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Imperial Java Stout - Santa Fe Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Java StoutImperial Java Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

207 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 207
Hads: 900
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 22.06%
Wants: 89
Gots: 159 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Santa Fe Brewing Company visit their website
New Mexico, United States

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

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: goochpunch on 03-31-2007

This is the kind of beer that gives the word "stout" a reputation. Extra generous quantities of barley malt, followed by vigorous fermentation leaves this "imperial" heavy weight with 8% alcohol A.B.V. and a body as full as chocolate bread pudding. A complimentary and complex array of bitter notes comes form potent American hops, earthy British hops, black-roasted malts and, of course, coffee. Santa Fe Brewing Company uses only top-quality ingredients like organically grown East Timor coffee beans blended with New Guinea coffee beans, locally roasted by O'hori's Coffee House. Its heavenly flavor and aroma can't be beat or imitated.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 207 | Hads: 900
Photo of websherpa
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

There isn't a whole lot to this beer. It's dark has a great tan-brown head that sticks around for a while. It's heavy duty on the coffee flavor, but I'm not a coffee junkie so I can't tell you specifically which way it leans. It's got some supporting chocolate as well, but the coffee far out shines. Finish is nice with a good long aftertaste to tide you over. Well made beer in a can. It's not over the top in flavor so you can put back a few in a night I think.

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Photo of WesM63
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz can into a CBS Snifter

A: Pours a dark brown almost black with a decent 2finger mocha head. Decent retention and lacing.

S: Smells of dark malts, coffee, chocolate some vanilla and alcohol.

T: Better than the nose would lead you to believe. Coffee, chocolate and vanilla on the tongue followed by some dark malts and a little bit of a alcohol finish.

M: Medium body and plenty of carbonation

O: First of all, many thanks to my buddy 4Balance for this one! Secondly, a decent java stout. A little boozy at the end and it could use more coffee flavor. However, still a great brew!

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Photo of DenverHopHead
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Thick cup of coffee black! Smells like a good, strong cup of coffee too! Taste and mouthfeel are a bit of a let down, but not bad. This feels like a beer that would be great to wakeup to after a night of camping! Overall, I'll look for this again. Perhaps a hidden gem!

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Photo of dbossman
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Quite black with a huge 2-inch frothy and thick head; decent lacing

S: Earthy coffee beans dominate up front; some chocolate and dark fruits linger underneath but this is a coffee bomb

T: The coffee, of course, is the star here but this is also hoppy up front with a balanced sweet malt base--chocolatey and yummy

F: Medium body and creamy with a sticky texture on the back end

O: This is a really nice coffee beer and the 8% abv is well masked; nice work, Santa Fe

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce can that one of my friends gave to me. No date that I can find on it. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with almost an inch tan head that stayed around for a bit. There's also a small amount of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells mostly like coffee but there's also some burnt/charred malt, caramel and some bittersweet chocolate noticeable. For the most part I think the taste is pretty much like the aroma, but there's also some vanilla flavor. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's smooth and easy to drink with a moderate amount of carbonation. I thought this was a good coffee stout. Glad I got to try it, but also disappointed I won't get to try this again soon since Santa Fe Brewing doesn't distribute here. Definitely worth picking up if you come across some!

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paid a bit too much for this (5 bucks) but considering it was a long time tick I put down the cash.

A - Has the look of a great stout, very back yet not incredibly viscous with an impressive full inch of mocha head that sticks around for a bit.

S - Like a frappuccino it smells of blended coffee's, mild chocolate, vanilla, and a touch of roasted malts.

T - The bend is fairly good. Roast is blended well with the hops giving a mild smoke/fresh filtered coffee taste. The sweetness of vanilla and chocolate is mild yet also satisfying.

M - A touch lighter than I expected yet still chewy and medium bodied.

Overall it is a pretty stand up imperial stout with coffee flavors. Try one if your a fan of coffee beers.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A-dark brown black color with a nice tan head and good lacing

S-dark roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, caramel

T-dark roasted malt, coffee, burnt caramel, chocolate, vanilla, mild to moderate bitter finish

F-medium to full body with moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy

O-nice flavor and body in this stout, could drink a lot of these

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Photo of BrownAleBollocks
4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours black with a one finger cream color head. Aroma is like a bag of unground coffee beans. Taste is super coffee forward, but not harsh or ashy. Mouthfeel is thin to medium, a bit lacking for a stout, but not bad. Overall a very coffee forward stout that is pretty darn good, I would like a touch more balance though.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to my GF for bringing back a can for me from her US trip
12 oz can poured into a Great Divide Tulip (total Mountain Time Zone thing)

A-- Poured a dark brown, near black color. Settled jet black. Just a touch of ruby light penetrating this. One finger of light mocah colored head. Settled to a thin layer of light brown film and decent collar. Slight bit of head retention but more or less a layer of film. Nice spotty lacing with this.

S-- Touches of roast, brown sugar, and chocolate. Otherwise, a lot of fresh roasted coffee. Nice nose. Quite appealing and a nice pick me up nose to it. Something I would want to drink at 7 AM.

T-- Coffee and dark chocolate. Almost equal amounts of chocolate and coffee. Quite fresh tasting. Touches of rolled oats and brown sugar again but really well done on the coffee part.

M-- Solid stuff. Bold, rich and thick. Medium bodied and light medium carbonated. Dry chocolate and coffee finish with just flashes of the acidity and bitterness. Just touches of brown sugar in mid and back again to smooth out the coffee and chocolate. Long lasting roasted coffee and bitter baking chocolate finish. Nice.

O-- Well rounded beer. Well hidden alcohol and easy to drink. Damned tasty beer and better to have at 7 AM than a long black. One good coffee stout.

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Photo of bcostner1
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Very dark brown/lighter black; definitely not a pitch black stout. Crazy heavy carbonation...too much actually (could be a by-product of transporting it in my checked suitcase on a plane but that was 3 months ago and it's been in the fridge since then).

S: Coffee, chocolate, char. Enticing.

T: Great tasting coffee stout. Very well balanced elements of the bitterness from the coffee and a an underlying smoky char along with the sweetness of chocolate that tastes like semi-sweet chocolate chips.

M: Easy drinker. Very satisfying. No detectable alcohol at all.

Overall, a very solid coffee stout. Not in my top 3 of the style, but definitely top 5-10. Would have again.

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Photo of tylerf19
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pour - this is not your "jet-black" motor oil imperial stout. The head was off white and rather small given the rate at which I was pouring. That being said, the coffee and roasty java aroma was released upon pouring. The head doesnt lace... there isn't much head unfortunately :(

Smell - Yes, it is definitely a JAVA stout.. coffee notes stand out, it is very roasty IMO.

taste - definitely tasting the same coffee / roast as in the aroma. Like I said, this is not a big robust imperial stout. There is no hop bitterness and not much chocolate malt (compared to other big stouts). But it is indeed a stout, and for coffee stout lovers, it is worth a try given the price and availability. It's quite sad that the head dies off very quickly while drinking (i like a stout with a thicker brown head). I'm not tasting much alcohol-booziness by the way.

mouthfeel - Again, im comparing this to "imperial stouts". It is a little more on the watery end (you can tell this right off the bat when you pour). But, you can feel the coffee fumes linger. Not much to say on mouthfeel... its not very watery, but its not like youre drinking a ten fidy or narwahl either. this is the only dislike I have about this brew...

overall - I tried this because of the price and its been staring at my since I've gotten in to stouts. The beer is a good beer, but with the competition it sees from other imperial stouts, I dont think it can hold a flame. But if you want to spend only $8 on a 6-pack for a good quality stout then give this one a shot... My review may sound negative but this is nowhere near a 3/5 crap brew.. just not up to par with the other beastly imperial stouts (though you get what you pay for)

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Photo of JonathanG
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from an undated can, into a Lion tulip. I actually really like the simplicity of the packaging. Seems like it could be a can for some sort of chocolate soda, or more likely a pre-mixed coffee drink. I also like the note on the can, "Not For Use With Donuts," as well as the monochromatic images of a coffee cup that says, "Before Noon," and a beer stein that says, "After Noon."

Dark brown, approaching black in color, with a tan, creamy head that leads to semi-sticky lacing.

Coffee is definitely present on the nose, along with mixed chocolate notes, as well as some dark fruits of plum and fig. Nice roasted malt notes without being overblown.

Tastes like liquid chocolate and coffee, again with some dark fruit on the finish. Sweetness is there, but it keeps the coffee notes in-check, which are not bitter or overpowering at all.

Mouthfeel is creamy and easy-going and pretty smooth. I don't think it would be difficult at all to drink several of these.

Overall this is an easy-to-drink, pleasant stout. I'd drink this again.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a large snifter glass.

A very nice creamy light tan almost orange hinting head off the pour. Grows a thick two fingers and slowly settles with minimal lacing and a creamed top. Deep walnut brown color, with some actual clarity up to the light and fairly clear actually. Reall nice looking brew.

Mild notes of piping drip coffee. Good sense of cream and thick milk action a bit, with toned down sweetness. Hints of peanut butter and nut a little as well in the mix, and an almost black licorice quality to is as well. Kind of fun and pretty solid.

Palate seems to come as expected. Mild creamed coffee but with not much roast character. Borderline amped milk stout sweetness but far more bitter and with much more body. Mild roasting finish with a bit of hop oil bitterness on the aftertaste. Warmth brings some mild milk chocolate character as well with the coffee angle disappearing quite a bit. Very faint hints of metals slightly.

Overall a fairly tasty stout, but seems to loose it's coffee appeal after a bit and goes into milkier territory. Still comes off though as very well made regardless.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

dark chcolate color with a towering head of fine tan. Slight reduction with time still elaves a copious amount of spider like side glass lace and lots of rocky crown.

The aroma is simply wonderful. A drop dead, drag out coffee knockout. Rich notes of sweet coffee are just all over this. It really is the best of both worlds here. Nice touches of sweet molasses in the finish that starts to become bitter and leaves you with more coffee then beer taste as you go through.

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Photo of ZoomanCru
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Java Stout – Imperial Stout (8.0%) - Santa Fe Brewing Co. (New Mexico)

App: Utterly and completely black. Pours a dark, syrup like color very indicative of the style. Allowed to warm before pouring, this beer forms a two and a half finger head with fine bubbles that dissipates fairly quickly, but leaves a good amount of lace clinging to the glass.

Smell: Smells immediately like pretty good dark coffee. Some maltiness,volatility, and a slight hop character compete, but coffee reigns supreme. Roasted malts compliment the coffee notes and add their own level of diverse characteristics.

Taste: Deep coffee character supported superbly by malt profile that sweetens. The first coffee beer I've had that wasn't overly bitter or extracted tasting. (Grew up in a coffee roastery) The balance achieved here is remarkable. Though coffee takes the predominant flavor role, much is to be said for the heavy malt profile too, which make this beer highly enjoyable. Lingering bitterness that is decidedly like coffee and not hops. This might be sacrilege, but it would make a great beer float.

Mouth: Creamy and heavy bodied as a result of the significant malt profile, but with enough cofee added to make it crisp and dry. Whereas most stouts leave a lingering sweetness on the palate after swallowing, this brew instead leaves a persistent and pleasant roasted taste.

Home tasting, 12oz can into Pint Glass. 12/15/13

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared by the lovely Bryna. The brew is brown-black, and is capped with a mocha head that collapses into a wispy film and encircling collar.

The nose screams Dunkin' Donuts coffee and the flavor delivers. This tastes almost as much like an iced coffee drink as it does a beer. At any rate, it is quite delicious. Further notes that appear include a perfect flavor of roastiness that is so crisply, pleasantly acrid as well as hints of bittersweet chocolate and some fruity and toffee-like maltiness. Creamy feel. I like it. A lot. It really does remind me of iced coffee as much as beer.

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Photo of obrike
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Just noticed this one for the first time at Specs Round Rock...a sixer of an Imp stout in a can for 9 bucks...hard to pass up.

Pours a typical nearly black stout pour. Nice clingy tan lace though. A thin very thin head remains throughout. Not bad...but doesn't stand out at all.

The scent...good lord...that's bad ass. For those who love a nice strong coffee...this one's for you. Getting bitter coffee, milk chocolate, some sweet burnt malt, spices...just damn good. Can't wait to taste it.

Holy moly...that's a tasty beer A wonderful coffee smack to the palate, but a good sweet malt finish as well. Vanilla, expresso, a shot of sweet cream...just delicious. A bit jarring if you're not a coffee fan though...thank God I am.

This one would scare off non coffee fans i'm afraid. But for those who love coffee, this one is a winner. A little thin on the mouthfeel and a lot of carbonation for an imp stout, but just incredibly tasty. I could drink this one all winter long. A very good beer at a very good price. Don't pass this one by.

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Photo of Ri0
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured 12oz can into snifter.

A - Dark coffee color (go figure) with a half finger mocha head that leaves a thin ring. spotty lacing is decorating my glass.

S - Dark Coffee, French latte, mocha, and hints of bitter bakers chocolate. Roasted malts and light caramel round it off.

T - Nice coffee forward stout. Roasted coffee beans and malts, espresso and bakers chocolate. Sweetened with mellow caramel and mocha.

M - A medium bodied that is smooth and creamy feeling with light carbonation.

O - A very nice coffee stout from NM. Big coffee flavor and a nice rich smooth feel make it easy to drink any time of the day.

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Photo of zac16125
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can into a pint glass
no born on date

Thanks to fatbeats18 for sending this one over as an extra in a trade.

A: Pours a very dark brown, bordering on black, with 2 plus fingers width of light mocha colored head. Looks like a cola, just a touch darker. Head dissipates down at a moderate rate. Leaves a good amount of fine bubbled lacing.

S: Fresh roasted coffee, vanilla, roasted malt, slight char notes, a subtle hint of semi-sweet chocolate. Not a lot going on, and pretty straight forward, but still very nice.

T: Sweeter than the nose implied. Very much still coffee forward, but more of a coffee with cream and sugar. A bit of dark fruits. Again, not a ton of complexity, but very solid.

M/D: Full bodied, not necessarily thick, but certainly not thin either. Carbonation on the lower end, and very smooth.

O: Overall, a very nice coffee stout. Simple and straight forward, but well above average IMO. Thanks again fatbeats for this extra!

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Photo of mdcrouser
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

My first beer from Santa Fe Brewing - I've heard good things and am looking forward to this one. Great design too - ironically, created by a KC-based agency.

Looks outstanding from the can - a finger of a creamy sand-colored head caps this pint of intense darkness.

Some of the biggest coffee on the nose I've come across - very much a "breakfast-like" stout.

Percolating on the tongue, dark, coffee-heavy - much more pervasive and deep than actual coffee ever is. Reminds me of the few times I've had espresso. Wishing there was another layer to this one - vanilla, roasty, something else - just to provide a constrast.

Less creamy than I'd expected and hoped - pops a bit on the tongue instead.

This one's best with just a hint of chill left on it. In truth, room temperature is when coffee has the most flavor to it. That's the rule here as well. Heavy as it is, I could enjoy quite a bit of this - even at 8%, it seems like a big session beer.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Imperial Java Stout
Santa Fe Brewing Company
Style: American Double / Imperial Stout
ABV: 8.00 %

LOOK: Pours an oily, darkest of blacks with no light permeating through. Off white, short livid khaki colored head forms and recedes away.

SMELL: Roasted coffee, chocolate, mocha, spent grains, alcohol, wet dog.

TASTE: Nice robust coffee notes upfront, giving way to charcoal, chocolate and a mild bitter hop flavor. There is plenty of delicious coffee notes and a bit of an off flavor as well. Its easy to overlook since the coffee flavors are strong and enjoyable.

FEEL: Full bodied, well carbonated, smooth, and very easy drinking. Drinks like a bubbly dark roast coffee.

OVERALL: This was a tasty coffee beer that is a step away from being a world beater. I really liked the depth of chocolate and coffee notes. A fine canned offering.

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Out of the can and into my kickass new russian river pint glass. Thanks byrd for the glass and drmattyb for the brew.

A- a firm pour really gets the head going and I have to wait a second for it to settle so I can pour the rest of the can. Two fingers of coffee and lots of cream head that does hold for a good bit before settling to a sudsy cap and a ton of lace all over the glass. Super dark brown bordering on black in color with a bit of a brown glow at the edges.

S- dark roasted malts and a good coffee hit. Touches of a molasses like sweetness and some earthy undertones.

T- lots of coffee and chocolate going on here. The malts dark and well roasted really playing off the coffee nicely. Sweet chocolate milk in there with some brown sugar as well.

M- a few steps above medium in body and well carbed keeping things very drinkable.

O- this is a tasty stout and super drinkable. Full flavored and very clean. Ill have to trade for some more I totally dig this stuff.

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Photo of BeerWizard
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a six of this imperial stout for a ridiculous $7.50. Brown can has a coffee cup icon, tagged with the descriptors "ale with coffee beans", "before noon", and "not to be used with donuts". I could see a donut with this, though, especially if it were pre-noon.

First pour into a nonic generated a huge head that I had to stand around and wait for to finish pouring. Second one was more gentle and subdued (so it is possible). Black body, tan head. Aroma is very coffee and malty, some hops, and has that SFBC aroma to it. What is that, the water? Anyway, big coffee flavor and smoke. Not too heavy for an 8%, but I don't think I could do more than two in a sitting. Ok, maybe three. Creamy mouthfeel, and medium to low carbonation.

Pretty outstanding imperial stout, especially for the price and format. I like this, and I will get it again. Thanks Santa Fe.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a twelve ounce can into a snifter.

This stout pours a dark brown, almost black in color, and creates a chewy, frothy head. There are big air bubbles among the head. The head persists long after the pour and creates a ton of lace around the glass.

The smell is very much like a coffee with milk. The coffee smell is potent, a condensed milk aspect weaves in and out, and their is a hint of sugar. This all shows up in the taste as well, as the beer drinks very much like a sweet, creamy coffee. Maybe an Irish Coffee, since the heat from the booze provides a kick.

This is a go-to beer for me here in my native state, truly a good beer, and I highly suggest it to those that enjoy a sweeter stout or a coffee stout.

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Photo of djeucalyptus
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

looks like a perfect stout... head could be a bit stronger, but the retention isn't bad. hints of lace, but the darkness is a beautiful cocoa hue that kills.

aroma of milk, molasses and espresso, hints of leather, tobacco, rich dark earthy malt.

taste follows. coffee, dark earthy malts. milky, rich, dark cocoa. licorice and leather.

mouth solid. moderate body, ample carbonation, light and soft with a hint of roasty bitterness in the finish that's pleasantly drying.

all in all, damn awesome. if this were local, it'd be steadily stoked in my fridge. I miss Santa Fe.

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Imperial Java Stout from Santa Fe Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 207 ratings.