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Moa Imperial Stout (Aged In Pinot Noir Barrels) | Moa Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
82
good
134 Reviews
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
134
Ratings:
508
Avg:
3.63
pDev:
30.85%
 
 
Wants:
8
Gots:
68
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Moa Imperial Stout (Aged In Pinot Noir Barrels)Moa Imperial Stout (Aged In Pinot Noir Barrels)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Moa Brewing Company
New Zealand (Aotearoa) | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by KickbacksSteve on 01-14-2012

User Reviews
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Reviews: 134 | Ratings: 508
Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.74/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12.7 oz bottle into a teku.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown color - this isn't some motor oil stout. The head is a finger high, and khaki in shade. Retention is nice for what it is, and the head has nice softness. Some lacing also sticks to the glass. (3.25)

Smell: I can tell you right now, I've NEVER inhaled anything like this. On one hand, there's a textbook European-style imperial stout, loaded with baker's cocoa, roast, and even a touch of peat. On the other hand, there's a massive pinot noir influence that brings notes of grape and oak tannin. And bah gawd, it works. The chocolate and fruit characters blend rather well, creating something ridiculously intriguing. (4.25)

Taste: The flavor profile smacks far more of pinot noir than a stout. It opens and closes with notes of buttery oak, pinot noir grapes, and vanilla, all while the imperial stout base add wisps of chocolate, roast, and peat. Somehow, it all kind of works. How a chocolaty, peaty stout can blend with such a massive wine presence is friggen' mind boggling. Of course, the integration isn't great by any stretch, but still...some credit needs to be given. (3.5)

Mouthfeel: Bone frickin' dry. I mean, seriously. A good wine does a fantastic job of being dry and not remotely boozy - so does this. It has a buttery texture seemingly, though it's rather thin. Quite thin, in fact. While I've heard stories about this being carbonated to hell and back, I have to report that this bottle's fizz is VERY weak. While the general texture isn't very appropriate for an imperial stout, I really enjoy how much this feels like a proper red wine. (3.75)

Overall: Looking at the ratings, I have to wonder if this beer suffers from infection issues - I've heard some bottles being over-carb'd/loaded with phenolic nastiness. Or maybe this is just marmite beer, I don't know. I do know that the stout portion of this beer is disappointing: it's thin and porter-esque. But the wine part of this beer kicks ass. It really does taste like a good pinot noir - ergo, wine lovers will get a big kick out of it. (3.75)

3.74/5: Caveat emptor, but I like it

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Photo of spoony
3.72/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 375 ml bottle into a snifter.

A-Tons of light brown head...tons of it. Seriously. Like four fingers-plus from a gentle pour (the cork basically jumped out the second I loosed the cage, so this wasn't surprising). Anyway, the brew is inky black. I couldn't see if there was any carbonation, but I assume there was because the head hung around for the entire glass and left considerable lacing.

S-Some dark, roasty malts, but also quote a bit of red wine and oak. There are hints of vanilla, too. A slightly different aroma for an imperial stout, and maybe a bit on the lighter side. Not much alcohol is present until the beer is room temp.

T-The taste was strangely tart with black cherry notes to go along with some mild roasted maltiness. It reminded me a bit of Madrugada Obscura from Jolly Pumpkin (or other sour stouts). There was just a touch of bitterness and very little alcohol heat. There was a slight soy sauce quality to it, as well that was not terrible, but not entirely pleasant.

M-Way too light for an imperial. The brew itself wasn't particularly light, but the level of carbonation makes this difficult to savor, and really detracts from the overall experience.

O-This beer has some potential to be a different type of imperial stout, and one that I enjoy. In fact, I actually enjoyed the smell and taste. Unfortunately, the over-carbonated nature makes the unique taste difficult to enjoy.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

No BB - from Warners.

Pours a massive four-finger tan head over black body. That from half the bottle first-up. Good lacing. (Plus five minutes to get the cork out!!!)

Aromas of roast malts, chocolate.

Taste is more chocolate, warmly alcoholic. Add coffee. Moderate bitterness builds as the bottle goes down to become quite roasty and charred..

Mouthfeel - quite light bodied, moderately carbonated.

I seem to be somewhat in the monority here, not really as bad as could be. More like an over-alcoholic foreign stout than an RIS tho.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.67/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12.7 oz corked and caged bottle, no date

Cork jumps out with a pop. The beer poured into the glass foams up like crazy, big 3" high tan head. Beer is jet black. Beer leaves nice rings of lacing, good head retention. Sharp fermented fruit aroma, bitter cocao as well. Similar flavor in the taste. Strong dry red wine flavors are pungent, acidic. Dry bitter roasty flavors as well. Medium body, coats the mouth.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.66/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep black in color, with a small, very dense tan head, thick glass-coating lacing. No carbonation is discernible.

Aroma: Begins with a strong punch of hops with notes of pine, and bitter grapefruit rind. Faint notes of coffee and roasted barley are also discernible, but are overwhelmed by the hops.

Taste: Opens with a strong wave of bitter cocoa, soon followed by cold coffee and roasted barley. The high alcohol content (10.2% ABV) is artfully concealed, it is a faint presence in the taste, and only mildly warming. As the taste progresses, the roasted barley and hops rise to ascendency. Late in the taste, distinct wood notes appear. Finishes with a moderate, herbal bitterness, which lingers on well after the end of the taste.

Mouth feel: Smooth, soft, full, quite pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: A pleasant,example, perhaps a bit lacking in balance, or perhaps it merely needs a few months of cellaring.

Presentation: Packaged in a 12.7 ounce custom green glass bottle with a cork and cage, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

Sourcing information: Purchased at Spec's in Texas on 02/15/2013, at $19.99 for a four bottle package.

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Photo of BowWowWowYippyYoIPA
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

No bottle date

Look - Pours very deep reddish brown, nearly black. Very thin light brown head with tiny bubbles. No clinging. 3.25 paws.

Smell - Very woody, a bit of cherry. Hints of chocolate and smoke with noticeable wine aromas that are almost tart. The chocolate becomes more pronounced the more I smell. Alcohol hiding underneath it all. 3.75 paws.

Taste - Very woody as with the nose. Lots of chocolate on the finish, lingering bitterness. Somewhat medicinal, with a band-aid flavor that develops. The pinot blends with the smoky chocolate malt to give a chocolate-cherry flavor. Bitter coffee flavors on the finish a well. Noticeable alcohol. 3.5 paws.

Feel - Medium bodies, somewhat creamy. A little flat, not much tingle on the tongue. 4 paws.

Overall - Not bad but seems a bit confused. It see-saws between nice and nasty, with the medicinal flavors being the most off-putting. 3.75 paws.

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Photo of tbeckett
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Local Taphouse as part of the Moa Tap Takeover. From notes.

A - Poured pitch black with no visible carbonation with a big fluffy two finger brown head. Decent retention with a full finger and spots of lace.

S - Lot's of sweet chocolate and red wine.

T - Strong vinous character was there with lot's of chocolate and a slight alcohol ting. The barrel is quite noticable.

M - Gentle carbonation with really full silky body and a grope-style finish of dryness.

O/D - An interesting imperial stout. Not complex, but the elements are nailed. Barrel seems to have really impacted this, almost taking away from other flavours that would pull through. Worth a shot for a different barrel character.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Somewhere between dark brown and black, sits this beer. Massive carbonation, head initially, leading into a deep recission and a drinker wondering "dude, where's my foam head?" Solid amount of roast, white wine barrel and smoke in the aroma.

Taste, interesting, made me think of Mikkeller's White Wine Barrel Black Hole at first, and while many think that beer (and this one apparently) are abominations, I kind of dig the juxtaposition of a white wine barrel and a 10% imperial stout. The excessive carbonation only furthers the influence of white grapes/white wine, the wood barrel is very rich in this one too. Because of the white wine and carbonation, I thought this one really hid the alcohol well and stayed light on its feet throughout. If you loathe white wine/pinot, you're going to loathe this beer I suspect. Its really prominent. The beer tastes anything but what it looks like. There even seems to be a little white pepper aspect to it as well.

$6 at Total Wine. I dunno if its worth it or not as a repeat purchase, but I think its good and different enough that everyone should try it at least once.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Wow, a shit ton of carbonation on this one, understated black, lots of brown color.

Interesting aroma, you get plenty of vinous white wine barrel, roast and just a tinge of smoke at the end of it.

Taste is more white wine barrel, the mouthfeel is extremely light given the carbonation and wine barrel for a beer of this magnitude. Its not just unique, its good, but not great by any means. Certainly a better price wise alternative than the Mikkeller White Wine barrel black hole, coming in between 2-3x as much cost wise as this beer, for essentially a thicker mouthfeel.

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Photo of Fcolle2
3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown nearly black in color with a thin frothy tan head. Smell has notes of chocolate malt with hints of dark fruit and oak. Taste has a slightly roasted chocolate malt flavor forward with a slightly dry oak notes, dark fruits and a alchohol heavy midsection. More oak barrel and a slightly tannic wine finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with slightly high carbonation for the style and a dry finish.

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Photo of Hawksfan79
3.57/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Pitch black with no highlights. Thick soapy, rocky mocha colored head.
Smells incredible, chocolate, very sweet and alcoholic. Slight caramel and licorice notes, and little bit of wine in the aroma.
Unfortunately it doesn't taste as good as it smells. Mostly Alcohol taste of alcohol and licorice. Little bit of roasted malts.
Thick medium to full bodied mouthfeel with a thick texture and an average carbonation. Alcohol warming with a dry finish.

This beer is really impressive in smell and appearance, unfortunately it's very average in flavor.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.56/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light brown, three-finger head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Black color, no highlights. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Dark roasted malt nose, flavor is earthy malts and bitter chocolate, hints of pinot noir. $5.00 for a caged & corked 375ml green bottle from Vinodivino Needham, MA.

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Photo of McStagger
3.56/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes.

A: Pours an unimpressive murky brown. Minimal head, moderate lacing. Light can easily pass through the edges.

S: Milk chocolate, bing cherry, toffee, malted milk chocolate. Small amounts of roastiness and coffee.

T: Milk chocolate, the same cherry. Some spicy elements, more roastiness in the finish. Finish is sweet and rounded.

M: Small for the mouthfeel. Slightly flabby.

O: Not a bad stout. Misses the depth of flavors of what many would consider "imperial".

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours an opaque black color. The head is a small cap of tan foam that dissipates within a few seconds. There is no lacing. The aroma is of chocolate and roasted malt with a faint whiff of astringent wine tannins. The taste is really mild for a 10% ABV beer. Hell, it would be mild for a 6% ABV beer. There is a more well balanced combination of the malts and tannins, but it is all really faint. The finish is quick, and leaves a clean palate. I don't really want a clean palate while drinking an Imperial Stout. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with mild carbonation. Overall, this beer is quite disappointing. I understand that not every huge stout is going to have a ton of complexities, but they should all at least have powerful flavor/aroma characteristics. This beer is simply weak.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A: about a two finger very frothy off white head on a jet black body with really no light getting through.

S: lots of wood character, mostly cedar and oak. roasted malts and floral notes. dark fruit notes.

T: interesting and unique flavor for sure. coffee and chocolate malts with the pinot noir minimally represented, less so than in the aroma, and mostly competing with the crispness of the carbonation.

M: medium body and very very high carbonation, almost like club soda level.

Overall: This one is good in some areas and poor in others. I was very interested in this one given the pinot noir barrel aging but it didnt meet those expectations.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.54/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Colonial Spirits.
Pours a solid dark brown/black color with a decent sized creamy off white head that persists forever. Smells of chocolate and caramel with a light roastiness and a hint of vanilla. Dark pitted fruits and a bit of grape skin round out the nose. This smells more like a sweet or a milk stout than an imperial. The flavor is lots of caramel and chocolate maltiness with bits of vanilla and pitted fruits.There is a vinous component and a hint of wood and alcohol as this warms. Medium to thick body with a light to moderate level of carbonation and a creamy smooth mouthfeel. Not exactly what I was thinking of when I bought this but it was a nice sipper just the same.

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Photo of tkdchampxi
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Disappointed.

Very humdrum.

I wish the pinot noir came through a bit more. Unfortunately, this was a 10.20% ABV beer that drank like a thinner 7.00% ABV stout. I'm not sure I liked this better than Sierra Nevada Stout, and definitely not better than Narwhal.

The beer hinted at its fruit/ wine heritage, but I had to add a splash of my own red wine to make it enjoyable. There was not distinct roast or malt character to this beer to truly make it seem different or worthy of its small, corked bottle presentation.

Mouthfeel was possible the worst part of this beer - not as thick as desired at all, and the carbonation was too present.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours solid black with a large, lasting head.
Nose shows char, roasted malt, cocoa and dark chocolate with a little smoke.
Similar flavours, but less complex. Roasted malt, booze. Not much else.
Body could be a bit thicker.
Pretty straightforward, whereas considering the alcohol content I would expect something more complex.

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Photo of Beerswag
3.45/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pour into st bernardus watou chalice..
Looks richly dark coffee brown active and spritzy for a barrel aged at 10.25%. Young pour as this is a new batch, yet I believe this beer is nice with the red fruit pinot and grape leaf bitterness on the tounge and nose. Strong alcohol presence.This is very dry, chocolate malts here with raisin, plum, and cherry on the nose; interesting blend of dark fruit flavours and vibrant berry like flavor. The barrel is carrying this beer through for me. Resiny dark chocolate and earthy front; boozey, fruity, pinot is a nice touch. A bit boozey and stringent bite upfront, hardly a complaint on the finish..Mouthfeel is medium to moderate heavy, carbonation is Medium. drinks a lot like a quad to me..Suprisingly not too sweet, since the wine balances the heavy booze with nice red fruit sour note.Toungue is coated now with pinot and woodsy oak. A good 3-5 hrs sitting on this one should increase the qualities of this beer.. I would appreciate this with black truffles, meats with horesradish and lemon(parsy/dill/fresh herbs), sweet-breads.

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Photo of Bung
3.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12.7 oz. it's black, pretty much no light gets through. Nice half finger of light tan head. Just stuck to the glass a bit.

Aroma, heavy road malt, anise, some plum and port like grape.

Taste, heavy roast malt, along with large plum, black currant. Herbal type hops, dark chocolate. Some earthy dry cocoa in the finish.
Struggled between 3 and 3.5 here, gave the nod.

Pretty thick body, could be full if not for the higher than normal carbonation. Drinks easy enough, but the high carb chops it up a bit, and adds a little more harshness. Improves as it warns though.

On the dry fruity side. Not overly expensive so worth a try, but temper your expectations.

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Photo of Beejay
3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Huge thanks to DmanGTR for the opportunity to try this brew.

A: The cork shot out with a loud pop. Pours chestnut brown, in the glass it is black with hints of deep crimson when held to the light.. I'd like to think it's the pinot noir shining through, but reason says it's not. Nice fluffy tan head on top.

S: Dark and roasted grain aroma comes out, light chocolate and licorice as well as a little bit of an earthy aroma. There is a rich berry aroma in the finish that I think is coming from the pinot noir barrels.

T: Interesting. Not quite the beast I was expecting. Coffee notes, as well as licorice. Some berry flavors, as well as a nice earthy bitterness. This beer is all about the finish, when a little more dark chocolate comes out, as well as some booze and a touch of a nut flavor.

M: Mouthfeel is remarkably light. Carbonation is a touch high for the style, although there is a bit of a creamy finish to it.

O: Overall a bit of a odd brew. The barrel process adds an interesting note, but I wish the base beer had a little more uumph.

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Photo of bound4er
3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

On tap at the Burger Bar in Vegas.

Interesting beer to say the least. Pours kind of flat...nice jet black appearance. Nose is somewhat muted - the pinot barrel influences are about all I detect. You can definitely taste the wine barrel notes of faint grape and oak. Not sure what to make of this beer - odd would be an apt descriptor. Glad to have tried it but one is enough.

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Photo of cvm4
3.35/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A - Took the cage off & the cork immediately shot up! Then the beer started bubbling out. I hate it when this happens. But, when I cleaned everything up & poured it pretty black, with a nice tan head and good lacing.

S - Musty, roasty, earthy & slightly sour.

T - Some coffee that transitions to sour grapes & ends with a dry chocolate.

M - Medium bodied with high carbonation. Not a fan of that combined.

O - It's interesting, to say the least, but just not well done, IMO.

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Photo of Chris912
3.33/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A nice sized bottle, caged and corked. Received this as an extra. Had some nice dark fruits on the nose and during the taste. Mouthfeel was medium, not much to write home about. I'd drink it again, but wouldn't seek it out.

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Photo of woemad
3.33/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12.7oz dark green caged and corked bottle purchased at Total Wine on the northside of Spokane. No obvious freshness date was found on the label or the bottle. Not my first Kiwi beer, but my first in a long while.

When poured, this beer was a shade of ebony that proved impervious to light. The pour had to be split, as there was an enormous, creamy, tan-colored foam head. Said head eventually dropped to about a quarter-inch, and left lots of lace on the sides of my glass.

The nose was of roasted malt, with a hint of wine - not surprising for a beer that was aged in pinot casks. As it warmed, the wine aroma became more intense, along with a brown sugary sweetness.

The taste began with a brown sugary-sweet flavor. Then, a red wine flavor kicks in that doesn’t really meld well with the previous aspect. There’s a very slight dryness at the swallow. The high alcohol content, initially unnoticeable, eventually creeps in, but the boozy heat remains deep in the background. All in all, I expected quite a bit more flavor from this.

Not as thick-bodied a beer as I expected. The mouthfeel was coating yet thin for the style.

This beer is a lot more interesting when you are looking at its label on the store shelf than when you are drinking it. Its failure to live up to explanations and its rather high price leads me to conclude I will not be trying this again.

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Moa Imperial Stout (Aged In Pinot Noir Barrels) from Moa Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 134 ratings.