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Sweetwater Happy Ending Imperial Stout - SweetWater Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sweetwater Happy Ending Imperial StoutSweetwater Happy Ending Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

852 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 852
Reviews: 387
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 12.24%
Wants: 87
Gots: 123 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
SweetWater Brewing Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: rajendra82 on 08-26-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 852 | Reviews: 387 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sweetwaterman:
Photo of sweetwaterman
sweetwaterman

North Carolina

4.47/5  rDev +14%

Served on-tap(!) at Jocks N' Jills, Vinings, GA ~March 2011

Appearance: Dark Mahogany. Head reminiscent of crema on a good cappuccino. very persistent.

Smell: Hoppy, roasted malt undertones. "Bright" for a stout.

Taste: Initial rush of fresh hops followed by dark roasted malt. Fruity toffee. Toasted figs? Sweet candied (caramel/toffee) fruit finish. Well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, High carbonation for a Stout IMO.

Overall: One of my favorite Imperial Stouts. Could be mistaken for a Black DIPA though.

Highly recommended.

04-03-2011 17:23:49 | More by sweetwaterman
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -8.7%

Sweetwater in my mind is a very underrated brewery maybe because its in the south and doesnt have the largest ditribution area?I dont know.This brew poured into a standard pint glass a jet black with a nice tight formed dark mocha colored head that left broken lace behind as it settled pretty quickly.Awesome aromas very fruity with notes of bitter chocolate,coffee,and some wood underneath,it seems to go downhill from there a little.Really thin for a RIS in my mind no chewey big mouthfeel here it glides down effortlessly wich is good for alot of beers but in my opinion not this style,flavors have alot of RIS qualities but are muted a little.Dark roast coffee and bitter chocolate are there with some dark fruit but its not real firm,one thing I like is a nice leafy hop profile in the finish wich was the high water mark for me.Man it started out great but just didnt have the goods to be stellar,all in all decent.

03-27-2008 23:01:49 | More by oberon
Photo of Hoppin_mad
Hoppin_mad

Florida

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

05-03-2014 18:32:50 | More by Hoppin_mad
Photo of ExtraStout
ExtraStout

Massachusetts

3.95/5  rDev +0.8%

A: Thick and black. Big ol’ dark mocha head. Killer lacing.

S: First thing that hits me is the hops. Earthy, dank and spicy. Then it's milky toffee and powdered chocolate.

T: The flavors develop as dark and bitter chocolate with a huge dose of the dank hops noted in the aroma. Coffee comes in to play in the finish. I like the way the flavors play off the bouquet.

M: Way too thin for the thick syrupy pour I got. Meek carbonation and a skinny body.

D: Excellent. No sign of the 9% ABV. This beer is downright quaffable.

Overall: Sweetwater entices me with this my first glimpse at their offerings. The amazing hop flavor on this beer is by far its best feature. Pleasantly strong in the nose, the hops bring a subdued bitterness and pack a huge punch in the flavor department. Apparently some people are turned off by this in their RIS's, but I'd call it pretty friggin' awesome in this one!

06-01-2011 02:42:58 | More by ExtraStout
Photo of TCHopCraver
TCHopCraver

Michigan

3.93/5  rDev +0.3%

Thanks to boonecal for bringing this back from Atlanta for me. I shared this with zoso1967 and BuckyFresh on 2/5/11 while we were brewing up some tasty beer of our own.

Happy Ending pours very dark brown, as close to black as possible, with a medium mocha-cream one-finger head into a snifter. The lacing is quite nice, with fine, splashy, intricate patterns forming on the sides of my glass.

Holy citrus hops! This is by far the hoppiest Imperial Stout that I've smelled. I pick up plenty of sweet orange and lime mixed in with roasted malts, but really the sweet fruitiness dominates. I also can smell some darker fruit hints of cherry and plum in the bouquet. There are also some honey and toasty aromas hiding in there. This must have been dry-hopped like crazy to achieved that aroma. Very unique.

Roasted malt flavors balance out hops a lot better than in the smell. That roastiness actually dominates the taste, but the citrus and tropical fruit flavors still nudge their way into the profile. A little milk chocolate blends with the roasted malts and citrus, while the darker fruit flavors linger in the background.

The mouthfeel is light for the style, especially at the outset of each sip. It is not as bold and coating as I like from an Imperial Stout, but the feel is nicely roasty and biting from the malts and hops, though.

Happy Ending was enjoyably drinkable and very different from other Imperial Stouts that I have had. It was quite a bit hoppier, sweeter, and lighter. Frankly, it was a weird combination of qualities for the style, but I appreciate its originality.

02-25-2011 17:23:30 | More by TCHopCraver
Photo of BeerAdvocate
BeerAdvocate

Massachusetts

4.22/5  rDev +7.7%

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #40 (May 2010):

Dark appearance dons a tan lacing that keeps dropping rings on the glass. The aroma is a mix of sweet floral hop victory and spice-laced burnt sugar. Thick, muscular malt body flexes and gives a smoothness to think about. Spicy hops tingle the taste buds as the roasty malt digs in with a burnt sugar and grilled bread flavor. Alcohol is no secret, nor does it want to be, with a growing warmth that pleases by providing some balance. Hop flavor engulfs all of this with layers of complexity that take a whole bottle to unfold in a timely fashion.

From start to finish, this beer shines--seriously a great brew with a drinkability that's uncommon in bigger beers.

01-11-2011 02:39:11 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of bdkucharski
bdkucharski

Michigan

2/5  rDev -49%

05-01-2012 23:35:24 | More by bdkucharski
Photo of orbitalr0x
orbitalr0x

Illinois

3.98/5  rDev +1.5%

Pours into my glass a deep, viscous black with a wisp of dark tan head that becomes a ring quickly. Spotty lacing on the glass and no light getting through. Aromas of deeply roasted, sweet malt alongside a intermingling of chocolate, coffee and vinous notes. Caramel hints as well as some fig and raisin accents. Mild smoke and nut with hops in the background.

First sip brings a bid roasted dark malt flavor upfront with a slight smoky edge. Chocolate, caramel and coffee intertwine with a touch of vinous fruit flavor as well. Flows down with some solid bitterness and a touch of hops. Mellow raisin accents round out this one. Not a bad imperial stout, but not one of my top picks either.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a rich deepness to it, sort of smooth as well. For an imperial stout this ends up going down rather easily. Overall, a tasty brew that I'm glad to have had the chance to sample, but won't go crazy seeking out again.

10-15-2008 02:00:14 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of blitz134
blitz134

California

3.78/5  rDev -3.6%

Just picked this up. It was nicely chilled by the time I got home since I have no heat in my truck at the moment...

Pours absolutely jet black. Expresso colored head on top, a quarter inch thick to start with and finished with a thin layer and a ring around the glass. Nice Belgian lace as I drink this one down.

Aroma is strong with hops, grapefruits and other citrus and a touch of pine sap. It almost overwhelms the aroma. A little dark chocolate and toffee underneath. I'm not usually a huge fan of overly hopped stouts, so we'll see how this one goes (although I've had it before...on tap though...this seems different).

Dark toasted malts come through with chocolate. The hops are pretty overwhelming again and the citrus and grapefruit finish this out after the swallow. The flavor is good, but there are a lot of American hops in this, although it isn't all that bitter, neither from hops or dark malts. I personally think the hops cover up a lot of the subtleties I remember when having this on tap. I'm knocking this down a bit on the flavor. While I know its not supposed to be exactly to the RIS style, this seems too much like drinking a pale ale or something. The toasted parts of this beer just fail to come through. I'm a hophead, but not in my stouts please, unless its subtle.

Mouthfeel is medium to full, slightly oily actually. Not creamy like some stouts. Low carbonation is right for the style. Flavor coats the mouth okay but this one washes away fairly quickly.

Good drinkability. No alcohol hints at all...none. This one goes down super easy though, really smooth. I have a feeling that given some time this beer will really stand out. I know there are some good toasted notes in this one, they just can't come out yet.

02-16-2007 02:37:13 | More by blitz134
Photo of Jimbo62
Jimbo62

Georgia

4/5  rDev +2%

02-19-2012 02:04:03 | More by Jimbo62
Photo of TheAdamConners
TheAdamConners


3/5  rDev -23.5%

08-03-2012 01:48:56 | More by TheAdamConners
Photo of marvin213
marvin213

North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +7.7%

Black like night with a dark brown head, it levelly laces my Sweetwater pint glass. Hops leaving lacing with a color as dark as the pitch, only the froth's dissipation before I pull this up presents a problem.

The aroma is malty and hoppy. Sweet like candied balls and bitter like aspirin with a headache, things are looking better. It's a hop stout.

Bitter like the smell, hops dominate this freshly poured stout. It's reminiscent of GI Night Stalker as the hops pierce thru the stout in the making. Just as a chocolate glaze suitably complements a donut, this hop stout is balanced like a ballerina.

The hops really dance--a bittering dance--on the tongue, as malted sweetness coats the palate. It's a chocolate beer without going dessert. The aftertaste is lip-smacking good. After instinctively calling it "exceptional," I'm going with the 5!

It's neat enough--core principles of Sweetwater marketing at work here--that it's worth always having around for the unexpected beer advocate visit AND to enjoy with frequency. Unlike the greatest of stouts, however, I don't see considering two consecutive. It is, nonetheless, an impressive beverage.

03-06-2011 22:17:54 | More by marvin213
Photo of iemailjack
iemailjack

Florida

4/5  rDev +2%

01-25-2013 02:41:10 | More by iemailjack
Photo of anjah
anjah

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

02-03-2013 01:49:03 | More by anjah
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

4.08/5  rDev +4.1%

Swingtop liter bottle pours dark, oily, and opaque. Large cocoa hued head retains well and has some garnet fringes. Sticky patch lacing.

Aroma of nutty malts, a hint of chocolate, grassy hops, and some fruity red apples.

Silky smooth mouthfeel is full bodied with a low medium carbonation.

Taste has some bitter dark roasty maltiness, a hint of citrusy and grassy hops, nuttiness, red apples, and faint notes of coffee and dark chocolate.

A solid impy stout that I've had in the cellar for several months. Wish I had another.

12-26-2009 23:36:20 | More by merlin48
Photo of banglin
banglin

Pennsylvania

3.29/5  rDev -16.1%

A: rich dark brown to black color. Very good lacing.

S: strong roasted malts aroma

T: strong dark chocolate flavors along with the roasted malts flavor. Lacks the imperial stout flavor I have come to appreciate in other imperial stouts.

M: not as thick as I would have liked from an Imperial Stout, but not too thing. Carbonation is good.

O: it is a good beer but lacks many of the characteristics of imperial stouts that I grown to love an crave.

02-16-2014 23:01:54 | More by banglin
Photo of joshnovaski
joshnovaski

Georgia

4/5  rDev +2%

09-07-2012 17:31:49 | More by joshnovaski
Photo of dankjohn
dankjohn

Georgia

3.25/5  rDev -17.1%

01-07-2014 20:14:39 | More by dankjohn
Photo of deebo
deebo

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

03-08-2014 03:54:15 | More by deebo
Photo of kingcrowing
kingcrowing

Vermont

4.13/5  rDev +5.4%

22oz bomber poured into a tasting glass, black waxed 2010.

Pours a very dark black color with a small brown head. Nose is fantastic - hoppy, fruity and a bit sweet.

Taste is lightly boozy, malty and crisp. There's chocolate and light malt with a really creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Really solid.

01-29-2011 01:52:13 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of bpfrush
bpfrush

Wisconsin

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

03-15-2014 19:05:37 | More by bpfrush
Photo of Dano420
Dano420

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

01-30-2012 03:49:33 | More by Dano420
Photo of Cynic-ale
Cynic-ale

Ohio

4/5  rDev +2%

03-06-2014 02:30:34 | More by Cynic-ale
Photo of kwkdmk
kwkdmk

Louisiana

3.25/5  rDev -17.1%

02-18-2014 00:01:54 | More by kwkdmk
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +3.3%

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass. Best by date of Feb. 2012.

A: pours black and, I think, cloudy with just 1 cm of light brown head. Good head retention with plenty of lacing.

S: aromas of roasted malt, for sure, but this also has a substantial hop character of the weedy/herbal sort. Higher ABV is evident even while cold and contributes to floral notes and hints of dark fruits

T: semi-sweet mocha and malt flavors appear initially. The hop component remains partly herbal in tasting but is less pronounced on the tongue than in the nose, and turns more piney here. The hop contribution grows in power, and comes to the fore in the aftertaste, which is also nicely, if lightly, fruity and bitter. These hop characteristics seem well-matched to the malt profile, producing a stout that is relatively hoppy but still seems well-balanced. The fine and lingering aftertaste has good bit of mocha tint.

M: creamy smooth and full bodied with a soft medium-light carbonation. The high ABV has exceptionally little negative impact on the feel.

D- exceptionally hoppy yet drinkable imperial stout, with a high ABV that is well-hidden in the taste and feel, although fairly obvious to the nose.

02-29-2012 00:12:07 | More by chinchill
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Sweetwater Happy Ending Imperial Stout from SweetWater Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 852 ratings.