Redband Stout - Great River Brewery

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Redband StoutRedband Stout

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102 Reviews
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Reviews: 102
Hads: 246
Avg: 4.08
pDev: 13.73%
Wants: 52
Gots: 32 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great River Brewery visit their website
Iowa, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Vdubb86 on 02-20-2011

Cold pressed Redband Coffee Company espresso beans infused into our milk stout. A big stout where a dark rich chocolate milk meets premium cold pressed coffee.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 102 | Hads: 246
Photo of JackieTH
4.36/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Jeremiah for the can! Poured pitch black with a thick cap of tan foam that receded slowly leaving copious, heavy lacing. Very, very nice. Smell was roasted malt, subtle chocolate and coffeehouse fresh French press coffee. Excellent. Taste was delicious coffee and roasted malt, at times almost creamy, with undertones of Wurther's chocolates..tootsie rolls..but not sweet.. Very smooth, satiny mouthfeel complimented nicely by a clean, dryish finish, exceptional drinkability.

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Photo of bnes09
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black brew with a finger's worth of peanut-colored head. Head maintains itself well and produces some lacing.

Just smells like fresh, smooth coffee. Not much else to say. Roasty and inviting.

Flavor is malty with toasted, wheat bread notes. Roasted almonds. Mild earthy hop flavor compliments the roasted character. Make way for the coffee! Rich, dark, smooth, flavorful coffee dominates the flavor from there on out and I am perfectly ok with that.

Surprisingly light mouthfeel. Low to average carbonation. Super smooth texture. Usually not a fan of lighter stouts but in this case it worked well.

Truly an exceptional coffee stout. Just leaves you feeling satisfied. You can't help but feel good when you are drinking one of these.

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Photo of ms11781
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to brydeen. 16oz can poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a solid black with a healthy 2 finger brown head. The head dwindles to a cap that has excellent retention and leaves some nice foamy lacing on the glass.

The nose is full of some nice coffee notes, chocolate and big roasty aromas. The coffee comes on first and it's fairly strong, not overwhelming but it's a good dose of it. There is a touch of some sweet milk chocolate and then some big roasted notes.

The taste follows along with the nose, perhaps it's a bit bolder. The coffee flavors still the dominant flavor but it's really well done. Not too little, not too strong. Some nice milk chocolate notes come through in the middle of each sip, with the emphasis on the milk more than the chocolate. There seems to be an underlying roasted character that is present throughout each sip. It's not as pronounced as in the nose as the beer is a bit sweeter in the taste, but it is still roasty.

The body is on the higher end of medium with carbonation on the lower end. It's not quite a full mouthfeel but it's close. It's definitely got a nice creamy feel to it as well.

I must admit that I was surprised by this under the radar stout. It's an excellent example of a coffee stout that doesn't have the bitterness from either the coffee or the roast. The flavors and aromas mesh together very well and it's not too big. Definitely a beer I will seek out again.

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Photo of claspada
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Can/extra courtesy of mcqwire756. Pours extremely dark for a standard stout - looks like an imperial stout. Pitch black with a thick tan head that leaves tons of lacing.

Aroma is fresh coffee beans, heavily roasted black malts and some light bakers chocolate. But, really, it's about the coffee. Not the craziest coffee forward aroma ever, but it's definitely top 5.

The taste has lots of coffee but also has more of the lactose sweetness which really makes this taste like an iced latte. The finish is bitter and roasty. Good flavor profile, but kind of one note.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied for the style. Good carbonation and roasty overall. Would have liked a little more body here to make it taste more like a beer and less like straight coffee.

Overall, this was a pleasant surprise. It has a nice flavor but it relatively one noted. If you like extremely coffee forward beers you will enjoy this, especially for the low price point. Probably not in the league of Central Waters Coffee Stout or Dark Horse Tres or even Coffee Bender, but it's not far behind.

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Photo of fdkayti
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a coffee black with a fluffy mocha colored head that sits patiently and leaves stringy lacy all over the tulip. A real beauty.

S- Sweet coffee and dark chocolate. Mega roasty.

T- For me, the chocolate comes first, followed by a coffee wallop. Hints of tobacco and none of the bitterness that I tend to associate with strong coffee flavors. A sweetness lingers and brings everything together.

MF- Medium thin mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Reminiscent of a cup of diner coffee sans co2.

O/D- Kept forgetting to bring this home, and I'm almost glad I did as I wouldn't have had it to enjoy right now. A solid coffee stout that does nothing but deliver. Great first offering from Great River.

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Photo of beagle75
4.06/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 16 oz. can into a tulip pint glass.

A: Opaque black color with over one finger of beige foam head. Heavy lacing remains on the glass.

S: A balanced blend of roasted grain and minerality is accompanied by lesser unctuous chocolate and a trace of carbon dioxide.

T: Begins off-dry, with dark fermented tobacco and chocolate. Acidity is very mild into the middle, where coffee is restrained and complementary in the presence of other qualities. The finish sneaks by fairly quickly, just leaving a hint of bitterness and a whiff of husky roasted malt to linger on the palate.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, wet and slick on the palate, with low carbonation.

D/O: This stout deserves the favorable reputation that it has begun to cultivate, comparing favorably in terms of interest and drinkability to any other export-strength stout worth recollecting. The flavor profile is most noteworthy in its focus on derived tobacco notes, rather than predictably tasting of coffee in a straightforward way. While not especially substantial in texture, it slips effortlessly across the palate to the benefit of overall drinkability. The complexity cultivated in this stout of modest strength is really remarkable.

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Photo of GregSVT
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

16oz can into a tulip

A: Pours very dark brown almost black with a decent mocha brown head that fades to a ring and leaves some lacing on the glass. Impressively dark for a 6% stout.

S: The nose is dominated by the's all I can smell at first. Very earthy but I can detect some vanilla in there as well.

T: The taste is also mostly coffee with a slight vanilla flavor. It's almost like a watered down iced coffee.

M: Feel is thin and watery.

O: I wanted to love this one after reading reviews and especially since I love WnB and a few other coffee stouts but this one was a bit of a let down. If you're looking for all coffee and little stout this is definetly your beer.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.26/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

tall boy can poured into a beer stien.

Appearance: black bodied stout with a dense brown head. Leaves thin and spotty lacing everywhere on the glass.

Smell: Really roasty fresh expresso coffee and some sweet smelling malts.

Taste: Fresh roasted coffee! This beer is so roasty and not at all bitter! Its just like gourmet expresso. The malts add some sweetness to the beer. Getting just a little bit of a chocolate note. Has a nice finish just like you would get from most stouts.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy beer with a medium body and moderate carbonation. Carbonation is near perfect. Super drinkable sessionable stout.

Overall: Huge roasty coffee flavor; very mild bitterness. Easy drinking and great tasting beer! This IS my new favorite coffee beer! I am really glad this beer is found in my backyard because I see myself drinking this beer on a very regular basis. Not only that its very affordable craft beer at $8 a four pack of tall boys! Only 2 dollars a can what a great value for a premium craft beer! Go out of you way to trying this beer! It doesnt matter if your a stout lover or a coffee snob everyone will enjoy this brew. Not to mention this beer is in cans...I will be bring this beer along with me on ice fishing excursions for the convience of not having to bring bottles of beer out on the ice.

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Photo of redjameskidd
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one great brew from a brewery that not a lot of people know.

It's simply a coffee stout in rarified air--a kind of coffee flavor that is not easily comparable to almost any other stout. Instead of a harsh coffee bite, it's exceptionally smooth and well-integrated. In fact, it's difficult to tell where the coffee stops and the stout begins.

As such, I can imagine that some people might not love this because they don't detect "the inner beer" as clearly as you would in most coffee stouts. At times, it's almost more like an iced mocha. But my, oh my, what great coffee flavor. I have to hand it to them. This is far and away the best beer that the brewery has made to date.

If you've had Surly Coffee Bender, that's the one brew that is comparable in its coffee character. I asked a brewery representative about that comparison, and he said they use the same coffee and the same cold extraction method. And it really shows in this dynamite coffee beer.

This would be a great beer to hook someone on craft if they were a big coffee/iced coffee drinker.

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Photo of Scotchboy
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes, reviewed 1/7/12.

A surprising extra from a great trader, Redband Stout poured into a New Belgium globe.

A: Pours extremely dark and a little viscous, opaque body with a very dark brown head that sticks around awhile.

S: Very pleasant coffee aromas, some bitterness and astringency, with some nice roasted malt characters but this beer is mostly about the coffee.

T: More coffee and bitter roasted characters here. Pretty balanced and not overwhelming while still staying coffee-forward. Maybe some milky chocolate as well.

MF: Smooth. Fuller, creamy mouthfeel.

O: Again, great light astringent coffee notes. Probably my 2nd favorite coffee stout behind FBS.

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Photo of harrymel
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Canned: unk

A black stout with a couple fingers of light mocha foam and a decent lace. Smells like coffee - serious amounts of coffee. There are hints of malt, but not particularly pronounced, mostly the smell of coffee. The taste follows a bit of a different route, the coffee is more complimentary than dictatorial. There are tones of chocolate, toasted malts, some hints of oxidation, and a creamy flavor as well. This is well done in the flavor department. Medium bodied with a sincerely dry finish - surprisingly, this feels right.

A deceptive beer up front with the nose, but converges into a really nice beer. As it warms, it grows on me and as I enjoy it, the nose seems less important. If they adjusted the aromas for more interaction, I would argue this would be a world class coffee stout. Really a beer worth seeking and I plan to place on my wants list for a second round.

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Photo of brydeen
3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into a snifter

A: Dark brown, almost black pour. Looks like motor oil. Creamy, inch thick mocha colored head, with good staying power.

S: Massive coffee aroma. Hard to pick a lot else out, except faint hints of chocolate.

T: Taste not as prominent as the scent. Very similar to cold coffee that isn't quite fresh brewed. A sweet finish that diminishes the roasty flavor.

M: A little thin for the flavor profile and aroma. Medium carbonation.

O: A little one dimensional. The aroma is among the best of this style, but the flavor and body don't hold up to others (ie. - FBS, CW Brewhouse Stout) Still solid though

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Photo of WYVYRN527
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16-ounce can poured into a snifter.

A: Pitch black with about 3/4 of an inch of tan head, which has very decent retention. Froth remains on the surface and leaves nice sticky lacing on the side of the glass.

S: A bit put off by the smell at first. mainly just coffee and black dirt. Not bad, but I expected more.

T: Wow! Intense coffee up front, with hints of chocolate, dark fruit, and potting soil, followed with a dry bitter chocolate finish.

Notes: Pretty full-bodied, and flavor is quite complex. This beer has exceptional drinkability, yet it's still a sipper. I'm liking it more and more with each sip. Definitely worth trying.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16 ounce can. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both good. Wow, you can tell from the aroma that this is a coffee beer. It smells mostly like coffee, and also some roasted malt and bittersweet chocolate. Taste is similar to the aroma, it's mostly coffee, but there's also some roasted malt, milk chocolate and bittersweet chocolate flavors noticeable too. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's creamy and it's very easy to drink. Moderate carbonation. I think this is a pretty good brew, I liked it a lot. If you like coffee beers, then you'll probably like this one. Definitely worth trying!

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Photo of ballenc
4.27/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16 oz can into an imperial pint glass.

Appearance - Black as coal with a dark tan head. Minimal head that dissipates quickly leaving little to no lacing.

Smell - very heavy on the roasted coffee aroma - stronger than I even expected

Taste - again very heavy on the roasted coffee flavor with a hint of bittersweet chocolate on the back of the tongue and maybe just a wee bit of dried fruit. Definitely a malt forward brew with little indication of any hops at all.

Mouthfeel - a bit on the thin side in comparison to other coffee stouts. No lingering aftertaste other than coffee.

Overall - This is my first try with this brewery and the coffee stout is a winner. While I was hoping for a bit of a chewier mouthfeel, the smell and flavor more than makes up for it. I would recommend this beer to others interested in stouts and/or coffee stouts but who may be put off by the general heaviness of most other stouts.

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Photo of gford217
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz can.

Pours extremely dark for a standard stout - looks like an imperial stout. Pitch black with a thick tan head that leaves tons of lacing.

Aroma is fresh coffee beans, heavily roasted black malts and some light lactose sweetness and bakers chocolate. But, really, it's about the coffee.

The taste has lots of coffee but also has more of the lactose sweetness which really makes this taste like an iced latte. The finish is bitter and roasty.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied for the style. Good carbonation and roasty overall.

I've a huge fan of coffee stouts, so I really enjoyed this one. Probably not in the league of Central Waters Coffee Stout but it's not far behind.

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Photo of SpdKilz
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to laymansbeerfan for this great extra. Cheers!

Appearance – Pours a pitch black into my tulip with zero light penetrating even the edges. About a finger of tan head is achieved with a moderate pour that dissipates somewhat slowly leaving spotty lacing.

Smell – A fantastic fresh roasted coffee aroma up front. Chocolate, nuttiness, char, and some cocoa.

Taste – Nothing less than wonderful. The enticing aroma led me to believe the flavor would be the same, and thankfully it is. A nice dry roasted coffee flavor mixed with a hint of chocolate and lactic flavors. Subtle earthy notes, cocoa, and caramel. Finishes with a charred characteristic.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, a bit lighter than expected, finishes dry.

Overall – A very good coffee beer. A great surprise and fantastic extra. Very happy I am enjoying this right now. Would love to do a side-by-side with FBS, this, and WnB.

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Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to LaCoursiere for this can.

A: Pours a pitch black with one full finger of mocha head. The foam dissipates fairly quickly, but leave some great lacing as it drinks.

S: Dang! This beer smells of HUGE coffee, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and caramel. If you are a coffee lover, this is your beer.

T: This beer starts off bitter, like I'm drinking a high end dark roast. The coffee notes are spot on. But this flavor transitions into a wonderful sweet, chocolatey, caramel mix. The finish is back to a quick hit of bitter coffee and then sweet chocolate.

M: Full bodied beer. Thin and bitter to start, but finishes super creamy and smooth. It's fantastic.

O: This beer is seriously great (if you love coffee). Great River is not messing around. It's like a cold mocha espresso. I think it's wonderful. It might be one of the best coffee stouts I've ever had.

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Photo of mynie
4.65/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

PERFECT pour. Thick and completely opaque with a wonderful, retentive brown head. This'd be a good pour for an RIS. For a medium-strength coffee stout, it's bofo.

Smells like rich, medium-acidity dark roasted coffee mixed with milk chocolate and a tiny little bit of hazelnuts. Mostly it's bitter, but that bitterness is balanced out freakin' perfectly.

Tastes wonderful--maybe a bit sweeter than I would have liked, but still an excellent balance between rich coffee, bitter barely, and chocolatey sweetness. The coffee nodes are just about as good as any other coffee beer I've ever tried, save for maybe Coffee Bender; you can actually pick out acidic fruit nodes. In other words, it tastes like nice, dark roasted coffee--not like burnt espresso.

Wowzers. It makes sense, I guess, since the coffee stout was far and away the best beer they brewed at the old Old Capitol. But this--this is a solid improvement even upon that.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours an opaque black color. The head is a massive two and a half inches in of dark tan foam that recedes slowly leaving stick lacing along the sides of the glass. The aroma is of espresso with some roasted malt underneath, but it is mostly espresso. The taste is more balanced between beer and coffee. There are considerable roasted malt, and chocolate notes that balance the still strong coffee component. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a velvety texture, and ample carbonation. Overall, this is a really good beer that I will surely be drinking a lot of in the future.

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Photo of match1112
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

can pours a pitch black into my pint aggressive pour results in a half finger of mocha colored head that settles to a frothy cap with tons of lacing. smells like a pot of coffee that was left out over night. roastieness, chocolate and coffee. tastes like a cold cup of joe. mouthfeel is a full bodied stout with good carbonation and a nice level of coffee bitterness on the end. this is one of the best coffee stouts out there.

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Photo of BeerNutz324
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ap- dark dark brown. some might even call it black. the head doesn't last long but the lacing makes up for it. The head is a half inch or so of off white.

Ar- coffee, coffee, and coffee. A bit or roasted malt and some chocolate too. Did I mention coffee?

T- Coffee, chocolate, roasted malts

M- Well carbonated for a stout, medium bodied, a bit on the lighter side for a stout.

O- A fine beer, I will seek this out again for sure. I love coffee and I love it even more in beer...especially at $5.99 a 4pk of 16oz' ers. The best thing to come out of Iowa since I-94!

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Photo of dave43
4.87/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Has nice lacing and is a tad over carbonated. That said the aroma is incredible. Heavy coffee and chocolate. Tastes like it smells with a nice creamy vanilla flavor. This beer is close to surly coffee bender and founders breakfast stout but costs quite a bit less. Put Iowa on the map!

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Photo of morimech
4.48/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the pint can into a snifter. Dark black color with a large mocha colored head that has good retention. The head eventually settles to a thick cap. Plenty of lacing is left down the glass as well. Looks like one chewy stout.

Aroma is heavily influenced by the coffee. Freshly brewed and iced. Underneath the coffee there is a touch of roasted malt.

Has one of the best coffee flavors of beers that are coffee influenced. The stout area of the beer loses a little focus so I cannot give this a perfect score. Could use a little more roasted and chocolate malt flavor to compliment the coffee.

I was expecting this to feel a little thicker considering the look of the pour. Still quite large for a 6% ABV beer. A little over carbonated as well.

Arguably the best coffee flavor in a beer. Comes in cans at a great price. Definately happy to see this on local store shelves.

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Photo of Duff27
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a one inch tall dark(!) mocha head on a dark brown/black body. Wonderful lacing and well above average head retention. This is one beautiful looking stout!

S- Straight roasted coffee aroma...mmm yeah roasty!

T- Coffee is prominent but in no way overwhelming or overpowering...may be the perfect amount in a non-imperial stout. Small hints of chocolate. Drinks right at its 6%abv.

M- Full mouthful, very creamy. Good carbonation.

D/O- Safe to say I've found my new go-to coffee stout. What's that? Sixteen ounce cans? Sign me up. Added bonus: I think the can is pretty damn cool looking as well. Wonderful job Great River.

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Redband Stout from Great River Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 102 ratings.