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Mephistopheles' Stout - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Mephistopheles' StoutMephistopheles' Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

841 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 841
Hads: 2,061
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 7.86%
Wants: 302
Gots: 721 | FT: 45
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  16.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2006

Mephistopheles is the crafty shape shifter, the second fallen angel. Amazingly complex, coal black, velvety and liqueurish, this demon has a bouquet of vine-ripened grapes, anise and chocolate covered cherries with flavors of rum-soaked caramelized dark fruits and a double espresso finish. Cellarable for 10+ years.

Mephistopheles is the final installment of “The Demons of Ale” series.

Food pairing: We like Mephistopheles’ Stout with chocolate (60% cocoa or more), chocolate lava cake, flourless chocolate cake, tiramisu or traditional fruit cake made with rum-soaked fruits.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Mephistopheles' Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 841 | Hads: 2,061
Photo of jdubjacket
3.61/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Is nearly completely black in appearance. Smell is VERY alcoholic. It's not very well-masked. Some dried fruit, but mostly alcohol. Damn, I've never had a beer burn going down. Taste is limited to roasted malts with mild coffee undertones, and a shit ton of alcohol. This one burns way too much. 120 Minute didn't hurt this much. This beer would do well to age. Honestly, I'm a little disappointed with this brew. (455 characters)

Photo of akorsak
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: The ale is a deep oily black color with an off-white head that has red highlights.

S: The stout has an aroma of wine, chocolatey malts and intense alcohol. The vinous aroma betrays a complex body.

T: The first sip is a warming alcohol, followed by a big malty taste. The malts are roasted and wine-like, further augmenting the alcohol. The flavor is almost too sweet, with a quad-like malt strength that quickly loses the vinous impact and becomes very sugary.

M: An overabundance of sweetness mixed with a decent malt body, I am conflicted because parts are good while others aren't.

D: Drinkability is limited by the strength and the sweetness. This is decent, but not in my top 5 ADS list. (707 characters)

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #5. Bottled December 2009. Poured in to brandy snifter.

A - Poured pitch black with almost no head.

S - A big alcohol presence up front accompanies rich milk chocolate, molasses and roasted malt aromas. Very sweet overall nose.

T - Massive sweetness up front with milk chocolate, molasses and roasted malts and dark caramel. A big alcohol presence helps cut through the massive sweetness. Lighter notes of char and licorice in the background.

M - Medium to full body. Light carbonation. (499 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Beerandblues2 (Batch #1 – Bottled January 2006 Drank February 2007): Poured a pitch-black color stout with a big foamy head with great retention and lacing. Aroma of light coffee and sweet malt. Taste is totally dominated by sugar with some light coffee and some light warming alcohol. This is definitely a sipper and not something I would drink too often as it is way too sweet for my personal taste, with way too much pure sugar (à la cane sugar). Alcohol had probably time to disappear a bit after one year of cellaring. Overall, an interesting takes on the style and better then some other Avery’s big bees. (633 characters)

Photo of david131
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled December 2009. Batch 5.

A- Absolutely black. Pitch black. Just the slightest bit of light coming through on the edges. The beer appears surprisingly carbonated with a rather creamy looking brown head that settles to a splotchy covering.

S- Fruit, coffee, dark chocolate, and some alcohol. Surprisingly faint for the ABV.

T- Fruit, dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee, and a strong alcohol presence on the end. Overall, this is not as sweet or roasty as I expected for a beer of this stature.

M- Smooth body, but a strong alcohol presence makes this a pretty astringent on the finish.

D- Overall, this could most definitely use some time to blend and cool down. The alcohol is painfully apparent. It is not nearly as strongly flavored as its Delaware counterpart, but to each their own. (798 characters)

Photo of Mitchster
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

$8.99/12 oz bottle at Merchant's in Dearborn. Ouch! Brewed with 2-row, black patent, roasted barley, Belgian special B, and aromatic malts. Hopped with Magnum and Styrian Goldings.

15.1% ABV. OG=1.145. 107 IBU's.

Pours out to a forboding black, forming a thick dark tan/cocoa colored head with good retention and lacing. Carbonation is mild. Upon cracking the bottle open and pouring, I'm immediately overcome with rich tawny port aromas. Intense prunes and dates, sharp deeply roasted grains, a ton of sticky malts, green resinous piney hops, vanilla, espresso, black walnut, milk chocolate, and dark rum. The mouthfeel is acidic from the roasted grains and oddly sour, likely from the copious amount of hops. Syrupy, cloyingly sweet, extremely rich and dense. The taste is a recap of the aroma. There is a ton of dark fruit, but the sourness looms over it all. Malt body is substantial and the burnt marshmallow sweetness is moderately strong and never taken over by the hops. Alcohol is perceived in mentation and as it goes down the pipe, but it doesn't stand out in taste. Cleanly fermented except for the odd sourness. Soy sauce in the aftertaste. Mildly bitter, if that makes sense. The finish is dry, extremely chalky and sharply burnt.

12oz of this is plenty, but it should really be in the $4.99/bottle price range. The very definition of a "sipper". Share this with 1 or 2 friends. Obviously, this is a beer of strength and quality, but it's primary flaws are the sourness and overwhelming burnt sugar syrupy sweetness that makes your teeth ache. Palette fatigue sets in very quickly, much quicker than the other "Big Beers" I've had from Avery. I'd have to pass on this one again. I would much rather spend my money on Salvation or The Reverend. (1,766 characters)

Photo of Kevin73
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think this beer gets high marks because of its high ABV. But in truth there are better stouts out there. Pours a typical opaque dark rustic brown with tan head that disappears quickly with very little lacing. Dark chocolate, grape and curry... seriously that's what I smell... permeate the nose and do not entirely play well together. The rest is okay but not world class. Taste begins with a satisfying rush of intensity from the alcohol. Fortunately I didn't taste the awkward spices that I could very clearly smell. The flavor blended quickly into mocha, grilled fruit, and very light but noticeable hops bitterness on the end. The mouthfeel was good. Nice, thick. This is a beer you can really chew on. In the end most of my complaining is wiped away by the fact that this in in fact a fairly well balanced stout. Not going to deny it, the taste is actually pretty good, but just not as good as some others, granted with far lower ABVs. You can tell on I'm kind of on the fence about this. I apologize for the wavering review. Bottom line, it's worth try, if the pocketbook can afford it ($9 a 12oz bottle at my store, eee-ouch). (1,135 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a plastic tumbler.

Okay, I know I've had this before, but I can't remember anything about it. Let's see how things go this time... It pours a very dark sienna topped by a finger of dark tan foam. The nose comprises a ton of roasted malts, charred pretzel, and some light smoke. Whoa now. It's almost too much. Almost. The taste walks the same line, though the roast is not quite as dizzominant, some molasses and cedar are added to the mix, and a small boozy kick comes in at the end. The body is pretty hefty, with a very light moderate carbonation and a pretty chewy feel. Overall, this stout would be pretty nice were it not so overblown. I'll leave it at that. (675 characters)

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled in Nov 2006 - Batch 2
[OG 1.148, Alcohol 16.03% by Volume]

Presentation: 12 fluid ounce brown glass bottle, sealed with silver backed thin red foil on the neck which has a large silver letter ‘A’ set against a black circular brewery stamp. This foil covers the upper 2” of the neck, as well as the black and gold Avery logo’d crown cap. Another Avery dark black satanic label with a horned devil definitely fits the bill. Cost $7.99. Owe, hurts the pocket, and kidneys too.

Appearance: Dark brown, like a brooding out of control head from a warm bottle of Cola which rises in a cold glass, the foaming kopf fills my Stone RIS goblet. It soon settles down and finishes revealing an intense silk woven head which is composed of a fine delicate tapestry. Jet black body is hard to penetrate; the viscous alcohol clings to the glass walls and provides a solvent that enables the lacing to rejoin the main body of the beer easily.

Smell: Intense odors of dark chocolate locked into a high octane jet fuel nose. Dark fruits, more specifically those dark skinned cherries with prunes and caramel too. The alcohol is like an elephant hiding behind a lamppost, hard to miss.

Taste: That jet fuel feel soon provides a vehicle for the dark chocolates and caramel. Melting brown sugar and dark hardwoods fill the middle with a hefty dollop of malts. The finish has an after-burn which produces the blue diamonds and heats up the back end to a temperature hotter than most can handle. Burnt liquorice and caramel are heavy on the palate, so are dark fruits molasses and roasted prunes. The tastes start nicely but the finish is just too damned hot to make this an enjoyable offering in the long term.

Mouthfeel: Gosh this is hard, harsh and a bit of a nutcase. Only a lot of time could ever temper the demonic nature of this “hot” brew. It certainly has smoked malt and dark chocolate background which helps put the scorching burn down a little. But that fiery trait runs from the middle and starts a bush fire in your throat at the death; it’s all a bit too much.

Drinkability: This is one that needs to be gently sipped; actually a few slices of cold meat and aged hard Irish cheddar help to temper the heat in the back end. The 12 ounce soon looks insurmountable and it is fair to say that this will be your last drink of the night for sure.

Overall: Absolutely massive. A huge beer that bruises with punches yet comforts with a crushing bear hug. Harsh and far from refined, yet it exhibits some balance, but at 16.03% this is everything you expect but with some low key refinement that will improve with time. I bet Michael Schumacher would be proud of this…..I’ll wager my farts smell of burnt rubber tomorrow. I’ll be offering donuts at work in the morning but not the ones with sugar and jelly. (2,831 characters)

Photo of tconboy
3.57/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours an opaque hearthy realm of darkness with a marshmallowy caramel bubbly head. Smells of deep rich chocolaty coffee bourbon. The taste, likewise. Deep and rich are two adjectives that are befitting the description of the chocolate roasted coffee twinging brew. It is quite apparent in the taste, however, that this monster packs more than just a bark. The bourbon hints are highlighted by the extreme bite. The mouthfeel is smooth, light carbonation. Drinkability, well I wouldn't advise having more than one of these in a sitting. I do not foresee having more of these in the near future, but that is not to say I did not enjoy the experience. (648 characters)

3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A continues growing head reaches nearly three fingers of milk chocolate brown head and fades to a rocky cloud. Body is absolute blackness and almost sludge thick. Nose has tones of bourbon and malty sweet chocolate with a bit of smoke in the background. The alcohol is wrapped in anise on the nose also. I am shocked a bit as I take first sip as the first thing I notice is a dark sour bitter feel on the front of the tongue. Dark fruit is soaked in alcohol almost like rum soaked fruit. The darkness hangs onto the tongue along with the sour bitter feel that leads into the mouthfeel. Alcohol is hot and I am not sure it would mellow as this is aged from Nov. 2007. Decent drinkability for a stout this rough. (710 characters)

Photo of Ranbot
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Extremely dark and thick - it coats the surface of the glass almost like an oil. Dark, but thin head, as expected for the ABV. First sip was amazing! Roasted/burnt coffee and chocolate malts and oaky sweet dark fruits - cherries, plum, apple - with surprisingly [dangerously] mild alcohol flavor for the 16% ABV. Hops were very mild, almost imperceptible against the heavily roasted malts. Very little carbonation. If I rated this beer based on just the first few sips this would be an A+ beer...however, a little over half-way through my glass the roasted/burnt malts were really building up and taking over my palette with an acidic/burnt coffee flavor that lingered way past it's welcome. It's still a great beer, but I had to detract points for this. Definately one to try at least once.

In retrospect, I really wish I had some food on hand while drinking this. I think a periodic cleansing/reset of my palette with some basic mild-flavored fare would have allowed me to enjoy every drop of the Mephistopheles. (1,062 characters)

Photo of Bendurgin
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chalice courtesy of my brother Andy. Thanks! Pours jet black with about a finger of rocky mocha head. I'm impressed with this given the high abv. It's eventually settles down to a cap of foam with sticky lace. The aroma on this is really rich. It's not all to different from your run of the mill stout but it's like it has be reduced to intensify the aromas. Lots of charred smokey aromas and fresh out of the jar molasses in the nose. The flavor is much like the nose just kind of seems intensified. Smokey molasses flavors; really a lot of sweetness going on here and some dark fruit undertones. The body seems a bit flat and it kind of seems to have an icy hot kind of feel. If nothing else the feel is pretty unique. As far as drinking this goes, I'd say it's about as easy as one of this style goes. I'm impressed out how hidden the booze are, it's just kind of warm going down. (897 characters)

Photo of nickydel
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I was feeling quite drunk after finishing my 12oz. Poured a little to gingerly, not much of a head to speak of, but my mistake. Black as the night. The smell and taste reek of alcohol, and it was honestly too much for me. Under the boozyness were some great and complex flavors, but kinda hard to enjoy. Glad I tried it, no way will I buy it again. (348 characters)

Photo of PicoPapa
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Bottled in Nov 2007, Batch 3, 16% Abv. Pours a really viscous black color with a very thin ring of brown head. Some lacing. Aroma is super boozey. Some chocolate, sweet coffee and earthiness. Taste is boozey chocolate upfront. Coffee and caramel as well. Some vanilla at the end. The alcohol dominates but I think the age helps pick up on the other flavors. This is certainly a heavy, chewy sipper. Reminds me of DFH World Wide Stout. Probably not as good as WWS, but a fine beer in its own right. Big alcohol burn but its done well. Very interested in trying a fresh one now. Overall, its pricey (8.99) but worth treating yourself to once in awhile. (663 characters)

Photo of Kendo
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to MRMOJORISIN for sharing. . . .

A: This monster pours black -- black-as-night black. No real head is present, but there is a small brown film resting on top.

S: Big nose of major alcohol. Some prunes and black licorice, but the spicy alcohol dominates in a big way.

T: Heavy alcohol again. Also heavy on the sweet malts. After your mouth adjusts to the heat (it's not warm, it's hot), tastebuds discover some roasted coffee and chewy raisins. With those flavors and the heavy mouthfeel, it's almost like drinking a port rather than a beer.

M: Chewy and thick.

D: The alcohol takes some getting used to, but slowly but surely I was able to put down a portion of a bottle. It did go well with cappuccino truffles, but on its own, this is a real slow-sipper and the overwhelming alcohol takes some getting used to.

Notes: This beer has been aged for awhile, but I think it could stand to benefit from even longer cellaring. It really needs to mellow a bit. Drinking it now it's a BIG beer. Its weaknesses were especially evident when we followed it with two more moderate RIS's -- a Stone (I think it was '04) and the Left Hand. Both were much more moderate, more mellow, better balanced and substantially more drinkable. (1,246 characters)

Photo of khiasmus
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Vintage 2008. Sampled two days after arrival from distributor. ABV 15.92%.

Pours almost black in color with a finger of rich brown head. The head drops to a ring in a few moments, but hard to expect more from 16%... no lacing.

The aroma is predominantly of roast and booze, with some hints of dark fruits thrown in for good measure. There is a tinge of burnt sugar in there as well, and along with it an overwhelming sugary-sweet note that balances the intense roast pretty well. Smells like a "black patent port" if you can imagine such a thing. The coming warmth of alcohol is hinted at in the spicy alcohol aroma.

Flavor combines all of the elements from the nose, in a sort of bipolar way. At first cloyingly sweet and roasty, then ridiculous earthy hopping and straight grain alcohol flavors in the finish. It's not quite as hot as a shot of everclear, but as close as I've experienced in a beer.

The mouthfeel is thick and silky, with relatively low carbonation. Finish is both intensely astringent from the roasted grain/earthy hops, and almost burningly alcoholic. Were it not for those two elements, the mouthfeel would be like oil.

This beer fails to be very drinkable. An interesting specimen and certainly worth a try, this offering will probably mellow a good bit with age. I may grab a couple to cellar for a few years. Some oxidation would probably do it good. As it is, it's far too intense, in all the wrong ways: like taking shots of jagermeister or nyquil. Do yourself a favor and be patient with this one. :-) (1,535 characters)

Photo of BeTheBall
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured a deep black color with an impressive foamy head, which lasted for quite some time. Nice lacing down the glass during the hour plus it took me to drink this.
Smelled of vanilla and toffee, huge nose, also with raosted goodness.
Taste was of roasted vanilla, but also a huge taste of caramelized sugar; quite sweet, which does a pretty good job of hiding the gigantic ABV in this one.
Mouthfeel was good, very satisfying.
Drinkability with almost 16% ABV? Certainly one (if you can drink one) and done. This is best shared with a friend; hugely powerful! A little sorry I bought two, going to take some courage to drink the second one. (641 characters)

Photo of surfer4life
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip from a 12oz bottle.

A - Black as night with a larger than normal dirty brown head for a stout.

S - Alcohol and fruit come through heavy in the nose. Small hints of chocolate can be detected.

T - Heavy heavy oakiness to this one. Chocolate and licorice take over otherwise. Not much else going on taste wise.

M - I really thought this was over-carbonated compared to some of the top stouts. Was a bit to crisp and didn't really draw me in for another drink. Heavy in the body, though, nice and thick.

D - Medium drinkability, not bad not great. let's jsut say I wouldn't run it down. (612 characters)

Photo of jampics2
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Thanks for the pour Cookie.

Batch 2, November 2006 bottling. Enjoyed Jan 2010.

Looks amazing. Jet black with a mocah head.

Smells of molasses, cherry, and we cat food.

Not too hot, surprisingly. Sweet, cloying cherry fruit, leather, roasted malt, bitter finish. A wild ride for sure.

Satisfying, chewy mouthfeel.

Slow sipper, happy to have tried it but one to split more than 3 ways IMO. (394 characters)

Photo of hammer09
3.51/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One word: Wow!

This beer is huge. Avery Mephisopheles' Stout pours a brownish-black with a half inch thick, smooth, foamy, brown head. Head retention is excellent and lacing is thin, yet consistent. Smell is sweet and estery; reminiscent of a Belgian ale. Aroma has hints of apple, grape, and a mild, leathery, earthiness. Taste is very sweet at the front with a faint roasted finish. Powerful malt presence with slight bitterness. Any hops used in the beer appear lost in comparison to the malt. Mouthfeel is very warming and alcoholic. Thick and syrupy, but good carbonation. This beer is best sipped. Slowly. A very good beer, but one not to be taken lightly nor consumed quickly.

Personally, I want to give this beer a rating of 4 for both smell and taste, but I'm trying to rate this according to its style. It's listed as an American Double Stout, but I'd have to say that a hybrid descriptor such as "Belgian Imperial Stout" would more accurately describe this brew, given its complex aroma. (1,004 characters)

Photo of shbobdb
3.51/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An absurdly large brew that feels much smaller than it is . . .

The beer pours and looks like a fairly standard impy stout. Heck, it even has some pretty good head retention!

The smell is boozy as hell, with a load of prunes.

The taste is layered in many ways. At 16-odd%, this isn't your average beer. It is very drying on the palate, while being excessively sweet. There is plenty of burnt toast, carob, and prune present. Wow, lots of carob and booze. Wow.

I dig the brew, the second best of the Avery super-sized series, but within them the most like "beer", so I'd recommend it to any Impy stout fan. (609 characters)

Photo of gonzo46and2
3.51/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark as hell with a dark brown head.

Smell is beefy yeast with soy sauce-like quality to the malts.

Taste is salty sweet like chocolate chip cookies. Hoppy bitterness shines though the darkness to balance it out. The alchohol is heavy and is hidden as well as it could be.

Mouthfeel is very heavy and viscous.

Drinkability is pretty low but is fun for a haymaker. (382 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours an impenetrable black with a tan head. Even without putting my nose to the glass I am already getting some strong fragrances. Let's dive in. Eek. So strong. Had to pull away before going back again. The most overpowering scent I get is that of wet, mineral rich dirt. Beyond that a super sweet edge. Strong malts. Flavor is massively sweet for a stout. Just way too much sugar here. Molasses. Even molasses type character over the tongue. Licorice. I am getting licorice on the end. I will say that the warmer it gets the better it gets, but still. Feel is thick and syrupy. Drinkability is low. If you buy this, absolutely do not drink it immediately. This monster needs to age for some time. I am thinking one to three years would mellow this puppy out quite a bit. By then it might be calm enough to provide a more enjoyable experience. The analogy of a puppy really comes to mind. Sure it can be fun when it is wee little. But when they are older and more mature is when they are really the best companions. I personally think we might be rushing too quick to drink this one and review it. This and all of Avery's other high ABVers. (1,142 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.5/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled January 2006, Sampled March 2006
Pours with a rich, creamy-chocolate brown colored head that is initially two-fingers thick. The beer is simply midnight black in color. An interesting aroma; initially I get notes of dates and alcohol. There is a rich, malty, almost salty note; a sort of umami kind of notes that could perhaps evoke thoughts of soy sauce, though not really. When you go in for a good, long draught of the aroma your nose gets just a bit singed by hot alcohol notes. There are some hints of chocolate aromatics here, a definite roast-acidity & I have a feeling this is a bit too cold right now.

Thick, almost syrupy, no it definitely is syrupy. It is quite sweet, almost in a sugar-like fashion (as opposed to the richer malt derived sweetness found in many strong beers). The finish has a certain, almost astringent, and lightly hot alcoholic note, that is not really all that detracting, in fact it is almost needed to cut thought the sweetness. Definitely rich and decadent, in fact it is a malt bomb up front, it is not until the middle that a detracting, sugary sweetness takes hold. The finish has a lingering roast bitterness, as well as a hop derived bitterness. My impression up to this point is that this beer is too sweet, and that it seems like filtration has robbed this beer of a lot of complexity.

I am really surprise at how subtle the roast character is; it is definitely here, but is completely dominated by the sweetness. There is a touch of coffee ice-cream here, perhaps some chalky roasted malt, and a bit of burnt acidity in the finish. Put another way, there is a ton of roast character here, it just plays second fiddle to the sweet notes. Fairly drinkable for all its concentrated flavors and thickness, though I certainly won't be pounding this any time soon. In the end this beer ends up being a bit too cloying, after the first 4oz it becomes a chore, even a 12oz bottle of this is too much. I think there is some potential here; I can actually see this getting quite a bit better with age, what complexity this beer currently lacks, will be added to and made better by some years of aging and subtle oxidation. Even though this is filtered, with the alcohol this beer will age for quite some time; perhaps I will sample this vintage again in 5 years or so. (2,317 characters)

Mephistopheles' Stout from Avery Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 841 ratings.