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Dark Seas - Mission Brewery

Not Rated.
Dark SeasDark Seas

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

555 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 555
Reviews: 140
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 9.54%
Wants: 31
Gots: 60 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Mission Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: srandycarter on 12-08-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 555 | Reviews: 140 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

9.8% ABV per the label.

Pours a super thick and opaque black with a foamy 2 inch amazingly dark khaki head that settles to a thin cap on top of the beer. Thin foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, and some coffee bean aromas. There is a slight cinnamon aroma that comes out as the beer warms. Taste is of dark roasted malt, dark cocoa powder, coffee beans, and some subtle port wine flavors. There is nice roasty bitterness and alcohol warming in the back of the throat with each sip. This beer has a really thick and creamy mouthfeel with a low level of carbonation. Overall, this is a very good RIS that took me by surprise.

Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of metter98
4.06/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a finger high dark tan head that slowly died down but consistently left a thin head covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of chocolate and roasted malts are present in the nose along with some notes of coffee beans.
T: Flavors of roasted malts stand out in the taste, which also has notes of chocolate and a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and rather dry with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This Russian Imperial Stout is easy to drink but is complex enough to make it a peasant to sip. It masks its alcohol very well.

Photo of kjkinsey
4.5/5  rDev +10%

Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of kylehay2004
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of jaydoc
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color with low carbonation and very little in the way of head formation. Heavy on the roasted malt with lots of licorice and coffee, maybe some molasses, too. The flavor has a nice burnt sugar flavor to it as well as some toffee and molasses sweetness. Quite a bit of roast with a bit of coffee to break up the sweetness of the beer.

Photo of Knapp85
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out a beautiful black color, nice oily looking body with a dark brown colored head on top. The retention was very impressive on this beer. The lacing was good too. The smell of the beer is heavily roasted and almost has a burnt chocolate note to it. The hops slide in there a little bit as well. The taste of the beer is rich, roasted, chocolaty, some coffee in there too the bitterness of some intense hops sting the tongue in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is nice and thick, good carbonation to it also. Overall this is a pretty damn good RIS. I would drink this one again.

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of biboergosum
4.19/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle, 9.8% ABV. Wasn't it actually a Russian queen who was so fond of this style introduced by the English? An urban beer myth, maybe?

This beer pours a solid oily black abyss, no highlights, no way, with three fingers of densely foamy, bubbly, and kind of glistening chocolate milk head, which leaves some decent stretches of rock cliff profile painted lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells strongly of medium-dark cocoa, lightly toasted caramel malt, thick toffee, heavy dark fruit - dates and prunes - dry roast coffee beans, soft anise notes, an indistinct earthy hoppiness, and hints of warming alcohol. The taste is still big and chocolatey, the roasted malt leaning heavily in that direction, with some further caramel/toffee/treacle sweetness, semi-sour dried black orchard fruit, more charred, somewhat acrid cold coffee, lightly bitter leafy hops, and a bristling, but still as yet chained-up booze.

The carbonation is a little fizzy and frothy at first, but settles to a dull din soon enough, the body an unctuous, luscious medium-heavy weight, with a sateen creaminess, and smooth by acclimation. It finishes on the sweet side, the chocolate, caramel, and lingering dark fruit well enmeshed, with random tics of smoke, coffee, and alcohol milling about.

A pretty stellar RIS, I wasn't quite expecting this after plodding my way through this brewer's hoppier offerings, so it's a genuinely pleasant surprise. Thick, oily, and chocolatey, with a plethora of sub-flavours underpinning it all. Good, good stuff - I'd like to have another go at this come winter (checking watch now...).

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

maybe the best of the mission beers so far. this pours as its name implies, dark and stormy, with a big frothy head and no light at all getting in. there is a funny gray shade though, like not brown but an ashy color, not sure where it comes from, not super nice, and ive never seen it before. the nose is a little sweet, boozy, and complex on the grains, with varying levels of roast throughout. tastes like there is some oatmeal in here, with a little extra sugar and a nice smooth full body. I get a little tobacco and a touch of vanilla, but this isn't as intricate as some others in the genre. an odd bitterness creeps in in the finish, not from hops or burnt grains, but sort of unidentifiable. its not an off flavor, but I can place its origin. kind of a difficult beer to drink, full body and overly alcoholic. my bottle says 9.8% abv, rather than the 10.5% listed here, but it might as well be the higher number. overall mission beers havnt impressed me much at all so far. they all seems to be slight tweaks on the standard lineups breweries are expected to have these days without much different to set them apart. this one is a little better than the others, but still on the generic side, insofar as a Russian imperial stout can be generic...

Photo of JAHMUR
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of zeff80
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.58/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excellent big chewy stout, dark as night pours with a chocolate tinted tan head...spent oil all the way. Big chugging bubbled carbonation, with chunky spanning lacing. Aroma has deep chocolate notes, dark bitter roasted malts, expressive with a bit of coffee like tones and ample hops in the back end mild citrus/herbs. Flavor is big upfront a bit of booze whacks you right in the kisser, but the chocolate creaminess/creamed coffee combo soothes the palate and it becomes a big dessert beer with bitterness from the herbal hops and dark roasted malts. Carbonation is ample pushes this big bruiser of a beer across the palate well no off flavors or lingering harshness, very drinkable big imperial stout. Overall I loved it up there with the best of the best in the imperial stouts, I like this and Black Out from Great Lakes just about equally.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap 11/28/2012 at Track 84, in Warwick, RI served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains rich chocolate, roasted malts, some coffee and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a strong creamy chocolate flavor followed by some flavors of dark fruit and coffee. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is very mild as it should be in this type of beer and creates a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, it’s a solid big stout but there are others in the style that I would pick first.

Photo of nickfl
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of Kegatron
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a deep brown, not quite black, with 2 fingers of rich dark mocha (almost milk chocolate looking) head. This retains with a ½ finger of creamy froth, which throws up a rich cascade of lacing that quickly slides down the sides of the glass but doesn’t stick a whole lot. The aroma smells of smoky roast, green citrus, dark fruit, chocolate, a touch of molasses. That roasted coffee character and dark fruit really start to emerge as this warms.

The taste is similar, with a strong roasted and bitter hop profile up front, with sweeter notes of chocolate and toffee coming in off the sides, before this finishes with a zippy espresso finish. Dark fruit is fairly hidden at first but much like the nose, starts to emerge in a bit way as this warms. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied and really opens up as this warms, with some sharpness on the tongue and then more of a chewy creaminess the rest of the way. The alcohol is handled pretty well here, mostly coming out as some underlying spicy warmth that adds a bit of an extra aggressiveness to this.

At first, this just seemed like a big American Stout, with a prominent roast and hop profile but then more dark fruit and even a touch of anise came out to play (after this really warmed up) to allow to this to come off as more of an Imperial Stout. This definitely could have used a bit more finesse but it overall wasn’t bad at all for the style at all. It just takes a little while to really get going.

Photo of Rifugium
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA

Served in a snifter, dark black pour with a small tan head that receded to nearly nothing, leaving a few stray bubbles behind. Great aroma, toffee, chocolate, anise, licorice, touch of dark dried fruits. The taste was similar to the aroma, but not quite as good, dark chocolate, dark malts, toffee and Werther's candy, subtle red wine / brandy, and a bit of anise and hop spice. Smooth and creamy mouthfeel, on the heavier side of medium-bodied, with a bit of inevitable alcohol warmth. Quite the pleasant sipper overall, I'd say.

Photo of mactrail
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black color in the glass. Rich and malty with a big hop finish. Very boozy with some vanilla. I notice some Jack Daniels barrels around the brewery, for what that's worth. Nice aroma of malt with a hint of licorice. Black roasted flavors, but more of a sweet finish than the Black Patent charcoal. Winey and mellow taste, but hot with alcohol. Dries out a little as you sip.

Very decent Imperial Stout. My favorite of their beers. Listed at 75 IBU. On tap at the brewery bar.

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Dark Seas from Mission Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 555 ratings.