Chocolate Rain - The Bruery

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Chocolate RainChocolate Rain

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

288 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 288
Hads: 2,242
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 5.07%
Wants: 2,467
Gots: 847 | FT: 115
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mikedashg on 10-28-2009

Black Tuesday with Vanilla Bean & Cocoa Nibs.

2011: 18.5% ABV
2012: 19.5% ABV
2013: 18.0% ABV
2014: 18.5% ABV
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 288 | Hads: 2,242
Photo of danh53
4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown with little lacing. Surprisingly htwo finger.head which disappeared quickly. I had this one night after drinking regular bourbon county and there are similarities here like the way the big bourbon flavor shines through. This one has more chocolate. Milk chocolate candy bar doesn't dominate the flavor but clings to my throat after each sip. There is a fair amount of fruit as well in the flavor an especially in the nose. You get bourbon soaked figs and raisins, but I'm also getting juicier fruits as well, possibly cherries and plums. Coconut is present, but you have to look for it. Sweet molasses too. The mouth feel is really good. It's thin but that's to be expected with this ABV. It still clings to palate which enhances each sip. The carbonation seems just right and the feel is smooth and silky. The vanilla is not prominent. Maybe it has faded since this is the 2013 vintage. The high ABV is a great feature and really sets this beer apart. You don't taste the alcohol burn, but the warming sensation is very nice. I would love to try this again but with so many barrel aged stouts out there, I don't think I'll be looking to trade for it in the near future. (1,189 characters)

Photo of SteveB24
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look-color is a surprisingly clear, lightish brown, not unlike milk chocolate, no head at all save for a few stray bubbles.
Smell-TONS of sweet chocolate, booze, and vanilla.
Taste-Loads of milky chocolate upfront, faint notes of caramel, vanilla, some coconut in there as well, and a slight touch of alcohol but nowhere near the level you might except from a beer this big.
Feel-Very thick and creamy, very faint carbonation.
Overall-This beer is a wonderful treat, hopefully i'll be lucky enough to try it again sometime. (523 characters)

Photo of d3brewing
4.77/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer lives up to the hype. 2015 taster @ the tasting room on 6/13/15. Pours jet black with no head. Nose is big burbon, chocolate, black malt, sweet base malt. Taste is huge and complex, big burbon, alcohol warmth, dark chocolate, sweet grain. So deep and so complex it's amazing. Mouthfeel was considerably lighter than expected, sitting on a bottle for a year or 2 is recommended to thicken, sweeten, and blend the body and tastes.
Reservation society here I come. (471 characters)

Photo of macher0
4.71/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Enjoyed a 2013 at a share. Split between 4 peeps.

Obviously this is a very dark beer with very little head, low carb, and fairly thin. These characteristics are typical for the big Bruery stouts.

Unlike the other big Bruery stouts, this has an incredibly complex chocolaty nose and taste. The bourbon is there but takes a back stage. The chocolate comes through big time and the taste is like chocolate milk that is infused with majestic bourbon barrel. Kind of sweet but delicious, not syrupy and a little silky. The booze is non-existence but I only had a portion of the bottle. I would certainly drink more, but a 1/4 of the bottle is perfect, leaves you wanting more and totally content at the same time.

I was very impressed, I will obtain another and enjoy the hell out of it. (786 characters)

Photo of pagriley
4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle so about 18 months old
Lighter hue than expected - dark tan more than black with a thin caramel head
Booze up front. some chocolate, but dominated by booze
Hot, more like a liqueur than a beer. overly sweet
thinner than expected, good carbonation

Overall, not what I expected. More like a dessert liqueur than a beer. (332 characters)

Photo of -Rick
4.81/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

this is desert in a bottle. Huge amounts of chocolate, vanilla, and a bit of coffee. The booze is well hidden in this one. Truly a great stout. Bottled in 2013 (163 characters)

Photo of maximum12
4.82/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Many thanks to RipRap for this bottle; yet another beer I felt compelled to track down after mouthing it at a tasting. Big 750ML bottle, vintage 2014, with the trademark Bruery label & gold wax, split with my wife.

The pour is as expected: minimally carbed, and black as the soul of Adrian Peterson with a maple branch in his hand (or a Twitter account). Smells like chocolate milk that’s been doctored with 268 proof something or other: boozy. Not complex or great, but lovely.

Chocolate Rain is something I’d never carry an umbrella for. The first thing I notice is how toasty I am after taking my first sip, as the alcohol burns a warm track all the way down. I hope it doesn’t feel like that coming out. Massive chocolate notes & enough bourbon to sanitize a moderately dangerous wound leap out of the morass. Big-ass vanilla that would have dominated any other beer doesn’t show up until the mid-palate: damn, I’m drunk already. Fudge, oak, gold star maple syrup. The end is all booze & chocolate. Thicker than my…well, thick. Ridiculously drinkable. I’m not sure I would survive taking an entire bottle myself, but damn, I’d like to try. Then try again.

If ever a beer deserved to have the word ‘decadent’ tattooed into its foamy head, it would be C Rain. This is a boozy, chocolate, bourbony, TNT of a beer. It’s also fantastic & fully deserving of… what was I saying? My wife is now speaking tongues. That’s a good sign. Without question a top-shelf beer. (1,494 characters)

Photo of Beer4B
4.04/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014: this one wasn't nearly as chocolatey as others (so I've been told). Chocolate and a ton of booz in our bottle. The booziness was overwhelming and hid most of the chocolate and any other depth. The feel was fantastic and would love to try another vintage. (263 characters)

Photo of Chcshammonde
4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An incredible confluence of flavors. Very smooth and drinkable for 18% abv. This was the highest ABV beer I've had to date. Huge props to my bud A. for sharing this apparent whale. That being said it was too much for me personally. Even beers at 12-13% knock me out, so it takes the enjoyability down a notch. Feeling it this morning. (341 characters)

Photo of Hoptimus-Prime
4.42/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love the Cacao nibs and vanilla presence! The one downfall for me was the body. Relatively light body vs what I was expecting for a 18%er. Great beer, big thanks to Dave Treat for sending this to me! (199 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

just a ludicrous beverage here, i mean come on guys, this is taking it pretty far, and its truly epic. maybe the final evolution of the huge stout. i was amazed by this on so many levels, although i also have to say that doing anything to black tuesday seems a bit ridiculous, like improving on perfection is pretty tough right? and im definitely not sure this improves on it any at all, but it does create a whole new landscape, and a delicious one. the chocolate is really dominant, aptly named obviously, its a mix of sort of sweet milk chocolate and really bitter dark chocolate. for some reason it only tastes like the nibs a little bit, with a much stronger actual chocolate flavor than the bitter earthiness and espresso roast. must be all the sweetness going on, this is sweet because black tuesday is sweet, its sweet because the vanilla is sweet, and its sweet because the bourbon barrel here is very sweet. its all a good sugar, but its hard to ignore, and it slows down the rate of drinking just as quickly as the alcohol here, which is strong, but not quite as strong as i expected it to be given the insane strength. not as thick as the others for some reason, its viscous no doubt, but its just not quite as coating and filling. this is a very special rarity, and i am very grateful to have gotten to share it with close friends. (1,344 characters)

Photo of Brandonparrent
5/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

wow beer. great chocolate, molasses boozy sweetness. the only bad part was i only had 1 bottle. Love what the Bruery is doing with beer!!!!!!! wishing i loved closer to LA #bruerybeer (184 characters)

Photo of Jlabs
4.87/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is one insane ba stout..easily of of the 5 best I've had..might be the best..the bourbon barrel and vanilla are mixed perfectly here..and the booze is fairly well hidden for such a high ABV beer. (200 characters)

Photo of rand
4.77/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

2014 batch

750 mL bottle to snifter

A: Cola-brown in color, not as oily-viscous as Black Tuesday - not sure if its the added ingredients or something with the process, but the viscosity is clearly reduced. A wispy, soda-like head dissipates and leaves almost no trace of lacing.

S: The added cocoa is prominent - smells like opening a box of chocolate truffles laced in booze. The molasses undertone that anchored Black Tuesday is replaced by sugary vanilla. Chocolate pie meets beer.

T: The flavors are less a confectionery treat and more beer-like, although it's a still a decadent sip. Easily parsed notes of vanilla and chocolate are balanced by oak, lots of booze and a touch of a leafy hops. Finishes long and sweet.

M: Rich and creamy, but not as oily and sticky as its Black Tuesday progenitor.

Just as decadent and delicious as Black Tuesday, but with the added ingredients slightly more drinkable. (925 characters)

Photo of MissSmisje
4.68/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: opaque blackish brown with mocha lacing. S: vanilla, cacao nibs, roasted malts, fruity coffee. T: vanilla and cacao dominate, fruity and bright coffee; implied sweetness from the vanilla and cacao; vanilla and oaky bourbon finish. F: on the lighter side of heavy. Not syrupy or oily. Warm finish from the bourbon barrels and alcohol; not otherwise hot. Excellent! Big fan of vanilla and cacao blend. (402 characters)

Photo of smb
4.77/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2015 vintage. 6oz pour in a Bruery snifter at The Bruery.

L: Pours with a light swirly mocha head. Oily blackness, heftier and darker than Black Tuesday.

S: Intense aroma of milk and dark chocolate, dark fruit, figs, vanilla, oak, freshly baked cookies and smores. An exciting beer to whiff over and over.

T: Wow. Vanilla, brownies, chocolate and cookie dough hit at the front of the tongue, with oak and an almost white chocolate character at the back. There's some slight bitter stout roastiness and bourbon flavor in the mix, but it's barely detectable and it works well to balance out and dial down the sweetness.

F: 18.4% ABV... where is it? I don't understand how Bruery does it. Vanilla, brownie fudge and oak coat the tongue, and while you can feel some heat as it goes down... it's by no means harsh and finishes really clean for how big of a beer it is.

Overall: A well-rounded, stunningly delicious and decadent world-class barrel aged imperial stout. The addition of the vanilla beans really thicken it up and improve the aroma and flavor. An improvement on Black Tuesday is a pretty big achievement. (1,122 characters)

Photo of skiking70
4.55/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have looked forward to trying this beer for some time and it sure didn't disappoint me. The smell is amazing, the chocolate is the first thing that hits your nose, followed by the bourbon. The taste follows the smell, with the chocolate up front along with bourbon and finishes with a subtle vanilla finish. I'm not sure how they hid the 19 percent, you will need help, because it is sweet. (395 characters)

Photo of Samuel906
4.14/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very rich and sweet. Smell is absolutely amazing, one if the best smelling beers I've had. Chocolate, rum, graham crackers, cherries. Taste is good but not extraordinary. Like I said, super sweet. Tons of rich dark chocolate. Figs. Port wine. Feel is heavy but not syrupy, fantastic warming from the impressive abv. Overall very good, but not one of bruerys greats. (366 characters)

Photo of john0721
4.47/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into a Bruery tulip glass.

Poured black with a light brown head which quickly diminished.

Nose had bourbon, oak, and chocolate.

Flavor started with caramel, chocolate and bourbon initialy. Chocolate increased as it warmed and oxidized. Vanilla, dark fruit and brown sugar also increased as it warmed.

Chocolate is the dominant flavor, but its balanced enough to allow other aspects of the beer to be appreciated. (436 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.11/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I tried this 2013 vintage chilled in a nonic from the 750ml. Enjoyed at the looking forward to spring stout tasting.

The color is dark brown with ruby hues when held to the light with light beige head with fine bead. The smell has a dark sugar and cocoa/fig-like earthy and raisiny aroma with slight alcohol odor. The feel is intense, big bold with rich viscous texture and more alcohol than average yet not over the top for the abv.

The taste is like a raisinette -mostly raisin with some chocolate in the taste which is more on the dark cocoa side with a slight yeast flavor and sweet dark sugar and vinous elements with a slight alcohol flavor that lasts after the swallow with so much residual sugar it leaves my lips sweet and I can taste the intensity as I lick them. This is one of the most intensely rich beers I have ever had -so much sweet qualities with strong alcohol in the taste which is the only drawback for me. (931 characters)

Photo of 31Sam13
4.69/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just sublime...the alcohol character is well-presented and it tastes like a fudge brownie and the way your Granny made them, with just enough vanilla and wow, it just is almost indescribable...a challenge to hold this much flavor in a bottle with this much alcohol and to have it be so balanced without residual sweetness or booziness...a triumph... (349 characters)

Photo of Vonerichs
4.55/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 vintage

It poured surprisingly thin compared to what I've been accustomed to with Briery releases. It's still thick, but not motor oil thick. There's also a little light that passes through it, giving it a dark brown appearance.

Aroma is dessert in a glass. Fudge brownies and vanilla bean.

This one met my high expectations. It's sweet and chocolatey. Boozey, but at 18% not as bad as I'd expect. I'm thrilled that it's not cloyingly sweet like a lot of these Bruery releases are. It seriously tastes like a fudge brownie a la mode. So good.

It's thicker than it appears. Soft, good carbonation. Boozey and a sipper. Sweet through and through.

I'm glad this also lived up to the hype. I've been dying to try this one for years and was not disappointed. (780 characters)

Photo of Shon4star
4.99/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer had big expectations for me. Then it blew every single one of them away. I had the 2013 vintage. It instantly became a favorite of mine. Strong chocolate and slight vanilla give this brew the taste of a chocolate bar. The 18% abv(2013) wasn't that noticeable. This is serious perfection in a bottle! (309 characters)

Photo of ironchefmiyagi13
4.61/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had the 2012 vintage the other night. A friend had opened it the night before and couldn't finish it, so he re-capped it.

Looks still and black as oil.

Smell is out of this world. Sweet chocolate, potent bourbon and a tannic barrel presence. Truly amazing.

Flavor was great, as well. I think being open all night helped burn off some of the alcohol and open it up into something truly decadent.

Mouthfeel was nice. There was just enough carbonation left to scrub the palate and keep the sweetness from being cloying.

Overall, I liked this beer a lot. Mocha Wednesday still edged it slightly, but it just goes to show how proper aging can vault a beer up in quality. (673 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark brown/black color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention and some light lacing. Aroma of black chocolates with quite a bit of residual sugar notes. Taste is also dominated by black chocolate notes with loads of residual sugar and a spicy finish. Vanilla notes are more subtle but kind of help smooth some of the rough edges of this beer. Body is about average for style with medium carbonation and warming alcohol can be detected. Big beer or sure that need to be split up between a couple of people, but very enjoyable beer nonetheless. (571 characters)

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Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
96 out of 100 based on 288 ratings.