.5%ABV very well. Smooth and light carbonation that fits this beer well. Very drinkable and enjoyable on a nice rainy day.

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Photo of turboedtwo
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours black with a thin brown lacing, smells of coffee and malt, tastes like the bottle says, it has a strong roast malt flavor that flows into an alcoholic bite. I don't taste the caramel or toffee notes. mouthfeel is good, pretty light on the tongue and it tingles a bit. i could probably have a couple pints of this before i moved on to something else.

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Photo of CaptainTripps
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- Black, dark as motor oil. Dark mocha head, 3 fingers worth.

S- Rich dark chocolate intertwined with roasted malts and a bitter coffeeness. Toffee and caramel notes are present as well. Man this thing smells good. Strong aroma's.

T- Just as it smells, rich chocolate taste, roasted malts with toffee and caramel. Nice amount of hops in the flavor as well. (This thing has 75 IBU's!)

M- Thick and creamy. Alcohol gets more apparent when the beer warms up to room temp but doesn't hurt the taste or the drinkability.

D- Perfect night cap

/end review.

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Photo of ptykozoon
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours very dark brown with a lovely caramel head. Average retention and lacing.

Smells of espresso and light chocolate.

Taste is big coffee up front, roasty and powerful. Chocolate undertones, hops in the background.

Solid mouthfeel, smooth and dense with animated carbonation.

Solid offering from Great Divide, new in SoCal!

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, this pours with an incredibly rich and frothy full brown colored head. The beer itself is, of course an opaque pitch black color. The aroma is quite surprising, it is not very strong at all, and after my first sniff nothing has really jumped out at me, perhaps a hint of port. It smells a bit of musty mild cheese, a hint of roasted coffee notes, and some alcohol, but that is it. The taste... well now, that is what I am expecting. All the power of this beer concentrates itself in the taste, after all what does a Yeti need with aromatics, it doesn't want to be tracked down. The taste is full and creamy up front with concentrated notes of espresso and a solid hop bitterness in the finish. This beer is thick and viscous, just like it should be. The malty sweetness is hidden by the deep roast malt notes. I get notes of burnt caramel, leather, charcoal, burnt raisins, and dark chocolate. This is a good example of an Imperial stout, but like a brute it is nice and simple, but still packs a powerful wallop of roasted grain flavors.

This is certainly enjoyable, and I am quite glad that the beer is quite a bit more flavorable than the aroma suggests, perhaps my schnozz is not working quite as well as it should be.

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Photo of BethanyB
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Look: Upon a deep ebony background, a wide band of deep gold beads come together to form a tightly formed mosaic upon which rests a frosty light brown head.

Smell: Dark fruit hits the nose first, laced with a vinous, boozy scent. Sweet milk chocolate is balanced by roasted malt and exotic spices.

Taste: Very roasty, much more so than the bouquet leads one to predict. The resulting bitterness, however, is sandwiched between two quick nips of raw sugar sweetness. The first makes a brief appearance on of the tongue upon the beginning of each sip. The second flashes in the throat upon swallowing, but is quickly swallowed up by espresso-like bitterness that lasts through the finish. Peppery spices give the beer a refreshing snappiness, while plums, bourbon, and black cherries languish in the background. The characters' performances are all impressive, but they don't quite come together to create a cohesive scene. In fact, they seem to want to outdo one another. At times the taste is on the verge of being cloyingly sweet. At others, the smoky bitterness is on the brink of becoming a bit tiresome. And still, each taste is teetering at its peak of intensity, which is much better than not quite fulfilling their respective potential.

Feel: Creamy softness gains maturity through a good amount of dryness inducing carbonation. No alcohol warming is felt, but the back of the throat sizzles a bit with the punchiness of the spice.

It's difficult to formulate a concrete opinion of this beer. There is enough to enjoy that it must be said that it is undeniably good, but the roastiness and the sweetness seem to be in so much competition (there is a general sense of tasting a burnt espresso with too much added sugar), that they both end up becoming a tad annoying. More harmony is needed in this concoction. And as an Imperial Stout, it would be acceptable, and in this case advisable, to let the fruit and spice shine through a bit more.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - imperially dark stout, with a hot chocolate colored head that lasts and lasts, looks great

S - smells like a typical imperial stout, hops with the assimilated espresso/mocha aroma

T - alcohol and hops at first, then mocha aftertaste, has balance potential, but not achieved, had good alcohol/hop bitterness and then espresso/mocha aftertase, well balance flavors just not at the same time, good flavors, but this detracts from the drinkability

M - good, nice and smooth

D - medium-high a good brew slightly too alcohol flavor for me

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Photo of marvin213
3.87/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black as tar, its trim head is also darkly tinged. The head could be fuller, and the head is so black I couldn't possibly see any floating intricacies, but it's a good-looking stout. It's black like black coffee, and tough like that. A plain and simple, dark-as-hell stout.

Sweet molasses and chocolate balls, this thing smells surprisingly good. It's got the alluring sweetness of a milk stout with an imperial alcohol emmanating from its surfaces. The beer smells creamy...creamy and malty. It's a melted malted milkshake. With a beer like this, I acknowledge I was biased because it came in a normal 12oz. bottle. The smell of this thing, however, makes me think it comes under wax.

I know there's a chocolatey version, but I was honestly expecting more chocolate on the taste. It's a quality imperial that tastes like a sweet milk stout. Maybe that candy shop nose I got is more cream and buttery sugar than chocolate. It'll help drinkability, but I really don't taste a burn I expect from a 9.5%er. The alcohol is more of a smell and a feel than a taste, and I bet a lot of people like that. Where I thought the smell could fit under wax, the taste is too simply creamy to connote complexity. It's novel with its sweetness contrasted to its strength, but its taste is not that much different from your regular cream stout.

The mouthfeel is sweet, but not it's in line with what I expect from a Russian Imperial Stout. I mean really, there's a creamy carbonation to this Russian Imperial Stout. It's kinda cool, and I continuously wonder how this beer could be so strong. The aftertaste gives you a little bit of the alcohol feel, but I want that warming effect within the taste. It's weird to detract from the rating for something like this, but this beer should taste stronger.

So, if a 9.5% RIS can go down as silkily smooth as a sweet milk stout, that means it's a drinkable beer. I'm probably spoiled by all the good stouts coming out of North Carolina, but this isn't one to which I'll repeatedly run. It's good and all but, in salute to true beer snobbery, it's not a very special Russian Imperial Stout.

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Photo of ScaryEd
3.87/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz can into a snifter.

Pours a pitch black color with a healthy caramel colored head. Leaves some nice lacing and has some good retention.

On the aroma I get graham crackers, coffee, and milk chocolate. There's a touch of hops on the back end. Good aroma, but not a lot going on.

The taste is similar to the nose. Lots of chocolate and roasted coffee. I also get a touch of sweet, citrusy hops which is a bit off-putting considering this is an imperial stout. Slightly charred and bitter on the finish.

The feel is medium-full bodied with moderate at best carbonation. A little oily. Bitterness lingers for a while after each sip.

Overall, a good RIS that is a bit too hoppy when fresh. There are some solid flavors here but nothing you haven't seen before.

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Photo of mactrail
3.86/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Looking at the label,it says bottled on March 11, 2011. I should have waited two more days for its second anniversary! Very dark, with a nice beige head and plenty of lacing in the Ommegang chalice. A pleasant aroma of toasted fruitbread and burnt raisins.

Flavors of licorice and a little smoke. You could imagine this as a black, oily Scottish Ale. Rather bitter in the aftertaste. A lot of malt, but it tastes mostly burnt and dark roasted. This is a more austere and glowering style without much sweetness. It's possible that any residual sugar has vanished with the aging, but there is not trace of unwanted bacterial flavors, so it's a bonus for Great Divide.

From the 22 oz bottle bought at Liticker's Liquor & Deli in Ocean Beach.

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Photo of CourteManche
3.86/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

A - Very, very black (like motor oil), reminiscent of TenFidy; thick, brothy, dark-brown, one-finger head; appears to be slightly carbonated; head begins to dissipate quickly, but minimal lacing maintains throughout the drink.

S - Boom! Big roasty malts side-by-side with chocolate and caramel; suppressed hoppiness; no apparent heat.

T - More malts with subtle hints of chocolate; more hops; roasty malt finish that segues into a subtle hop linger.

M - Full-bodied; chewy; oilly; mild carbonation does little for mouthfeel.

D - A fun Imperial Stout, definitely drinkable. Would taste it again, for sure.

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Yeti Imperial Stout from Great Divide Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,735 ratings.