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Black Xantus - Humboldt Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Black XantusBlack Xantus

Educational use only; do not reuse.

407 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 407
Hads: 1,274
Avg: 4.12
pDev: 18.69%
Wants: 123
Gots: 358 | FT: 31
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:
Beer added by: ThreeWiseMen on 10-09-2009

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%
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 407 | Hads: 1,274
Photo of mfnmbvp
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date or vintage date present. Nothing further about the beer printed on the label either. Somehow this is my first review of a beer from Nectar Ales, or Humboldt Brewing Co., as BeerAdvocate lists it. Acquired this bottle at the local beer store for $14.99. Expectations are excellent based on this beer's high ratings.

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

A - Pours a thick murky mahogany; opaque black in the glass with just over a finger of thick sudsy mocha head with some decent staying power considering the hefty 11.00% abv. Some sticky spotty lacing clings to the glass on it's way down. Looks very nice.

S - The aroma definitely has a lot going on - you can smell the combination of bourbon & wine barrels working together. Vanilla, caramel, toffee & some fruity berry / vinous dark fruit presence in the vain of raspberry / cherry / plum. Cold coffee is in the aroma also, but it is a minor player.

T - The taste is much more bitter / roasty coffee-forward than one would expect from the aroma. Caramel, vanilla, toffee, herbal tea leaves, oak wood. Dark fruits are more in the background - raspberry, cherry, dates, raisins.

M - The feel is smooth, lightly thick / syrupy, and creamy. Goes down smooth with mild warmth on the finish. Lightly bitter, sticky, and roasty on the finish also. Semi-bitter for 50 IBU.

Overall, an excellent barrel aged stout from these guys, but I wish the label would delve further into specifics about the beer. Obviously, not the most complex of all barrel aged stouts, but it is very nicely crafted and well worth picking up.

Nectar Ales Black Xantus ---4/5.

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Photo of rand
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

From 22 oz bottle to snifter

A: Black as black can be, a small head attempts to form but is quickly squashed by its own weight.

S: The nose yields oaky, toasty, roasty aspects right away, propelled by ample alcohol volatiles and carbonation. The malty sweetness is properly offset with astringent notes, giving the edges of the bouquet notes of mint, carob and coffee.

T: Molasses and sweet carob are at the front of the palate; the molasses notes are stronger than expected. Lots of bittersweet chocolate as well, along with a toasty, oaky undertone. The booze and drying oak aspects keeps things from getting too sweet, but the finish is still long with plenty of sugary residue lingering between sips.

M: Oily-slick but not as chewy as some of its contemporaries. More than enough carbonation for to the style.

A boozy, barrel-aged classic. There have been so many great BA stouts of late I don't go crazy stockpiling this brew, but it's still a tasty treat.

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Photo of dbossman
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with a reddish tint; minimal lacing

S: Dark fruits, boozy, roasted malts; some vanilla--man, this smells good

T: Roasty with loads of chocolate, coffee, and some bourbon-- a bit astringent; oaky with some subtle vinous notes and lots of roasted coffee in the finish

F: A bit thin--even a touch over-carbonated

O: This is a nice, boozy, oaky beer

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Photo of richj1970
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%

A: Pours pitch black with no light penetration. Less than one finger head and no lacing.

S: Semisweet chocolate and rich coffee.

T: Plenty of roasted malts with slightly sweet chocolate and rich coffee notes.

M: Very full body and lightly carbonated. Nice creamy finish.

O: Excellent stout. If this was in my distribution in my area, it would be one of my regular buys.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a snifter at the Union Brewhouse in Weymouth.

Appearance: A one finger mocha head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a pitch black color with no vision of anything. Super tight mocha lacing down the glass.

Smell: Roasty, milk chocolate, toffee, caramel, molasses, smoke, toasted, vanilla, oak, and bourbon alcohol booziness

Taste: Same as above. Pretty tasty stuff. I like it a lot.

Mouthfeel: Silky creamy smooth, full bodied,

Overall: Pretty awesome barrel aged RIS. Not seen too often here in Boston and now I know why. It goes fast

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Photo of beer4colin
4.67/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is a very, very nice Imperial Stout. I have been looking at it bottled but never pulled the trigger. I think it was label confusion? On tap today at Union Brewhouse, so trying it on for size.

Need to mention....UBH has had this stocked away for a year, so this is certainly not the same as a bottled yesterday bomber....

BIG! HUGE! This is a mouthful of flavors....black licorice and coffee riding on a bourbon surfboard. I am going to regret having another of these 11%ers when I fall asleep watching Jeopardy but it is so good I am doubling down.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-dark brown black color with a nice light brown head and good lacing

S-dark malt, coffee, chocolate, light dark fruit, vanilla, hint of bourbon

T-dark roasted malt, dark chocolate, raisins, anise, coffee, light char, light bourbon, little oaky, vanilla

F-full body with moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy, alcohol well-integrated

O-this was a great imperial stout, great blend of flavors all harmoniously balanced

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into a snifter

Appearance – The beer pours an almost pitch black color with a one finger of tan colored head. The head has a good level of retention, slowly fading to leave a moderate level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer has tons of chocolate and coffee in the nose. Along with these smells are some wonderful oaky and bourbon aromas mixed with a good dose of caramel and vanilla sweetness. Some other lighter aromas of a more dark fruit nature are thee as well with smells of cherry, raisin and plum all there. Overall the aroma is big roasty and sweet producing a nice warming aroma overall..

Taste – The taste begins with a huge sweet chocolate flavor with tons of caramel and vanilla mixed within along with a decent sum of a roasted malt flavor. While described from the bottle as a coffee stout, I got much more chocolate and sweetness out of this then coffee. From the onset with the big roasted, chocolate and sweet flavors does however come some notes of a coffee flavor as well as a bit of a oaky flavor. Some lighter alcohol flavors, for a brew of 11% abv, come to the tongue at the end of the taste, which are accompanied by some fruit flavor of raisin and fig, end up mixing with the other flavors that had come up throughout the taste profile to leave a nice smooth and sweet, chocolaty roasted flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. Both were fantastic for the big chocolate, and sweet flavors of the brew with the lower carbonation only accentuating these and making for a nice slow drinker that is surprisingly easy to drink.

Overall – A nice and “easy drinking” Imperial stout at 11 % abv. It has tons of nice smooth flavors that make it a real pleasure to drink.

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Photo of neurobot01
3.54/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured at fridge temp into a snifter, allowed to warm while drinking. Have been sitting on this since late Nov.

Look: Dark brown, with very minimal head, not much carbonation.

Aroma: Initial smell is really hard to place—pretty sure it was the wine barrels coming through, but didn't quite smell like wine. I think the best description I can give overall is that it smells Iike Ghirardelli Raspberry-filled Dark Chocolate Squares. Also a hint of astringency. Honestly not sure what to make of it.

Taste: First thought was, "What the hell is in my mouth?" Sort of bitter/tart fruitiness, has a kind of rotten something going on. Followed quickly by intense sweetness, chocolate, then sweet fruit (or fruit-like goo; see aroma). I also feel like I'm getting some char—maybe that's part of the initial bitterness. Lingering taste of fruit, chocolate, and burnt wood. Surprisingly pronounced yellow bell pepper way on the back end. As it warms, things meld a bit better—it almost has the feel of an ABA, thanks to the combo of roastiness and bitterness. Might also pick up a bit more Bourbon.

Feel: Fairly light, particularly for the abv and style. Pretty spot-on carbonation.

Overall: I really wanted to love this beer—it's a local brewer trying something pretty different. As it is, I may grab another bottle from a local shop where I know it's been in cold storage the whole time. But based on this bottle, this just doesn't quite work for me, and for this price, I'd much rather be drinking actual FW barrel stuff than this step-child brew.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a black body with one finger tan head that left lace patches. Dark fruit aromas like black cherry and figs are evident as are notes of vanilla and coffee for that java smell, roasted malts, molasses, chocolate and wood. Body is chewy, fuller bodied, breadlike, beer goes down smooth yet at times is also sticky, there are cherry and figs for dark fruit flavors, vanilla, bourbon, coffee, wood, chocolate and there all balanced for a both sweet and dry beer that is a monster sipper.

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Photo of TTAmod
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Received this for free from my beer store. Thanks!! 22 oz. bomber poured into pint glass. Looking at the description, I must say I'm excited....

A: Looks really good. Pitch black beer, even when held up to the light. Thick dark brown head on top. Excellent retention for 11%.

S: Smell is also quite good. Sweet coffee, bourbon, vanilla, roasted malts, wood, bourbon-soaked cherries....very nice.

T: Very well-balanced for a barrel stout. Get the sweetness up front. Lots of vanilla, fruit, bourbon, brown sugar, etc. Lots of coffee and espresso on the back end. A touch roasty, but not burnt. Not bitter at all. Finishes with a nice taste of coffee. Some alcohol is present near the end.

M: Pretty thick, but not cloying, thankfully. That's typically the problem with these types of stouts. Moderate carbonation, but more lively than your typical stout. Easy enough to drink for a big stout.

O: Color me impressed, here. Never heard of this one, but my guy at the beer store said it's going on clearance and gave me one because he had a ton of them. If people knew what this tasted like, it wouldn't be around long enough to go on clearance. There is a lot of strong tastes and depth with this beer, but nothing overpowers the other. This beer is quite the balanced barrel stout.

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Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.01/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I hope there’s a good reason this bomber was over $15; still, I’m the sucker who bought it, so I guess that’s on me. Cheers.

Bottle 11/22/2013, about four months before the date of this tasting.

A: Dark, dark brown body, pouring nearly black from the bottle, with no head whatsoever. Give the glass a little twist and you get a bit of mocha-colored bubbles hugging the walls, but that’s it. Get a little further into the bottle and a bit of creamy head appears after the pour, but you have to work for it. Looks thick, at any rate.

S: Complex, gourmet coffee and artisan chocolate aromas create an alluring character, one I’ve experienced in only a few special stouts. Wow. Typical stout scents – vanilla extract, brownie batter, heavily roasted coffee – are present in force, but more intricate tones of bright ripe cherry, toasted pecan, and rose water add nuance; that, plus an ever-present maple and bourbon scent, shows that this has some wonderful complexity before even taking a sip. A memorable nose.

T: As expected, this is a rich palate packed with residual sugars, but the coffee and barrel tastes are just odd enough to turn this into something that’s not your typical imperial stout. In each sip, you have a vanilla ice cream and Hershey’s chocolate foundation laying flat beneath sharp and abnormally wild bitters – tastes of earthy coffee and hops add a twist of acidic espresso, herbal mint, raspberry, and a touch of cola. That all wraps up in a catty, mildly flowery hop taste that pulls on the palate a bit, adding some prickliness to the smooth sugars. The barrel aging adds a nice touch, as well, playing on the interesting bitterness with a slight oxidation flavor – a lightly papery note – and an oak sawdust and taste. Finishes with some light whiskey and smoke on the tongue, woody and very slightly dry.

M: This stout is the definition of “milky:” no real carbonation, a creamy (but not thick) body, and a lack of intensely drying features on the palate. It fits, though, since the palate is sweet in a meaty, lactose sugar kind of way.

O: Sometimes a beer with an odd palate is interesting; here, though, the abnormal fruity and herbal tastes end up perceived as off-flavors. I enjoy drinking it, sure, but that’s only because there’s a streak of traditional stout flavor to this beer. I’ll take a stout with an interesting palate any day – Porcine Unidragon, Surly Darkness, Bourbon County Cherry Rye – but it’s possible for out-of-the-ordinary to become unpleasant, and that’s what ended up happening with the hops and the coffee here. Underneath, though, you have a great stout with a spectacular nose and creamy drinkability that shouldn’t be overlooked.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Late '13/early '14 release, poured into a snifter

A- pours pitch black with a thin light tan head that reduces quickly, leaving only a ring around the glass, no lacing & short lasting alcohol legs

S- milk chocolate aroma meshes with a roasted and slightly smoky charred malt, there's a big fruity aroma in the middle with notes of cherry and dark grape. Also picking up vanilla & oak, licorice, some woodsy notes with a hint of bourbon

T- big sweetness on the tongue up front with flavors of sweet cherry juice and more fruity flavors, perhaps from the wine barrel aging. Sweet milk chocolate kicks in mid-palate with highlights of vanilla and a red-wine-like tartness. The finish brings out a hint of fresh coffee, dark fig and a touch of bourbon warmth

M- medium-heavy body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy, almost chewy mouthfeel, leading to a smooth finish. Alcohol warmth on the linger

O- Really enjoyed this, I think the wine barrel aspect used in this beer adds a nice fruity tartness to it. The bourbon is more of a compliment, rather than a focus, but I think it all balances out quite nicely.

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Photo of ryannosaurus
4.58/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz poured to tumbler (snifter/tulip would be better for this)

Opaque dark brown with small brown head

Aroma is big on molasses with hints of anise, whiskey, and wood.

I rarely give anything a 5, but flavor here is so perfection, not too much oak, not too much bourbon. Anise and hot alcohol abound, tempered by delicious grape and fig sweetness. A hint of coffee bitterness for punctuation. It all melds to a dark chocolate aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is what one expects from a big stout: heavy and a little intimidating, nice bite from the bubbles, which stick around.

Overall... a whole lot of everything I want from a huge Imperial Stout, but still some very subtle elements. Fruitier then a lot of other big IS's, and the barrel elements very subtle and engaging. I brew to savor slowly and mull over. Probably my current favorite style of beer, Xantus was a surprise addition to my top 5 in style.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black rich color gave way to to a thin layer of cream for a head. Smoky nose with a spicy chilli pepper. Lots of char, whole smoke, dry Graham cracker, chocolate, chilli pepper capsaicin, chipotle , coffee and roasted malts on the tongue. Nice bit of spicy heat on the feel. Excellent and fun beer.

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Photo of BB1313
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours black with a little light getting through; small dark khaki head that fades and leaves little lacing and decent retention. The aromas are full of chocolate. Lots of dark chocolate followed by some sweet milk chocolate. There's a little bit of vanilla and caramel in the mix. The bourbon characteristics are pretty subtle in the aromas. The flavors are pretty bold and bitter. The dark chocolate really shines giving this one a solid bitterness. It's roasty. The wood/oak characteristics become pretty noticeable in the flavors, but the bourbon is still on the subtle side. There's just a kiss of bourbon. The coffee really comes through in the flavors, giving it another bitter dynamic. Some ash and tobacco is in the finish as well. Finishes pretty dry for the most part. There's a little bit of warmth to this one, but it's definitely not hot or boozy. Mouthfeel is full-bodied with active carbonation. It's smooth and silky without being super thick. This makes a nice sipper.

Very impressive beer right here. The flavors really shine. If you like bitter coffee stouts, this is definitely worth checking out.

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Photo of MattSweatshirt
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Looks good in the glass. Pitch black body and a light brown head. Leaves some lacing.

The aroma errs on the sweeter side. Chocolate with vanilla and graham cracker barrel character. Bourbon and roasted coffee. Dark fruit comes out after warming.

So much more coffee than the nose leads on. Coffee and chocolate bitterness. Bourbon flavor especially when it is room temp and bourbon heat. Slightly fudgy with some vanilla. Dark fruit.

Has a thick smooth body with mild carbonation. Pretty spot on.

It's nice to find a good stout that doesn't fly off the shelf right away.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark red up to the light but pretty much black with a mocha head.

S: Dark bittersweet chocolate, coffee, vanilla, caramel, oak, molasses, great bourbon character and a little booze, in a nose akin to Black Note and Older Viscosity.

T: Coffee is strong in the taste, vanilla, oak, dark, almost fudgy chocolate. Delicious but a bit too bitter for my taste.

M: Full bodied and smoothish, creamy.

O: A great barrel aged imperial stout. It's no parabola, but it's definitely worth the 16 dollar price tag.

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Photo of Benjammin107
4.46/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amazing, complex flavor! It seems all at once, but not too suddenly, it goes through malt, chocolate, coffee, and a perfect amount of bourbon flavor. After the first sip I was left thinking, "how will I ever finish this 650 ml bottle!" But after a little while it grows on you in the best of ways! Great for keeping warm this winter. A+ beer!!!

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Photo of champ103
3.72/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours an inky, nearly opaque black color. A small, bubbly, khaki film forms and sticks throughout. Plenty of of lace is left behind.
S: A mix of dark fruits/stone fruits with roasted malt, vanilla, and chocolate. Coffee grounds and cream. The stone fruity aroma is at odds with the roasted coffee grounds. Still interesting.
T: Much the same with that stone fruit flavor up front. Pithy cherries and grapes almost. Roasted malts, coffee grounds, vanilla, and milk chocolate. Interesting, just does not mesh as well as I would like.
M/D: A full body and moderate carbonation. Almost oily and resinous. A big beer with a bit of fusel alcohol. A slow sipper and/or sharer for sure.

I do like this. I am just not sure what to think of the stone fruit mixed with roasted malt and coffee grounds. Interesting and worth the price of admission, just not one of my favorites for the style.

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Photo of sprucetip
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle was given to me 2+ years ago, not sure how old it is.

Pours inky black but initially no fizz or foam at all. Eventually a very thin mocha head appeared briefly then receded. Questioning the carbonation, but it still looks petty inviting.

Sweet toffee, vanalila, cocoa, flavors balancing the deceptively strong boozyness. There is also a woody/earthy character that adds depth.

Caramel, toffee, oak, chocolate, and vanilla are what come through most clearly to me at first. The booze is sneaky, but more noticeable through the middle and into the finish.

It's pretty flat. But it still feels very rich, thick, full and highly viscous.

Really nice smelling beer, and it tastes great too. Damned good. Even with the low carbonation. Would like to try it again sometime.

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Photo of McStagger
3.79/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

No idea how old this one is. Knowing my local liquor store, probably fairly. Says Nectar Ales on the label.

A: Pitch black. Finger of tan espresso creme head. Retention is moderate. Lacing is above average. Head is made of large and small bubbles. Looks fairly standard.

S: Huge hits of baker's cocoa. Underneath is chicory, super dark roast coffee. Toffee, some vanilla. Just a touch of dark fruit. Not much alcohol perceived.

T: Dark fruit up front. Transitions into prickly heat. Roasted barley, toffee, more dark fruit, dark sugar syrup, oak, some bourbon element. Coffee picks up in the end, but it's much milder than anticipated. I suspect that they've had this beer for awhile. Alcohol warmth helps the dark fruit to shine.

M: Low carbonation, as to be expected. However, this one isn't chewy enough. A bit thin across the palate.

O: Fairly mediocre for the style. And at the same price point as Parabola and from the same brewers...well, it's dissapointing to say in the least.

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Photo of artoolemomo
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- Received with excited head that is pushing a finger's worth of a foam crowning from the top of the glass. The head is a medium beige while the body is an opaque, dark chocolate black. Lacing is prevalent and tends toward sheeting.

Nose- Some chocolate notes, hints of cocoa at first. Needs to warm up a bit though. A little bit of fudge brownie. Light notes of caramel and vanilla. Very faint roasted notes.

Taste- Really broad and dark chocolate that evokes Tootsie Roll and beyond. Definite coffee but fortunately this doesn't take over too much. I realize they describe this as an Imperial Java Stout and it doesn't show its force until the finish. I think this works for this beer. Some oak and a bit of a vinous quality. Slight red grape. The coffee has a good amount of presence but still manages to be discreet. The barrel notes are very light- the beer tastes as if it were aged on spent barrels (whatever that's supposed to mean). Not exactly complex but is very solid. I can understand the displeasure from paying full price for a bottle of this. Good to very good beer but certainly doesn't command the price a Firestone Walker barrel-aged beer should. Some hints of coconut but not enough to keep me interested.

Mouthfeel- Between medium and heavy bodied. A tiny bit chewy and a little over carbonated. A beer this robust doesn't need this level of carbonation. Definitely drops my overall impression of the beer.

Drinkability- Pretty easygoing and shows none of the heat of a 11% beer. Fairly boring for a barrel aged beer though. 4 bucks for a 6 oz pour seems a bit pricey for the quality but I'm glad I gave it a try on tap instead of springing for a whole bottle.

Overall- It's good beer with some tendencies toward being a really good beer. I would try it but there are dozens of better imperial stouts out there for the price or less.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with an inch of head (impressive for 11%). No real lace.

Smells of coffee, chocolate, oak and earth. Almost none of the 11% shows through.

Chocolate, coffee, earthy and slight citrus. Middle is earth, molasses, slight booze and a slight dry oak finish. Goes down thick and smooth.

I bet this ages very well!

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Photo of Florida9
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Very dark brown in color. Appears black in the glass, but there is a fairly large transparency around the edges. Forms a moderate sized tan head that reduces fairly quickly to a nothing more than a thin ring around the edge. Very little lacing.

S: Aroma is quite pleasant. Loads of coffee, espresso actually, mixed with chocolate, dark fruits, plums, prunes, molasses and a hint of a vinous grapes.

T: Taste is similar to the aroma, but whereas the coffee seems to take center stage with the aroma, the chocolate dominates the taste. Mildly sweet. Cocoa powder, burnt caramel, coffee.

M: Lightly creamy and smooth, but rather thin for the style. Mild bitterness. Lower carbonation.

O: A nice beer. Great balance. Just feel it is a bit thinner than it should be.

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Black Xantus from Humboldt Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 407 ratings.