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Black Xantus - Humboldt Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Black XantusBlack Xantus

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

963 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 963
Reviews: 362
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.98%
Wants: 108
Gots: 261 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
Humboldt Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Barrel aged for 6 months in combination of Bourbon, retired Firestone Union and wine barrels and Infused with fair-trade, organic coffee from local roaster Jobella.

Style: Imperial Java Stout IBUs: 50 Color: Black ABV: 11%

(Beer added by: ThreeWiseMen on 10-09-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 963 | Reviews: 362 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rowingbrewer
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

rowingbrewer, Oct 30, 2013
Photo of bnes09
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep black, dense looking brew with no light visible. Bold and luscious, whole wheat-colored head gradually recedes to a thin film and creamy corona around the edges of the glass. Blankets half of the glass (opposite the drinking side) in creamy lacing.

Smooth, bourbon, dark fruit and molasses aroma dances around my nostrils begging me to take a sip. Sweet, oaky and very well balanced.

Flavor begins with smooth sweet molasses, prune juice and black currants. Oaky bourbon character comes next, rich and satisfying. Just a hint of booze. Mid-drink, coffee notes dominate and compliment the malty, roasted almond flavor. Hops come to life in the finish with a well balanced, herbal, leafy character. However, somewhere between the finish and the aftertaste, the hops turn from pleasant to off-balanced with an aggressive pine-sol, grapefruit, detergent bitterness which does not blend well with the smooth bourbon tones. Thankfully this flavor is short-lived and is not dominating thanks to the massive malt bill in this beer. I think there are just so many flavors here, you are bound to find something that doesn't quite fit.

Dense, full bodied beer. Near syrup consistency. Sticky texture on the tongue and lips. Relatively low carbonation but works well for the style.

Overall, a very tasty bourbon-barrel aged double stout. Has all the bells and whistles I am looking for and has great balance throughout the majority of the drink. I am about half way done with a glass and am already beginning to feel the alcohol take hold. This is some strong stuff but it does not taste that way. Respect this beer, sip and savor.

bnes09, Oct 28, 2013
Photo of FLenoci
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%

FLenoci, Oct 27, 2013
Photo of Tuckersmth
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%

Tuckersmth, Oct 24, 2013
Photo of parris
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

parris, Oct 23, 2013
Photo of inkdemention
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

inkdemention, Oct 23, 2013
Photo of vonnegut21
4/5  rDev -4.5%

vonnegut21, Oct 21, 2013
Photo of mozim
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

mozim, Oct 21, 2013
Photo of atoulouk
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

atoulouk, Oct 14, 2013
Photo of OKCNittany
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

OKCNittany, Oct 14, 2013
Photo of mcrago
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

mcrago, Oct 13, 2013
Photo of NickyDee21
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

NickyDee21, Oct 12, 2013
Photo of SHerninko
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

SHerninko, Oct 11, 2013
Photo of ImperialStout
5/5  rDev +19.3%

ImperialStout, Oct 08, 2013
Photo of BEERchitect
4.51/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Espresso, bourbon, wine- ooh, my! Emboldened with utmost complexity, this powerful stout tantilizes with savory sweetness while promoting dry roast to take the taste buds on quite a wild ride!

Black Xantus pour with an onyx-black pour and complete opaqueness. A thick sheet of foam builds on top the dark ale before reducing to a delicate creme before holding firm for the duration. Where lacing is minimal, the beer instead prefers brandy-like legging that combines with the froth for a sultry and ominous appearance.

Decadent aromatics rise from the glass with a burst of espresso and dark chocolate first, and then the sweet bourbon aromas secondarily. Brought together with notes of molasses, brown sugar, and vanilla- the scents all intertwine into a savory mix of all-things-dark. Warming up a bit, deep sherry wine emerges and brings in the light soy sauce and char-grilled scent that's more meaty than smoky.

As the malt lays on the tongue, it saturates with black-strap molasses, espresso, bittersweet chocolate and burnt grain. Its merely mid-weight sweetness promotes a dry roast taste that accents its roast and introduces slight ash. While the roast easily balances the sweetness, the savory wine flavors peak through with aged sherry, rich meaty and salty soy sauce, and licorice-like pepper taste. Finishing with sweet bourbon- the caramel, vanilla and booze-soaked oak sweetens the taste before closing with a return of coffee-like bitterness.

Certainly full on the palate, the beer takes little time to cast the bulk of its malt sweetness and weight to the wayside in order to favor a drier and more drinkable palate. Where the dryness helps here, it exposes the powdery ash textures and roast-derived astringency that creates slight harshness in texture. However, this only keeps the beer from becoming world class; its still and excellent mouthfeel component.

Black Xantus is an incredible Imperial Stout with strong bourbon and mild wine undertones. Though delicious and dry on the palate, the stout promises sultry and savory aromatics that the taste and texture has a hard time equaling.

BEERchitect, Oct 04, 2013
Photo of Prost76
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

Prost76, Oct 04, 2013
Photo of mquartuccio87
4/5  rDev -4.5%

mquartuccio87, Oct 02, 2013
Photo of SwG237
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

SwG237, Sep 29, 2013
Photo of bccocx
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

bccocx, Sep 29, 2013
Photo of EB1
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

EB1, Sep 28, 2013
Photo of sleuthdog
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

sleuthdog, Sep 27, 2013
Photo of Unchi
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

Unchi, Sep 26, 2013
Photo of rab53
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

rab53, Sep 25, 2013
Photo of shand
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

shand, Sep 24, 2013
Photo of steinz
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

steinz, Sep 22, 2013
Black Xantus from Humboldt Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 963 ratings.