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Epicurean Fig & Coffee - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Epicurean Fig & CoffeeEpicurean Fig & Coffee

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

53 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 53
Reviews: 21
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 9.51%
Wants: 7
Gots: 6 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
The Epicurean series is a celebration of the flavours and aromas that can be found within the diverse range of ingredients that brewers and chefs alike use in their creations. This beer is a culmination of hours of cerebration, experimentation, ocgitation and libation. And a sprinkling of dehydrated finesse.

(Beer added by: mulder1010 on 02-26-2012)
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Ratings: 53 | Reviews: 21 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.63/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pour at Woodshop 7 held at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

2011 vintage.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, coffee, and some slight fruity aromas. Taste is pretty much the same with a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but I think it smells better than it tastes.

Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of biboergosum
3.99/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, 2012 edition. A multifaceted collaboration amongst brewer, fig farmer, and barista, according to the Lagunitas-esque label-delineating text.

This beer pours a possibly clear, very, very dark chestnut-tinted black, with prominent mahogany highlights, and two fingers of puffy, loosely bubbly tan head, which leaves a broadly ambitious, random pattern of spectral lace around the glass as it lazily recedes.

It smells of bitter espresso and dark roast coffee, a very slight grainy oatmeal cereal malt essence, dry earthy black fruit, which I suppose must be the figs (something I'm not altogether familiar with), a bit of charred ash, and a mild musty hoppiness. The taste is more bitter, somewhat sour coffee beans, almost well blended with a creamy milkiness, quite un-Fig Newton-like figs, lightly roasted caramel malt, a touch of baker's chocolate, cheap cigar ash, a wee hint of anise, kind of weirdly watery coconut flesh, and an understated sweet simmering booziness.

The bubbles are mostly laid-back, with only a slightly edgy frothiness, the body a generally solid top-end medium weight, and mostly smooth, an inherent creaminess persisting from well before. It finishes on the modulated sweet side, as the bittersweet cocoa, milky coffee, oatmeal mush, and now even weaker Middle East black fruitiness facing up to a drying earthy hoppiness and lingering metallic booziness.

An enjoyable imperial stout, with the geographically proximate 'local' adjunct ingredients providing further agreeable flavours - coffeehouse notes chief among them, as the figs (the other promoted guest star here) not really doing much to stand out or make a splash. In the end, this offering is pretty tasty of its own accord, which mostly justifies the equally questionable larger serving and price tag.

Photo of Mora2000
3.78/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a tan head. The aroma is outstanding. I get a ton of coffee, as well as a little bit of chocolate and some dark fruit. The flavor is not as good as the aroma. I get the coffee, chocolate and roasted malt that I expected, but they are all a bit muted. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. An awesome smelling beer whose flavor doesn't live up to the aroma.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely dark, opaque black-brown colour, crispy at the edges, with a fine, slightly creamy tan head. Lacing is superb. The body is surprisingly light, however, and doesn't seem as thick as the style or the ABV would suggest. But overall, a very good looking brew.

Nose is redolent with big complex coffee aromas, giving characters from the husky, to the chocolatey, to the burnt. There's a lovely sweetness to it, but also a freshness—it reminds us of how fruity as well as how deep and dusky coffee can be. Yes, the coffee dominates, but there's a complexity to it even in its one-dimensionality.

Taste is smooth and light, with coffee bite on the front giving a crisp, oddly bright dark bitterness, that falls off into a soft, mellow chocolate finish. There's no harshness or residual bitterness on the finish, and the smoother characters from the added booze and possibly the coconut conditioning to much to make the ending a caress rather than a punch.

Feel is smooth enough, although I figured it would be a little heavier than it is.

Overall, a really nice brew from Epic, who have a tough record to continue when it comes to "really nice brews".

Photo of KAF
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of liamt07
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of dgilks
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Inky black with a creamy, tan head. Fair head retention and great lacing.

Smoky, slightly ashy, mildly phenolic aroma. There is a touch of sweetness too but this is all about the burnt, acrid roast. I'm not convinced barbequeing the figs was the best idea.

More "green", ashy roast. Mild fig notes that need to be sought out. Hints of coffee but nothing massive. More roast and a touch of alcohol.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good on the whole though it seems a touch fizzy for the flavour combination.

This beer is odd. The incredible ashiness is a little bit too much but I can taste the fig and coffee. A little more sweetness would probably help.

Photo of tbeckett
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Beer Deluxe. From notes.

A - Poured black with one finger of light brown head. Minimal lace and a film of retention.

S - HUGE coffee on the nose. Tons and tons of fresh coffee. Maybe a slight hint of fruits and roasted malt as well, but the majority of the nose is coffee.

T - Coffee is once again dominant. Fruits which I'm gonna guess are fig. Some smooth chocolate and a roasted element as well.

M - Light carbonation, full body and a sweet finish. Smooth stuff.

O/D - A neat, rich stout. Pretty solid for a coffee stout. Not sure if it's worth the price tag, but it's a tasty drop.

Photo of Brenden
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This stout is very dark brown, nearly black, but just shows some red-brown shine in the light. The head is half a finger of chocolaty brown cream that's dense and retains itself moderately well, dropping a modicum of patching as it goes.
The aroma has lots of roast, fresh ground coffee in particular, and it's like some of the freshest French roast you could smell. There's the same woody dryness and note of charred wood as comes out in the flavor, but more of a balancing creamy sweetness, almost vanilla-like, to accompany it as a figgy sweet/tangy combination rests underneath with less sharpness than in the taste.
The flavor is good, very good, in fact, just a little less refined than the aroma. It ends up showcasing the coffee most strongly by far, with mostly tanginess from fig and raisin-like notes as well, then transitioning even before the middle to lots of charred woods and some smokiness that comes into the finish.
The body isn't huge but it is full, and it fits for the style while holding up a light crispness that comes off a carbonation that's just enough to give it some movement. The real pleasure of the feel is a very creamy, soft smoothness that accompanies the big body.

Photo of rudzud
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bought this up at Hill Farmstead some time early last year. 2011 vintage.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a nice rich dark brown hue, not quite black, but with a massive creamy, dense two finger mocha head that fades to leave very nice lacing and a rich, creamy blanket. Awesome.

S - Nice rich bakers chocolate, sweet fig juice, the coffee is faint and subtle (more so just a good roast at the end), but with unfortunately a rather strong metallic aroma that just darts in and out.

T - Nice roast malt notes, coffee is faint, lingering on the finish. Oats lend nice creaminess to the beer. Chocolate baking powder, figs oddly enough are nearly absent. I was expecting this to be overly sweet, instead I get rich chocolate with the figs coming out in a very brief sweet flash at the start and then again when I lick my lips.

M - Mouthfeel is quite nice, silky smooth with just a hint of carbonation.

O - Overall, a nice beer. Perhaps I held onto it for a touch too long. Glad it was not overly sweet like I was dreading, but its just rather straight forward/lackluster considering the ingredients. Was not worth the $20 price tag for me.

Photo of illidurit
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of cbutova
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Chico for sharing. 2012 bottle.

A- 750ml poured to a tulip glass as well as a tall chalice. Light tan off white head forms to about a finger with a frothy texture. Decent retention but the cap falls to a fairly thick, creamy ring. Not much lace, some legs and only a few spots.

S- Coffee is probably the most prevalent thing here but certainly doesn't dominate as there is a lot going on. Fresh French press roasty coffee beans but very smooth. Dark dried fruits, cocoa and deep roast malts in the back drop.

T- The fresh, even from 2012, coffee notes are still quite strong with a medium roast coffee bean feel. Cocoa nibs, dark bitter chocolate, slight burnt, caramel, molasses and cereal grains come to mind. There is a general dark fruit feel but that could come from the yeast or aging, but I'm sure the figs have something to do with it. Coconut doesn't really show up for me.

MF- Moderately thick bodied with an oily slightly silky mouthfeel. Carbonation at a low end level but the complex roast coffee flavors ave the body from feeling overly thin, although it is a bit. Finishes with roast bitters on the palate.

Great coffee flavor, perhaps one of the better ones I can think of. Age seems to not affect it much for 8%.

Photo of StJamesGate
3.54/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clingy creamy, sienna head that trails over chocolate black body.
Aggressively sharp, acidic coffee nose.
Espresso grounds, dark dried fruit, slight hit of oily toasted coconut, maybe some mincemeat spice, and a woody end.
Smoky end and barky finish.
Lt-med, crisp, not especially creamy.

Coffee, coffee, coffee – and dark roast, too. Wouldn’t guess coconut or oatmeal if it didn’t say it on the bottle. Lean enough to be a porter, so at least that much is right.
Not unpleasant, but highway robbery at €25 for a 750ml bottle.

Photo of Dope
3.71/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a very dark brown, not quite black. Big dense and frothy light brown head. Fades slowly with good head retention. Only moderate splotches of lacing are left behind.

S: Well, loads and loads of fresh roasted coffee beans. I can't really get anything beyond that, maybe some creamy oatmeal but it's more or less like sniffing a mug of cold coffee. Not unpleasant but basic.

T: Coffee is still here but thankfully not as overpowering as in the aroma (it's still quite strong, however). Coffee beans up front with smooth and creamy oatmeal. Sweetness fades a bit, leaving more of a bitter coffee in the middle and into the finish. Mild but noticeable coconut in the finish, particularly in the lingering aftertaste. A little bitter coffee along for the ride in the aftertaste as well. Try as I might, I couldn't find any figs in this one.

M: Fairly medium bodied, smooth and creamy. Has a slick, almost oily mouthcoating effect.

O: Not a bad IS, but unfortunately it was better on paper than in execution. Very unbalanced, the coffee dominates heavily here. Oatmeal is barely noticeable unlike most oatmeal stouts. Coconut is only noticeable a little in the finish/aftertaste. No fig to speak of at all. It's just a coffee bomb stout, unfortunately. Having said that, it's not bad, just not nearly as good as it potentially could have. Poor balance of flavors although what is there is tasty enough. I guess I just feel a little let down after seeing the interesting ingredients listed on the bottle.

Photo of ngeunit1
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown-black color with a finger of frothy chocolate colored head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of roasted dark chocolate malts, coffee, figs, vanilla, coconut, with a bit of black licorice and molasses.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasted chocolate malts with figs, vanilla, and a bit of black licorice. Through the middle, the roasted coffee comes through with some coconut, oats, and molasses. The finish is a mix of roasted chocolate malts, coffee, fig, vanilla, molasses, oats, and touch of black licorice.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and a bit chewy with a sweet and roasty finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice imperial stout with some good complexity from the added ingredients. Overall nicely balanced.

Photo of Stinger80OH
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Morey
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of IronDjinn
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From a 750 ml brown bottle, 2012 edition. Pours out a dense opaque black, impermeable to light, with a frothy dark mocha head that settles quickly.

Intense aroma of roast coffee grounds, dry cocoa, hints of dark dried fruit and some oat sweetness..

Bitter dark malt, cocoa and of course roasted coffee start out the flavour, followed by a musty leafy hop presence in the middle, dark dried fruit along with some mint(!), with coffee grounds and earthy hops on the finish. Same character as the finish lingers into the aftertaste, though much milder.

On the beefier side of medium-bodied, a bit of a rough, grainy texture, with moderate carbonation.

Okay for the style, however all the extra fanfare (read: extra ingredients) doesn't do much to enhance it beyond the norm. Certainly not an average beer, it also doesn't really stand out amongst its peers either. Plus a bit of e let down given the fairly hefty price tag. Still gets points for being somewhat balanced, and certainly does deliver in the coffee department.

Photo of schopenhauerale
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of JRod1969
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of BAsbill
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of bobv
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of facesnorth
3.25/5  rDev -16.5%

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Epicurean Fig & Coffee from Epic Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.