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Sexy Chaos - Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant

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Sexy Chaos
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29 Reviews
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Reviews: 29
Hads: 125
Avg: 4.23
pDev: 22.7%
Wants: 40
Gots: 13 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: deltatauhobbit on 12-12-2009

We age Chaos Choas on vanilla beans and toasted oak chips to give the already sultry and complex Russian Imperial Stout a sexy twist. Very limited availablilty.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 29 | Hads: 125
Photo of Casey10
4.68/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow I cant believe this is canned. Found it at a small market store in Brunswick Maine. Really good.

If you like stouts this a must try, great look, great smell, great taste!!

Still can't believe this is canned but it is what it is so completely recommend!!!!

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Photo of ggilman
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a growler at the brewery store today. Thank you David so much for setting this aside for me! What a great surprise!

Poured vigorously into a DFH snifter, cascades nicely to a solid jet black with a creamy brown head of loose bubbles. Smell is strong vanilla mocha and coffee. The nose is enjoyable, the flavor is decadent. Vanilla, dark roasted coffee beans, chocolate liqueur and kahlua. Rich, creamy, and velvety! Thoroughly enjoyable mouthfeel, with nice carbonation. This is as imperial as it gets. It's rich, but not overly sweet, however, I'm not sure how much of this growler I'll be able to polish off tonight. I may have to switch over to the Big Twitch! As a single pour, this is the best stout I've ever had. I'm interested to try the original Chaos, and curious what the oak and vanilla bean has done to it. There's some nice smokey wood in the surprisingly dry finish.

David, can't thank you enough! This made my day! I'll be very willing to share this with friends and family, provided they can pry it from my Kung-Fu grip!

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Photo of bishopdc0
4.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got a growler from the brewery.

Beautiful head with a dark tan head. The head is sticky and laces all over the side. The beer is pitch black.

The aroma is wonderful vanilla and chocolate melt with a sweet malt. This smells almost like a ice cream very nice.

Love it. The beer is sweet to start. Chocolate comes in to make a very silky mouth. The chocolate subsides to reveal a roasted flavor like in dark chocolate. The only apparent alcohol is in the mouth a slight numbing

This is a great beer

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on-tap and served in a snifter, the beer is jet black, with a rich, thick, dense, milk chocolate colored head. Completely coats the glass, and I am excited. The nose is coffee and chocolate milkshake. It looks creamy and thick. The beer's flavors are milk chocolate sweet and dark, bitter cocoa nib, blended with a dash of dark roast coffee. Very well balanced. The aftertaste is heavier on the coffee bitter and dark chocolate, but still well blended. The finish is slightly long on the film and bitter linger, which is perfect for the brew. Amazing beer. Arguably one of the best beers I have had from MW!

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a pitch black color with 2+ fingers of sticky tan head that lasts forever. Takes about 10 minutes before it gets down to a fingers worth of cap that leaves sticky lacing down the glass

S: Roasted malts, vanilla, caramel, oak, molasses, dark and milk chocolate, coffee, and a hint of anise all come through. Extremely complex

T: Follows the nose. Very layered and extremely complex. Starts off with the roasted malts, caramel, and molasses. Oak, vanilla, coffee, and dark chocolate then come through along with a touch of alcohol. Finishes with a bit of bitterness and more roastiness

M: Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Almost motor oil-like, but the carbonation cuts the thickness

O: Quite pricey at almost $6 for a single 16 oz. can (or $20 for a 4-pack), but I'll be damned if this isn't one of the most complex RISs I've ever had. Not sure how it compares to on-tap at the restaurant, but I'm extremely glad that they canned it, even if it's only this once. If you can find it, it's worth a purchase

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Photo of Rifugium
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at Three Tides, Belfast, ME

Probably the best brew I had at Three Tides, and that's saying alot. Russian imperial stout (9%ABV according to the menu) further aged on toasted oak and vanilla beans. Indeed extremely sexy. Limited to 2 per customer.

Poured opaque black with a small tan head. Nice aroma of roasted malts, dark chocolate, and vanilla beans. More of the same in the taste: dark chocolate, brown sugar, vanilla, roasty malts, and subtle toasty oak. Just a tad bitter in the background. Full bodied and rich in flavor. Complex and very drinkable. Sexy indeed.

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Photo of sprucetip
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes mostly, but also from recent memory. Notes were taken from savoring a growler of the precious nectar, but as it was a week old, and I'd had some on tap at the source when the growler was filled, I've added some comments from memory, especially as related to carbonation. The week old growler had less than what was poured at 3 Tides.

It should also be noted that this version of Sexy Chaos, Chaos Chaos aged on oak and vanilla, weighed in at 9.1% abv. Typically Chaos Chaos is somewhere around 11%. The brewery stated that the lower abv was not intentional, and that they aren't sure why it happened this way, though possibly the lack of heat in the brewhouse was mentioned as a possible reason. Whatever, I'm not going to add it as a new beer.

Sexy Chaos is pitch black, and comes with a rich mocha colored head that is less than it was after a week in the growler. The retention is also modest compared to what was served at the bar. It's not particularly active after a week either.

Smells woody with black malt, roasty, and some mild booze is evident with a swirl. Malty sweetness and just enough but not too much vanilla top it off. Deluxe.

Malty sweet, mild roasty bitterness, roasty, oaky, vanilla, and kind of chocolaty (though without any chocolate). Booze is well disguised. This is a delicious Imperial Stout if ever there was one.

Lower carbonation after a week in the growler, but I don't recall that attribute when consumed in Belfast. Very rich, full body, and low/medium viscosity after a week.

David and his team have hit the spot with this one! Chaos Chaos is really good, but Sexy Chaos is even better. I feel fortunate to have been able to visit when she was available. You will too should you have the chance.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another Marshall Wharf winner, a big bad imperial stout, oaked aged with vanilla beans. Had at Novare Res during their beer geek Christmas event.

Pours a very dark brown color with a very thin wispy head, leaves some patchy lacing along the glass as I drank it.

Smell has a strong roasted malt aroma with vanilla being the headliner, not picking up any oak or wooden aspects from the aging.

Taste has a soft carbonation, thick mouthfeel, the roasted malt and vanilla is a real showstopper (although I personally don't care for vanilla all that much, it's the perfect amount for a beer to have and works wonderfully), the oak aging comes in to play a bit to add some complexity but isn't overdone like some others, not too cloying or sweet either.

I can't remember the strength even though it was listed, but I want to say it was around 10%.

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Photo of Drazzamatazz
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from a growler I've had in the fridge for a few weeks now thanks to Chuckycheese. Had the hardest time ever opening this sucker up, which worried me, but from the first pour I realized the carbonation was still spot on.

A: Deep charcoal with a wonderful cascading mocha head. Nice clinging to the sides, and as soon as you pour you realize this is going to be a full bodied monster. I'm getting a little bit of coconut too, which I'm digging.

S: Tons of sweet vanilla with a little bit of char in the back. Typical stout aromas can all be found, but the biggest thing setting this apart is a tangy sweetness.

T: First thing to really come through is a tangy fruit note, my girlfriend says it tastes like "grape soda" take from that what you will. Right after that the vanilla really comes out along side the oak notes. There's still a lingering sweetness throughout, but the last notes are a smooth roasted char finish.

M: Full bodied for sure, not quite motor oil, but this stuff clearly fills your mouth. Medium carbonation is just where it should be for a big imperial stout. For being so sweet its surprisingly dry in the finish, like a big full bodied tannic red is the closest comparison.

D: Anyone who went to Novare for Valentine's Day beer & chocolate pairings would know how drinkable this one is, clearly the most talked about beer of the night. I've had it a few times before, and I'm excited to destroy this growler. Its big and in your face, but its also smooth and complex and there's no real high presence of alcohol to be found.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Having had some Chaos Chaos already, I had to have a 1/2-pint of this offering as well during my 10DEC11 visit with Alewife. This also cost $4.50 for the 8oz glass.

Also poured in a small flute, it was, like Chaos Chaos, dark and opaque, a crude oil brown. Atop the brew was a creamy, rich tan head, lasting well and leaving very nice lacework. Nose was roasty coffee with some bitter hopping as well. Add onto that some whiskey and oaky aromas. It had a medium to medium-plus body, almost being chewy. And it raised no ruckus at all on the tongue going down.

Had a lovely roasty flavor, with similar coffee and bitter choco characteristics. Figgish and raisiny, then throw in some light bourbon, toasty oak and vanilla flavors and this one really goes places! A lovely bier, indeed!!

Zum Wohl!!

4.35 rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


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Photo of jlindros
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Marshall Wharf takeover of Novare Res.

Pitch black syrupy thick dark beer with light creamy dark head,

Nose is dark malts, vanilla, caramel, roasty malts, sweet malts,

Taste is awesome, and delicious, vanilla, oak, molasses, crystal, choc, smooth and creamy, light biter roast,

Mouth is heavier bodied with decent carb.

Drink is good, light booze, light sticky feel

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Photo of Brez07
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Great Lost Bear last night. 12oz tulip

A: Very dark beer. Black as night. Limited amount of tan head, no lacing

S: Not much nose at first, but as it warmed I picked up some bitter chocolate, vanilla and roasted malt

T: Starts with a good amount of roasted malt, but stops before it becomes overwhelming. There is an accompanying chocolate sweetness. Light bitter chocolate and vanilla undertones. Very well balanced. After a few sips I detect more chocolate. I laugh at this being 11%. No heat at all

M: Full bodied, creamy. Carbonation is enough to liven up the beer but still within the general framework for the style

D: Such a treat for me whenever it pops up in the area. Drinkability is insane. Probably my favorite beer from this brewery

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Photo of rudzud
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on the outdoor eating area at Marshall Wharf.

A - Poured into a standard PINT glass a dark oily black hue with a nice mocha thin head. Good wisping.

S - Aromas of rich roast chocolate malts and light oak and vanilla. Really nice ans inviting.

T - okay...Yah. Taste is full of chocolate and vanilla....the oak comes out on the finish. Until then its just nice and chocolates and vanilla. Delicious.

M - Mouthfeel is a nice ans creamy feel, not boozy at all. Could be more silky.

O - Overall I really enjoyed this stout. The vanilla and oak come through quite nicely. Just really nice, dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of dasenebler
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Marshall Wharf Sexy Chaos
16oz can, no code

Inky black. Thick tan head. Low carb. Sticky lacing. (4)

Alcohol, ester, coffee, light vanilla. Dark fruit as it warms up. Pleasing aroma. (4)

Roast, acidity. Heavy dark chocolate. Treacle, licorice. Heavy malts, booze. Few signs of oxidation. Pretty smooth for an impy and very balanced. Sweet, but with plenty of roast and enough hop bitterness to level the playing field. Time has served this baby well. Vanilla character likely higher if fresher. Moutfheel is very heavy, but not cloying. Carbonation is medium-low, nice small bubble size. (4.25, 4.5)

I can’t remember when I bought this can (Fall 2013?), but it’s been stored cold since. Has held up very well. Quite enjoyable as a luxurious evening sipper. I’m not always a fan of MW beers, but I’ve got to give credit where credit is due. Excellent stout. (4.75)

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Photo of jedwards
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to chuckycheese for getting me a growler of this long-time want of mine. Opened at a tasting (and let me just say how much I appreciate Marshall Wharf putting a map of their location onto the growler -- really made answering that question a lot easier).

Pour is incredibly dark, some large bubbles around the edge from the pour and a thin, dense head rising up after it hits the glass. Aroma is initially roast and tannic oak, opening up as it warms to reveal burnt sugar, vanilla, and soy sauce. Taste is sweet charred malt, vanilla, tons of oaky spice, rich coffee, and finishes with a bitter bite (char? hops?). Slight oxidized/soy acidity keeps me coming back for more. Mouthfeel is rich, particularly for a growler fill, and carbonation is light but present.

As always, looking forward to future beers from MW.

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Photo of barhoc11
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Nice and dark, just how I like my RIS' s

S: Dark and rich, sweetness is not overwhelming.

T: Very rich, great taste at first but finish is 'hot' from the alcohol

M: Good as it should be

O: I liked this beer but was disappointed based on the alcohol burn. I have had other similar abv stouts that are much more well done. I would drink this again but it wouldn't beat out an easier to find beer such as Ten Fidy

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Valentine's Day 2013 saw Marshall Wharf in a generous mood: offering for sale rare growlers of Sexy Chaos. This growler has been refrigerated since it was purchased, except for the long drive back from Belfast. I'm served myself in a tulip glass.

The beer is colored very dark brown. The head is a shade of light brown and about a finger or two in height. It settles down to a thin skim. Good lacing is left behind.

There are great vanilla notes coming off of this beer. I also smell a good amount of dark roasted malts. This makes it more roasty than sweet, although there is a bit of alcohol in the nose too.

The beer has a very smooth flavor with a good amount of vanilla and a touch of roasted malt. There are hints of chocolate and some alcohol in the finish. What is quite impressive is that this doesn't taste anywhere near as strong as a 11+% ABV beer.

Again, this beer doesn't feel as thick or sticky as other RISes of this strength. There is flavorful coat that has some roast and sweetness. Carbonation does tingle, but the overall level is a bit low (due to this being a growler pour, I assume).

Overall, this is a fine RIS. It is another great beer out of Marshall Wharf. If you get a chance to try it, don't pass up on the opportunity.

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Photo of 05Harley
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased fresh at the "5th year of beer" festival on 10/13/12.
(336 calories)

Price - $18.00/growler

It was a real treat to score a couple of growlers and just as good here as on tap. I can't wait to get this in cans off the store shelf ;-)
One of my favorite offerings from Marshall Wharf.

The appearance is what you would expect from a big, bold, Russian Imperial Stout. Not quite midnight black but plenty dark with red highlights near the rim. A tan creamy head tops it off but retreats fairly quickly leaving behind a thin veil and decent lines.

The aroma is not as strong as you would expect from a beer weighing in at 11.2%. It may not be "in your face" but you still can't hide the unmistakeable smell of vanilla, caramel, burnt sugar, dark chocolate, bittering hops and wood. Pretty complex when you take the time to nail it all down. Like a fine wine, it gets more impressionable as it warms.

Taste is roasty right from the start followed by a blast of vanilla, oak, licorice and coffe beans. Dark chocolate and alcohol round it out and complete the experience. Not too boozy but a sipper none the less.

The mouthfeel begins silky smooth but quickly switches gears to a hoppy bitterness. A nice play on balance and interest. This beer is full bodied and somewhat syrupy. Very little carbonation but a fair amount of heat is present due to the octane. Finishes with a near perfect dryness for the style.

This is an excellant example of the style and a highlight of the season. Winter is here, so let's get warm with a glass of your favorite Imperial Stout.

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Photo of benclimbs
4.16/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Excellent stout that is incredibly drinkable, balanced and complex.

Pours off-black with a light tan head, a bit of lacing.

Smell is oaky vanilla, coffee, cocoa and brandy.

Taste is nice, balanced light mouthfeel with an equal mix of dark malts, mocha and a little brandy or bourbon - finishes just off bitter.

Overall a terrific Imperial stout that is less sweet and sticky than most - goes down smooth.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.04/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into a snifter

A- pours a deep opaque black with a massive creamy khaki colored head that eventually reduces a bit to leave some lacing behind

S- sweet caramel & chocolate malt sweetness up front, complimented by the vanilla. The oak is quite noticeable and adds a toasted nut aspect. A hint of dark fruit as it warms

T- Big & bold roasted chocolate malt up front brings out some smoky char, quickly followed by some light oak & vanilla. As it nears the finish, dark fruit flavors kick in with notes of raisin & fig. More chocolate with a hint of coffee on the finish

M- heavy body with low carbonation leads to a thick and chewy mouthfeel and a silky creamy finish, just what you'd expect from a RIS

O- near perfect mouthfeel with lots of bold roasted notes, which tends to overpower the oak and vanilla a bit

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Photo of Bendurgin
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip at when pigs fly. Pours jet black with a nice mocha colored head.

The aroma has a nice mellow chocolate aroma with some nice roasted malts and some fruity character such as plumbs. Nice roasted malt flavors with some dark fruits with some milk chocolate flavor. Real enjoyable stuff.

The body is robust and silky with soft carbonation. Overall real good. Grab this one if you see it

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Photo of Jwale73
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to jedwards for sharing this beer. Pours one shade shy of black with no head, just some bubbles around the edges. Ruby red highlights are revealed when backlit. Nose expresses wood, some char and a slightly vinous quality all on a malty backbone. Taste reveals dark malt, cocoa, spicy wood and some vinousness - finish is slightly charred and bitter. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with an even, pleasant carbonation. A light acidity also stimulates that sides of the cheeks. An excellent RIS. Definitely allow this brew to warm in order to bring out its depth and complexity.

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Photo of alaimoa
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can from early December poured cold into a snifter
A: jet black with a vigorous pour leaving big creamy mocha head w coating dark lace
S: toasted nuts, coffee grinds, sweet chocolate
T: coffee upfront, bittersweet chocolate leads into a roasty blend of complex depth. Swings a bit toward the sweet side for me could use a bit of age
M: creamy, bit of chew, thick and almost feels like chocolate bar melting in mouth

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Photo of ltjska04
3.92/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Gmr75 for the hook up on this one. It was left out of the refrigerator for 45 minutes before consumption. Poured from the pint can into a tulip glass results in pitch blackness even when held up to the light. Two fingers-worth of khaki foam billows on top of the inky liquid. The aroma is reminiscent of syrupy chocolate milk with hints of vanilla followed by wisps of alcohol. The taste exhibits more vanilla than the aroma with the chocolate taking a back seat. I don't detect any oak but the 10.7% alcohol makes itself known. I was hoping for a little more complexity here with a bit less burn. The mouthfeel is full and thick but decent carbonation keeps it from being too heavy. Not very creamy; maybe even slightly abrasive but not distracting. Overall a very good stout but my high expectations weren't fully met.

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Photo of jwinship83
3.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

growler shared by user freeagent before NoTB. served in a small tasting glass.

A- this one pours a dark brown body that only a little bit of light can escape. a decent sized coffee colored head forms on top and quickly falls.

S- the first thing i pick up on in the nose is the vanilla. wow. very strong. after that i get the typical roasted malts i would expect in a stout. lots of chocolate, both milk and dark. lots of coffee. not picking up too much from the oak. pretty intense smelling brew.

T- the taste starts out with sweet milk chocolate and roasted malts. the vanilla beans i could smell come through much more subtly in the taste. lots of dark chocolate and coffee. still not too much from the oak chips. a little bit of booze.

M- big and viscous. chewy. palate coating and syrupy. a little bit of heat from the alcohol. a nice low level of carbonation that really works with this one.

D- too strong to have too many of, this was a sleeper hit from a brewery that ive never heard of before. check this one out if you get the chance.

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Sexy Chaos from Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant
91 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.