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Chocolate Rain - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Chocolate RainChocolate Rain

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

313 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 313
Hads: 2,427
Avg: 4.42
pDev: 10.41%
Wants: 2,568
Gots: 940 | FT: 117
Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 313 | Hads: 2,427
Photo of Stevedore
4.53/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

75cl bottle, vintage 2012. Generously shared by lunarbrew at a crazy bottleshare last night, 10/5/2013. Poured into a Zwanze 2013 glass.

Review #225.

Looks like Black Tuesday. Pours motor oil and looks like liquid chocolate, like fondue. Opaque, black and chewy. Even came out with a 1cm mocha head that had fairly good retention. Not much lacing. Looks like freakin' dessert.

Heavenly is what I'd call the smell. We had just drank 2011 Black Tuesday before opening up this one, and it smells even better than BT. The massive sweetness of the base BT is tempered a bit by cocoa bitterness and raw vanilla, which is perfect. It's intense and over the top, which is the Bruery for you.

I love how this beer tastes. The sweetness is pretty much a straight up caramel-molasses-sugar bomb. So intensely sweet, but not overly so because of the bigness of the vanilla essence and the bitterness of the cocoa nibs. A good bit of barrel contribution, giving us some sweet bourbon and some oak.

Mouthfeel is BT plus. Medium bodied, basically liquid dessert, much like Bourbon County Stout. Carbonation is low which is expected here. Best thing about it is that there is no booziness whatsoever in this 19.5% beer. Dang! Finish is complex as hell with a nice resinous quality to it. Not too sticky, not too dry. Its great.

This is an awesome imperial stout. Much better than Black Tuesday for sure.. the adjuncts do a great job of taming down BT's ridiculous sugar bomb aspect, and there is no heat in this. None at all. This is a treat, but I would agree that you have to open this bottle with 4-5 other people to be able to fully enjoy this.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.52/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I shared a bottle with the guys the other day, side by side with the 2010 Black Tuesday.

Like BT, this is dark brown with a dense, brown head that recedes to a ring leaving nothing but gorgeous legs. The nose has chocolate, chocolate, vanilla and more chocolate. Intensely decadent, this has brown sugar, vanilla and bourbon. Like BT, it displays an abject lack of roast or coffee aromas, this has plenty of caramel to go with the chocolate. The palate is what you'd expect - chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, brown sugar, no tannins and intensely dessert-like. It's good for what it is, sweet and boozy on the finish, a decadent treat. Full in body with medium-light carbonation, the mouthfeel is rather tremendous. Not as good as the cask version I had, but still, very, very good.

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Photo of SteveB24
4.52/5  rDev +2.3%
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.

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Photo of Mavajo
4.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Do I even need to bother describing the appearance? Pitch black with a very minimal cream head.

This thing reeks of booze and vanilla bean, with chocolate back behind it -- I love it! Taste is the same. Actually reminds me a good bit of World Wide Stout. Big chocolate, licorice, vanilla, "bourbon" (and all that entails) and booze. I keep saying "booze" -- but don't let that fool you. Also, there's some roast on the palate, which I'm extremely sensitive too -- but it's minimal and quickly overwhelmed by the rest of the beer. This is imminently drinkable and smooth, with a nice warming burn as it goes down. Mouthfeel is syrupy, but not overly thick.

I love it, but I think I loved Black Tuesday even more. And quite frankly, I feel like World Wide Stout scratches the same itch pretty well...and WWS is way more readily available.

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Photo of zac16125
4.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a snifter
020912 Lot 30

Another huge thanks to Redbeeron for sending over this big time want in a trade!

A: Pours a quite thin appearing dark brown with lightening on the edges. An aggressive pour yields approximately 1/2 fingers width of light tan head which dissipates down almost immediately to a think outer ring. Leaves no appreciable lacing. Actually appears very similar to a cola.

S: Tons of bourbon and dark fruits. Cinnamon, caramel, vanilla bean ice cream, rich dark and milk chocolate, balancing booze, maybe even a hint of coconut. Jesus. Its so sweet and delicious smelling. Intoxicating. Incredible.

T: Huge sweetness up front, with a big caramel/toffee presence. Dark fruits, fig and cherry. Pretty boozy from the get go, but it has to be to balance out the huge sweetness. Cocoa is significant and hangs around for ages in the aftertaste. Taste is similar to dark chocolate covered cherries, soaked in booze. I also get burnt sugar, bourbon, raw oak, some roasted malt flavors and vanilla which makes itself known but is mild. Awesome palate profile here.

M/D: Smooth, slightly syrupy with an appropriately low carbonation. By no means thin, but could be thicker and chewier. Drinkability is actually very good, but this one is a slow sipper, thats for sure. And although this has a boozy component throughout, it does an incredible job of keeping the 19.5% ABV in check. Its the highest ABV beer I have had to date, and even with that ABV it is not necessarily even hot going down.

O: Overall, another big hit from the Bruery in my book. Its literally one of the best smelling beers I have ever had, and the taste is excellent (but not quite to the degree of the nose). Im very glad I was able to try this one, and will definitely seek it out again. As far as in comparison to Black Tuesday, I like CR more. Better aroma and greater balance in the flavor profile (less of the straight up diabetes-inducing sweetness bomb that BT is). I'd drink both any chance I got, but BT is great, and CR is excellent.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Rain pours down in an alluring brown murkiness that holds a deeply thick and robust crown of Brown foam.

The aroma hits sharply with a snap of alcohol but then settles in with coconut and vanilla. Deeper in the aroma starts to really penetrate deep in the nose with fudgy chocolate and molasses.

The fudge, chocolate and brownie like flavors burst on the palate as the finish ends with cream and whiskey notes.

The feel is smooth and quite thick. The alcohol is imperceptible but for a warmth that enters the body and gives you a happy feeling all over.

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Photo of SadMachine
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes

A- Pours mostly black with dark brown hues around the edges. A small off-white head dissipates quickly, leaving no lacing.

S- The aroma is very in your face. Tons of whiskey, thick chewy fudge, vanilla, and oak. Alcohol soaked dark fruits, namely prunes, dates, and figs are also prevalent.

T- The flavor is sweet as expected. The most prominent flavors are actually the dark fruits previously mentioned. Roasted malts and a bit of bitter baker's chocolate make an appearance. The fudge and vanilla play supporting roles. There's big bourbon alcohol in the finish.

M- The mouth feel is super thick, smooth, and velvety. Just the right amount of carbonation. A significant, but not overwhelming amount of warming booze.

O- This is basically like drinking bourbon-soaked dark fruits with vanilla and fudge. A very tasty imperial stout!

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
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.

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Photo of tewaris
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chocolate Rain
Dang!
Thanks Andrew!!

Dark brown, clear, not much head yada yada. I thought Black Tuesday was liqueur like, Chocolate Rain is liquor like. Thin, boozy and hot, in the best way. Chocolate, vanilla, toffee... it tastes like one of those fancier candies.

It is so damn good, I would consider killing an entire bottle myself. Definitely. Now I said that it was thin... it's not thin in the sense of final gravity I guess, but because alcohol is such an excellent solvent, this beer “flows”. Just a great beer with marvelous complexity and deliciousness. Believe.

4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.5

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to ArchEnemyBrew for trading me this beer! Thanks Hollis!

Chocolate Rain Batch 2 in a waxed 750 format bottle split 3 ways. An 8-9oz pour served in a snifter at cellar temp.

reviewed from notes taken on 5/18/12.

Appearance: black bodied beer with a thin brown head that drops quickly to no head or ring.

Smell: Perhaps my favorite part of this beer is the nose. Massive gourmet dark chocolates, bitter cocoa, and vanilla notes. Smells like a rich dessert. Hints of oak and bourbon are a bit more subtle. When this beer is at cellar temperature is has no booze in the nose, but as it warms the begins to become noticable. It just smells amazing, I could smell this beer all night.

Taste: Its taste is a little contridictory, but not in a bad way...it both a massive beer yet its mellow too. It pretty sweet, but not quite cloying to my palate because I enjoy sweeter stout over a hoppy stout. The beer opens up with notes of dark bitter chocolates, bourbon, cocoa and they mix with big vanilla notes. You can get a hint of the booze when this beer hits room temperature, but you gotta expect that when a beer is 19.50%.

Mouthfeel: This aspect of the beer also impressed me. Its full bodied beer with low carbonation. Its big, its favorful, mellow, and smooth. The alcohol is warming and has a mild boozey burn to it when at room temp. I think it drinks at an ABV of 12-13% which is impressive when it 19.50%. A sipper for sure. It also surprised me that the beer was not as thick as i expected it to be, but it does have an oily and slick quality to it.

Overall: Really crazy what brewers can do these days to push the envolope of truly big beer while still making it pleasant and palatable. I was impressed by this offering by the Bruery! Honestly, I dont think I would age this beer, I would drink it fresh.

Had this side by side with 2011 Black Tuesday! Gotta say that Chocolate Rain is much smoother and more mellow than Black Tuesday.

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Photo of Fux
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared by Pixieskid to ruin our palates after an awesome sour tasting! Bottle from batch #3.
A: Very dark, black pour, with creamy mocha head, which falls into a thin collar around the glass.
S: Nose is on chocolate, vanilla, molasses, also toffee and wood. Not too much alcohol given the ABV.
T: Palate is rich and very expressive, on chocolate, vanilla and bourbon. There are also underlying notes of toffee, some sweetness, and some fruitiness with figs and plums in the background. The finish is quite alcoholic, really warming in the back of the throat, a bit disturbing actually.
M: Velvety, oily, a little bit sticky, and also warming mouthfeel.
O: The flavor profile of this beer is great, rich and dense. There is however a bit too much alcohol in this to be truly perfect. Thanks for sharing Brandon!

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.48/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a bit of brown around the edges and a touch of khaki-chocolate colored head. Fades very quickly.

S - Roasted chocolate and dark caramel malts, cocoa nibs, Bourbon, oak, lots of vanilla, black licorice, coffee, dark fruits, and some booze.

T - Roasted chocolate and dark caramel malts, cocoa nibs, Bourbon, lots of vanilla, oak, black licorice, molasses, dark fruits, coffee, and booze.

M - Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a warming and sweet finish.

D - Super bold and complex, and the vanilla beans and cocoa nibs add some more great flavor.

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Photo of jradams76
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this at the Indy Summer Brewfest HUGE thanks to Bob for letting me try this! This poured black with a light brown head. This smelled of chocoalte heaven. You can smell the chocolate and hints of bourbon with vanilla. The taste matches the smell and hides the alcohol well. You can tell that it is 18% but it does hide it well. Nice and thick chocolatey goodness that coats the mouth well. Overall this beer lived up to the hype and I'm fortunate to have met Bob and was able to try this great beer.

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Photo of Beejay
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Much thanks to Lee for sharing this bottle.

A: Tootsie roll brown. Not much head, but that is rather expected.

S: Dark chocoalte and high alcohol. Malty with a huge hit of molasses.

T: Chocolate and oak, with high alcohol coming in after. Finish is huge with vanilla and oak with another stinger of chocolate.

M: Smooth and creamy, though the carbonation is lively.

O: Fantastic. Creamy and delicious.

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Photo of rlee1390
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Black in the glass, one finger slightly off white head.

S-Chocolate, vanilla, roasted malt, nice bourbon, slight coffee.

T-Lots of chocolate and vanilla. Great balance, mild bourbon, roasted malt and coffee is there.

M-Heavy to medium in body, nice carbonation.

O-The addition of chocolate and vanilla take BT to another level.

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Photo of john0721
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
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.

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Photo of kbutler1
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Bruery Reserve Initiation party 2011. Pours a dark black/brown non see through color with a slight dark tan head that collars around the glass. HUGE aromas wafting out of this one with notes of dark chocolate, vanilla, cream, barrel, and a slight warming booze aroma. The first sip yields a nice medium/heavy mouthfeel. The flavors are well blended but the chocolate is very noticeable and pleasant. Other flavors include vanilla, roast, and booze. For being 18.5% this beer drinks very well albeit still a sipper. Probably would be best as a dessert beer. This one was great!

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Photo of landhoney
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tried this last Monday, thank you Eric!

Appearance: Black, smallest wisp of tan head

Smell: Bourbon! That was the first impression, then the roast, sweetness, toffee/caramel/vanilla/chocolate, and alcohol.

Taste: The first sip was amazing, or rather the finish, just went on forever. You definitely get the bourbon up front (boozy?), then vanilla/chocolate notes, fairly sweet, no hop flavor, very nice!

Mouthfeel: Very lightly carbonated, not overly sweet/malty, the bourbon seems to make for a thinner beer than I was expecting. Excellent mouthfeel though, very nice drinking it.

Overall: Special beer, huge complexity and long finish even after our normal Monday 10+ beer tasting, great bourbon/vanilla/chocolate stout, and not cloying/sweet/too malty. ABV is high, and it's there in the glass, but not a hot mess for sure, I really enjoyed it.

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Photo of KVNBGRY
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks Kyle

Cccchhhooocccooolllaaattteee, rrraaaiiisssiiinnnsss, aaalllcccooohhhoollll, whooollleee vannniiilllaa beeaannns, bourbon sweetness.

Real good. Nothing spectacular. Would be better paired with a dessert in a nice setting. Would like to age a bottle for a few years to see how it mellows...

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Photo of Zach136
4.46/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 Vintage, reviewed from notes written 5/2/14. Poured into a Bruery glass.

A - Pitch black, little to no head. To be expected with the alcohol content.

S - Huge bouquet of bourbony-booze, vanila, semi-sweet chocolate and caramel.

T - Giant bakers and semi-sweet chocolate notes. Insanely chocolatey and not that artificial tootsie-roll chocolate. Super boozy. Bourbon, vanilla, and more chocolate in the background.

M - Surprisingly well carbed, full bodied, rich and velvety.

O - In a class all its own. Hard to even compare to other imperial stouts.

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Photo of jaasen64
4.46/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle stored in my cellar for over a year. Poured into 18oz Funky Buddha snifter, bottle split three ways. Reviewed live.

A- Pours a dark black that has some translucency, actually slightly lighter then I was expecting. Pretty much no head, very still top, minimal carbonation, just some alcohol legs along the sides of the glass.

S- Rich chocolate, vanilla beans, lightly bourbon, extremely well balanced booze. Can tell it's got a high abv, but fits very nicely for how high it is and integrates well with the other aromas. Fairly aromatic.

T- This is where the beer gets really interesting: flavors of dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, bourbon, vanilla, hints of booze on this finish but nowhere near what you would expect at almost 20%, extremely well balanced. Aftertaste that lingers with chocolate and balanced vanilla.

M- Very smooth especially for 19.5%, a beer definitely should not be this smooth with an abv this high- feels more like 9%, fairly minimal carbonation but nice for the style. Can't believe how easy this is to drink.

O- This was a fantastic high abv stout that was incredibly easy to drink and extremely flavorful. I was expecting this to be overly boozey but the abv was well hidden and was surprisingly easy to drink with all the flavors coming out very nicely. I highly recommend seeking this out, just be careful with how dangerously smooth it is.

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Photo of Etan
4.45/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml into a snifter. 2012, batch 2.

A: Reddish black body with a small tan head.

S: Huge vanilla aroma, lightly astringent booze, milky chocolate, oaky bourbon. This is going to be a sweet beer.

T: Sweet raisins and chocolate hit the palate first. Cream, marshmallow, drying and buttery bourbon, a bit nutty, boozy warmth on the end.

M: Surprisingly light body, with a quick flash of carbonation.

O: An incredible dessert beer, with the vanilla, chocolate, and bourbon melding together seemlessly. Stay away if you don't like sweet beers.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.45/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml, 2012 vintage
5oz mini tasting snifter

A: Pours out a deep reddish brown. I see others describe this as pitch black, and doing a side by side with BT '11 that is not what we got. Definitely some reddish hints in there and not a thick black at all. I got a layer of off white, light tan head. I was actually surprised to get any head on this high ABV. Tons of alcohol feet.

S: Well, it smells like chocolate that is for sure. Lots of dark and milk chocolate character on the nose. It's masking the vanilla and oak character a little bit that I was pulling more from the BT, but you can still get some coming through. There is a little alcohol booziness coming through, but it's to be expected.

T: Up front, dark super high cocao chocolate. As it progresses, you get more vanilla meshing in to give it sort of a milk chocolate like feeling. I wish there was more roast and/or coffee, but what is there is still delicious. We had this bottle open for a while between us, as it's certainly a sipper. I think I prefer the BT to this, that year did BT well. This is still fabulous beer though. Warming brings out more flavor but also some more booze.

M: Full as full could be.

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Photo of claspada
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 2 - Sampled 1/6/13. Too sweet and boozy compared to Batch 1, so I have to ding this a little on taste. Both were aged about the same amount of time, hopefully batch 3 turns out a little more drier and less hot.

Batch 1 - Pours a silky, menacing, near black color with a small dark tan head. Some solid lacing on the sides of the snifter, especially after a few swirls.

The aromas are out of this world. My first impression is liquid brownie batter; a huge mix of dark and milk chocolate/cocoa powder, equally large vanilla and caramelized sugars. As it warms you get the base beer's presence coming through with a light dosing of bourbon plus some mild roasted maltiness. Booze is extremely subtle at this point and I can only detect because this is at cellar temp (if not warmer). There's a mild coffee presence, but that is more of an undertone to sweeter chocolaty smells.

The tastes begin almost equally as intense as the nose. The chocolate is the dominant character. Melted milk chocolate malt balls, melted dark chocolate baker's cocoa bars and vanilla extract all come to mind initially. This is diabetes in a glass. Next you get lesser amounts of light bourbon and hints of oak plus lesser notes of roast coffee.

The mouthfeel is really thick and full bodied with, thankfully, some medium to low carbonation. Finish is velvety smooth and sweet, and yet thanks to the base beer being barrel aged, it avoids being cloying.

Overall this was stupendous and a great treat to sample. There is no feasible way I could finish this by myself or probably even with another person just because of its luscious flavor profile. Highly recommended for all beer geeks and absolutely a must try; definitely one to trade for and share with a couple beer geek buddies.

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Photo of dgilks
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Somewhat hazy and very dark brown colour. Creamy tan head. Nice.

The aroma is intense. Bourbon. Chocolate. Alcohol. Fruit. Vanilla. Bloody crazy.

This is SWEET! Great chocolate flavour and nice oak character. The bourbon is here and there is lots of vanilla too. Really good and complex flavours.

Full bodied and quite oily. Moderate carbonation. Very good.

An excellent beer. Sure there is some big beer syndrome here but it is really nice and complex.

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Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
98 out of 100 based on 313 ratings.