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Tokyo* - BrewDog

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

669 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 669
Reviews: 259
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 15.74%
Wants: 67
Gots: 205 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
BrewDog visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  18.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: PartyBear on 08-29-2009

The irony of existentialism, the parody of being and the inherent contradictions of post-modernism, all so delicately conveyed by the blocky, pixelated arcade action have all been painstakingly recreated in this bottles contents. This imperial stout is brewed with copious amounts of speciality malts, jasmine and cranberries. After fermentation we then dry-hop this killer stout with a bucketload of our favourite hops before carefully ageing the beer on French toasted oak chips. It is all about moderation. Everything in moderation, including moderation itself. What logically follows is that you must, from time, have excess. This beer is for those times.

90 IBU
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 669 | Reviews: 259
Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle. Ah, moderation redefined...

This beer pours a solid black abyss, with very slight cola edges, and a healthy three fingers of dense, caked, beige head, which leaves some mushroom cloud/Joshua tree lace around the glass as it settles. It smells of sweet caramel, treacle, boozy cranberry sauce, black licorice, jasmine tea (my heretofore only exposure to the scent), and earthy, floral hops. The taste is big sweet chocolate malt, somewhat tart cranberries, a bit of toffee, vanilla, some fairly saccharine floral notes, soft earthy hops, and a surprisingly mild warming alcohol. The carbonation is actually noticeable, but not all that pushy, the body medium-full in weight, a bit sticky, but smooth amidst a boozy edge. It finishes still quite sweet, the fruit and florals aiding and abetting up front, the liquor doing so on the down low.

A generally enjoyable big (nae, huuuge) stout, if just a bit too one-sided in its multifaceted sweetness. It would have been nice to have perceived the dry-hopping with their unspecified 'favourite hops', at least to balance things out a wee bit more. Anyways, this is one herculean effort at hiding so much ABV, that I have to give credit were it is due. Moderation - R.I.P. Logic - on death watch.

Photo of mrfrancis
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an inky, opaque black with a fizzy tan mousse that sticks around longer than expected.

S: Intense aromas of dried cranberry, pomegranate, jasmine, oak, roasted grain, coffee, chocolate, and sherry are present on the nose.

T: Opens sweet and woody with notes of black cherry, pomegranate, fig, dried cranberry, oak, roasted grain, coffee, bitter chocolate, jasmine tea, and sherry. The finish is long and intense with the jasmine and fruit flavors fully blending with the robust sherry notes. Quite lovely, though I was expecting more prominent hopping.

M: Medium-to-full bodied and relatively dry with lively, active carbonation.

O: This is a really nice stout. Its unique flavor profile clearly sets it apart from other beers of this style. Worth a shot if you can find it.

Photo of brotherloco
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle. Batch -002. Best Before 14/12/19. Served in a tulip.

Bottle is red asterisk "Tokio" version. ABV is 18.2%

Pours almost pitch black with a decent head for a high ABV beer. Over a finger of dark beige foam, settles to a thin head with a thick ring. Lacing disappears quickly.

Strong sweet aroma. Chocolate malts, chocolate covered cherry notes, vinous sherry notes, dark fruits, molasses, some dry roastiness. A touch of spice.

Taste does not let down the strong aroma. Sweet, more like a barleywine than a stout. Vinous fruity notes kick in quickly and tingle on the tongue. Transitions into a rather roasty, and bitter coffee finish, but sweetness doesn't completely go away. The finish might be the contribution of the toasted French oak, but hops play a big part too. Amazingly, I'm not really tasting the alcohol, but after a few sips you really feel it on your tongue, a slight numbing sensation. This is definitely a sipper.

Body is a bit thinner than I was expecting, and carbonation is right around medium. Very drinkable for the strength.

Photo of mikehblack
3.38/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 007. Poured into a snifter.

A- Black with brown edges. Khaki head dissipates very quickly into a thin ring. Leaves tons of alcohol on the glass.

S- Nose is sweet with heavy heat. Finding some roasted malts and dark fruit in there but the alcohol just dominates.

T- Like a Port wine, sweet and with lots of fruit depth. Chocolate and coffee notes are hidden by the high alcohol. Burns on the way down.

M- Very nice silky mouthfeel, coats the tongue and roof of mouth. Leaves a trail of heat.

O- Pretty interesting but it could use a good amount of time to bring down the heat. It is way too boozy right now.

Photo of ThaCreep
3.51/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Black with brown highlights, it feels especially sweet flavors. That is to say, no chocolate or coffee but the jasmine flower, alcohol, soft acidity and a little cranberry. On the palate, it is first surprised. Indeed, for an imperial stout, you do not feel at all the roasted malt, coffee, chocolate or anything else, which is rather strange. By cons, alcohol is now faster and with overwhelming power and very warming.

What damage - except for the ABV pretty impressive that makes Tokyo* looks closer liquor than beer - that alcohol totally eclipse infusions of jasmine and cranberries. This gives a bit of a strong drink, such as sweet / flavored vodka more than an original beer.

What a shame, because the idea was good.

Photo of heygeebee
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been wanting to try this for a while. Shared bottle.

Pours syrupy black with slight lacing.

Licorice on nose, not a lot else.

Taste is malt heaven initially, with caramel and licorice, without the usual stout roast flavours. As it warms, sweetness comes in and starts to dominate.

Mouthfeel heavy but fabulous. The alcohol is hidden, but you still just sip.

A real gem of a find - not to have every day, but glad to have had as a shared bottle.

Photo of smakawhat
4.29/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass. Batch 007, with best before listed as 15-01-21. My bottle distinctly says "tokio" without the distinct "y" but this is the same beer based on the description.

Snap crackle pop rice crispies Batman. What a fizzy sound out of the bottle. Head of cocoa brown just can't be made and disintegrates quickly. Extremely filmy wet like coating and watery appearance. Classic dark walnut brown though with wet hues. I am kind of torn on appearance, it has a mix of good and bad so I am scoring it down the middle.

Nose is strong. Barleywine fruit tart berry and booze. Soft milk chocolate but mostly a large amount of.heat. Red swedish fish and chocolate but mostly hot alcohol. Stronger swirls bring up brine, pickle, and some slight turpentine. Yikes!

Taste is extremely fruity. Wine like viscosity and mild char roast. Extremely noticeable fruitiness of red fruits, cherry, cranberry, raspberry and so forth. A very surprisingly heat tolerance on the palate that isn't jarring or dry. Just a surprising small amount of fizz that gives some candy like sweet action. Some tobacco and tannic qualities in the aftertaste also.

I thought after the pour I was really not going to like this but I am actually rather enjoying this complex palate, and wine texture. A true sipper if there ever was one. I had fun and I want more!

2.31/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Reviewed from notes 08/26/11 at the Bad Apple.

Pours a deep black, no head. Smells of straight malt. Hints of chocolate, and coffee but no hop aroma. Not much going on. Tastes rough and boozy giving way to more complex chocolate, cranberry and vanilla notes. Aftertaste is way too harsh though, even for a Imperial Stout lover like me. It was fun to try and there was definitely some nice flavors in there, but way too much of a hot mess. Tasted like cough syrup as it warmed as well. I'm not a Brewdog hater but this just didn't agree with me.

Photo of czfreeman
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed at my SC, given to me around a year ago, batch 04.
Opening and pouring:
Pours a ruby black tone, light head that dissipates nearly immedialy.
Smell immediatley recalls a port wine. Rich red wine aromatics-vanilla, tobacco, cherry,cranberry,molasses,nice burn of spicy .alcohol on the finish. Pepper, spiced figs. Caramel,
Flavor is very warm, and very sweet. vanilla tcherry, oak, tobacco, fig, spicy pepper, molasses, burn. alomond, spices akin to clove round out the flavor lingering in sweet vanilla.
Mouthfeel need a bit of carbonation to perk things up. The caramel sweet body is nice, I would love to serve this to a port wine drinker.
I will use this as a pairing beer.

Photo of jrenihan
3.89/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer pours a murky dark brown. While pouring, looks a little like swamp water. No head.

Smell is filled with oak, vanilla and booze. Jasmine is there as well. Clearly a strong brew from the scent alone.

Taste is VERY boozy, and very sweet. Oak and vanilla bound, and jasmine is there s well. I would not have identified the cranberry without knowing it was there- not because it is not noticeable, but it is such an unusual flavour in a beer that I do not think I would have placed it. It is clearly there once recognized. Roasted malt is present as well. A lot going on in this beer, and it is VERY strong.

More carbonated than is typical for the style. Lots of alcohol heat. Heavy body, but not overly so.

This is a good beer in many ways, but it is simply too strong. Toned down to a more moderate 12% or so (??!), this could be very nice. As it is, it is just a little too much to really enjoy. Definitely some nice flavours.

Photo of Squelch
2.5/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

appearance: Jet black. no head. opaque.

smell: Alcohol. Malt. no hop aromas here.

Taste: Strongly sweet. Artificial. overly sweet in my book.

Mouthfeel: HEAT from the alcohol.

Overall: Do not like this one. WAY too much alcohol. Very unique beer but maybe not a beer at all?!

Photo of evlu1441
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This will be the second highest ABV beer I've ever had. I'm rather excited.

It pours pitch black with a thin, yet slightly foamy tan head.

The aroma is very strong and robust. There is distinctive toffee and chocolate aromas, but the alcohol lends towards a perfumy aroma. I'm really enjoying this. It fills the room with a very rich smell.

The taste is very sweet! It's almost too sweet! The flavours of toffee and molasses come through very clearly. It has a very syrupy mouthfeel. The hoppy aroma comes through in the finish adding some aromatic and earthy flavours. The alcohol is present throughout, but isn't unpleasant.

Overall, I shared this bottle, and can't imagine finishing a whole one on my own, but it is a very luxurious beer. I'm liking it.

Photo of DoktorZee
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch ten, best before 04-04-2021! Decided to open it a bit early..:)

Poured from a bottle into a schooner.

A - deep, dark brown color rather than black. Has some chunky residue floating in it; also appears cloudy. Tan head, about a finger high largely dissipates after a couple minutes leaving some streaky lacing.

S - not a huge nose on it; has some licorice, but also some leather and even astringent odors

T - the flavor is completely dominated by the alcohol, with the strong warming effect right up front, and only some hints of dark fruit, chocolate and coffee in the background. Also has a bit of a spicy finish that endures impressively long. Doesn't really taste like a beer, but instead some sort of evil mixed drink!

M - thick and syrupy with some light carbonation. Totally coats the mouth and the alcohol seriously warms things up.

D - drinkable only over a looong session. Powerful and somewhat off-putting with its alcohol. Sipper to the max.

Very interesting beer, though in some ways in really transcends what i'd normally call a beer. A very novel experience, but not necessarily one i'd have again.

Photo of kcopelan002
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a plastic cup. I shared half of the bottle with a friend. It was a good thing I did because this is a very strong beer. I'm not saying it was bad just that I would struggle to finish the whole bottle by myself.

Appearance- Dark brown with a soft tan head.
Smell- A nice blend of fruit with a sweet alcohol smell
Taste- A straight kick in the mouth to start. At the end I tasted the , cranberries and molasses
Mouthfeel- Syrupy. i could definitely taste the alcohol.
Overall- A warning for this beer not for the faint of heart.

Photo of fatmcb1
3.54/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a snifter

Pours black with dark brown edges. A finger of head dissipates to nothing. No lacing is left on the glass.

Smell is very complex, with plenty of chocolate, sweet malt, and alcohol. There is a background of dark fruit and hops.

Malt is a bit overpowered by dark fruit and alcohol. There is certainly still some chocolate, but it's not as pronounced as it is in the nose.

Mouthfeel is a bit light. The higher abv is not particularly well masked.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer more as it warmed up. I would add additional malt and make it thicker. Only for the brave.

Photo of Fenris244
4.84/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into my duvel tulip

Pours almost jet black in color(upon closer inspection is a dark brown but whatever) almost no head, bit of lacing from what little there is.

Aromas of jasmine and coffee(weird) and some sweetness like apples and cranberries as well as some chocolate and spice and some of that roasted malt as well as a nice earthiness, more aromas than i can count in this thing.

Wow, sweet up front with berries and raisins and some brown sugar and mellows out quickly into something almost like cinnamon and clove, the alcohol kicks like a mule on the finish and the beer is rounded out by some chocolate and some beautiful roasted malt bitterness.

Heavy in body, and just smooth enough to balance out the jagged edge of the alcohol

Overall? Its not refreshing or crisp or subtle hits like a damn hammer and I couldnt be happier, this is on of the best beer experiences I've ever had. It hits hard has a fantastic balance of flavor and is one the best brews I've ever had

Photo of jondeelee
4.79/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Note: This is a review of "Tokio" with a red asterisk--the 18.2% ABV version--as opposed to bottles with the "Tokyo" spelling, with a white asterisk, or sans asterisk altogether. The beer--subtitled an "intergalactic fantastic oak aged stout"--is noted on the label as having been brewed with cranberries and jasmine, then dry hopped and aged on French toasted oak chips.

Tokio begins with the kind of aroma that lets you know your tastebuds are in for an ass-kicking (as if the 18.2% ABV wasn't enough): huge sugary malts, bursting with crystallized sugars, fig and port aromas, oranges, brown sugars, molasses, candied dried fruits, cognac, and anise, and rosewater hops which add a heaping dose of pine and grapefruit.

On the tongue, the beer begins with a sugary-sweet lure of brown sugars, raisins, and figs, then takes a sudden plunge into the bitter and dark, bringing in paralyzing doses of, in order, black malt, espresso, tobacco, ash, whiskey, cognac, and vodka, as the brew lingers on the tongue, the flavors change, and the sugars die off to reveal the massive alcohol content. I'm not exactly sure where the cranberries and jasmine come into play, as my tongue is overwhelmed by these darker, more alcoholic flavors (perhaps they help temper them?), but the presence of the oak chip aging definitely adds overtones of wood and char. Even the hops, coming in at 90 IBUs, take a backseat to the malts, and are mostly noticeable late in the mouthful, especially in the long-lingering aftertaste, where they are accompanied by chocolate and black malts, with hints of whiskey. Mouthfeel is an alcoholic medium-heavy, and carbonation is medium-light.

Overall, I'm impressed by the craft of this beer, as it's difficult to imagine how so many flavors have been crammed into one bottle. The mix feels supersaturated, the ingredients fighting for attention, but simultaneously working in harmony. This is, however, a sipping beer, and definitely not for the faint of heart. The sheer levels of alcohol and flavor in this would, I suspect, make a guzzler quite sick, and I doubt the casual beer drinker would appreciate (much less like) what they're tasting. But if you're on the lookout for something impressive, daring, and cutting-edge, this is certainly a good place to start.

Photo of AgentMunky
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1/3 pint served in a Teku glass in the BrewDog bar in Edinburgh. From notes. Reviewed 7 June 2011.

A: Thick finger of head fades softly, leaving traces on the sides and surface. Murky dark-brown.

S: Hrm. Deep, heavily alcoholic, fruity, and...stoutish. Very sweet. Strong and nice.

T/M: Thick, creamy, and strong, but with an odd fruity twang (cranberry?) and somewhat misplaced carbonation. Sweet like a liqueur. Lighter on the endtaste. A bit...not harsh, but it drys/burns the mouth like liquor. Rounder, and nicer than the bottle I had about a year ago. The aftertaste is wetly sweet and dryingly bitter. Jasmin-vanilla notes may be my imagination. Smokiness?

O: I dig this beer a lot more months later and on-tap. This, I would recommend. And drink again. Several times, probably.

Photo of k7sw
4.45/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. The first thing I noticed upon opening the bottle was the overwhelming scent. It smelled very strongly of Whiskey (Jack Daniels probably), presumably from the oak chips.
A- Poured with a 1 finger head reduced to a thin, nicely laced head. Overwhelmingly dark, almost entirely opaque. Could only see the tiniest bit of red around the edge.
S- Strong whiskey scent, I was quite partial to it. Bit of soy sauce.
T- The oak is apparent in it's taste. Hint of jasmine is there. Couldn't really pinpoint the cranberry. There wasn't much to mask the flavor of the alcohol.
M- Carbonation was perfect. Brought out the flavor without overpowering it. Warming (and it would be at 18.2 percent
O- I was stunned at the first sip and the finish followed through. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer.

Photo of jdhilt
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a three finger brown head that fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Good carbonation and heavy bodied. Black color, no highlights, some yeast left in bottle. Dark fruit, alcohol nose and flavor is molasses, dark fruit and alcohol. Nice IS. Best by Dec 2019, couldn't wait! Expensive at $13.95 for a 330ml bottle from Bert's Better Beers Hooksett, NH.

Photo of depechemode1983
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color almost seems black but is actually very dark brown and with a reddish glow to it. Head retention is low and there is just a bit of lacing. Smells like soy sauce upfront. In the background you get dark berries, raisins, and smokey leather. The taste is very port like. Sweet cherries and grapes, tart blueberries, chocolate. I could go on and on. Very complex on the taste. The alcohol is surprisingly toned down for the abv. Its there but not in your face. Mouthe feel is medium bodied, smooth, soft, and low carbonated. Pretty damn good. Its almost like drinking a fine port wine. Overall Im glad I purchased this beer. A very good extreme beer experience.

Photo of WankelEngine
4.54/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2 ounce bottle into a snifter

A: This brew is almost pitch black with just a hint of brown when held up to a light. There is no head or lacing to speak of, although there was about half a finger of large brown bubbles during a vigorous pour which disappeared within seconds of finishing the pour.

S: The first thing I notice and the backbone of the smell are roasted malts and molasses. This quickly gives way to a medley of scents including oak, licorice, dark fruits, coffee and, last but certainly not least of all, alcohol.

T: There are so many flavors going on here that it’s hard to get them all put down. There is a moderately strong oak flavor and a very powerful taste from the alcohol which combine to give the beer an interesting spiciness. The roasted malts I noticed in the smell are here again but milder, acting more as a platform for bitter dark chocolate and coffee flavors. This is balanced a bit by some fruits. There is definitely the more standard group of dark fruit flavors that one finds in imperial stouts, but I can also make out some lighter fruit flavors, likely from the added cranberries. Also adding to the sweetness are notes of vanilla and maybe even a little bit of bourbon. There is a noticeable amount of hops that add a light floral flavor. The finish is long, bitter, and heavy on the coffee, hops and especially the alcohol.

M: Pretty thick without being syrupy or unpleasant. Though it seems like there is next to know carbonation, there are some light small bubbles with give an enjoyable effervescence which complements the spicy burn of the alcohol.

O: A fantastic brew but not for the faint of heart. This cost me 13 dollars for an 11.2 ounce bottle and it was worth every penny. I’ll probably be buying two more bottles to cellar. I think cellaring might help temper the strong alcohol flavor and make it easier and more pleasant to drink.

Photo of caryt
4.41/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on-tap at the Green Dragon, Portland, OR.

A - The color is a deep mahogany with a small cream colored head lacing.

S - The smell is overpowering making you think, "what did I get myself into here." The smell of alcohol hides any taste expectations to come.

T - Sour cherries, molasses, some smoke, and surprisingly not as much booze as you expect from the smell.

M - The mouthfeel takes a sip to get used to due to the acidity but after that it is amazingly drinkable for 18.2% and delicious.

O - This is a great unique beer and I'm extremely happy I walked into. This is a must try for anyone who indulges in this style of beer. It doesn't compare to anything

Cheers to BrewDog for another successful extreme beer venture.

Photo of diamondc
4.62/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: For such a high abv beer, this one sure has good head retention and lacing. Pitch black. Mocha colored head.

S: Oak-y, chocolate, dark berries way out in the open, coconut and licorice. Awesome.

T: Wood chips, dark berries, sweet milk chocolate, surprisingly light roasted malts. A pleasant dry, earthy bitterness on the aftertaste.

M: Sweet, almost bordering on cloying, but luckily never getting there. This is really 18% abv? It's not that noticeable until the very end.

O: A great beer experiment, these guys are brewing some of the best 'extreme' beers right now.

Photo of thagr81us
2.64/5  rDev -33%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served from bottle into a Surly Darkness snifter. Poured pitch black with a one and a half finger light brown fizzy head that subsided to a half finger slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, peat, raisins, dark fruit, maple syrup, and alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, dark fruit, wood, peat, massive alcohol, and maple syrup. It had a heavy feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall I was not really a big fan of this one. It just seemed like a big mess to me if I'm honest. As you probably know this one is pretty high ABV and it definitely lets you know this fact right out of the gate. Not a whole lot of balance going on in this one at all as the alcohol truly dominates this brew. While it is a LITTLE sweet up-front, it doesn't stand a chance again the booze. To be fair, it did smooth out some when it warms up, but not much. Also upon warming the aroma actually made my eyes burn! Worth trying at least once to say you did, but I will not be having this one again...

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Tokyo* from BrewDog
88 out of 100 based on 669 ratings.