Imperial Java Stout - Santa Fe Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Java StoutImperial Java Stout

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BA SCORE
89
very good

197 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 197
Hads: 861
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 10.28%
Wants: 83
Gots: 147 | 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: 197 | Hads: 861
Photo of DavidST
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz can into a snifter. This pours a pitch black color with a finger thick mocha head which quickly dissipates. There is some coffee in the smells, nice espresso, some dark roasted malts, not much hop aroma, the alcohol is well hidden. The feel is thick and creamy, mid carbonation. The taste is pretty good, nice amounts of roasted malts, dark chocolate, and espresso. Nice. (391 characters)

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

Pours a very dark brown color almost completely opaque with a thin brown head. The aroma is nice with tons of roasted coffee and some chocolate. The taste is bitter coffee with some dark chocolate and some earthy hop notes with a hint of pine. It is nice and thick but not too heavy with low carbonation and a dry finish. Very nice brew, all of their beers have been good that I've tried. (388 characters)

Photo of jlindros
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

As it says, before or after noon and its both as it just hit noon. Thanks to dcloeren for this one.

Pours a creamy thick slight off white colored 1 finger head that fades fairly slowly with tons of lacing, pretty much pitch black thick looking beer. Breakfast?

Nose brings a bit of roast, actually plenty of roasted malt, some coffee with that mostly roasted beans but just a bit of fresh brewed. Then light cocoa, some oats, oatmeal like, hint of acrid roast. Some dark black patent like malt, and hint of caramel.

Taste is as expected, starting with coffee this time, some fresh brewed but also some roasted beans, and some roasted malt with just a bit of acrid bitter roast. More oats with a creamy oatmeal taste, and a bit of super dark bakers chocolate. Some bitterness mostly from the roasted malt but just a hint of earthy hops. Finish is drier bitter and more earthy hops coming out, long lingering coffee and slight metallic acrid, but f fresh earthy coffee too.

Mouth is med to fuller bodied, good carb, creamy oats.

Overall pretty good, nice coffee and roast with just the right touch of acrid bitterness, nice long finish, but just a bit more oats and rich feel would have made it even better. (1,210 characters)

Photo of beesy
3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at The Friendly Place in San Antonio. Poured from a 12oz can into a plastic pint glass ;). No canning date.

A - pours a deep deep brow that appears black in the glass. A huge 2.5 finger head that's medium khaki in color builds and fades fairly quickly. Some water falling from an aggressive pour.

S - coffee and chocolate are present but take a back seat to the malt. Man this thing smells über malty and wheaty. To be honest, it smells a lot like a mash more than a finished beer.

T - really malty in the taste too. Just like chewing on a mix of malt with some wheat tossed in. Chocolate and coffee bitterness come on in the mid palate and finish this beer off. Slightly campfire marshmallow flavor. It really just tastes a lot like unfermented first runnings.

M - medium bodied. Slightly rich and creamy but it thins out because of some drying effects later on.

D - lowing for me. There is nothing offensive about it but I just can't get over how much it tastes like sort right out of the mash tun.

Overall a pretty good tasting malty beer with nice notes of bakers chocolate and espresso. Very malty. As I indicated before - the malty flavors tAste like wheaty unfermented wort straight out of the tun. (1,221 characters)

Photo of starkmarvelo
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Santa Fe Imperial Java Stout

A- Pours dark brown with a thick light brown 3 finger head.

S- earthy, fresh ground coffee and dark chocolate.

T- follows the nose very well. The earthy coffee flavor hits the palate first followed by chocolate flavors and slight hop bitterness to round out the finish.

M- medium mouthfeel with a moderate amount of carbonation. Not much in the aftertaste.

O- this is an excellent coffee stout. I like the dirty/earthy flavors of the coffee. It's definitely on the lower end of the Imperial ABV, but it makes it more drinkable. The price point is also excellent, $9-$11 for a six pack. (619 characters)

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. (1,040 characters)

Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A big shout out to woodychandler for providing this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of coffee, a touch of chocolate. Taste is of strong espresso, the most coffee I have ever experienced in a beer. Alcohol is well hidden. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall if you are a coffee lover this beer is for you, otherwise it may be a bit to overpowering. (403 characters)

Photo of rudzud
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received as an extra in a trade and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a very nice deep, rich dark brown nearly black. There was a good one finger mocha head that faded to leave almost no side lacing but did have nice retention/haloing.

S - Aroma pops with coffee and chocolate. Its almost, almost up there with the likes of other stellar coffee beers, thats how much it jumps out when you breathe deep. Its just doesnt explode in the surrounding air like some of those others do. Still, damn good.

T - Wow, this might be my favourite canned stout...Excellent coffee flavors along with light chocolate. Great black coffee. No joke, this is almost drinking like a poor mans FBS so to speak.

M - Mouthfeel is almost excellent. Stuff drinks like a mug of cold ice coffee. Goes down super easy. Just delicious.

O - Overall this is a shocking beer from New Mexico. Really, really enjoyed this one. In full agreement with WoodyChandler here, this is something special and I wish I had a donut. (996 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Another incredible CAN from Blargimus in support of The CANQuest (TM)! It really pays to advertise and my ISO post caused a lot of people to offer up all kinds of new CANs. I am so excited that I am downright giddy ...

From the CAN: "before noon [coffee cup and saucer depicted] not for use with donuts."; "after noon [beer mug depicted] ale with coffee beans." The best part was that the opening was aligned with the "after noon" side of the CAN.

The Crack revealed another nearly brimful CAN and the inverted Glug had both a cascading quality as well as producing two fingers of dense, deep-tan head with excellent retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown with limited light penetration and ruby highlights at the edges. As the head finally dissipated, I was ready! Nose had a heady coffee roastiness and I began to wonder how it might actually work with donuts. Mouthfeel was thick, full and creamy with a bitter coffee flavor not much behind what I brew up every morning. I am a retired US Navy sailor and not only do I like my java hot and black, but it should also have the consistency of mud. Man, but this was like a jolt to the CNS at 2023 (EDT)! Finish was equally bitter and I was contemplating trying to score a donut somewhere just to test the theory. My heart began banging against my breastbone and I knew I was alive. Not many beers will do that to me. My my my. YMMV. (1,385 characters)

Photo of jaymesbawned
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a tulip. Nice superdark tone, light tan head. Didn't get as much coffee on the nose as I would have liked, but this got better as it warmed. The taste was much better. strong coffee without overwhelming. nice balanced malts with a touch of hop bitter. Overall very solid beer, especially at 8% (316 characters)

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. (1,300 characters)

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.92/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Great Divide cervoise glass.

Look: The beer is an espresso bean black with a faint dark brown hue on the edges -- if that. An oatmeal colored head dissipates quickly to a nice thick film with a thick collar around the glass. A good amount of webbed lacing sticks to the glass, despite the high ABV.

Smell: Delicious burnt malt aromas abound here, with bitter chocolate and some dark roasted coffee on the back side. The coffee really smells good.

Taste: I'm really impressed with this. A nice bitter chocolate dominates this beer, and it blends well with the malts. There's plenty of roast in this, which leads right into the coffee notes. A fine balance between dark chocolate and dark roasted coffee.

Mouthfeel: Velvety smooth, rich, and on the thicker side. Dry.

Overall: Really delicious, and the alcohol is hidden rather well. I can't tell which emerges more -- the coffee or the dark chocolate. (921 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with an off-white head. The aroma features a lot of coffee, as well as a hint of chocolate and some roasted malt. The flavor is very similar. I get a lot of mocha coffee notes, as well as some roasted malt and vanilla. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice chocolate stout. Glad I got a chance to try it. (353 characters)

Photo of XicanoBeerRun
3.32/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured like used motor oil, black and opaque, and not thick like some stouts. Cocoa head about 1/8 inch thick dissipated rapidly. Smells like chocolate and coffee. I know this is not too creative, but it is all I could come up with. Taste: chocolate cake, chocolate covered coffee beans. The coffee was not as prominent as I had expected. I enjoyed this. It was somehow refreshing, which I do not expect from a stout.

I’ll have another. (440 characters)

Photo of cvm4
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Can poured into a snifter

A - Pours a thin black with a 2 finger tan head. The head stays around and dissipates into a ring around the glass. Minimal lacing.

S - Lots of coffee, cocoa nibs and roasted malt.

T - Coffee dominates up front and it meanders into a dark chocolate finish with roasted malt always in the background.

M - Somewhat thin but has medium carbonation.

O - Lovely stout poured from a can. I was pleasantly surprised! (441 characters)

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. (844 characters)

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. (719 characters)

Photo of denver10
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark brown with a thick 2 thumbs width mocha head. A nice rich aroma of coffee, bitter chocolate, and roasted malts. The flavor is not quite up to par with the aroma but still quite good. Coffee beans hit the forefront, the middle is a weak roastiness, and then it picks itself back up with a nice chocolate and coffee finish. The aftertaste is quite good, tasting like mocha frappucino. A creamy, medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, I really dig this beer. Gonna have to try this one fresh next winter 'cause if its this enjoyable at this age, I can only imagine what it'll be like fresh. (593 characters)

Photo of azdback
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass. Deepest, darkest brown possible. I can call this black but it wouldn't be a very dark black. The highlights are see through and light brown in color. Head is a gigantic five fingers and very explosive but as it recedes it shows it's beautiful creamy look. Lace is looking pretty good as well.

Smell is mostly dark roasted malts. Coffee, charred wood. There is some bright red tart fruit there too.

Taste is actually more chocolate than it is coffee. There is some coffee along with some figs and some hop bitterness and some alcohol burn. This is pretty nice.

Mouth is creamy but a bit on the bright side for an 8% stout. Carbonation is a bit over used. Body is on the heavy side and the finish is average and just a bit on the wet side.

Overall I really enjoyed this. I have had four of the Santa Fe BC offerings and have been pretty satisfied with all of them. This one does not disappoint. (932 characters)

Photo of czechsaaz
2.95/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Really malty smelling, nice roast and a little bit of coffee. Fruity yeast too.

Deep black. Half inch tan head that lingers as a little layer and leaves a touch of lacing.

Very sweet flavor but with a nice coffee aftertaste. Black and sweet maybe? Overall, it's too sweet for my taste. I have a hard time focusing on anything else. There's a bit of toasty stout and yeast but it doesn't get through unless I'm really trying.

Slightly warming and not as full bodied as most Impy Stout.

Not one I'll be stocking in my fridge. (527 characters)

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can pours a rich, silky black color with a rather large, stiff head. Fades uber-slow and leaves nice lace. A good looking brew...

Nose is charred malt and strong black coffee. Just a hint of sweetness and the hops are pretty tame. A little nutty yeast comes out as it warms.

Alot of coffee to be sure, but it is pretty smooth and the velvety mouthfeel helps quite a bit to take the edge off. The ABV is astonishingly hidden, I would never have guessed it was more than 6% or so if it didnt have the word 'imperial' on the can. There is just enough sweetness to keep it from being astringent. A very good bargain at 8 bucks a sixer these days, unfortunately. Not everything tasty has to come out of an overpriced bomber. This is one of those beers that is best consumed fresh, and I cant seem to find a date on their cans. (829 characters)

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! (602 characters)

Photo of scarfield
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

App- pours dark brown to black with a 1" khaki head. moderate lacing through the glass

Smell- sweetness and dark roast coffee. Smells like "cold" hot chocolate.

Taste- there is definitely some alcohol coming through and an aftertaste that is quite bitter and earthy. Malty sweetness and the roasted coffee flavor and bitterness are not quite in balance, but it is not unpleasant.

MF- creamy/oily, and the very long aftertaste and high abv make this a sipper

Overall- this beer tried to Pull off something difficult and almost pulls it off. The balance just isn't there and the bitterness is perhaps too strong. Still it is quite a good beer despite this. (658 characters)

Photo of wagenvolks
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz can into a stemless Hennessy snifter (my pimp hand is strong tonight, bitches!)

Nice appearance, with a rich mahogany brown core that fades outward to a ruddy amber color. The head is a dusty taupe hue, and the quarter inch of foam quickly settles to a ring and a thin veneer of bubbles. A very earthy aroma brings forward freshly ground coffee beans, fresh roasted, too. Dark malts lend notes of chocolate and bread crust, while the hops add a bit of balance to the ensemble.

The flavor matches the aroma's earthiness, and then some. Lots of roastiness to the coffee beans, verging on charred but the base beer dials in the balance just enough that things don't get too carried away. Alcohol is well-hidden. My only knock against this beer is the body--a bit thin for an 8% Imperial Stout. Still, good carbonation level and a clean finish. Overall, a tasty release from Santa Fe that any coffee beer lover should look forward to trying. (945 characters)

Photo of Hopswagger
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P:  A sea of pitch black silk adorned with a creamy cappuccino head. 

S:  Roasted dark chocolate malt, dark roasted coffee beans, woody hops, and  charred barley. 

T/M:  A thick and foamy body that tingles the tongue.  Heavy notes of dark chocolate and coffee with burnt wood and grains.  A slight copper taste in the back followed by a dry but powdery finish of smoked cocoa. 

O:  Big coffee chocolate and a thick body is just what I expected when I grabbed this up. I was supposed at how well put together this was. Complex but well mingled and easy drinking.  A huge plus for it coming in a six pack of cans. I will frequent this beer and am eager to try more from Santa Fe Brewing Co.  (704 characters)

Imperial Java Stout from Santa Fe Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 197 ratings.