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Mephistopheles' Stout - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Mephistopheles' StoutMephistopheles' Stout

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1,930 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,930
Reviews: 837
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 12.38%
Wants: 277
Gots: 634 | FT: 37
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

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

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,930 | Reviews: 837 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of andrewinski1
3.21/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 3, bottled in 2007. Got this from a BIF, thanks to Ben in Illinois! Poured into an Allagash tulip. Nice giant mocha head on top of a black body. Not too thick looking in the pour.

The smell is strong. Only a hint of booze, lots of chocolatey aroma and a hint of vanilla. I've smelled better, but this isn't bad.

Bitter chocolate start and a slightly hot finish. Nice vanilla in the middle. As I keep sipping the sting from the alcohol becomes a little more noticeable.

The mouthfeel would probably be creamy but my tongue is a little numb from the heat.

Not a bad sipper. Don't know if I'd seek it out again, but I might drink it again. I certainly can't complain for what it is.

Photo of Bendurgin
3.56/5  rDev -15.2%
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.

Photo of jayhawk73
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This big beer poured into a tulip glass. I can't imagine a darker beer. It's completely devoid of any light, almost like a black hole. Nice chocolate head, which thins out fairly quickly. The smell is surprising in that I don't detect any alcohol. Surprising for a 16% ABV stout. I mainly get chocolate and coffee w/ the smell. I was surprised that the smell of this beer is fairly subdued compared to the taste. The taste is fantastic. Almost like a taste bomb going off in your mouth. Coffee first, then chocolate w/ a hint of liqorice thrown in. Also LOTS of malt. The mouthfeel is amazing! It's like a journey w/ every sip. The taste lingers in your mouth long after you swallow too- fantastic! This is definitely a great stout that will warm your insides on a cold day- Highly recommended.

Photo of PhiloPsych
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Paid nearly $10 at Hi Time in Costa Mesa for a 12 ounce bottle.

Very dark brown color pouring into the bottle with a chocolate-colored head that dissipates quickly. Smell is strongly sweet, high in alcohol, with anise and molasses. Mouthfeel is incredible! It is thick, creamy, dry, then slightly sticky. Wow, I love it! The taste is a bit alcohol-hot, but there are so many other rich flavors that it isn't overwhelming. The taste has lots of dark chocolate and brown sugar, but the beer is not overly sweet.

Photo of CuriousMonk
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paid a pretty penny for an individual 12oz beer ($7.99) poured into a snifter glass. Pours a nice pitch black color with a nice roasted brown head. The head evaporates fairly quickly and turns into a lacing. Aroma is very powerful and complex, i smelled it from just opening the bottle without putting my nose in it. The aroma is very roasted and sweet. I get booze, dried dark fruits like raisins and plum, vanilla, wood, liquorice, espresso coffee, and a slight burnt note. Flavor is also very complex and very roasted. There is alot of espresso coffee in the flavor, a charcoaly burnt note, liquorice, dried dark fruits, wood, slight and faint amount of hops, tobacco, a slight smoky note and booze. The body is full and creamy, with a very sticky oily mouthfeel. The high ABV is extremely well hidden thus making this a very dangerous (and drinkable) beer - couldn't have asked for a better logo to portray that warning. Overall an extremely complex and powerful imperial stout and a definite sipper.

Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a blackish body w/ slow dying one-finger head that is light brown colored. Roasted malts abound inthe aroma with a dry woodiness like oak and there are touches of molasses, bitter chocolate, toffee and black cherry as well as a touch of dark fruit. Very heavy, thick, creamy but flavors abound with a buttery stickiness - molasses, syrup, bitter chocolate, caramel, toffee and wood w/ hint of vanilla are all over. Not much of a hop or fruit flavor profile as malts are so intense they leave a cloying sweet sensation all over tongue. The high ABV is barely noticeable in the drink, although there is a "whiskeyish" finish that is crisp and strong. A well-designed brew you slowly sip on and savor.

Photo of DaveHS
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #4 (2008) poured into a white wine glass.

A-Pours coal black with an aggressive dark khaki head that sits for a long time. Eventually it receeds, leaving a small cap of foam and light, soapy lacing.

S-Wow, I can smell it from 3 feet away! Fruity, sweet, boozy. Like a broke-ass Dark Lord. This is gonna be a malt bomb.

T/M-A hell of a lot better than I expected, given the 15.92%ABV. This is pretty smooth. There's a well balanced smoky roastiness that's growing on me with every sip. Thin and sharp, but the ABV doesn't get in the way as much as it could. The body is soft at first, but becomes sharp and a bit hot mid palate, carrying through to the finish.

D-The best of Avery's strong beers. Wouldn't touch this one fresh, though. Give it at least 2 years.

Photo of breweryaprntc13
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a strong dark black with a thick muddy/ chocolate head which settles to a thin but solid layer with little to no lacing.

Strong caramel/ toffee nose, slight burnt smell, malty/ nutty.

Very rich, strong alcohol, burnt malts, chocolate, coffee, slight bitter notes.

Full, creamy but bitter, medium carbonation.

Strong, delicious but not a drink to have regularly.

Photo of rrski198
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from brief notes at a beer festival. 2008 vintage.

A: oil black and thick. small off white head. harder to tell as this was about a 3 ounce sample. Thick as hell.

S: Alcohol, burnt coffee, sugar, spicy at the end. The hops are coming through all the burnt malt. This is very complex.

T: Heat from the booze up front followed by a huge rush of burnt sugar and molasses. Amazingly bitter at the back of the mouth. NIce rotten dark fruit flavors of rasains and plums.

M: Thick and super chewy. Alcohol is burning my gums and the bitterenss is making my mouth pucker. my whole mouth is coated in this burnt sugary goodness.

O: This is a huge beer. Everything tastes burnt and bitter. My mouth is absolutely demolished. Love this but in very small amounts. A sipper for sure.

Photo of artdob
4.8/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Dark as night. Brief brown tinged head.

S: Dark roasted chocolate cake/malt.

T: Absolute decadence. Hints of molasses, dark caramel - more sugar than normal. If Bosco became a beer, this would be it.

M: Light carbonation and full body.

D: A bit steep at $8.99 a bottle but a great and unusual beer at over 16ABV. This one is a sipper - a warmer - yet no alcoholic burn even with the high ABV.

Photo of kiddwhiz
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

a: Black as oil, initial one finger caramel head settling in to a tan dusting.

s: Malt, sweet caramel, espresso, black liquorish, dark chocolate

t: Malty sweetness on the tip of the tongue which slides in to a smooth bitterness. Finishes with a taste of true dark, bitter chocolate. Great imperial stout!!

m: Creamy, dense, not in a hurry, perfect amount of carbonation.

d: This is very drinkable for being north of 15% ABV! I've always described this beer as a perfect addition (maybe the main attraction) to a good movie. It's a beer that sticks around and evolves as it warms. Well done Avery Brewing!

Photo of SteveO1231
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. Brown bottle. Bottled Novermber 2007 Batch 3. A devilish label done in papyrus, booo! Pours thick black, the slightest red highlights and a billowing tan head that settles quickly. Fantastic aroma of fudge, roasted malts, walnuts, coffee, some cherries & raisins, and a hint of vanilla beans. I love thaw aroma, very complex a lot of stuff going on here. Full bodied, thick like honey, super slick. Booze numbs the palate like novicaine. Super sweet up front almost syrupy, a lot of licorice, burnt sugars, caramel, roasted malts, black coffee and bakers chocolate. Lots of roasted bitterness, still a lot of bitterness for a three year old beer. ABV hits the palate with a sting and leaves it dry and bitter like eating baker's chocolate Nd washing it down with black coffee. The flavors are super aggressive and in your face. Tons of malt sweetness, tons of bitterness, tons of booze. I woulnt not expect less from an Avery brew. This is good but a bit too much for me. The aggressive flavors and alcohol content make this one a tough one.


Photo of buschbeer
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle
Bottled November 2007, batch 3. 16.00%ABV
Served in snifter.

A - This beer is very dark. There is no light getting through this one. I got about a half inch of mud colored head.

S - Dark roasted malt.

T - Obviously lots of roasted malt but it seems to leave a burnt aftertaste.

M - Very thick and viscous.

D - I thought it was good enough to try again. The price tag is kind of prohibitive on a budget though.

Photo of mithrascruor
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a solid, still, black color. Doesn't quite look like motor oil when pouring, but still thick. Nice small but dense dark tan/orange/brown head.

Smell: Good aroma of roasted malts with some toffee and sugar. Surprisingly, no alcohol.

Taste: Not very complex, but good. There's strongly roasted malts and a bit of caramel sweetness - though hardly overpowering... just enough to add some balance. It is pretty much the same at the finish and the aftertaste. Sometimes there's a hint of spices that I can't quite place. Of course there is some alcohol in the taste, but it doesn't stand on its own and is pretty low in the mix.

Mouthfeel: Medium- to heavy-bodied (a bit lighter than I anticipated) with a little bit of carbonation tingle, and quite smooth.

Drinkability: Definitely one to sip, but I am seriously amazed that the alcohol isn't right out in front here - very well done!

As someone who cannot stand Samichlaus and other beers exceeding the 13% mark, I wasn't expecting much here. Instead, I am pleasantly surprised! The alcohol flavor is kept at bay, and it isn't either too sweet or too bitter. Definitely the strongest beer I've ever had (alcohol-wise). While not the most interesting beer, taste-wise, for this style it is definitely enjoyable and I will get again.

Photo of 1MiltonWaddams
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought two bottles from the local bottleshop... one to cellar and one I am drinking and reviewing. The brew pours thick and finishes with one finger of nut-brown head. Looks inviting. Smell is sharp, which is indicative of a strong character. Mouthfeel is good, thick and heavy. Robust character and hearty consistency. Taste is sweet at first sip, hints of rasins and fig. The alcohol overwhelms the initial sweetness but never rises to a bite. Smooths out and finishes with a nice warmth. Overall, a strong stout with an aggressive nose and smooth finish.

Photo of smakawhat
3.16/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the bottle into a snifter. A nice solid dark brown color on pour, good chocolate/tan colored bubbles giving a decent lacing. Very dark dark chestnut/walnut like in color. Pretty good looking.

Bouquet is surprisingly small, but also not with much heat which is nice. Malty, yeast like and molasses.

On the taste faint anisette, but really a giant alcohol bomb that overpowers everything. Lots of heat... kind of disappointing, missing complexity, more interesting notes, and character.

I'll pass on this, I'd rather have Mikkeller Black, or Dogfish Head World Wide Stout.

Photo of Barleythenred
4.36/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black as night maybe even darker

Smell: strong ethanol smell with a fragrance of sweetness and malts

Taste: sugary, rich with a strong alcoholic flavor (it is 16%)

Mouthfeel: thick and creamy

Drink-ability: decently ingestable

To my mistake I accidentally ingested about a 1 inch of the glass full in one gulp not something i would suggest to the casual drinker i even had to put the glass down and walk away for a minute to return to this delectably desert

Photo of ericmunley
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Thank you to my friend Mark Carpenter for bringing this naildriver up to Pennsylvania from South Carolina.

Whenever a beer is in the 15% plus ABV category, I always want to try it to see if it can maintain balance and not just be all booze. Avery Mephistopheles is my latest review.

I poured the 12 oz. bottle into a Founder's pint. Mephistopheles pours jet black with very little tan head.

Mephistopheles has an earthy, boozy smell. I expected a bit of a stronger smell for a beer of this weight, but the chocolate, malt, and alcohol definitely make their presence known.

Avery does an above average job balancing such a high ABV beer. While the alcohol content is far from unnoticed, the malt and grain bill go a long ways to round out this beer. A very pleasant-tasting pint with chocolate and malt flavors.

Mephistopheles has a thick, viscous mouthfeel, which is one of the best traits for this beer. I would say this beer is up there regarding mouthfeel with the Ten Fidys of the world.

Concerning drinkability: to drink more than one of these in a sitting is a waste. At 15+%, Mephistopheles is a rare treat that should be enjoyed in singularity. I rate Mephistopheles' drinkability as "good" with this logic in mind.

Photo of LevitatedEep
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split a 12 oz bottle with a friend. Poured into my Chimay glass.

A - Pitch black with decent lacing and small head.

S - Smells of black licorice, alcohol, figs, nice and danky. Very strong smells here.

T - Long burning bitterness and alcohol taste, very smoky but surprisingly smooth going down. The bitterness will not go away. A very delicious sipper.

M - Burns the tongue as soon as you taste it...very little or no carbonation.

D - Very slow sipper that you gotta split with a friend or 2....no way you could drink a lot of this in one session.

Photo of Trueant1
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have had this one many times before. This is my first review.

Pours a typical stout style. Dark...off white head..ect ect..

VERY aromatic. Dank fresh squaw bread smells. Other smells of chocolate syrup, alcohol, ripe fruits, and molassis.

Alcoholic taste with alcoholic bitterness. Maybe mixed in hop bittering? This baby has all the classic flavors of this style, the only thing different is the extreme bitter bite. The bitterness lasts and lasts and lasts. Huge chocolate as this one warms up. Very possibly described as drinking liquid milk chocolate with bitter bakers chocolate melted in.

Thick and oily mouthfeel with a creamy texture. Very interestiing!
The high alcohol bitterness and boozyness makes this one a true sipper. Start this one very warm. It will control you for over an hour. Good luck and good drink!

Photo of beerman207
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ever since getting into craft beer, I have always had my eye on this brew but couldn't see plunking down $8.99 for one single 12 oz beer. I have had in my hand only to put it down at least a dozen times. With an awesome break from work, there's only one way to celebrate such awesomeness - crack open a $9.00 BEER!

Nov 2007 edition still chilling on the shelf - batch 3.

A: Pours out like motor oil, a bit chunky and little head developing until I tip the glass to heavily pour into my tulip. Some lace left behind and a nice brown skim on the top f the glass.

S: Smell is chocolate, malt, coffee, charred marshmallow, some booze (but not cheap booze), and whopper candy. Wow. This thing smells amazing

T: Taste is cocoa, malt, smoke, bread, dark fruit, figs, hershey's syrup, amazing.

M: Wow, the texfture is slick and thick with a burn that just nails your throat and lingers in between sips. this isn't for the faint hearted but man is it a wild ride! Great carbonation for this beer - it really complements the burning the beer gives.

D: Ok...for 17% - this beer is smoother than most I've had in the 10-11% range. Does it burn? Yup. Is it awesome - yup. Will I ever have it again? Fresh - hell no. With three years of age or more? - YES!

Great offering from Avery - highly recommend

Photo of BigJamoke
3.42/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Batch: 4

Almost black appearance that pours with a small caramel colored head that endures throughout. Strong aroma of coffee with chocolate overtones and a hint of the 18.63% ABV (this is what the Batch 4 bottle shows).

The taste hits you hard with the alcohol in your first sip but finishes a bit weaker. The alcohol is still strong because you can't hide 18+% but, the coffee is more dominate in the finish and aftertaste.

Very substantial texture. Some have mentioned motor oil. I wouldn't quite go that far but, it is very substantial.

Overall, I'd characterize it as an imperial stout that is good for sipping over time or sharing with a friend as it's extreme ABV is too much for one person...even a single bottle.

Photo of chumba526
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Brewed in November 2008: batch 4.

It appears pitch black with a small light brown head.

It smells of caramel, toffee, molasses vanilla, coconut and oak. There is a pleasant graham cracker smell as well. There is also a slightly grassy hoppy smell as well.

It tastes strongly of grab crackers, toasty coconut, and toffee. There is a mild coffee like taste to the beer as well. I taste a nice mild coffee flavor as well. The finish is comprised with a nice rich bitterness. A nice toffee and coconut flavor also lingers in the mouth for a while. This almost tastes like a mix between a barleywine and a stout.

The carbonation is moderate low and the mouthfeel is creamy.

The drinkability as expected from a thick and heavy beer that has 16 percent alcohol in it is limited, though the beer is smooth and it goes down easy.

Overall great big thick creative ale. The flavors of the beer are big and bold though they mix well with each other. This is not what I think of when I think of an imperial stout as it is more sweet then most imperial stouts, yet it is excellent ale.

Photo of greenmonstah
4.26/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle of 2007 batch, served at Tap and Mallet on 12/28

A - Pours pitch black with 2-3 fingers of gorgeous brown head. Tons of lacing and head action for a beer of such high ABV. Some alcohol lacing was present.

S - Roasty, dark fruits (dark cherries, predominantly), and sweet molasses. Boozy rum as well.

T - Dark cherries again, roasted malts are strong. Chocolate makes an appearance. Booze (rum-like again) is very strong, but neither dominating or overwhelming. Possibly some tobacco. Sweetness and booziness enhance rather than detract. Chocolate is incredible in the finish. I really love the finish.

M - Heavy body with tons of warmth from the alcohol. No carbonation.

O - To say that this beer is very drinkable is an understatement. The incredible ABV would suggest that it'd be a chore to drink, a super-slow-sipper at best. While is it definitely not a beer to be downed quickly, the intense booziness does not detract in anyway from the beer, and in fact makes it more enjoyable. It is definitely a sipper, but I find it easier to drink than DFH's World Wide Stout, as it is both tastier and better balanced. Let this one sit for a few years, I can imagine it'd be pretty hard to drink if fresh. Overall the beer is a great take on the extremely high ABV category of imperial stouts, and gets better an better with age.

Photo of AllFineThings
3.93/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark black with some red hues on the edges when held up to light, the head is about a half inch, but quickly dissipates leaving minimal lacing.

Smells of molasses, alcohol, bitter chocolate, and coffee.

Tastes smooth, considering the ABV, but there is still a persistent somewhat over-powering alcohol taste, which makes sense at almost 17% alcohol.

Not something that I will buy regularly, but foots the bill for those winter nights when you crave warmth.

Mephistopheles' Stout from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,930 ratings.