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Dark Lord Imperial Stout - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Not Rated.
Dark Lord Imperial StoutDark Lord Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,469 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,469
Reviews: 1,166
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 14.95%
Wants: 2,824
Gots: 1,517 | FT: 99
Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  15.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
A demonic Russian-Style Imperial Stout brewed with coffee, Mexican vanilla, and Indian sugar, this beer defies description. Available one day a year, in April at the brewery: Dark Lord Day.

Vintage guide:
Red wax = 2004
Orange wax = 2005
Gold wax = 2006
Silver wax = 2007
Black wax = 2008
White wax = 2009
Green wax = 2010 - 15% ABV
Yellow wax = 2011 - 15% ABV
Red wax = 2012 - 15% ABV
Orange wax = 2013 - New Label 15% ABV
Blue wax - 2014 - 15% ABV

(Beer added by: cretemixer on 12-13-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dark Lord Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,469 | Reviews: 1,166 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pschul4
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

pschul4, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of brstls4drmrs
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a thick black as night color with a brown sugar colored froth. Some good lacing occurs and sits more between the brew and the glass as opposed to on top.

S - Dark fruits (fig, raisin, date) galore with hints of dark chocolate and perhaps nougat with some molasses. Very pleasing scent.

T - Dark fruits, little coffee and dark chocolate, and some hints of booze in there too. Its not overpowering which is nice. Just a great blend of scents and taste on this one.

M - A very smooth texture with mild carbonation. Almost feels like silk swimming around in your mouth erupting an explosion of flavors.

O - A very nice RIS. More please.

brstls4drmrs, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of hurfer
5/5  rDev +16.8%

hurfer, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of NvMyBeer
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

NvMyBeer, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of dwoolley1
3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

dwoolley1, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of SPRichard
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

SPRichard, Dec 27, 2011
Photo of MrHirschybar
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

MrHirschybar, Dec 27, 2011
Photo of MordorMongo
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

MordorMongo, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of AdvocateFan
4.45/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

So here we are, Christmas 2011… 786 days after receipt of this bottle, a gift the night before my wedding from one of my groomsmen, I prepare to drink my first sips of Dark Lord. This is the 2007 bottling, picked up by my friend at Dark Lord Day 2007, which took place April 28th. So, it’s been 1702 days since it was picked up, or about 4.66 years. The cap opens with a small pffft, not surprising, though I’m concerned since it’s wax-dipped (silver) so I expected no oxidative damage or air leakage. The head starts about ¼" thick, and it is vocal, snapping and crackling like a cindering log. It’s got a coagulated blood red hue to the deep brown color. Ok, maybe more mahogany, but the ruddy hues are unexpected. The beer coats the side of the glass in a brown, tobacco-juice like layer, and has a cola-like appearance. The coating layer is like looking through vintage negatives… The beer is not pitch black, it’s a dark brown, but it looks like coke at the edges. The smell is, of course, deeply malty. Reminds me a bit of bourbon, but without the booze. Some serious mash… Cherry undertones, and lots of port and madeira wine taking charge of the nose. Plums are in there, as are some of the strongest, “freshest” raisin notes I’ve ever picked up from a beer. Fresh out of the box CA-raisins. Really prominent. Fig newton filling pretty robust as well. I get a bit of box board, and paper, hopefully that isn’t an oxidation issue. I get almost no alcohol notes, which is just nuts at 13%+ABV. Ah, as it warms, and I swirl, the booze does get coaxed out. But much deeper and below the surface than anticipated. Slight burnt note, some chocolate, almost no coffee. It’s big-time madeira style. Crazy. Oh wow, first sip down… it is thick! Very thick. I can feel the weight of it hit my stomach. My word, this is nice. Extraordinarily mellow, considering how big and bold a beer this is. Chocolate comes out quite a bit on the palate, more so than I would have expected from the nose. There are no burnt notes, nothing scorched, just thick, almost milky chocolate and cocoa. A bit of mocha flavor as well. Lots of molasses in the fade. Suggestions of black licorice and a splash of vanilla emerge, but its amazingly port- and madeira-like. It’s rich without being sweet or at all cloying. Coats my front teeth in a way that makes me fear they’ll be permanently stained. But the good Lord has blessed me with the opportunity to try this beer, and I’ll embrace the risk. Finishes with a bit of charcoal and chalky dryness, which is a nice shift as the palate is dried out after all the rich maltiness, and, well, 'refreshed' is not the right word, but 'readied' for the next sip sounds about right. A very nice experience. Wish I had tried it fresh and had something to baseline it against, but it is quite a nice beer at nearly 5 years old and a very rewarding experience. Merry Christmas to me!!

AdvocateFan, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of larsenju
4/5  rDev -6.5%

larsenju, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of mmmhopslam
5/5  rDev +16.8%

mmmhopslam, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of RoamingGnome
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoying Christmas Eve with my family, and my cousin Kevin was nice enough to share a bottle of 2011 vintage with me. Thanks again Kevin, I've been wanting to try this for a long while now.

Poured out of the 650 ml bottle into a couple snifters.

A) As I expected it was black and it did have that motor oil look, I've heard so much about. There was a thin layer of tan colored head, that dissipated quickly. Not much lacing, but it was enjoyable just swirling this around in the snifter, checking out the viscosity.

S) Initially a malt induced sweetness filled my nostrils, followed by some booze. There was definitely coffee and dark chocolate too. It was a well balanced aroma.

T) The taste was also sweet, but not overly so. There is roasted malt, caramel, coffee, dark fruits, and bitter dark chocolate. The favors are well layered and in harmony. You can pick up a little of the booze, but considering the ABV, it is well hidden and easy to sip on.

M) Full bodied may be a slight understatement. This one is pretty thick, and light on the carbonation. This beer just coats your entire mouth. It is velvet smooth. I guess this type of mouthfeel isn't for everyone, but I was quite impressed.

O) I really enjoyed this 2011 vintage, and am thankful my cousin put in the effort to acquire a few bottles. I must admit to being somewhat skeptical about this beer going into the tasting, especially given the hype. It lived up to the hype in my opinion, and I found it quite impressive. I would be thrilled to sample some of the other vintages, and remain hopeful that I can attend Dark Lord Day, one of these years.

RoamingGnome, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of Ineedabeerhere
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Ineedabeerhere, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of gbbass16
5/5  rDev +16.8%

gbbass16, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of TapeDeck
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

TapeDeck, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of Yesdog
5/5  rDev +16.8%

Yesdog, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of jophish17
4/5  rDev -6.5%

jophish17, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of ajs4bd
4.75/5  rDev +11%

ajs4bd, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of headyhopzhead
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

headyhopzhead, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of rpaul2012
3/5  rDev -29.9%

rpaul2012, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of metalgdog
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

metalgdog, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of oline73
3.73/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I was able to try the 2007-2011 versions of this beer side by side during a tasting this past weekend. My rating is from the 2011 version, which was my favorite. Poured into my Colossus snifter.

Appearance: Pours almost black with just a little bit of light coming through at the very edge of the glass. There is a layer of tan carbonation that disappears completely.

Smell: Sweet with some cocoa and caramel. There is a bitterness from the roasted malt and some molasses in there as well.

Taste: Lots of sweetness up front. There is a strong presence of roasted malt with some chocolate and brown sugar. There is some dark fruit flavor mixed in there as well. This version has a slight metallic taste to it that seemed to show up even more in the older versions. There is a mild hop bitterness in the finish as well.

Mouthfeel: The body on this one is quite thick with tingly carbonation and a dry finish. Quite nice.

Overall: There is a metallic taste that I'm getting in all of the versions that isn't completely pleasing. Everything about this beer is good enough and I'll probably try the future versions.

oline73, Dec 20, 2011
Photo of Jakers90
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Jakers90, Dec 19, 2011
Photo of a74gent
4/5  rDev -6.5%

a74gent, Dec 18, 2011
Photo of StayWhatYouAre2
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

StayWhatYouAre2, Dec 18, 2011
Dark Lord Imperial Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
96 out of 100 based on 3,469 ratings.