Devil In The Details - Frog Island Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Devil In The DetailsDevil In The Details

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42 Ratings
no score

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Ratings: 42
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.23
pDev: 23.84%
Wants: 0
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Frog Island Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  13.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TurdFurgison on 12-30-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 23
Reviews by Chriscrundwell12:
Photo of Chriscrundwell12
2.54/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle sharred with 4 other BA's.

A- Pours a pitch black, ½ finger brown head, dissipates to nothing, splotchy lacing.
S- Huge oak presence, big metallic aroma, nothing special, slight cocoa, dark malt, not very appealing.
T- Wow, interesting, big big oak, dark malts, molasses, cocoa, sight bourbon but very hard to pick out, the taste is just as bad as the aroma.
M- Big mouth feel, decent carbonation, dry roasted finish.
O- Not very good, metallic, cardboard, no bourbon characteristics at all, very disappointing.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Sammy
3.31/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looks like a thick chocolate milkshake with a big bubbling head. A lace sheet is left complementing the dark black body. Corny, buttery, vinegar, bourbon, boozy, woody. Balance, well doesn’t quite get it taste-wise, murky mix, though interesting to try. OK drinkability.

Photo of Bung
4.12/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. Murky brown black pour. Not much head to speak of, just some bubbles throughout and a very small ring of tan around the top.

Big malt, chocolate, caramel, molasses, earthy aroma. Some booziness.

Really nice tasting brew. More roast here, malt and light coffee. Robust oak/peat molasses, anise, chocolate, some vanilla. What you are looking for is there. Not sure if this is barrel aged, but it certainly tastes like it is.

Medium bodied, maybe could have been more solid here. Pretty low carbonation, coating enough. Hides that 13% very well.

Goes to show, you can't always go by the ratings. This one is very nice and has probably come a long way since its beginning.

Photo of BierFan
2.37/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a tulip glass.

Not much carbonation at all. None really. Looks like a murky black coffee in my glass. Some vanilla, alcohol, and sweet dark malty aromas. The lack of carbonation really killed the taste and mouthfeel. I don't know what's more disappointing, the beer itself or the fact that I spent money on it. Contemplating now whether to finish this beer or drainpour it.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
2.38/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle from Siciliaon's in Grand Rapids. Poured in to Bruery tulip glass.

A - Dark inky black with almost no head aside from a few light bubbles around the edges.

S - Huge artificial vanilla aroma up front with some oak and a roasted malt presence in the background. Very sweet overall nose.

T - Big sweetness up front full of vanilla and milk chocolate flavours. The vanilla tastes very artificial and is almost cloyingly sweet. Roasted malt backbone is present behind the vanilla. The bourbon is barely noticeable. The sweetness makes this difficult to drink.

M - Medium body with almost no carbonation.

Photo of ThickNStout
2.5/5  rDev -22.6%

22oz bottle from Main Street Party Store (Ann Arbor, MI). 9.99. No bottling date but I believe this was only brewed once in late 2010. Served in a goblet.

Pours a molasses hued, near-black brown with two fingers of frothy mocha foam that quickly dissipates. Almost no retention and absolutely zero lace.

Fairly simple aromas of vanilla, dark fruit, and brown sugar.

The flavors are not bad but come across as a bit disjointed. Fudge, charred wood, vague dark fruits, burnt coffee, subtle oaky vanilla, earth and a lot of fuesel alcohol. Towards the beginning of most sips it seems like a pretty well done imperial stout but by the time ot hits the back of the tongue all that booze and char crowd out what could have been quite good.

The body is pretty heavy but the carbonation is almost completely gone so it just wallows on the tongue. The aftertaste is bitter with more burnt wood, bitter cocoa, fruit skins and alcohol.

I was hoping that time would smooth over some of the issues that previous reviewers noted. Maybe it did but there it just wasn't a strong enough beer to begin with. After enduring about half of the bottle I opted to sacrifice the remainder to the drain. Not that a near 4 year old bottle would be a likely option but I recommend passing on this one if you see it.

Photo of jtingue
1.98/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance. Very dark reddish brown in color. Pours with absolutely no head, no lacing and no alcohol feet.

Smell. 2 distinct smells emerge. One being a musty bourbon soaked oak smell, which is dominant. The second being molasses that is so pungent that you can almost guess that it is going to be thick and sticky. A real tale of two smells.

Taste. Hits the palate with a a slightly sour or bitter hit, which is quickly taken over by overwhelming sweetness. The bourbon and oak start to build with quite a bit of vanilla, which is strong enough to be mistaken for an artificial flavor. Some strange astringent bitterness leads into a semi-dry finish.

Mouthfeel. Surprisingly moderate in body, with absolutely no carbonation.

Quite a disappointing beer. Absolutely nothing seemed to be gained from the aging, other than a weird vanilla flavor. The mustiness in the nose is off-putting. The biggest killer though was the complete lack of carbonation.

Photo of weeare138
4/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a pitch black with a beige head, and a tiny cap that fades into a little head and collar. Speckles of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of vanilla, cocoa, roasted barley, and toasted grains.
Taste is of the aromas with a toasty barley flavor with cocoa.
Mouthfeel is medium full bodied, slick, and filling.

Photo of liamt07
3.41/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle shared by sprague11, thanks John. 22oz into a tulip.

Huge dense brown head that appears to cascade (like a nitro-pour) when poured into the glass. Black body with some lighter hues at the edges. Nose has big bourbon and barrel notes, brown sugar, oak and butterscotch. All of this appears to dominate some subtler flavours, perhaps some chocolate and roast. Taste has some warming (but not hot) alcohol and bourbon, oak, butter/butterscotch, coffee bitterness. Unbalanced flavours and the barrel certainly overtakes this rather than compliments it. A heavier medium body, but the lack of balance really sets this back - little room is left for the other flavours to add much to the profile.

Photo of CFHMagnet
3.79/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

I picked this bottle up in a bottle shop in Ann Arbor on a trip to Michigan a few months ago. Finally drinking it.

I poured a finger of very rich brown head over a nearly black body. As the head thins to a ring, the body continues to stare at me like a black hole.

I smell chocolate, roasted malt, a little caramel and coffee.

The richly roasted malt is very pleasant up front. This goes to a chocolate/coffee mingle, with a little vanilla on the back end. The alcohol burn is surprisingly slight for the ABV.

The mouthfeel could be a little creamier. It almost seems to pass too quickly. There is a little bite of carbonation, but it's not heavy handed.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.7/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a stemless globe.

Big thanks to Florida9 for sharing this bit of Michigan randomness!

I've never come close to hearing of this brewery or beer before, so this is a rare surprise beer. Right on. It pours a deep black-brown, barely highlighted with garnet, topped by a half-finger of dirty tan foam. The nose comprises butter, a good amount of booze, roasted malts, and oak. The taste holds notes of sourdough, light roasted malts, coffee, light bourbon, oak, and brown sugar. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a smooth-ish feel. Overall, a nice-tasting barrel-aged stout, but one that doesn't seem to have it all quite together yet: It's a bit too boozy, a bit too buttery, and a bit too thin, but it's really not truly bad in any sense.

Photo of womencantsail
2.06/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Black in color with an enormous head that nearly fills the glass. The nose is just awful. Highly metallic and acidic with the only stout characteristic being the roasted malt. The flavor is similarly bad. Very acrid and harsh, super metallic and acidic as well. Somewhat roasty with maybe a touch of oak flavor. No way I’d care to have this ever again.

Photo of mactrail
4.1/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The bourbon hits you immediately. Big and rich mouthfeel, but not overly sweet. I keep tasting spicy chiles along with the alcoholic heat. Slightly smoky and very fragrant with the charred wood. Leaves a definitely chewy, woody aftertaste. Lots of hops but they are well balanced with the massive malt. For such a boozy beer it's totally sippable and full of flavor.

Not sure why some reviewers don't like this. I think more people need to drink this stuff. I'm ready for Frog Island to age some other beers in these barrels-- like a Porter and a Scotch ale.

Photo of MarcatGSB
3.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 22 oz. bottle into DFH Signature Glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep black, no light getting through, with a very inviting mocha colored, thin head. The thin head lingers around for a while, it's actually a nice looking product. Small bubbles slowly pop and dissipate.

Smell: Quite inviting vanilla, chocolate, oak, roasted malt, and light bourbon.

Taste: Some interesting flavors going on there...The oak really takes hold, only to be finished by a mildly astringent alcohol, and bitter flavor. Some of that chocolate from the nose comes through on the palate, only to be slammed into the background by overly aggressive wood. I feel this beer may have been overly oxidized as I'm getting quite a cardboard taste on the back of my tongue...and it lingers.

Mouth: Some oily texture, and a drying sensation from the amount of oak that is present.

Drink and overall: For this beer being 13% ABV, it doesn't show it. It drinks fairly easy, but not really that enjoyable of a bourbon aged stout. Not sure if this is a lower quality barrel used, or even some refilled, refilled bourbon barrels. The oak comes through too much, causing this beer to be overly dry, and not as complex as it possibly could be.

Edit: I don't actually know what the A.B.V. of this beer is. I find it hard to believe it's 13 as listed, as other sites have it in the 8 to 9 range.

Photo of homebrew311
3.52/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes of a previous tasting.

Pours a deep dark brown, not quite black, but definitely opaque. Lifeless upon pour in terms of head. The nose starts with some vanilla and oak with accents of artificial cherry character. Roasted malts seem to be taking a back seat on this one. The taste is very mellow with lots of vanilla. The flavors seems well integrated, but again lacking some of what I search for in a stout. The mouthfeel leans on the thin side and the carbonation is very low. Nice balance of flavors here but nothing really resonates.

Photo of DragonzBreath
3.38/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Devils in the Details, Frog Island Ann Arbor was our final tasting. we were shocked at the pour to see a black, syrupy beer fill our glass. Strong odd smell. upon first taste I was pleased, but it grew sweet and stronger after that. No carbonation either. it is billed as an Imperial Stout at 13 abv .
Our tasting glasses are 6 oz can't imagine drinking more than that.
Good - rich beer

Photo of mothman
1.52/5  rDev -52.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours a tan head. Color is black.

Aroma: all oak chip and no bourbon. Chocolate and wet cardboard. Not a fan.

Taste: molasses dry tar and roast. Chocolate and oak spirals. Rich and roasted. Not for me.

Mouthfeel: roasted and dry. Lighter bodied with a higher amount of carbonation. Ends really dry and roasted.

Overall this wasn't good and I couldn't drink a lot of it.

Photo of MasterSki
2.68/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Jason for sharing this one. Served in a wine glass.

A - Quick-dissolving tan foam settles to a thin ring of bubbles and not much else. Very dark brown body.

S - Milk chocolate, vanilla extract, light bourbon, smoke, wood, roasted nuts, yeast, and some not entirely hidden alcohol.

T - Flavor is pretty cloying, with pretty copious amounts of vanilla extract, milk chocolate, butterscotch, and straight-up sugar. Just intensely sweet.

M - Medium-light body, low carbonation, smooth texture, and fairly watery. Some alcohol warmth is present.

D - It seems like they tried to hide the high alcohol content with tons of sugar. Not much bourbon barrel character either, other than the oppressive vanilla extract.

Photo of Florida9
3.92/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Black, appearing quite viscous. Forms some tan colored bubbles, but no head. Leaves no lacing.

S: Smells of chocolate, with quite a bit of vanilla mixed in. Some light bourbon notes.

T: More chocolate. Some roasted malts, mild bourbon, lots of vanilla. There is a slight sourdough quality that doesn't mesh with the rest of the beer, but isn't overly distracting.

M: On the lighter side of heavy in body, but comes across as feeling a bit thin. Slight viscosity. Lower carbonation level.

O: I'll admit this is not a great beer, but I've had worse. In the end it is a good stout that is quite flavorful and very drinkable.

Photo of TurdFurgison
2.22/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

22oz bottle courtesy of jale, thanks Jim! The label states "A bourbon oak aged imperial stout with subtle undertones of vanilla".

It pours opaque brown with a tan head (kind of a standard stout description but it fits). The aroma is not at all what I expected, definitely this doesn't smell like bourbon, oak, or imperial stout. What I DO smell is yeast, reminds me a little of homebrew based on smell alone. No malt character at first, but I do smell a little cocoa once it warms up.

Nothing from the bourbon barrels in the taste either, just bland and yeasty beer. I'm pretty surprised, this is nothing like advertised on the bottle. I don't think I'm gonna finish the bottle, this is not enjoyable beer.

Unless there was a problem with this batch, I recommend to avoid this.

Photo of Jas45678
3.09/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

22 ounce bottle into snifter

Pours a nice dark brown with a small tan head. Smell is roasted malt and chocolate with a hint of vanilla and coffee. Very muted nose. Taste is like the nose, not a lot going on here. Lighter bodied with a higher level of carbonation, too much. Overall not very good, flavors and nose are very faint.

Photo of divineaudio
2.35/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

bomber into my deschutes snifter.

a - a hard pour gets me a black liquid with no head whatsoever, not even a thin film. no lacing present.

s - burnt toast, sour cherry, stale coffee.

t - a little roasty with some stale coffee notes. maybe a bit of wet cardboard. no oak or vanilla as claimed on the bottle and no discernible hop character either. faint alcohol bitterness.

m - thin for the style with absolutely no carbonation.

o - really sub par and just shy of being a total disaster. drain poured half the glass. if you see this one on the shelf, keep on going.

Photo of kzoobrew
2.72/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Review input from notes.

Black and opaque body. A heavy handed pour only manages to produce a meager one finger head. The head dissipates rather quickly, patchy lacing left clinging to the glass.

The aroma is somewhat promising. Chocolate and vanilla aromas blend with a pleasant roast on the back end. The bourbon appears to be fairly well integrated, well blended and not overpowering in the nose.

The flavor is where things start to fall apart for this beer. Chocolate and roast flavors are present, flavors may be enjoyable if it were not for the oak. The wood is really overpowering in this beer, really diminishing the other flavors. Dry astringent flavor is one that I cannot get past. Combine with the overly assertive wood the bourbon flavor seems very cheap, just not a pleasant tasting beer.

Medium bodied Imperial Stout, body is much too thin for the style. The carbonation is low though does not provide a creaminess which could benefit the body. The finish is overly dry, not appropriate for the style.

Devil in the Details started out ok, then the wheels fell off. There are many similarities between this beer and Dark Intrigue for me. Both become victims of the oak monster, and under delivering on expectations. I would love to try a version of this beer which the flavors are more developed and integrated, this on did not do it for me.

Devil In The Details from Frog Island Brewing Company
76 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.