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Cocoa Psycho - BrewDog

Not Rated.
Cocoa PsychoCocoa Psycho

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

240 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 240
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 13.2%
Wants: 11
Gots: 38 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
BrewDog visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Welcome to the world of Cocoa Psycho, a liquid dimension where pure indulgence reigns.

Originally brewed some 250 years ago to celebrate the Russian Royal Family, this 10% Imperial Russian stout borrows from the decadence of the time with its extravagantly smooth blend of crushed coffee beans, cocoa nibs and dark malts.

But continue to dig a little deeper, past the infusions of vanilla pods and toasted oak chips, and eventually you'll come face-to-face with the madness required to make this beer; a kind of insanity that would have made Rasputin himself proud.

To fully unleash the aromas and bittersweet luxury of this stout, we recommend drinking it from a stemmed beer glass before taking a sledgehammer to a Faberge Egg.

(Beer added by: dgilks on 03-14-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 240 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +1.5%

djrn2, Feb 02, 2014
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +1.5%

spycow, Sep 28, 2014
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

acurtis, Feb 02, 2014
Photo of metter98
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color—slight traces of red are visible near the edge of the glass when it is held up to a bright light. It poured with a quarter finger high mocha-colored head that left a large patch of bubbles in the center and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of coffee beans and roasted malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of bitter coffee beans along with hints of roasted malts, cocoa nibs and oak. Coffee-like bitterness lingers through the finish. No alcohol is perceptible. The taste seems to get a little better as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied and slightly chalky on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer isn't as full-bodied compared to other Russian Imperial Stouts and seems like it could have more dominant aromas and flavors.

metter98, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Texasfan549, Apr 24, 2014
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +1.5%

kjkinsey, Sep 14, 2013
Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

GRG1313, May 11, 2014
Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev +1.5%

ygtbsm94, Jan 13, 2014
Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +1.5%

kylehay2004, Mar 27, 2014
Photo of Knapp85
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Knapp85, Jun 01, 2014
Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

SocalKicks, Apr 14, 2014
Photo of nickfl
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

nickfl, Feb 10, 2014
Photo of mendvicdog
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

mendvicdog, Nov 26, 2013
Photo of MarkyMOD
4/5  rDev +1.5%

MarkyMOD, May 01, 2014
Photo of kojevergas
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label and branded black and gold pry-off pressure cap acquired at a local bottle shop for $12.99 USD and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. 10% ABV confirmed per the label. "Batch 218. Best before: 13-09-18." Expectations are above average given the description - "Imperial russian [sic] stout brewed with coffee, chocolate and vanilla." Reviewed as a Russian imperial stout for obvious reasons.

Served at fridge temp and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours an absolutely gorgeous rich tan colour head - 2.5 fingers wide - with an impeccable shiny complexion. Good creaminess and thickness. Appealingly frothy. Soft looking. Retention is great for the high ABV - at least 9 minutes. There's some sticky inconsistent lacing on the sides of the glass as the head recedes too. Love how rich and dark it is.

Body colour is a predictable opaque solid black. I wouldn't call it jet black, but it's dark. No yeast particles or hop sediment are/is visible. Appears aptly carbonated.

In short, I'm craving the first sip. While far from unique, this is how a Russian imperial stout should look. Good execution.

Sm: Roasty creamy coffee/java notes. Even a bit of a burnt espresso edge. Dark malts. Chocolate malts. Burnt sugars. Char. Molasses. I have trouble finding the vanilla; it's not very explicit and seems obscured by the cream. The cacao nibs are similarly unevocative; I don't find the richness I expect from true cacao nibs, and can only find a pretty generic chocolate character.

Still, the coffee works well with the burnt character, and the roast is lovely. I'm really looking forward to trying this. As it warms, I almost pick up on a cayenne powder note, but I'm probably just tricking myself. It does have the dustiness of cocoa powder.

Overall a very inviting aroma. Moderately strong.

No yeast character or hop character is detectable. The roastiness tames any malty sweetness, suggesting a very balanced flavour profile.

T: I do find that cayenne/chili powder note here; it's got a bit of heat. Cocoa powder, dark malts, chocolate malts, and a kiss of roasted barley comprise the foundation. The coffee character is less interesting here than the aroma suggested; I do find a bit of roast and burnt grounds, but there isn't much depth or diversity of flavour. Char, burnt sugars, molasses. Light cream. Faint kisses of vague dark fruits emerge as it warms. No hop character, alcohol, or overt yeast character comes through.

Boy, any vanilla is extremely reticent here. The cacao nibs are equally unevocative to the point that I'd question if any were even really used. Why is this called Cocoa Psycho, again? I'm not finding any oak, either.

The sweetness is very well balanced by the roast. BrewDog handles the complexity of this beer well, balancing each note carefully. There's even some subtlety here. That said, for the style it's not uniquely intricate or nuanced. The shallowness of flavour is definitely disappointing. Average flavour intensity and duration.

It's a damned enjoyable beer overall, and I really like it. It boasts a gestalt build and plenty of layers of flavour.

Mf: Near perfectly coarse and dry - in large part due to the well-utilized roasted barley and coffee roast. But the creaminess lends it just enough smoothness and wetness to prevent it from being rough or scratchy on the palate. Medium to full-bodied, with apt thickness. Not too filling. Has a good overall presence on the palate, with a fitting softness and near ideal carbonation.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, or harsh.

Texture suits the taste well overall.

Dr: A very drinkable and enjoyable imperial stout with plenty to offer the discerning drinker. I'll easily murder this bottle and wish this was sold by the 6 pack (albeit at a much more reasonable price). In fact, I'd go so far as to say I could and would easily kill a 6 pack of this in a single sitting - it's that tasty. While the price point is a strong deterrent to buying this again, I do think every beer appreciator should give this a spin just once. Definitely one of BrewDog's better offerings. I'd recommend it to friends and trade partners. Well worth trying.

Strong B+

kojevergas, Apr 17, 2014
Photo of oriolesfan4
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

oriolesfan4, Nov 15, 2013
Photo of wrightst
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

wrightst, Jun 19, 2014
Photo of dbrauneis
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque though still clear extremely dark and thick jet black with very faint traces of gentle visible carbonation along the edges of the glass and faint dark cola brown highlights. The beer has an eighth of a finger tall sudsy foamy dark mocha head that reduces to a small patch of very thin film and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Minimal amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of bittersweet chocolate and coffee bean with moderate aromas of vanilla and just a hint of roasted malts. Very light aromas of oak as well.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of roasted malts with a light hint of ash. That is followed by moderate to strong flavors of rich dark chocolate (more bittersweet than sweet), freshly roasted coffee, oak, and vanilla. Light hints of earthiness. There is a light to moderate amount of bitterness present in the finish which does not linger for long.

M: Just shy of full bodied with light amounts of carbonation. Thick and viscous yet smooth. Hints of dryness towards the finish.

O: Very rich and decadent, one that I really enjoyed though this is definitely a slow sipping beer. Definitely one of the more expensive beers that I have picked up recently, but definitely worth trying. Alcohol is relatively well hidden.

dbrauneis, Mar 23, 2014
Photo of Billolick
4.01/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Birdsall House in Peekskill, NY

Pours damn near to black, under a very dark, rich and creamy mocha head that leaves nice solid rings of sturdy lacing with every sip.

Sweet mocha/chocolate/dark grains nose

On the palate, waves of chocolate, malt balls and again smooth and flavorful dark grains.

10% well masked, super smooth, dangerously delicious and easy drinking.

Quality RIS-happy to get to savor it on tap...

Billolick, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of wl0307
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Coming in a slim 330ml brown bottle, BB 11/12/2013, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass.

A: pitch black in colour, coming with a dark khaki foamy head retreating slowly to a rim to last, on top of rather mild carbonation.
S: jammy dark fruits, dates, dark chocolates, sweet coffee, vanilla, marzipan and aromatic roast nuts abound, with a whiff of warming alc. lurking in the background and some Fuggles-like aromatic hoppiness.
T: a lubricating swallow of roast malts, syrupy chocolates and licorice-coffee precedes a rather neat mid-taste of mild hoppiness and weighty spicy bitterness balanced by a decent lease of acidity from both dark fruits and roast coffee beans, leaving a lightly spicy bite at the end of each long sip. Chewy, bitter-sweet, aromatically coffee-ish and nutty-malty goes the long finish.
M&O: full-bodied, softly carbonated and just lightly lubricating on the palate, this fulsome, chocolaty, coffee-ish and fruity Imperial Stout is executed beautifully on the balance, with the alc. strength hidden a bit too well…

wl0307, Oct 22, 2013
Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

duceswild, Nov 15, 2013
Photo of Gonzoillini
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Gonzoillini, Feb 15, 2014
Photo of Mebuzzard
1.86/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.75

Sampled at the Great International Beer Fest sponsored by Elite Brands.

Pours a dark ruby red, very dark. Looks thick and rich, not much of a head, if you can call it that.

Oof. Aroma is booze and nail polish remover. Hot, burn....not a hint of anything RIS

Flavor is just a mess. The booze kills everything. Cocoa is burnt and barely alive. Malt is putrid.

Not even a sipper beer. Too hot, too messy

Mebuzzard, Jun 01, 2014
Photo of BillRoth
4/5  rDev +1.5%

BillRoth, Jan 27, 2014
Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

iL0VEbeer, Jul 21, 2014
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Cocoa Psycho from BrewDog
88 out of 100 based on 240 ratings.