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Tweak - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
TweakTweak

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

1,269 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,269
Reviews: 186
rAvg: 4.46
pDev: 8.07%
Wants: 363
Gots: 436 | FT: 73
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  17.81% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rye726 on 02-18-2010

Formerly known as Meph Addict and Coffeestopholes.

Tweak is Avery Mephistopheles Imperial Stout, with a chunk of coffee thrown in. If you haven’t geeked out enough, the brewery aged in four months in bourbon barrels.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,269 | Reviews: 186
Reviews by BeerForMuscle:
Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.29/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Black syrup, espresso, sticky brown lacing. Looks strong and viscous.

S - Bitter black coffee, espesso, semi sweet chocolate, and cocoa.

T - Bitter sweet espresso, and coffee. Cocoa powder and faint dark chocolate. Burnt grains and booze.

M - Soft, smooth, velvety. Soft, tiny bubbled carbonation with a warming dry finish.

O - Rich and luxurious all the way.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Upon one draw of aroma and a supple sip, it's hard not to sum up a quality reveiw without including a phrase like "stupid-crazy" or "ya gotta be kiddin' here". With copious amounts of espresso and added conditioning, the Mephistopholes Stout just got better!

Strong and smooth, the espresso notes wrap this stout in a cacoon of silky smoothiness that delivers the beer in an inky-black hue that coats the glass like port. A light creamy head adorns the rim in even an espresso-like manner. Low on retention or lace, the 16% abv just wont allow it- instead, brandy-like legging and oily weight sculpts the impressions.

A burst of espresso leaps out of the glass and without any of the burnt or coffee ground aromas that often accompany coffee beers. Smooth roast, walnuts, caramelized molassas, malted bitter chocolate candies all round together in a seductive and decedant nose.

All the flavors of espresso, tampered roast, nutty/malty taste, bitter-sweet chocolates all give the distinct impressions of chocolate coated espresso beans that you buy at classic coffee shops. Oxidized esters contribute flavors of burnt currants, black cherries, red grapes, and savory sherrys and even a hint of soy sauce for added complexity and depth.

With extreme alcohols, the beer hardly attempts to build any creaminess from carbonation. Rather it allows the velvety weight of the beer to provide a lush and silky feel while allowing the full oily textures to coat and penetrate the surfaces of the mouth for fullness and richness in flavor. Obviously the beer finishes malt-rich, warming, and with a long linger of coffee.

Impressively, the beer avoids any acrid or astringent roast from either the dark grains or coffee. Secondly, the harsher alcohols of 16% are surpressed underneath the coffee and go largely unnoticed. A beautiful beer all around.

Photo of glid02
4.47/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Brewvival.

Pours black with a small brown head. The head quickly recedes into a thin ring around the glass leaving light lacing.

Smells of loads and loads of espresso coffee. Serving as the backbone are good amounts of molasses, roasted malts, and unsweetened chocolate, in that order.

Tastes similar to how it smells, although the coffee influence isn't quite as large. Smooth coffee flavors kick things off with roasted malts lurking in the background. Midway through the sip molasses flavors join in and sweeten things up a bit. Coffee and chocolate flavors with a decidedly sweet edge then carry through to an ending that's neither sweet nor bitter.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have a few more, even at such a big ABV.

Overall I enjoyed this one more with coffee than without as it cut some of the sweetness. Well worth a shot.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.36/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the 12 ounce bottle into a snifter. 2014 bottle.

Straight mocha in a bottle. Pitch black body, still as night with no carbonation visible, and a dark-khaki head, fluffy, creamy and pillow-like. I'd easily rest a bottle cap on this. 5

Sweet, creamy dark roast coffee with a drizzle of caramel, that's this beer. The coffee aroma bursts from this. Slightly solvent, but I'd expect that from a beer this fresh with this much ABV. 4.5

Pretty similar taste to the nose, big coffee flavor of the dark roast variety, sweet caramel, and a slight solvent presence. Coffee lingers on the tongue long after each sip. Tasty, but perhaps almost syrupy, which brings it down a quarter of a point. 4.25

I hint to how it feels with the taste, as this beer has a syrupy quality, but it's also very thick and creamy. There's a spicy hop finish that helps to not make this cloying. Impressively, as this warms, there is almost no heat or solvent feel. 4.25

I find this on par with BCBCS in flavor and feel. It's good and potent. The only difference is this costs twice as much.
4.34

Photo of kojevergas
3.56/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

BOTTLE: 12 fl oz brown glass with gold foil-ed over pry-off pressure cap. Appealing label design. Bottled 10/28/14. Batch No. 1.

Served cold into an Avery stem-tulip in high altitude Fort Collins, CO and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated. 17.81% ABV.

Thanks to Blakelive784 for the share. Expectations are pretty high, but in fairness I wasn't that big Mephistopheles - which I understand is the base.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: One finger wide. Dark khaki colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Retention is damned impressive considering the ABV - about 3 minutes, not including the retreat to a floater ring. Leaves no lacing as it recedes.

BODY: Opaque dark black - not an ink or jet black, but a dark black. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Appears aptly carbonated. Not unique or special appearance, but good for the style certainly.

AROMA: Dark malts, chocolate malts, marshmallow. I pick up on faint coffee when I look for it, but the coffee isn't rich or evocative, and lacks the roastiness and java characteristics I seek in a good coffee stout. The bourbon notes are mild - some mild vanilla but not much oak. Cream.

No yeast character, alcohol, or off-notes are detectable.

Overall, it's a pleasant aroma of average strength. I'd like more of a bourbon-forward profile, with more evocative rich notes of vanilla and coffee. Adding (more) chocolate would be a good call. Sweetness seems perfectly dialed in based on the aroma.

Seems a biteen reticent overall. The notes don't jump out at you; they're rather contained, but in fairness they don't seem muted or subdued. Just mellow - which at ~18% is unexpected.

TASTE: The coffee isn't very rich or evocative; I get some grounds but no real roastiness or fresh java. The base is as you'd expect: plenty of dark malts and chocolate malts, but not too much sweetness. It's not cloying. I pick up on no yeast or off-notes, but judging by the sweetness (or lack thereof) the yeast has an unnaturally high attenuation.

Tame marshmallow. There're hints of bourbon, but they're mild. I get a kiss of vanilla or vanillin, and maybe a bit of charred barrel wood. No rich toasty white oak or genuine vanilla bean. Maybe a brief kiss of coconut?

There's alcohol warmth, but I'd never guess this was 17.81% if I tried it blind.

Is it balanced? I guess...the alcohol - well hidden as it is - is still disruptive, and I just don't feel like the barrel notes accentuate natural characteristics of the base, nor are the barrel notes prominent enough for my tastes. Mephistopheles may be too aggressive a base beer to start with, and the coffee just didn't take. I'd recommend richer more distinctive coffee and a longer barrel aging period. But I could see this mellowing out with age.

It's complex, sure, but compared to the best beers in the style it's not horribly intricate. While it's carefully handled for a 17.81% ABV beer, I wouldn't call it subtle or nuanced.

I do like it, but it never feels like a gestalt whole and there are obvious areas for improvement. The bitterness/sweetness tug-of-war is never resolved, and the barrel isn't well-tailored to the base.

TEXTURE: Creamy, smooth, plump, wet, supple, full-bodied, thick, and chewy.

Should be softer. I love that the ABV is as well hidden as it is, but I also wonder why Avery skews so high on their ABVs in general; this would be more drinkable and approachable at a more reasonable 10-12% ABV. Thankfully, it's not too sticky, syrupy, or viscous.

It does have a harshness to it, an aggression that unsettles. But it's not boozy.

Overall, this texture is a decent companion to the taste, but doesn't elevate the beer and doesn't seem tailored specifically to this flavour profile.

OVERALL: It's got some alcohol warmth, but nowhere near what you'd expect at ~18%. Admittedly, I wasn't huge on the base beer (Mephistopheles), and I don't taste a natural harmony between the bourbon barrel notes and the base. It's surprisingly drinkable for its monstrous ABV, but I think Avery goes big on alcohol to a fault, and gains little in the process. I'd like to see the alcohol dialed back, the bourbon aging period extended, and some nuanced notes added - coconut, milk chocolate, vanilla bean, et al. Worth trying, but not world-class.

Huge thanks to Blakelive784 for the share.

Low B

Photo of Slatetank
4.68/5  rDev +4.9%

Enjoyed this at the Fridge served in a snifter, review from notes.

A-4.75, S-4.25, M-4.25, T-4.5, O-4.25
The color is like used motor oil -black, thick, opaque look with medium tan head and ultra fine bead wtih lace that sticks, just a very robust intense looking stout. The smell is rich with tons of coffee up front with light raisin and sweet molasses ith a slight alcohol aroma and mild sweet dark cocoa scent. The feel is intense as the look and smell with rich full malt body and very roasted almost char in the dry texture with alcohol warming and lots of residual sugar in the lingering finish.

The taste has a wonderful coffee flavor with dark rich malty and dark sugar flavor with subtle raisin and lightly woody toasted sweet flavor with spicy alcohol in the mid palate in the flavor with nutty and almost burnt coffee with hints of spicy pepper and licorice with some intense coffee effects like drying of high alcohol making the flavor increase wtih dark currant and woody flavor which comes out as a spice-like taste with some residual sugar which leaves a slightly bitter flavor lingering. Overall -one of the most intense coffee beers/stouts I have ever tasted

Photo of VeganUndead
4.19/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Too coffee for my personal preference, but scary drinkable for the abv

Photo of Dajtai007
4.75/5  rDev +6.5%

This beer makes BCBCS it's biatch!

Photo of KansasBeerLover
3.99/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

8 oz. Draught served in a snifter.

Appearance: Black body. Head was a thick, dark creamy foam one-half finger deep. Lacing was absent.

Smell: Espresso, malt, plums.

Taste: Alcohol is overpowering. Espresso, chocolate, fruit and bourbon.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied. Dry with some bitter. Left a “fuzzy” tongue with the espresso taste.

Overall: Too much alcohol. But is should be good after 5 years in a cellar.

Photo of bouldercellar
5/5  rDev +12.1%

HANDS DOWN ONE OF AVERY'S TOP 5 CREATIONS EVER! COFFEE!

Photo of OldRickSputin
4.98/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I'm not worthy!

Bought six of these in October and figured I'd have one every 3-6 months or so. I'm not sure I'll have one left after 2 months.

Guess I'm a Meph Addict.

Photo of Stevedore
4.43/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from 10/28/2014. Served in a snifter 3/6/2015.

A- Dark black body, oily and thick as all heck. One finger brown head that dissipates quickly. Leaves a creamy medium sized collar that lingers for a long time. A foreboding dark liquid with a lot of legs, more than a spider.

S- Tons of whiskey, oak and chocolate. It's actually a bit difficult to smell the coffee here, but it's there as a roasted coffee bean presence. But the whiskey hits you in the nose, and hits you good. Whoa. Very intense nose full of dark chocolate, oak and bourbon with a splash of espresso.

F- The espresso comes out more on the palate. Not oxidized at all, a nice substantial espresso contribution with oak, dark chocolate, whiskey and sugar. Essentially, it's an espresso with a shot of bourbon and a packet or two of sugar. I don't know what the Italian name for this blend of coffee would be, but it's definitely potent and flavourful.

M- Thick bodied, a bit oily and sticky with a fair amount of heat on the backend. This one will creep up on you if you're not careful.

O- Intense, flavourful stout with a nice espresso flavour. In keeping with Avery's special 12oz bottled beers, it is super high in ABV and well, just be careful. It reminds me a lot of Mocha Wednesday.

Photo of MikesnoHSL
4.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Ridiculous amounts of coffee somewhat mask the bourbon barrel but this thing is good! Drink about 50-60 degree

Photo of arizcards
4.57/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single from TW Arrowhead in late December for $13.99. Bottled on 10-28-14.

Beer poured black with a beautiful brown head that is still hanging around mid-glass. Somewhat unusual for a high abv brew.

Nose is primarily barrel and is quite nice. Getting a hint of mocha sweetness too.

Taste is near perfection. The melding of the coffee and barrel along with the barrel flavors of oak and vanilla on top of a very nice roasted imperial stout is awesome.

Mouthfeel is full and very smooth, almost perfection.

Overall this beer is worth the price of admission. The alcohol was warming with the first sip but amazingly pretty much rendered to the background the rest of the way. No need to age this one as it is ready to go now! Hats off to the Avery family for a masterful brewing and blend!

Photo of MasterSki
4.47/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After trying this at DLD 2010, I scheduled my Friday evening around the tapping of a sixth barrel of this gem at The Long Room. Served in a snifter - I was initially shocked by the $10 sticker price, but then realized it had the same amount of alcohol as two 7.5% beers. This batch clocked in at 15.1%. Kicked in about 3.5 hours more or less.

A - Served with a finger of tan foam that settles to a thin cap, leaving glass-coating lace. Body is straight-up black, although it was hard to be 100% certain in the low light conditions.

S - Big earthy intense coffee leaps out of the glass, following by peripheral notes of dark fruits, dark chocolate, anise, roasted malts, and a hint of booze. Really fantastic - a beer I'd happily nurse all night just to keep drawing in deep breaths of this fine aroma.

T - The taste has less overt coffee, and more sweetness to it. There's still plenty of dark chocolate, but more rum-soaked fruits and burnt sugars tip the scales a bit. The espresso pops back up in the finish, providing lingering roasty bitterness. Alcohol is minimally present in the taste.

M - There's some definite alcohol warmth here - my face started tingling after nary a few ounces and I started to feel flush. Sticky, viscous, chewy and clingy full body with lower carbonation otherwise.

D - Definitely a one and done kind of beer. I ordered two glasses as I was worried it would kick before Sean arrived and the bartender gave me an incredulous look. I also was forced to text Sean telling him that if he didn't show up to drink his glass he could find me passed out on Irving Park the following morning. Great nightcap beer though, and a great start to Chicago Craft Beer Week (even if the Avery event wasn't officially part of it).

Photo of CTbrew32
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Pitch black in color. About one fingers worth of head. The head is mocha colored with an almost red hue to it.

Aroma- Massive amounts of coffee which really overshadows everything else. A little booze is noticeable along with some rich dark chocolate sweetness.

Taste- Roasted coffee is big at first and really lingers into the finish, but at no point is it overly bitter. The coffee is balanced by a sweet dark chocolate and a mild bourbon presence. Almost forgot this barrel aged for second as the coffee dominates this throughout.

Feel- Dense, full bodied, low carbonation, warming alcohol in the stomach, and despite being almost 18% abv the malt does not linger for too long.

Overall- The biggest coffee stout I've ever had and it isn't close. This makes FBS look like chocolate milk. Yet, despite how massive this beer is, there is great balance between the roasted coffee and sweetness from the dark chocolate and bourbon barrel. If your're looking for a coffee stout this is a must try, but if your're looking for a beer that showcases the barrel aging this isn't it. The barrel is simply a compliment and a great one at that.

Photo of reebtaerG
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had on draft at Rustico Alexandria in a snifter.

A-Pours a black opaque with a 1 1/2 finger tan head. Great lacing

S-Great aromas of coffee, chocolate, bourbon, and notes of vanilla.

T-Taste is just like the aromas. Simply amazing.

M-Mouthfeel is very very well balanced.

O-Overall this beer is excellent in all aspects. The 17.8 ABV is well hiddened. I would love to get a bottle to age to see how it would be, I could only imagine.

Photo of smb
3.68/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Way too hot and way too carbonated for an imperial coffee stout. There are some nice barrel characteristics, slight chocolate sweetness and bourbon in the aroma and the flavor, but burnt coffee is the headliner, which isn't a good thing. Smells much better than it taste, and that's always disappointing in any beer. It may get better with a few years on it, once the alcohol and coffee fade more... but that's a little bit of a cop-out.

Photo of otoolman221
3.26/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Big coffee flavor but was almost too much for a beer.

Photo of mverity
4.07/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

2012 15.4% abv. Black in color with a good amount of deep tan head, very good lacing and a thick collar. Aroma is deep malt, coffee, earthy woodiness and some bourbon. I would swear this is barrel aged. Maybe it is... Taste is that great malt up front, coffee and tobacco at the end with a aged hop flavor in the middle. Great thick mouthfeel, chewy almost. Low carbonation. Great coffee stout, but I feel like the coffee was a bit too much of the focus.

Photo of Mora2000
4.32/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Avery Tap Takeover at The Common Table.

The beer pours a pitch black color with a brown head. The aroma is full of coffee with some roasted malt thrown in. The coffee is extremely intense in the aroma, as well as the flavor. This tastes like I imagine iced espresso with a shot of alcohol would taste. There is also some roasted malt and chocolate but this is really all about the coffee. Medium to thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Very, very nice.

Photo of gibgink
4.77/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

BEERchitect describes it spot on. This beer comes REAL close to Bourbon County Stout. Highly recommend getting one if you can.

Photo of Franziskaner
4.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Black in color with no light penetration. There's a half inch of mahogany colored head. Brussels lacing. Enticing aroma of dark roasted coffee with caramel and just a trace of bourbon. The flavor is creamy sharply bitter coffee which pairs well with the sweet Bourbon flavor. There's slight bit of burn from the Bourbon in the fade. The mouth is creamy,viscous,and thick. This definitely drinks smoother than you would imagine. Phenomenal.

Photo of MattyG85
4.62/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice. Bottled on OCT 28, 2014.

Appearance: Pours pitch black with a moderate amount of carbonation. Slight finger of tan head that settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A rich, roasty, and nicely boozy dark malt driven aroma with big hints of dark chocolate, coffee, and bourbon. Dark roasted barley malt with big hints of dark chocolate, coffee beans, toast, biscuit, smoke, caramel, and yeast. Barrel hints of bourbon whiskey, vanilla, and oak. Subtle dark fruit hints of raisin, cherry, and fig. Sweet hints of molasses and black licorice. A pretty good rich aroma.

Taste: Like the smell hints at, a rich, roasty, and boozy dark malt driven taste with huge notes of dark chocolate, coffee, and bourbon. Dark roasted barley malt with big upfront notes of bitter dark chocolate, coffee beans, smoke, burnt toast, biscuit, caramel, and yeast. The barrel presence comes through with notes of bourbon whiskey, vanilla, and oak. Sweet notes of molasses. Some black licorice as well. Subtle dark fruit undertones of raisin, fig, and cherry. A really good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Very rich and fairly syrupy. There is some noticeable alcohol heat as expected but things are surprisingly smooth considering the extreme ABV.

Overall: A really great Barrel Aged Coffee Stout. Big chocolate and coffee flavors with a nice bourbon presence. It’s amazing how smooth it is. This is up there with Bourbon County and the big Michigan stouts.

Photo of Beer21
4.72/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A boozy beast of a beer! Wow 17.81%. I just finished 12 oz and don't think I can handle anything else. This beer smells and tastes terrific. I really like it despite the alcohol content. Not a "before the game" beer. Try it when all you want is 12 oz of pure imperial stout bliss. It is a well balanced beer and goes down well with small sips. Enjoy!

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Tweak from Avery Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 1,269 ratings.