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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

1,783 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,783
Reviews: 257
rAvg: 4.54
pDev: 10.13%
Wants: 2,131
Gots: 654 | FT: 76
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: 1,783 | Reviews: 257 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of s_mart
1/5  rDev -78%

s_mart, Jul 07, 2012
Photo of ucis
1.1/5  rDev -75.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.25

Cocoa sweet boozy drain pour. I want with all my heart to praise this beer and to say that what I gave for it was remotely worth it. I wouldn't trade a six pack of your favorite AB-INBEV product for another bottle. Overly sweet, overly misplaced boozy in a very non clever way. This smelled like something my brother would have cooked up in his "cooking class" when he was postulating drug addled kittens. The mouth feel was nice and thick, like poisonous pancake syrup.

I'm sorry.
adieu

(2013 bottle...maybe this is ten years too fresh)

ucis, Sep 09, 2013
Photo of HereforBeer
1.25/5  rDev -72.5%

HereforBeer, Aug 29, 2014
Photo of paper_tiger
1.36/5  rDev -70%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

I was very excited to try this beer last summer at a tasting event, and there was a ton of buzz among the patrons about it. I unfortunately bought into the hype.

The flavors were poorly blended, with the general consensus among my group that the flavors were akin to cheap malt liquor with chocolate syrup added in. This also describes the mouthfeel, which was quite thick, almost silty, like chocolate milk made with Hershey's syrup.

I normally love a stout with deep chocolate flavors, but this just did not do it for me, and seemed more like a gimmick than a true attempt at crafting a quality product.

If nothing else, the name is cute.

paper_tiger, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of HitchSlap
1.5/5  rDev -67%

HitchSlap, Jan 11, 2014
Photo of Beerman6686
2/5  rDev -55.9%

Beerman6686, Oct 07, 2014
Photo of tinypyramids
2/5  rDev -55.9%

tinypyramids, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of cpetrone84
2/5  rDev -55.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

pour is dark chestnut brown with very little thin light tan head. The nose is huge, faint notes of chocolate, cloying sweetness, light ash note, tons of booze and a complete mess. The taste is almost as bad. The booze is overpowering, the sweetness is insanely high, it is completely unintegrated, the faint notes of actual malt body are completely blanketed by the huge abv and under attenuation. The body is thick and heavy, high carbonation. The burn and finish are similar to straight liquor mixed with pure sugar.

cpetrone84, May 03, 2012
Photo of arminjewell
2.05/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours deep oily black with white head. Aroma is like vanilla extract, with slight notes of chocolate, alcohol, and slight wood. Taste is boozy vanilla, some chocolate, lots of alcoholic boozy sweet, not a good finish with harsh booze. Wow, did not expect this,but really not well done, boozy mess.

arminjewell, Apr 23, 2011
Photo of CLevar
2.05/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I feel compelled to share this rating, if only to warn people away from trading away their first born for this beer.

Bomber shared with the MN crew! Thanks! Cloudy pitch black pour into a small snifter, no head, only a spare light brown ring. Smells like a bottle of vanilla extract, slight bit of chocolate coco powder coming through after the taste is in the mouth. Huge, messy and sweet smelling, cut by a nose burning alcohol. Wow, huge boozy flavor. Almost thin tasting. Flavor is booze, vanilla, and slight chocolate, messy ash. Odd carbonation level, feels like almost harsh bubbles and thin. I really like BT, but this beer does not live up to the hype at all. Just a thin, boozy mess, that burns the throat and nose. Don't buy into the hype.

CLevar, Apr 23, 2011
Photo of pmccallum86
2.25/5  rDev -50.4%

pmccallum86, Sep 15, 2013
Photo of Mebuzzard
2.3/5  rDev -49.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

At 18.5% abv this beast can sneak up on you. A nice looking beer, pouring dark with ruby highlights. Goes downhill from there.

For a beer called 'Chocolate Rain' there's a crap-ton of vanilla in it. The nose is sweet and vanilla. Other things exist, but they are pounded mercilessly by Mr. V.

And the taste is vanilla. Sweet and dull. That flavor just pops out and kills enjoyment of other flavors, like cocoa (little) and caramel (very little). Drain pour here.

Could pair well with ice cream, or something else too sweet...like cotton candy.

Mebuzzard, May 05, 2012
Photo of spdyfire83
2.35/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

39th Review
Bottle to snifter.
2009 Vintage

A huge thanks to Mike (mtep13) for sharing this at our DL Variant & Other Ticks Tasting in Chicago. Stoked to finally try this whale.

L: Deep mahogany – almost burnt brown, but not quite black. Thin auburn head that disappears quickly. Does not look as thick as I expected.

S: This smells like a fresh plate of dark chocolate/fudge brownies with a touch of vanilla. Very, very sweet smell with a hint of alcohol coming off the nose.

This is where the beer falls apart. Sad, but true (at least in this review).

T: Hot and un-balanced. From the first sip, this beer was not enjoyable. Hints of chocolate, vanilla, and a little molasses, but all of these flavors are over-powered by the booze. Totally unenjoyable.

M: Thin mouth-feel; not what I was expecting. I had hoped and thought it would be more sludgy and thick, but it’s not. More disappointment.

O: Just awful. I hate to say this, but I was really excited for this beer and it is simply overrated. Too boozy, not thick enough for the style, and a complete disaster start-to-finish. I can’t help but think this beer is overhyped after trying it. I would never trade for it going forward, but it is possible this bottle could have been off. I’m thinking not, but maybe so. I will not go out of my way to try this again in the future, but if it happens to land in front of me, I’d be willing to give it another shot.

spdyfire83, Oct 11, 2011
Photo of MatSciGuy
2.35/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

[Bottle] shared by Armin, Caleb and Greg. Thanks guys! Pours cloudy black with almost no head. Aroma is sickening vanilla extract, massively sweet, quite boozy, some chocolate. Holy shit this is hot. Lots of booze - man, this has got some massive burn, vanilla, can’t really drink much of this. Not awfully sweet on the flavor - the vanilla really thins out the mouthfeel. Retronasal is straight burn. WTF, this isn’t even enjoyable. Anyone who claims to perceive any complexity in this beer is either drinking hard alcohol daily or kidding themselves.

MatSciGuy, Apr 23, 2011
Photo of MaartenvanDoorn
2.49/5  rDev -45.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

The beer was poured from a bottle into the glass. It looks really dark and nice. It also smells good: very complex. However, I did not like the taste. Not balanced, too sweet and it also did not taste like 'beer' at all. The beer is also very heavy, a very dominant alcohol and sweet chocolate taste. Overall, the first impression of the beer was good but the taste is disappointing.

MaartenvanDoorn, Sep 27, 2013
Photo of obiwan_k3n00bi
2.5/5  rDev -44.9%

obiwan_k3n00bi, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of Michigan
2.5/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. Shared with my brewing friends. Served at 50*. 2013 vintage. I am reviewing this as a representation of a barrel aged stout and nothing more.

A- Pours a deep brown/black. Minimal head that disappears quickly. No light is passing through. Viscous liquid, and due to the high alcohol, it leaves legs on the glass. Not what I usually look for in a barrel aged stout.

S- BOOZE and CHOCOLATE. This thing is a mess. Upfront, I get a lot of sweet sweet sweet bourbon, vanilla, and chocolate. Aromas of toasted coconut and burnt sugar follow right behind. The aroma gave me diabeetus. So far, I don't understand why people are crazy about this. It smells like a Hershey's chocolate bar (cheap chocolate) mixed with Wild Turkey 101 bourbon.

T- Guh.... Cloyingly sweet. More of a mess than I was even expecting. It was boozy, hot, chocolaty, and very sweet. I may have grabbed a bottle of Hershey's syrup instead of chocolate rain. The alcohol is not masked at all. It seemed quite amateur. It doesn't taste like it was expertly crafted.

M- The lack of any real carbonation just made this sit in my mouth. It coated me teeth and gave me cavities.

O- Ok, The Bruery. I understand you guys like your big bottles and fancy wax, but please make the beer taste better. This whole badass, high alcohol, wax dipping thing appeals to high school lacrosse players, but the beer inside doesn't deliver a level of sophistication that I expect from a $40 bottle of beer. This was a total mess and a huge disappointment. I really don't understand the hype.

Michigan, Aug 04, 2013
Photo of mtep13
2.63/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Cracked this at a recent Chicago tasting. http://beeradvocate.com/forum/read/4132653

Thanks again Matt (exitmusic00) for hosting.

This beer was poured into a taster glass.

A: Deep dark brown/black. The beer had minimal light transmission, lacing, and head. The pour and swirl demonstrated a thin, low viscosity beer.

S: Chocolate brownie/hot cocoa on the nose. Subtle hints of vanilla

T: Lots of booze up front which quickly fades. Vanilla and brownie batter flavors linger after the booze is gone.

M: Mouth feel is thin with little carbonation.

O: I was excited by the hype of this beer. Unfortunately, the hype left me disappointed. The beer lacked the complexity that I would expect from this particular style. With a name like “Chocolate Rain”, I expected rich complex chocolate flavors that were simply not present in this beer. I am thankful for the opportunity to sample this beer. I would give this beer another try, but would not participate in a trade for this beer again.

Serving type: bottle

mtep13, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of r0nyn
2.75/5  rDev -39.4%

r0nyn, May 25, 2013
Photo of infi
2.75/5  rDev -39.4%

infi, May 25, 2013
Photo of kojevergas
2.81/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served on-draught at Beer Belly in Koreatown last night. 19.5% confirmed. Cost was $7.00 USD for an 8 oz pour. Served into a tulip. Expectations were extremely high; I love Black Tuesday. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a half finger head of milky light khaki colour. Retains for 1.5 minutes, reducing to a floater ring which itself remains for about 3-4 more minutes. Body colour is an opaque solid black; not quite a jet black but dark. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. I remember Black Tuesday looking far better and richer. Given the gargantuan ABV, I think the head retention is pretty impressive. Pretty good for the style overall.

Sm: The first thing I noticed about the beer when the bartender handed it to me was the aromatic pungent vanilla bean notes. Chocolate, cacao nibs. Dark malts. Molasses. Raisin. Boozy, but nowhere near as much as you'd expect for 19.50%. Caramel. No yeast character is detectable. Syrup. Light vinous notes. Powerful and strong, but not as rich or evocative as I recall Black Tuesday being. A bit disappointin,g but inviting overall. Certainly not alive.

T: Molasses, chocolate malt, dark malts, caramel, raisin. Light vinous character. No roast, to my chagrin. Sweet vanilla bean on the climax; a bit overbearing and creme-brulee esque - definitely too sweet, but not quite cloying. Hot and boozy; it's unpleasant but tolerable. I expected far more from the chocolate/cacao based on the aroma, but it's not rich or high quality at all. Surprisingly shallow depth of flavour. Syrupy and imbalanced. Aside from the alcohol, flavour intensity is actually fairly restrained for the style. No subtlety here at all. Not getting any barrel or wood notes. Average flavour duration.

Mf: Syrupy and thick. Undercarbonated. Smooth and wet. Not at all ideal for the style or flavour profile. Really underwhelming. Average presence on the palate.

Dr: THIS is based on Black Tuesday? THIS is highly sought after and heavily traded? Boy am I disappointed. A boozy mess with lackluster balance and few remarkable characteristics. Honestly, I wouldn't order this again. I'm shocked at its high ratings. Is Grey Monday as mediocre as this? I expected way better having loved Black Tuesday. This emperor has no clothes; I'm sorry for those of you who pay The Bruery exorbitant membership costs just to have the purported privilege of buying bottles of stuff like this. I pray the bottled version is better. I'm almost tempted to figure that the bar didn't serve or store this right, but Beer Belly has quite a good reputation. Wow, I did not see this mediocrity coming. What a waste. Very mundane.

Low C

kojevergas, Jun 20, 2013
Photo of DavoleBomb
2.88/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a snifter, about 6-7 oz. 2011 vintage (Batch 2).

3.0 A: Deep brown/black color. Head fell just about as soon as it was made.

4.0 S: Surprisingly, the booze is fairly well hidden, in the the nose at least. Big roastiness, lots of sweetness, but reasonable. Chocolate, vanilla, molasses, and leathery bourbon. Coffee underneath. It's intense, but it doesn't have much of the subtlety or complexity that I like to discover in the style.

2.5 T: Big roast, lots of chocolate, caramel, and molasses. Vanilla with oak underneath. Big leathery bourbon. Uncontrolled sweetness and booze, but not quite as bad as BT '11 was.

3.0 M: Heavy body. Good moderate carbonation. Too thick and chewy though otherwise okay.

2.5 D: This is undoubtably tough to drink and no one in my 'burgh tasting group cared for it.

DavoleBomb, Jul 18, 2012
Photo of champ103
2.95/5  rDev -35%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours not completely opaque, but dark black with some ruby brown around the edges. A tiny bubbly head forms and recedes to nothing in a second. Looks really still.
S: Very boozy up front. Some bakers chocolate, vanilla and roast comes through. Huge barrel aromas that overpower everything.
T: Like the nose, all barrel and not much else comes through. Some bakers chocolate and vanilla. Light roast. Mostly boozy ethanol and barrel flavors.
M/D: Still carbonation with a thick, gloppy, resinous body. Oh, the alcohol here is rough. Crass and over barring in almost every way. Really hard for me to enjoy this.

Oh man, I just don't get this. Beers like Bourbon County are so much more well rounded and incorporated to me. This is the newest release, so hopefully this mellows with time. Though as is, just over barring and not something I really enjoyed.

champ103, Jul 05, 2014
Photo of Florida9
2.95/5  rDev -35%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2009 Vintage

A: Very dark brown, almost black, in color. Forms a thin dark tan head that quickly reduces to absolute nothingness. No lacing.

S: Loads of chocolate and cocoa with hints of vanilla and molasses.

T&M: The first thing you notice is how thin this beer feels in the mouth. Almost watery, but then the alcohol kicks it and it becomes thin, watery, and hot. The only flavor is chocolate. Cheap, shitty, chocolate mixed with alcohol. Lower carbonation.

O: This beer tastes as if someone took Nesquick, mixed it with water instead of milk, then dropped in a couple of shots of vodka. There is absolutely no depth or complexity to this beer and it is oddly thin for a Imp Stout as well. Drinkable, but certainly doesn't live up to hype.

Florida9, Oct 11, 2011
Photo of dmsohyea
2.98/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured at the Bruery 3rd Anny fest. Taster glass.

A: Dark brown to black with almost no light penetration. Very small brown head and no lacing or retention. Very viscus.

S: Smell is exceptional. Tons of chocolate and brown sugar. A strong vanilla extract scent as well. Booze is very detectable.

T: Tastes like chocolate liquor. So much alcohol taste it ruined the rest of the flavors for me. I was able to gather some brown sugar, lots of bitter chocolate, and a hint of vanilla. But it mostly tastes like a vodka soaked chocolate bar.

M: Mouth feel is mostly burning and harsh. Oily consistency with almost zero carbonation.

O: A great smelling beer that just has too much alcohol taste for my palate. I prefer smooth beers, and this is far from smooth.

dmsohyea, May 30, 2011
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Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
100 out of 100 based on 1,783 ratings.