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Steelhead Extra Stout - Mad River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Steelhead Extra StoutSteelhead Extra Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

306 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 306
Hads: 505
Avg: 4.04
pDev: 13.61%
Wants: 46
Gots: 30 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-05-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Steelhead Extra Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 306 | Hads: 505
Photo of cmq103
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-oz. bottle into a Duvel Belgian Tulip glass. I picked up a six-pack of this from the Beer Store in Southampton PA. They have an outstanding collection of craft beers if you haven't been there yet and live in the area.

Appearance: An aggressive pour got me maybe a half inch of dark brown head which quickly diminished to a thin ring. A thicker, syrupy looking pour that was pitch black. Lacing was almost non-existent.

Smell: Coffee, caramel, a little vanilla and chocolate at the first inhale. A gentle swirl of the glass brought out the roasted malt and oatmeal in the nose. Very nice. Not earth-shattering, but worthy of an inhale between sips.

Taste: Light coffee, mild unsweetened chocolate with a mild hop bite. Roasted malts, hint of oatmeal, with a moderately bitter lingering finish. The taste it top notch in my book. By far, this category will get my highest rating.

Mouthfeel: A light to moderate body for an extra stout. Carbonation was perfect. All of the flavors blend well as they meet the taste buds. Creamy, with a nice roasted bitterness in the finish. Thinner than expected from what I saw in the initial pour.

Overall: This could easily become one of my favorite stouts under 7% ABV. I will seek this one out again. This is exactly what a stout should taste like. Well done Mad River!! You have a new East Coast fan…

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Photo of dlbrockmiller
4.65/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Holy cow this is good! This is a very dark appearing ale. It almost looks black! It has a wonderful malty aroma with a touch of hops. The flavor was the most distinctive thing about it. It starts with an almost coffee flavor then moves on to a chocolate aftertaste. It has a good mouthfeel and I can almost picture this with a scoop of vanilla ice cream like a root beer float.

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Photo of chinchill
4.17/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass. Some black sediment remained on the bottom of the glass.

Appearance: Pours dark brown, nearly black, with a smallish creamy tan head.

Smell: Roasted malt with hints of coffee, licorice and prune

Taste: Starts out a bit sweet, butquickly becomes balanced. The roasted malt centerpiece is surrounded by hints of prunes, coffee and dark chocolate, along with some more obvious spicy hops. After the swallow, there is a bit of smoke in a toasty finish that lingers a good while.

Mouthfeel: full body with moderate carbonation; creamy smooth.

O: An exceptional and very flavorful stout.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque black with a 2 inch foamy dark khaki head that settles to a thin cap. Random dots and streaks of foam form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, malt balls, and cocoa powder. Taste is of dark roasted malt, dark cocoa powder, and some slight coffee flavors. There is a nice roasty bitterness that lingers on the palate. This beer has a higher level of carbonation with a crisp yet smooth mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good stout with a very nice balance in the smell and flavor.

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Photo of shanblur
3.53/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No freshness date on bottle. Poured from 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

A - Dark pour with a dark tan head which leaves extensive lacing.

S - The standard roasted malts with chocolate and coffee aromas.

T - Much like the aroma, with a chocolate and coffee flavor. A bit on the acidic side.

M - Medium bodied with a light carbonation.

A nice stout. Would not go out of my way for one, but could definitely drink another bottle.

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Photo of BeerNutz324
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

bottle into a pint glass

Ap- deep, rich dark brown (almost black). Cinnamon head typical of a lot of stouts. Most of it dissapears pretty quick but the surface head has stuck around for a while.

Ar- Dark fruit (cherries, figs), some chocolate, some oats.

T- chocolate, cherries, raisins, roasty malts and some sweet malts too. Smidgeon of coffee.

M- smooth, creamy, medium body, perfect carbonation for this style.

O- this is an awesome stout. I just want to keep on sipping this stuff so the flavor is always in my mouth. I will be having another tonight :)

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Photo of bnes09
4.47/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ink black and completely opaque. Beautiful, metallic copper colored head. Poor retention but does leave a nice ring around the glass.

Complex dark aroma, coffee, dark chocolate, sherry and nuts.

Massive roasted malt attack on the palate with coffee, bitter chocolate, licorice, and roasted almonds. Underlying molasses sweetness mellows things out. Fairly assertive hop punch, pine and spinach leaves. Smoked maple character. Very well balanced.

Medium bodied. Drying. Malt seems to stick to the tongue and continue to deliver more flavor all the time.

A truly awesome beer. I love stouts and this one really hits the spot.

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Photo of MEsoJD
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Thick/syrupy black body, mocha head (fast dissipation), and minimal lacing(mild stick).

S: As expected, it smells of roasted chocolate/toffee notes. Not really picking up any dark fruits.

T: hmm.... not what I was expecting. It's quite watery for a stout. Despite that, sweet malt, taste of coffee, licorice, caramel, some raisin(?), possibly some vanilla and very settle hops/bitterness.

M: Boozy... for 6.5, the alcohol comes out even more than some 8 or 9s(defiantly makes it's presence known). The texture was lighter than expected, medium carbonation, smooth(despite what was said), and light(for a stout) to medium bodied.

O: It wasn't what I was expecting from the style, but it's enjoyable. This is a hard style to stand out in, and this does it by taking me off guard of my original assumption. Though it may not be amongst my top stouts, it has left it's mark. Sure if my options are limited and if it's set at the right price, I would buy again and share with friends.

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Photo of DUBinMIA
3.16/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black with about 3 in. head… not that foamy but decent. Ok lace.

Smell is of roasted malt and toffee. Light caramel notes towards the end. No real hop notes.

Roasted malt is dominant with coffee and piney hops toward the end. Not very complex.

Mouth feel is light for a stout. Could be thicker.

Overall an ok stout. Worth a try but I won’t pick it up again.

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Photo of CaptJackHarkness
4.3/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep black body, nice aroma reminiscent of French roast coffee, Head foams up nicely but doesn't hold up long. ( I always drink from Pilsener glass for consistency in comparision)
I think this is a good solid brew, exemplary of it's type and recommend.

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Photo of Dan3279
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just had this on cask at the Beer Engine in Lakewood, this is the first cask beer that I remember having. The beer was served to me in snifter glass and had a body that was black as night and a very small tan quarter inch head that left a little lacing.

The aroma has dark chocolate, coffee, and some bitterness. The taste was great, a solid stout with everything I like in my stouts, coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate and good blend of sweetness and bitterness.

This beer was creamy and very easy to drink, I was actually expecting this beer to a little heavier than what it actually was. In fact I think I drank it a little too fast and didn't give it a chance to warm up. My only complaint about this beer is that I wish the ABV was a bit higher, I like my stouts to be in the 9%-11& range, but overall I can't complain at all. I really enjoyed this one and I would probably have had another one if it weren't for all of the other beers that were calling my name at Buckeye.

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Photo of Lerxst
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to chugalug06 for this extra

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip

A-Pours black, no light coming through, with a two finger coffee colored head that slowly recedes to a thin cap that leaves wisps of lace.

S-Nice roasted malt aromas greet me first, followed by hints of molasses, coffee, chocolate and dark fruit. Smells nice.

T-Slightly charred malt and coffee, dark fruit, a touch of smoke, bakers chocolate with just a bite of citrusy hops.

M-Medium body with crisp carbonation. The carb bite is a bit distracting here, but it still manages to coat the palate fairly well.

O-A good, solid American Stout that I enjoyed and would have again.

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Photo of dwilson01
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from a bottle into my arrogant bastard pint glass, the body is a midnight black tinged with dark brown around the edges. the head is a thin dark caramel mocha coloration which sits on the top of the brew dissipating slowly.

The smell seriously makes me think dark chocolate mocha. It's thick and drowns your scent of anything else in there.

The flavor follows directly from the nose, a dark chocolate comes out in the beginning fading to a roasted coffee flavor and then combining in the end leaving you with a slightly bitter choc/coffee aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is full but surprisingly not too thick, it's got a huge amount of flavor without being a syrupy consistency.

Overall this is a must try brew if you haven't already indulged.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Really nice pour, very typical for the style with a deep dark black look to it and a nice head of maybe two inches that came up and over the top with some ease. Settling down it left a decent amount of lacing on the sides, but nothing spectacular though it did retain a good bit of the puff of tan on top. The aroma was nice, well blended mix of chocolate and roasted malts, hints of light coffee notes and a decent bit of dark fruit note carrying over. This was pretty much par for the course with the flavor. Started out very smooth with a rich and well defined chocolate note that dominated early before mellowing with a nice but of vanilla and coffee notes. Small touch of hops catching up right there at the end were enough to make it just slightly bitter, but overall it was a smooth, creamy and very session able stout.

I would have no issue with trying this one again as it went down quite nicely and really left a soft, sweet note in the end. Very well done.

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Photo of felipe2toes
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out of the bottle like black syrup. Not much of a head, and whatever head there is quickly recedes into thin ring.

Smells great. Hints of bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, and lots of coffee.

Tastes darned good too. Bitter and dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, and some sweet molasses/brown sugar notes.

Not as viscous as I initially thought it would be, but still decent mouthfeel and good carbonation.

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Photo of jsh420
3.45/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

pours dark dark brown with a 1 finger fizzy tan head that left some spotted lacing

smells is faint but i do pick up some roasted malts and milk chocolate

taste is along the same lines as the nose - those same roasted malts chocolate a little dark fruit and some nuttiness - pretty dry overall -

mouthfeel could be better - overcarbonated and thin

overall - while i dig the flavor i dont dig the body and this beer is a ltttle pricey to boot - would rather have a SN stout or founders porter

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.23/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured out an oily black whit a slight amount of head that quickly went away. A bite of bitter bakers chocolate in the nose with a lot of booze as well. The taste is smoother than expected but it still has a sharp bite that has a pungent bourbon alcohol aftertaste. I was not too impressed with this one.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black with a light brown head. In the aroma, big roasted malt and sweet notes are in there too. In the taste, dry coffee and a big roasted maltiness. A small hop bite and medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a dry coffee flavor in the aftertaste. Nice coffee note and easy to drink.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Steelhead Extra Stout

Stubby bottle into a snifter.

Pours a thick oily black, small brown colored head and little in the way of lace or retention. Aroma of roasted malt, coffee, chocolate and some smoke. In the flavor, black coffee, dark chocolate and a hint of vanilla. Moderately sweet with little to no alcohol presence. Smooth and full bodied. A nice sessionable stout with a moderate ABV. Quite tasty.

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Photo of chugalug06
4.31/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Blackened caramel color with taupe colored "soapy" looking head. Not too much lacing kisses the glass

S - Smell is very burnt and low odor. Super dark chocolate and roasty... Not quite what I was looking for

T - GREAT! Definitely a must try, I've been looking for this brew for sometime now... Thank you for distributing to CO!!!!

M - As close to perfection as i've had in quite sometime... Smooth and light carbonation

D - Super rich chocolate and delicate hop balance mellows out the flavors leaving you with a ver enjoyable ending mouth feel

Great Job Mad River!!! Congrats on your small brewery of the year award too!!! I will definitely be purchasing a lot of Mad River brews in the near future, keep em' coming!


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

This is my first review since BA.com changed "drinkability" to "overall". This beer is a great example of why that change needed to happen. (low drinkability with high overall appeal) Just because you don't want to drink a beer all day everyday, doesn't mean it is not an outstanding/worthwhile example of beer. cheers to that change.

twist off 12 oz. bottle.

I know the beer is fresh because i bought it from a store that just opened up.

A brown head over an opaque black beer. Reasonable carbonation and head retention. Dark malt character in the aroma, good chocolate essence. maybe a hint of yeast to the smell as well. Taste is similar to smells: dark malt flavors, and a bitterness that reminds me of strong coffee. Acidic dark malts are smoothed out by thick body and head. Pretty thick and viscous body, very filling. While still maintaining 6.6% ABV "decent". I wouldn't drink more than one or two of these personally. But a good brew with exciting flavors, I enjoyed it.

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Photo of Rayek
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Perfect Pint glass, the beer leaves the bottle a thick molasses black. A generous and dense tan cap falls fairly fast to a patchy film. Leaves bits of lace.

This beer is fairly sweet for the style. Molasses dominates the nose and palate. Bitterness is light and burnt. The beer gets a little acidic in the finish. In the mouth, the beer is dense, but overly fizzed.

Overall I liked this. It's a nice departure from the traditional American stout. A solid pickup.

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Photo of samie85
2.73/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A-Pours a pitch black hue with one and a half fingers of marron head.

S-Smells of dark chocolate, freshly roasted coffee, and earthy hops.

T-Dark chocolate with a bit of roast and vanilla and finishes with bitter, dry chocolate.

M-Medium bodied with low carbonation with a pretty dry finish.

D-Definitely not my kind of stout. Very acrid-like roast notes make this one not very palatable to me.

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Photo of zeledonia
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes, enjoyed January 2011.

Pours nearly black, opaque, and thick, with a coffee-colored one-finger head. Smell is mostly roasted malt with coffee notes but not a ton of complexity. Taste is delicious, straightforward, and just what I want from a stout: malty, strong coffee flavors, some sweetness, and nicely rounded. Mouthfeel is medium-thick but bubbly; has a bit of the stout syrupy texture but enough carbonation to balance it. Overall, quite good. The only thing holding it back from an even higher rating is the lack of complexity to the flavor.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3.87/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass; pitch black color; light brown head that dissipates to ring along the glass.

Smell is chocately roasted malt with feint hop bitterness; hint of coffee and toffee notes.

Taste is big roasted malt sweetness balanced by a good hop bitterness, just a solid stout.

Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, a touch on the sweet cloying side, but still well done.

quite drinkable, maybe a touch on the sweet side for great drinkability.

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Steelhead Extra Stout from Mad River Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 306 ratings.