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Steelhead Extra Stout - Mad River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Steelhead Extra StoutSteelhead Extra Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

457 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 457
Reviews: 294
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.89%
Wants: 45
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mad River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-05-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 457 | Reviews: 294 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Globetrotter


3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

Scored this at the Total Wine in Northern Virginia in early November. No freshness or ingredient information on the label. In fact, the label only talks about the Steelhead line of brews - nothing specific about the stout at all. Semi-stubby 12oz brown bottle with a pleasing blue and white label featuring a large salmon springing from some forest stream.

Pours an utterly opaque super-dark burgundy under a one finger purplish gray head that is thick and creamy, but still dissipates quickly leaving no trace of lace. The nose has some roasted malt, but what sticks out is a distinct plum note. The mouth is fairly heavy and very carbonated, with a body that hugs anything it touches. This beer almost tastes like a sweet stout, with prominent plum and sour citrus notes. There is roastiness here, and a touch of espresso, but the fruitiness pervades. Only in the aftertaste, long after the prune juice is gone, do the roasted malts and dry hops assert themselves. It's OK, but a bit disappointing in my book.

11-24-2004 18:48:58 | More by Globetrotter
Photo of yankeeheel


4.3/5  rDev +6.4%

Pours the usual tar black with a rather meager espresso colored head, even after an aggro pour. Smells so sweetly molasses that I want to dive right in. Lots of choclate seeping in there too. Smells incredible.Taste is what you smell. Lots of chocolate, molasses, fig, cherry and earthy flavors. Finishes with a lingering smoke/tobacco zing. Quite a solid/thick mouthfeel. Oatmeal like in it's texture. Sitting at 5.5% ABV I could see this as an all night beer at the pub.

Another JahNoth hookup.

10-10-2004 22:13:29 | More by yankeeheel
Photo of oelergud


4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Pitch black body, impossible to tell level of carbonation. Head is big and brown, dissipates quickly to a thin film, little lace.
Burnt coffee beans all over the place, solid earth flavor and a smoked burnt earthy coffee aftertaste
Very well balanced brew, lots of both hops and malts, firm body that leaves some coating.
Good drinkability, one of the best extra stouts I've had.


10-09-2004 23:50:33 | More by oelergud
Photo of abcsofbeer


4.72/5  rDev +16.8%

This is a damn fine stout that pours a dark, used motor oil color. There is no seeing the light on the other side of this one. The head is tannish and very thin that leaves little or no lace.

The aroma is a licorice, coffee blend, with hints of cherries and red grapes. The taste is much the same, chocolate tasting and lightly bitter. The maltiness is heavy and the tastes a little like wine in the aftertaste. This is a fabulous stout, one that makes me think that stout is my favorite beer style. Highly recommend.

09-19-2004 22:51:10 | More by abcsofbeer
Photo of Shiredave

New York

4.6/5  rDev +13.9%

I was very happy to find this beer on the east Coast, but I had forgotten just how damn good it is.
Steelhead pours pitch black and opaque with a sparse red/brown head.
Sharp, acidic massive aroma of roasted barley - very stouty with a hint of floral hop softening the overall impression.
Initial mouthfeel is slick and heavy with huge roasted malt flavors.
Hop bittering is firm but not overpowering and mixes neatly in behind the delicious grain bitterness and malt sweetness.
Exceptional balance and outstanding Stout character. A truely great example of a Foriegn / Export/ Extra Stout.

08-09-2004 03:40:14 | More by Shiredave
Photo of arizcards


4.15/5  rDev +2.7%

Picked up a bottle of this at TJ's recently for $1.39.

Appearance is black as night but it poured a dissapointing head leaving no lacing. Smell is good, toasted grains, coffee, and chocolate. Taste is getting better the warmer this brew gets. Roasted malts, hints of coffee and chocolate, and a nice dry finish. It is a bit thin for a stout. Overall drinkability is good. I have another bottle that I will be sure to let warm up from fridge temps!

08-09-2004 02:18:25 | More by arizcards
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.65/5  rDev -9.7%

The beer pours a deep dark black color with a thick frothy brown head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a rich black and chocolate malt scent along with dry, yet creamy finish. The taste is decent. It has an extremely rich black and chocolate malt flavor that is very thick and dry. It goes down slow and finishes with a bitter black malt aftertaste. The mouthfeel is decent. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a decent drinking stout. It has a little lacking in the mouthfeel department as well as a little too intense in the grain bill.

07-22-2004 02:26:36 | More by WesWes
Photo of JahNoth

New York

4.38/5  rDev +8.4%

Very dark pour with small caramel head. Scent of bitter chocolate and mild roastiness. Very nice nose. Nice roasted bitterness in the flavor - the hops, chocolate and slight coffee bounce around in unison. Light on the tongue. A delicious brew! Mad River brews are slowly moving up the ladder among my favorites.

07-22-2004 02:15:39 | More by JahNoth
Photo of mattcrill


4.2/5  rDev +4%

Standard 12 oz. bottle. Pours like tar or maple syrup with almost no head with a fairly aggressive pour. With the carbonation and head evaporation, it almost pours like a soda.
Smell: I smell burnt raisins and hints of vanilla beans. Almost like Guinness (extra stout not the pub draught stuff).
Taste and mouthfeel: Nice carbonation. This is a big tasting stout with a complex array of malt, coffee, and hints of vanilla.
This stout goes down easy and really is a great find.

06-12-2004 03:56:40 | More by mattcrill
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +0.2%

Cant pour any darker than this pitch black stout with a thin mocha colored head,aromas of deeply roasted malt and mocha flavored coffee very rich and appetizing on the nose.Taste is very roasted with a unsweetened chocolate note finishing very earthy and nutty.Very raw and bold beer like the earthiness in the finish and the creamy mouthfeel a big winner here.

05-13-2004 23:19:28 | More by oberon
Photo of abents


3.23/5  rDev -20%

Pours an oily black with a big brown head that's gone rather quickly. Not much for lacing. Smells of roasted grain and coffee with a slight hoppy smell as well. Taste is of a bitter coffee and slight chocolate with a nice roasted malty taste as well. Lingers pretty well in the mouth, but nothing too spectacular here. Pretty well carbonated with a light mouthfeel for a stout. I don't know here. A decent offering, but again nothing too terrific. I was impressed with the scotch porter, but this was just OK.

04-13-2004 22:33:38 | More by abents
Photo of watermelonman


3.88/5  rDev -4%

This poured to a very dark black with minimal head. The head quickly faded and the lacing is minimal as well.

It smells like a prototypical good stout. The taste is a little bit plain, but it's of pretty good quality. It feels good on the mouth and it definitely goes down easily as well.

A touch plain, but a good solid beer.

03-31-2004 11:30:54 | More by watermelonman
Photo of Skidz


4.08/5  rDev +1%

Pours out dark, and I mean DARK, brown finishes jet black with no signs of light anywhere. Dark tan head with beautiful lacings on the sides, holds pretty strong on top.

Smells of roast grains, coffees and some nice hoppy aromas. Taste is very bold. Nice roastiness with a bit of citrus twist to it as well. Finished mildly bitter, with those hops floating around your mouth to get you ready for more.

Nice full body, very smooth and clean tastes all around. I could easily make a night of this superb stout. The price is just right for this, so it's even easier to dive in.

03-07-2004 03:45:41 | More by Skidz
Photo of francisweizen


4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

This is a fine extra stout. It pours out a dark, opaque black colour with a nice frothy espresso coloured head. The aromas are nice. Chocolate, espresso, caramel, hops, deep roasted malts, and a bit of spicy booze. The taste follows suit with a wonderful melange of roasted coffee and chocolate flavors. The mouthfeel is neither thick, nor thin, and it is all too easy to drink one of these puppies down. Nice stuff.

01-04-2004 20:06:05 | More by francisweizen
Photo of AtLagerHeads


4.35/5  rDev +7.7%

From an unimpressive start, this little number really built steam and made me a believer. Much like a true Russian Imperial stout, ala La Coq, there is virtually no head and, likewise, no lace.

But from the nose forward this is an impressive brew, again ala La Coq. The dark opaque body captures a sense of extreme roasted goodness and gives off lovely aromas of burnt grains and thick, roasted caramel malts.

The taste is very Imperial having a rich fullness that is very much of the old school. It is truly waming of the innards despite its relatively low alcohol content; can this be an accurate rating of ABV?

The full, heavy, and thick body is just shy of being syrupy, earning it high marks in this lesser dimension. The drinkability is likewise enhanced by the moderate ABV and lovely feel. Grande! Let this Steelhead come upstream and multiply!

01-02-2004 02:53:08 | More by AtLagerHeads
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +7.7%

The beer pours pitch black with a slight ruby highlight when held to light. The brown head forms quickly and then falls slowly lacing the glass. The aroma is chocolate and coffee and roasted malt. The flavor is chocolate and coffee and roasted malt. The body is medium-full and appropriate. The finish is dry coffee.

12-29-2003 23:53:38 | More by GCBrewingCo
Photo of RoyalT


4.53/5  rDev +12.1%

Appearance – Blacker than black with a small head that dissipated quickly.

Smell – Giant espresso and cocoa aromas fill the nose, followed closely by strong, roasted malts. The nose is very powerful and fulfilling.

Taste – What do we have here? There’s a surprise in this bottle: balancing hops. Whudda thunk? The bitter espresso and chocolate cocoa powder come with some refined sugary flavors as well, making this one quite the party.

Mouthfeel – Seriously full in the mouth and exceptionally smooth for such a heavy brew. Not a hint of alcohol to this one.

Drinkability – I had no problem killing this little 12-ounce bottle.

Comments – This is one stouty stout. This is what I think of when I think of stout. This is a tremendous example of the style. Much thanks to the Santa Monican MickeyMac for sending me this offering from Mad River.

11-29-2003 03:06:04 | More by RoyalT
Photo of rkhaze


4.4/5  rDev +8.9%

Pours an opaque black with a ruby tinge. Creamy, thick dark tan head that leaves decent lace.
Coffee, chocolate and some red fruits( plums, currants ) show up in the aroma along with an almost burnt roastiness.
Just a great taste of espresso, dark chocolate and roasted malts. A nice spicy hoppiness and licoricey sweetness lead to a dry finish.
A little thin in the body for the style but still creamy and highly drinkable.
I really like this stout! Top notch and highly recommended. Pick some up if you run accross it.

10-15-2003 03:24:58 | More by rkhaze
Photo of Gusler


4.47/5  rDev +10.6%

The beer pours a raven color, not a hint of light passes through this stout, the head pythonic in size, the texture spumescent, and the color a rich chocolate brown, as it disperses, a thick and claggy lace welds itself to the glass. The deep rich aromas of the toasted grain reaches you first, followed by the sweet malt, with hints of bittersweet chocolate and yes even some deep rich roasted fresh ground coffee, delectable the nose. Start is ambrosial, thickly malt, the top full and chocolate rich with the finish pleasantly acidic, the hops spiteful in their spicy presence, very dry and slightly bitter aftertaste, clings to your palate like a newborn baby to its mother’s bosom, quite quaffable this beer from a fine brewery.

10-01-2003 23:30:35 | More by Gusler
Photo of beerguy101


3.73/5  rDev -7.7%

Dark black color. Medium head. Aroma is chocolate, roasted malts, some fruitiness and coffee. A medium bodied stout. Malts are chocolate and coffee, with a touch of fruit sweetness. Hops are slightly bitter and dry. Smoky and peaty as well. Very drinkable stout. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

09-01-2003 01:20:55 | More by beerguy101
Photo of mickeymac


3.88/5  rDev -4%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with a twist-off cap, this pours inky black. It appears highly carbonated on pouring, but the head never really comes to life and it just sort of sits there. Espresso, chocolate, and just a touch of raisin combine nicely in the smell and taste. It has enough hops to lend a nice twang. The mouthfeel is fairly chewy. Despite the nice complexities, it runs its course after one or two.

07-13-2003 21:50:14 | More by mickeymac
Photo of Todd


4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

12oz short brown bottle. No freshness date. Unfiltered.

Pours an opaque black coloured beer with a creamy coffee coloured head with decent retention. Aroma holds a slight twang of roasted malts and background of molasses and suggestions of vanilla bean.

Oh so smooth ... creamy, somewhat chewy with a complex malt profile of overall malt sweetness, semi-astringent roasted malts, coffee grounds/espresso, wood, smoke, chocolate, hint of caramel, burnt raisin edges and molasses. Nice citrus hop twang breaks up the malts, then settles back in. Dry chocolate/coffee and grain finish.

So much flavour, and so damn drinkable. Oh yeah ... this is a damn tasty stout.

07-08-2003 10:24:28 | More by Todd
Photo of cokes


4.58/5  rDev +13.4%

Black as a 3-mile deep ocean trench. Huge chocolate brown sponge-cake head.
This seems to teeter on imperialness in several categories. Most notably the nose: deep burnt raisin, ripe plums, charcoal and chocolate.
Cocoa bean right up front, mingling with a subdued expresso note. Seared dark fruits rush in from all sides. As the nose promised, blackened raisins and plums materialize. Just the slightest bit of drying hops are noticed, and they seem to have minimal effect on the taste. Impression of burnt paper late. Rides out thick and remarkably similar to fudge.
Seemed a bit over-charged up front, but settles into a hearty medium-full body.
Great stout here.

Muchas gracias to Bighuge for this trophy

05-05-2003 20:42:25 | More by cokes
Photo of bcm119


3.83/5  rDev -5.2%

Pours opaque black with a thick, fine brown head that soon melts to a thin lace. Aroma dominated by espresso, with dusty roasted malt. I liked the lack of alcohol in the aroma. Nose is dry roasted malt and coffee, with a little dark chocolate, that thins to a surprisingly light mouthfeel for a stout that looks so thick. Hops are present as a muted, minerally astringent bitterness towards the finish, which is snappy. Nice coffee aftertaste. I wouldn't call this a deep or complex stout, but it has a great smell and aftertaste. Its lighter, drier and more drinkable than you'd expect. Worth trying but not seeking out.

04-04-2003 13:12:42 | More by bcm119
Photo of Jarod


3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

This beer poured into the glass a jet black color, no light penetration. The head was a medium brown color, but left fairly fast. There was no head retention and no lace visible. The aroma was of dark fruits and berries, malt, coffee and chocolate. The taste was creamy and semi thick. Hints of chocolate dominated, as well as coffee and chocolate and some alcohol peeked through. The flavors were fine while in the mouth and good while they caressed the tongue, but once swallowed the flavor left fast. Shame on this I was enjoying this beer up until this moment. Would like to have more lasting flavors after the last sip.

01-21-2003 13:50:31 | More by Jarod
Steelhead Extra Stout from Mad River Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 457 ratings.