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Chocolate Rain - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Chocolate RainChocolate Rain

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

1,546 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,546
Reviews: 248
rAvg: 4.53
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 2,007
Gots: 624 | FT: 78
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  18.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Black Tuesday with Vanilla Bean & Cocoa Nibs.

2011: 18.5% ABV
2012: 19.5% ABV
2013: 18.0% ABV
2014: 18.5% ABV

(Beer added by: mikedashg on 10-28-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,546 | Reviews: 248 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Dennoman:
Photo of Dennoman
Dennoman

Belgium

4.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 bottle courtesy of Vincent at our crazy Antwerp tasting. Thanks everyone for an amazing night that will long have a special place in my heart and liver. Sampled next to a 2011 Black Tuesday, in a 50-50 blend of the two and even mixed with a lambic (which was dead gorgeous). Yeah, that's how crazy things got.

A: Pours a chestnut brown going into black. Very little head with awesome oily lacing that gets swept away by the alcohol. You can tell just by looking at it this is going to be one boozy beast.

S: Bourbon, vanilla and milk chocolate. No real bitter notes from dark chocolate, which I was expecting since this was matured on whole cocoa nibs. The differences with Black Tuesday are there, but they are very subtle at best. It seems the cocoa has mostly subdued the oaky notes from the barrel.

T: First things to hit the tongue are bourbon, vanilla, sweet Japanese soy sauce and creamy milk chocolate. Some woody notes, but very subtle if so. This is distinctly less sweet than the Black Tuesday, whereas I was expecting the complete opposite due to added vanilla during maturation. The cocoa nibs are sadly all but lost to me and that's a bit of a shame: the bitterness and slight acidity of a roasted cocoa bean would have cut through all that sweetness beautifully. Again, the booze is very present and borderline hot. It could do with some aging.

M: Soft carbonation that's only just enough to remind you that you're drinking a beer and not syrup. Very fitting for the style.

O: Though the maturation on cocoa nibs is sadly a bit lost to me, I preferred this over its base beer. Where the alcohol in Black Tuesday came out just a touch more aggressively because of the sweetness in it, the added maturation on this seems to have mellowed out some of that hotness. Since there are currently no Choccy Rains older than a year and a half and the first batch is very hard to get, this beer will take some time before it reaches its peak. When the time comes, I'll be sure to give it another shot.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2012 11:50:34 | More by Dennoman
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look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chocolate Rain, 2013 vintage. Tasted July 5th, 2014.

APPEARANCE

Pours opaque black with tones of deep red. Initially there is almost no head, and the little there is disappears quickly. No lacing.

AROMA

It is baffling how complex the aroma is. At first I'm sucked into a whirlpool of dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and vanilla. Holy cow.

Once I recover, sweet ripe dates as well as red raisin greet my nose. I can also definitely smell the alcohol. There is a hint of wood somewhere in the back, and I perceive sweet bourbon somewhere in the distance. I'm overwhelmed with sweetness, sweetness, and more sweetness. Brown sugar, and sugar pie (a French Canadian specialty: brown sugar, cream, butter).

It doesn't take too long for fortified wine, port wine, madera and sherry to make their presence known, in no uncertain way. They are supported by a malty back bone.

As if it was not sweet enough, other desserts come to me after it warms up: chocolate cake, some sweet carrot cake, notes of cola, truffle, and caramel.

TASTE

It tastes almost as complex as the aroma. My first impression is all dark chocolate and vanilla, with a touch of espresso, truffle, and caramel. It is almost unbearable how good this is.

Sugar pie returns (caramelized cream and brown sugar) - you really have to try this one day to know what I'm talking about. I feel like I'm drinking fancy Swiss chocolate candies. A little note of cinnamon remains after the sip is gone.

I can actually taste the alcohol. However, it doesn't overpowers anything, it balances well with the other components. Eventually I spot a few extras that do their thing quietly in the background: amaretto, a touch of hazelnut, and almond.

Finally, I taste what's going on in the background: tobacco, leather, and a hint of fig.

I was a little surprised to find very little bourbon, wood, molasses and licorice, which are typically found abundantly in this type of beer. I suspect those qualities couldn't find a spotlight on this crowded stage. Btw this is not a flaw, just something unusual. The beer is already outstanding.

MOUTHFEEL

The carbonation is pretty low, and I stand in a world of warmth from the alcohol (not burning though). Curiously, it leaves in my mouth a prickly sensation, that faintly numbs my tongue and even the inside of my cheeks. I suspect the vanilla to be responsible.

I was expecting a very thick and oily beer, but no, surprisingly, its body leans on the light to medium side. Viscosity is average, and it is not very chewy. It is extremely pleasant, to be honest, it elevates the drinkability. Even more surprising, the finish is rather crisp for that style of beer. Perhaps aging it for a year and half has thinned it just right?

OVERALL

Lots of surprises with beer, especially with the mouth feel. The only flaw I found was the lack of head, which is a fairly minor one. For me this beer is nearly perfect, mature, and -excuse the language- fucking EPIC.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2014 19:15:09 | More by Brew_Bear
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« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
100 out of 100 based on 1,546 ratings.