1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Imperial Java Stout - Santa Fe Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Java StoutImperial Java Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

724 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 724
Reviews: 174
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 10.45%
Wants: 71
Gots: 101 | FT: 6
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:
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 added by: goochpunch on 03-31-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 724 | Reviews: 174 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer is the color of my morning ritual cup of coffee. Dark brown, nearing black. The beige head is thick and leaves sticky residue in its wake.

The aroma offers a potent dose of coffee right off the bat. Certainly aimed at the coffee aficionado.

Some roast and chocolate notes, which is to be expected. Coffee takes center stage, however. Dark roast leads the way, then transitions to a chocolate bread flavor lingering in the finish. Very good.

Rich and creamy feel with none of the unpleasant bitterness sometimes found in a bold coffee beer.

A solid beer. I would definitely have this again.

Photo of Zorro
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lightproof black colored beer with a small brown colored head that doesn't last.

Smells of chocolate and coffee with a little smoke. Malty aroma it smells fairly sweet.

Starts out semi sweet with a strong coffee bitterness. This gets sweeter as you drink it and the chocolate comes on strong. This gets sweeter as you drink it and quickly starts tasting like a mild milk stout. Coffee taste is strong and the bitterness is moderate. Alcohol is completely hidden.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a tasty coffee beer that is very easy drinking.

Photo of afsdan
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.1/5  rDev +2%
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.

Photo of smakawhat
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.83/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A nice, simple looking can design. Can simplicity be art? Methinks so. Anywho..the beer...

Dark pour. Deep brown, "light" black. Foamed up to about a finger of off-brown head, then settles to a ring. Would like to see more froth, but it does look good.

Chocolate, cocoa, baked coffee beans in the aroma. Roasted malt, maybe some oats. Overall, a stout with some coffee, but a coffee stout? A bit light

Flavors are nice, albeit not in-yo-face. Coffee, some espresso, toffee, cocoa and dark bread. A bit of a metallic taste on the back. From the water used? Of course I could be crazy. Nice flavors, but a bit light and bubbly on the feel. Nice canned stout

Photo of BillRoth
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of chinchill
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can dated best by July 2013 poured a very dark brown color; clear, with a light brown head.

Nose: more hops than expected, matched in strength by coffee, with dark malts more in the background.

Flavor: mild-moderate bitterness until the moderately bitter finish and aftertaste. Good balance of hops, malts and coffee. Lot of coffee in the aftertaste. Some very dark roast flavor but only a hint of char.

Feel: carbonated is a bit more lively than expected, but works well; smooth; medium-full body. The ABV is well hidden.

O: an attractively priced, high quality, robust coffee stout. Recommended.

Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

Photo of dmorgan310
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of Zaphog
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.45/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz can Inflatablechair brought over tonight after a very long shift ... Thanks a ton Sam, this was awesome!!

Pours with a descent dark brown head.... the brew is clear deeep brown/verging on black... a bit of dark ruby shows toward the stem end of my glass... Not much for the way of retention, but it isn't bad.

Great fresh bean coffee combines very well with all the traditional expected RIS flavors... what IMO is setting this one into the top tier is a little bit of maltiness in the aroma that helps bring the nose up and out of the glass... even make it lingering.

Flavor mirrors the nose... fantastic coffee components.. still there are good roasty elements.. again a nice sweetness is a big tie that binds everything together.. solid medium body... almost creamy carbonation.. wonderful.

I am damn surprised I enjoyed this one as much as I did.. This brew is an unknown marvel.... tastes very fresh and the body and combined complexities make for a great package.... and... it is in a can.

3.5/4.5/4.5/4.5/4.5

Edit... Holy shit.. big boy review for me... I am gonna stand by it... thank again Sammy.

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.22/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

CAN you dig it, SUCKA! Pours brown out the can, mild beige head about 3/4" deep. Aroma was magnificently coffee. They really knocked that out the park. No acridity, acidity or bitterness in the aroma.

Great taste, again, the bitter adjectives are not amongst this beer, yet the immense coffee ones are. Amazing mouthfeel to completely cover up the 8% abv, can't believe this. Its like they even had the perfect amount of creamer (lactose?) in it where you can't smell it or really taste it, but it just gives it a better mouthfeel than oats would probably do or maybe are there in tandem. Good carbonation, even if its too high for you, you can just let it chill for a few minutes and its adjusted to your likings mr. cask guy from britain. All the chocolate is very dry and never sweet.

Just a bang up job they did on this. Expand distribution!!

Photo of chippo33
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of drummermattie02
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -10.9%
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.

Photo of DrDemento456
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.78/5  rDev -6%
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.

Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to cmanuel for sharing this one! Served from can into a New Belgium globe. Poured pitch black with a half finger khaki colored head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, coffee, caramel, acidic coffee, and milk chocolate. The flavor was of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, cream, coffee, and caramel. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a good brew. I have to be honest and say that I drank this one as a wake up beer while on a vacation day from work. But I am certainly glad that I did. This had a really nicely balanced flavor and aroma going on here that made it surprisingly refreshing and intriguing at the same time. It was really well rounded around the edges with every aspect having a balancing component going on with it. A really well done brew that I would love to have A LOT more of to enjoy as an alternative to coffee in the AM.

Photo of LoveStout
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

Photo of champ103
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Anvil in Houston, TX.

A: Pours a near opaque black color. A large tan and rocky head rises with excellent retention. Sticky, spiderweb looking lace is left behind.
S: Roasted malt, cream coffee, chocolate, and vanilla. The coffee and sweetness work well together.
T: Follows the nose. Plenty of roasted malt. Coffee comes next, but not acrid or over barring in any way. A big chocolate flavor is present along with some sweet vanilla. Fairly simple, but very nice.
M/D: A full body and moderate carbonation. Creamy, velvety, and smooth. So easy to drink. No alcohol in sight, and a joy to drink.

An excellent beer on cask. I really enjoyed this, and something I would recommend. A well done stout on cask.

Photo of AlexFields
3.98/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark thick brown, nice two inch creamy tan head.

Smells of rich sweet coffee...and really not much else. Smells great though!

Taste is rich coffee again, fairly bitter, more rich coffee, some burned cocoa. This is very good.

Good carb, rich creamy mouthfeel, but fairly light body for such a rich taste and really pretty drinkable. Not enough sweetness to be cloying and too much coffee flavor to taste any booze.

Great beer! Fairly one dimensional but really good.

8.2/10

Photo of rudzud
4.38/5  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.

Imperial Java Stout from Santa Fe Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 724 ratings.