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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: 2,132
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 nickfl
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%

nickfl, Oct 18, 2013
Photo of russpowell
4.75/5  rDev +4.6%

russpowell, Jun 28, 2014
Photo of MasterSki
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to hoppymeal (again!) for sharing this one. Served in a tasting snifter.

A - Pours with a quick-dissolving wisp of foam that settles to a partial ring, and no lace, etc. Body is black, with a glint of transparent brown at the fringes.

S - Cocoa nibs, chocolate cake, vanilla, caramel, booze, fudge, lightly roasted grains. Alcohol is present, but seems a bit lower than 18.5% - still, it's quite obviously "high-test". Sweetness is borderline cloying.

T - Alcohol is better hidden to taste. Lots of melted chocolate, fudge, cake, vanilla, and perhaps some light bourbon character as well. Less oaky than I remember Black Tuesday to be, and not much in the way of roast character either.. Some heat still creeps in, but the sweetness would become off-putting long before the alcohol.

M - Smoth, full-bodied, with mild alcohol warmth. Very sticky and viscous. Carbonation is low but sufficient. Pretty much exactly what I'd want from a beer of this style and heft.

D - I prefer the base beer to be completely honest. This is a bit too sweet and hot at this stage for me to want more than a couple ounces. I suspect it will improve over then next 12-18 months, but I long for a bit more roast to my stouts and that is definitely not happening here. Still, as a decadent dessert of a beer, this is quite good - perhaps it should be renamed Chocolate Panty Dropper, as chocolate-crazed wives and significant others will go wild for this one.

MasterSki, Apr 18, 2011
Photo of jlindros
4.85/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In the Beer 2000 (the rest of this voice should sound like Conan O'brien)... Oh man, never thought I would reach 1000 let alone 2000, holy crap! To do it, one of my long (about 1 year) sought after beers, Chocolate Rain, "Some stay dry and others feel the pain" (Tay Zonday eat your heart out). Shared with rudzud as our shared RS membership dictates.

As it pours, it looks a bit lighter than I expected as it's flowing slowly out of the bottle. A light fizzy head forms, darker colored I think although hard to tell, fades almost instantly, although typical for ridiculous abv beer, over a very dark beer, not quite pitch black, with hints of light sneaking through the edges, and I mean HINTS. It also wants to have legs, but is more like a layered sleen of beer slowly sliding down the sides of the glass instead of legs.

Nose is just pure chocolate! Awesomeness! Tons of chocolate right out, oh and vanilla!. A big cocoa nib profile wafts out of the glass, not too aggressive at first, but then shows me up quickly, with some cocoa nibs, melted milk chocolate, a bit of baker's and some heavy dark chocolate. The fresh soaked vanilla beans, tons of caramel and molasses to add to the richness. A bit of booze, but doesn't seem like 19% yet. It brings that aroma of a brick of almost pure dark chocolate, there's so much chocolate! so many exclamation points!. A hint of cinnamon leads to some brandy and bourbon soaked raisin, vanilla, some oak and bourbon. The vanilla really builds as it warms.

Taste, ooohhh man, knee buckling, luckily I peed before I sipped this. it just erupts with pure chocolate! It reminds me a lot of the huge brick of the super dark chocolate I used to get at Trader Joe's which I would shave slices off, and let them just melt over my tongue, and the result is almost exactly like this experience. Various layers of chocolate melting all over my mouth, bakers', dark, milk, cocoa nibs, etc, etc, and also etc. Then comes vanilla, with all the descriptors I did for chocolate, vanilla is just behind it (well mostly after it warms). Some toasty oak barrel, vanilla, pure vanilla bean and richness. Some bourbon comes through as well, not strong, but enough to let you know, with a light bourbon soaked raisin like flavor. It drinks like 9% not 19%, smooth and rich, and just a light bitterness. A touch of biscuit adds some malted milk ball flavor. Finish is super long, mouth coating, tons of vanilla, chocolate, dark choc, light bourbon, oak, booze, and just a touch of bitterness, linger for what seems like forever, and even burps up flavor of awesomeness hours later.

Mouth... holy shit, this has to be the best mouth feel I've ever had in a beer!!! it doesn't even seem like a beer, more like velvet, velour, essence of pour silk, and everything in between, all having sex with the hottest chic in the world in heaven, wrapped in melted dark chocolate, and served on a naked hot Japanese woman, ala sushi, etc. There really isn't a word to describe the mouth feel. If I could vote for higher than 5, this mouth would go to 11. It even tickles my gums on each subsequent sip, literally tickles!

Overall... gggmmmsssshhhgggguguuuaaahhhgggrrrlllggguuh.

jlindros, Aug 15, 2012
Photo of drabmuh
4.6/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I still can't believe that this was just there, at the Bruery, waiting for me to try it. This beer was as good, perhaps slightly better on every other Thursday than Black Tuesday. Think Black Tuesday plus chocolate.

Beer is served on cask into a Bruery tulip. Beer is brown / black with a diffuse head of small and big bubbles that doesn't leave lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low. Looks OK.

Beer smells like bourbon and chocolate, it smells amazing. Its sweet, molasses, chocolate, liquor, some alcohol, its so amazingly complex, I could have smelled it all night.

Beer has this creamy mouthfeel from the cask, its sweet and has some minimal bitterness on the back from the chocolate. The forward flavors are like a hershey bar dipped in bourbon, its great, its not cloying or overpowering its just really solid. The finish is nice and not too dry, a little dryer than the regular Black Tuesday but overall its a great beer. I would definitely have it again, only if they would bottle this.

drabmuh, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was able to try this at a tasting this past weekend. Poured from a bottle into a Colossus snifter.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with a mild amount of tan head that leaves a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Chocolate and roasted malt with some cocoa and dark chocolate. There is a lot of really hot liquor in the finish.

Taste: Cocoa and roast hit the tongue right away. The chocolate flavors are mildly sweet, but the roast seems to dominate. There is a heat from the alcohol that shows up immediately and builds throughout the sip.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side of medium with smooth carbonation and a finish that is a bit dry.

Overall: This is a good beer, but didn't quite live up to the hype for me. I would love to try it again with some age on it, but we'll have to see if that happens.

oline73, Dec 19, 2011
Photo of Rifugium
3.6/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

First had: bottle as a "gift"
2012 bottle labeled as 19.5%ABV

Refrigerated for about a half hour, and allowed to slowly warm while drinking. Decanted into a Bruery snifter, dark cola brown color, translucent around the edges, with a thin, wispy tan head. No real lacing, but a streaky, oily film is left on the glass. Nose is pretty much straight up bourbon and dark chocolate. Taste is pretty hot with booze (my throat is burning as we speak), bourbon is the first thing to hit the palate, followed by dark chocolate, sweet vanilla extract, with notes of oak and cocoa powder. Chocolate definitely comes out more as the beer warms. It's sweet and boozy, basically, with some chocolate in it. A bit chalky in the finish. Body is on the heavier side of medium, but not at all full. The booze cuts back on the drinkability a bit, and I'd like to taste it after a year or two of aging, but that probably won't happen. Pretty good overall, but there are plenty of other chocolate beers out there that are better, made better, and of course much easier to obtain.

Tasty enough. Worth a try? Sure. Worth the hype? No. And I'm not going to give a super-high rating just because it's rarity. Easily the best Bruery beer I've had so far, but just further convinced me that all Bruery beers are overrated. I have other Bruery beers in the cellar, but I'm pretty much done going out of my way for them.

Rifugium, May 16, 2012
Photo of mendvicdog
4.75/5  rDev +4.6%

mendvicdog, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of mdfb79
4.75/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge huge thanks to drabmuh for sharing this one; thanks Matt! Big want of mine. Served in an Alvinne taster tulip. 2011 vintage.

a - Pours a very dark brown, almost black color, with one inch of very dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks pretty good.

s - Smells of chocolate, roasted malts, bourbon, vanilla, dark fruits, cocoa, cream, and toffee. Very nice nose, a wonderful mix of the bourbon, chocolate, and vanilla. Loving it.

t - Tastes of of sweet milk chocolate, roasted malts, bourbon, oak, vanilla, sweet dark fruits, raisins, cocoa, cream, caramel malts, and tofee. Again, a really great mix; tons of sweet chocolate again. The chocolate and vanilla really comes through; a step up from the nose.

m - Medium body and low carbonation, very smooth and creamy. Near perfect mouthfeel; a tiny bit more carbonation and it would be perfect. Hard to believe this one is in the 18.5%-20% ABV range.

o - Overall I thought this is a fantastic beer; I think I actually like it a bit better than the normal BT as it had more sweet chocolate, especially in the taste. I love chocolate, vanilla, and bourbon in beers, and this blends all three in a great way. A top notch RIS; very glad I'll get another bottle in the Reserve Society next year.

mdfb79, Jan 03, 2012
Photo of MarkyMOD
4.5/5  rDev -0.9%

MarkyMOD, Oct 13, 2013
Photo of Mora2000
4.72/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to bman1113vr for sharing this bottle. Not sure I was going to get to try this beer.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with no real head. There are a few dark brown bubbles. A very nice looking stout.

The aroma is awesome. I get a lot of chocolate, bourbon and oak notes, as well as vanilla and maple from the barrel aging. The mix of bourbon and chocolate in the aroma works perfectly. The beer smells about like I expected it to and it is very nice.

The flavor is more of the same and is also great. I get a lot of boozy chocolate as well as a lot of bourbon, oak, vanilla and maple. Even though the beer is pretty boozy, it is still very easy to drink. The barrel aging has done great things to the base stout, imparting several different flavors that all meld very well together.

Low carbonation and thick, creamy mouthfeel.

Very glad I got to try this one and hope I get to try it again.

Mora2000, Feb 13, 2011
Photo of beernads
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%

beernads, May 17, 2013
Photo of Rochefort10nh
3.5/5  rDev -22.9%

Rochefort10nh, Apr 23, 2012
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 XmnwildX12
4.5/5  rDev -0.9%

XmnwildX12, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of oriolesfan4
3.75/5  rDev -17.4%

oriolesfan4, Nov 04, 2012
Photo of Halcyondays
4.05/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Finally, a year late, I got to have this on cask,

A: Pours a dark brown with a mild cask head. Some lace, very nice colour.

S: Lots of chocolate, bourbon, the cacao really comes out and differentiates it from BT. A soothing but complex smell.

T: Direct bitter cacao nib flavours. Sweet residual sugar throughout with a hint of acidity in the finish.

M: Full-bodied, but thins out a bit with the acidity towards the end. A big beer though for sure.

D: A very nice stout. I was a bit underwhelmed as I missed it last year and have been waiting for this moment. Not as good as regular Black Tuesday for me, but in the whole scheme of things it is well made in its style.

Halcyondays, Oct 27, 2010
Photo of imperialking
5/5  rDev +10.1%

imperialking, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of drewone
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%

drewone, Mar 19, 2012
Photo of yourefragile
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%

yourefragile, Aug 11, 2013
Photo of corby112
4/5  rDev -11.9%

corby112, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.6/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the Bruery Line Party...I mean R.S. initiation party. Reviewed from notes.

A - Pours black as the devils soul with a small tan film of head, dissipating down to almost nothing, leaving light wisps of lacing down the glass.

S - Holy sweet heat batman. Tons of rich chocolate sweetness, vanilla, sweet malt, and bourbon heat. The alcohol is strong but it blends in quite well with all the other strong flavors. Very nice overall balance, all things considered.

T - Lots of chocolaty sweetness up front never really fading throughout consumption. Hints of vanilla, sweet malt, and strong bourbon help round things out. Finish is a mix of sweetness and bourbon, lingering for some time. This stuff is awesome. I can't wait to see what a little bit of time in the bottle will do to it.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Thick, sticky sweet, feel with plenty of lingering sweet heat in the finish.

D - Finally a beer that lives up to its own hype. I made sure I got a pour as soon as I walked into the party and I was glad I did. I enjoyed the overall mix of sweet chocolate and warm bourbon. One of the best stouts I have ever had. Glad I have a bottle of this in my cellar.

orangesol, Mar 10, 2011
Photo of stakem
4.15/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml poured into a matching Bruery snifter. The brew streams a dark brown that settles in the glass more toward black. An initial 3/4 finger of tan froth dissolves to a fine ring around the edge of the glass. Some spotting of lace sticks to the glass that is minimal. There is a greater amount of alcohol legs that sticks to the glass than lace. A swirl agitates bubbles from solution that again creates a quick dissolving film. When held to the light, the brew looks more of a clouded brown with some yellowish/orange highlights around the edges.

The aroma is fairly strong with notes of cocoa and vanilla. These 2 characteristics are also present in the base beer but it is really exaggerated here in Chocolate Rain. The overall nose is quite sweet smelling and inviting with character that is reminiscent of brownie batter. As the brew warms up, the alcohol starts to come through with some solvent burning to the nostrils and a faint amount of dark fruity character.

The taste is sticky and sweet with an immediate rush of chocolate and strong vanilla flavoring. There is no hiding that 19.5% abv though. It comes surging out with bold fusels and a solvent kick that strips the sweetness from the inside of the mouth and burns all the way down the gullet. There is a bit of bitterness here towards the back that seems like unsweetened chocolate and a bit of fruity hop accent. Black licorice is evident in the aftertaste.

This is a full bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is thick and chewy yet a smooth sipper. This is an impressively bold brew with a shocking amount of cocoa and vanilla inclusion (moreso than I expected.) As far as drinkability goes, this one is a brute and is not something to be drank glass after glass of. It is rich and inviting and something I would like to be able to take in small samples on multiple occasions, not try and tackle an entire 750ml of. Fans of Black Tuesday will love this but in my opinion this is really hot right now. I wish I would have waited a year or more to open this.

stakem, Jun 22, 2012
Photo of wrightst
4.5/5  rDev -0.9%

wrightst, Jun 20, 2014
Photo of dbrauneis
4.25/5  rDev -6.4%

dbrauneis, Mar 03, 2014
Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
100 out of 100 based on 1,783 ratings.