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The Czar - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
The CzarThe Czar

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

1,630 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,630
Reviews: 856
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.7%
Wants: 68
Gots: 208 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.57% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Wildman on 01-05-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,630 | Reviews: 856 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mattcrill
mattcrill

Ohio

2.68/5  rDev -31.8%

Pours like motor oil and virtually no head. I really had to get aggressive with the pour to get any foam. Smells of licorice, coffee, and alcohol march right out of the glass and into your nose. I knew this beer was going to try to beat me into submission (thanks to a "heads up" from Hard Target). The first thing I tasted and the last thing I tasted was alcohol. There were hints of greatness tucked in the beer but the alcohol was just too overpowering for me. This is NOT the place to start if you are a first time stout drinker. I had a big meal with this...good plan or I probably would have been blind stinking drunk by the time I got to the bottom of the 22 oz. bomber. Being a stout man, I really enjoyed this beer but it just wasn't balanced and seemed to be a very one dimensional beer compared to the other stouts that I usually enjoy. Careful with this one...

06-19-2004 18:35:46 | More by mattcrill
Photo of HardTarget
HardTarget

Texas

3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

2003 vintage, sampled June 2004.
Aroma 4.5: Dark roasted malt, some raisins and chocolate aromas
Appearance 4.5: Black with ruby edges with a thin dark tan head that laced like grandma.
Flavor 4.0: Oh my. The alcohol hits pretty early in the taste, but it is backed up with some rich flavors. Rum soaked raisins are the lead role with a sweet brown sugar chaser. There is a harsh side as well, a lingering charcoal, vodka and burnt coffee taste that detracts a bit. This beer has a twisted soul, greatness combined with madness.
Mouthfeel 3.0: It burns, IT BURNS! Alcohol is a bit harsh and warms all the way down the gullet. I can currently feel it in my stomach and fully expect to be able to track its progress all the way through.
Overall Impression 2.5: I don’t know if the alcohol just beat me down or what, but I paired this with a cantaloupe, and it improved immensely! Really brought out the fruit taste and helped hide the alcohol. While it was an unintentional pairing (wife brought me a snack) it really worked well. Consider pairing with some fruit. By itself, this is a tyrant, not a Czar. Drinkability? I poured half the bomber in a swing top for tomorrow, I doubt I can finish this tonight, although, as I warm, so does my opinion of this massive double barrel attack of a beer. In the end, I’m afraid the alcohol just isn’t hidden well enough. The bottle suggests cellaring, and I think they are right. At 12.2% I think my 3 year old son will enjoy a bottle of this with his son.
Recommendation: Buy, but don’t drink, unless you are struck with that half mad, half genius inspiration.

2005 vintage, Reviewed 06-24-2005

Bottle Inspection: Bottled in 2003 (bought off a store shelf this week; June 23, 2005), 1.100 OG, 70 IBU, 11.9% abv (oh mamma)

Aroma 3.5: Rum raisin, sweet dark malt, perfumed alcohol

Appearance 3.5: A stiff pour produced a small short-lived dark tan head that shrank to a trace of cover and a thin collar. It is so black that it seems to extend beyond the edge of the glass. It appears evil.

Flavor 3.5: Santa? Is that you? What are you doing here, it’s 100 degrees outside! Tastes like a Christmas beer. Rich, revved up, a touch spicy (which I think is mostly hot alcohol). Raisins have turned to plums, but still rum soaked. The fruit melds nicely with a serious stout taste, deep roasted grains, with hints of bitter coffee grounds. Man, a full on assault.

Mouthfeel 4.0: Surprisingly light given all of the above. It weights in at about a medium body with very low carbonation. It’s so hot it’s burning the back of my nose.

Overall Impression 3.5: Wow, what a beast. I’ll be sipping on this monster all night. Really nice flavors, but the alcohol is still too hot after a good year to year and a half in the bottle. I got one of these and cellared it back in 2003. I don’t think it’s ready yet. I’m not entirely sure it’s going to be ready this generation. If it can soak up some of the alcoholic flavor, it really could be a masterpiece.

06-11-2004 03:46:40 | More by HardTarget
Photo of meathookjones
meathookjones

Virginia

3.08/5  rDev -21.6%

This came in a 22oz Bomber with a picture of who I am guessing is a past Czar on the label. Pours as black as one could ask for with a slight light brown head about half an inch high. The smell is of sweet chocolate and a strong alcohol scent to it. Not the most pleasant smelling stout, as the alcohol seemed to really take over the aroma as this warmed. The taste was a bit sweet to start off with before the alcohol jumped in and took over. This is one Imperial Stout where you can defiantly taste the big alcohol. The usual roasted malt and coffee flavors are there just not a prominent. The mouthfeel is decent with a good amount of carbonation. I think the drinkability is defiantly hurt by the strong alcohol, not a bad beer but no-where close to a favorite imperial stout of mine. I might possibly get another bottle to lay down for awhile to see if the alcohol mellows out and lets other flavors take over.

06-09-2004 14:03:05 | More by meathookjones
Photo of hobbes2112
hobbes2112

Texas

3.9/5  rDev -0.8%

22 oz. bomber

Pours solid black with a small tan head. and subtle lacing.

Aroma is mostly malt, roasted and alcohol. Maybe a fig here or there also, especially as it warms.

Taste is alcohol on the fore palate, malts on the mid palate and a strong hop finish. The aftertaste, of 30 seconds or so, sours for a bit also. Like the nose, the taste develops more dark fruit with increase in temp.

Mouthfeel is good, I like the carbonation level I like the size and accessibility of the flavors and for me (a neat scotch fan) the alcohol is at a pleasant level. I would add "stomach feel" to mouth feel in this case and the warming is fun!

Drinkability. Well this is not the first time I have had this beer and will certainly not be the last. The high alcohol level limits the occasion for this one, but situations where you are having one beer and/or sharing work well.

06-09-2004 03:06:52 | More by hobbes2112
Photo of ngandhi
ngandhi

Illinois

2.73/5  rDev -30.5%

My first homebrew was a 5 gallon batch of stout that I decided to ferment in my attic through the throes of summer heat. Something told me it was the right thing to do. Temperatures quickly shot up past 90 in that unventilated room and my beer was vigorously bubbling away with fermentation. The next day, it was done. It had gotten so hot, that this process -- which normally takes at least a week -- was completed in 24 hours. Whenever my girlfriend paints her toenails, I'm reminded of this wretched beer.

After tasting Avery The Czar, I prize that beer for its ingenuity and craft.

The Czar is an absolute mess of thin, moderately carbonated slop. Alcohol more than dominates this beer, it is its key component with flavors ranging from vodka to scraped knees covered in isopropyl. When cold, these notes are controlled and a moderate chocolate flavor carries this beer with the slightest bit of bittering and a few plummy notes on the nose, reminiscent of a Belgian quadruple. Not hopped enough (70 IBUs to 1100 OG) with hardly any roasted malt, this is more bock than anything else.

The warmth of my hand weakens this self-proclaimed leader. His rotting corpse spits at us, bile and puss. Miserable tyrant.

Relax, relax.
ng

05-28-2004 14:26:43 | More by ngandhi
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

4.35/5  rDev +10.7%

This beer is as close to black as you can get, but I see shimmers of scarlet red if I look really closely. Not much of a head, but oh well. Doesn't matter for this style. Really nice, thick nose. Deep and dark malt tones. Burnt and bloodied. Rum. Molasses. Barrel characteristics. And whiskey as well. This one's got some heat on the nose. First sips of this definitley grab my attention. I find fire immediately in the ethanol burn, but after further sips, this diminishes, yet remains throughout. There's a nice, harsh bitterness present. Roasted barley and hop in nature. The molasses and sweet brown sugar balance the alcohol and bitterness somewhat...somewhat being the key word. The body is about medium-full and the mouthfeel is very slightly carbonated. This is a good one, but I think it will be better in years to come.

Gotta thank cokes for this Czar...this Emperor...this Kaiser...this King....this Despot.

04-26-2004 05:22:40 | More by Bighuge
Photo of Quaffer
Quaffer

Nevada

3.95/5  rDev +0.5%

22 oz. Bottle. Picked up in Dallas. Not available here in Wichita.

Appearance: As black as night. Only in direct sunlight did a hint of deep, blood red come through. Dense, one-finger head rose up with a rough pour. A ring of fine bubbles remained around the circumference of the glass the whole time.

Smell: Strong cocoa and hops right after the pour. As the beer sat, smoke, alcohol, and darks malts rose to the surface. A little bit of dark fruit was present as well.

Mouthfeel: Buttery smooth on the tongue, this beer coated the mouth. A little bit of a bite and tingle from the alcohol, but otherwise, very smooth.

Taste: A strong sweetness hit the tongue immediately. This was followed by cocoa, heavily roasted malt, and relatively strong alcohol. The middle was bitter hops, tart dark fruits, and heavily roasted coffee. Everything continued on into the finish and lingered for a long, long time.

A pretty good imperial stout. The alcohol was pretty strong, though, especially at the temps that I drank my first glass at. (I think it was somewhere around 62 °F.)

04-25-2004 23:15:47 | More by Quaffer
Photo of beergeek279
beergeek279

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +1.8%

Served in the 22 oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The color is jet black, with a bubbly beige head. The smell is anise malt with a lot of alcohol. The taste is a licorise sweet malt, and the alcohol is quite strong in this beer. Mouthfeel is average. As for drinkability, maybe have a couple, but just too much alcohol taste to sustain.

Well, it's certainly been a lot of fun in my first year as a BeerAdvocate, and I appreciate the friends that I've made over that year, both here in Pittsburgh and beyond. As such I figured I'd give this beer a try to celebrate this event. It's not a great imperial stout (a bit too alcoholic) but still something that I'd likely have again.

04-24-2004 03:36:21 | More by beergeek279
Photo of BeerAngel
BeerAngel

Texas

3.93/5  rDev 0%

Pours a dark brownish-black that is slightly translucent and nearly no head to speak of. The smell is of sweet chocolate and toffee with a slight bourbon aroma as well. The taste is a bitter-sweet chocolate with a cough-medicine note right after the swallow. The first breath after the swallow reveals the hops along with more bitter chocolate and warming alcohol. This is a light to medium bodied beer for this style and finishes faintly sweet. This is a fairly complex brew but lacks quite a bit in mouthfeel. Also the high abv is not hidden well at all and therefore makes the drinkability suffer a bit. Cheers!

04-13-2004 03:58:15 | More by BeerAngel
Photo of barleysangel
barleysangel

Ohio

3.98/5  rDev +1.3%

This is a dark reddish brown beer with light beige foamy head. There was initial lacing. It had some carbonation, not a lot. Unlike some darker Imperial Stouts that I have drank, this one you can see light through. The smell was a sweet, maybe a touch of raisin. The aftertaste was dry and bitter with no aftertaste of alcohol. The mouthfeel was thin for an Imperial Stout.

04-01-2004 00:14:16 | More by barleysangel
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OldFrothingSlosh

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

Sampled at the Pop The Cap gathering in Raleigh.

Good heavens! This is one ballistic Impy stout! Extremely dark and mysterious, with a miniscule layer of dark brown head that lasts and laces. Aromas are excellent, with chocolate, raisins, toffee, coffee beans, and Jack Daniels. Flavor is very well done. Mimics the aroma, with a rum-soaked fruit wrapped in a chocolate coating. The ABV only shows up for a brief cameo at the end. Surprising, given the potency of this bad boy. Mouthfeel is huge. All sorts of palate coating going on here. Drinkability is way up there, too. Very well-balanced, given all that is going on with this beer. I would love to try this after it ages or, dare I say, on cask? Try this...you will like it.

03-29-2004 02:12:00 | More by OldFrothingSlosh
Photo of kbub6f
kbub6f

New York

4.68/5  rDev +19.1%

One of the few big imperial stouts that I can get locally. The Czar has a light tan, bubbly head that disappears fairly quickly to a thin film. The beer below is deep black with nice, dark red highlights. The nose is a little disappointingly faint, but there's some toffee and chocolate. The front is a dark hoppy with some fruit and bitter chocolate. The fruit develops through the middle. It's almost apple-like... an impression that only intensifies with temperature. There's also a good dose of tangy toffee in the thick, malty body. The finish is very bitter with considerable alcohol bite. This is very good. The hops are more pronounced than the big, intense malt-monster imperials. The malt here is more toffee-like. Almost British toffeeness. I wonder if that alcohol would tame if you left it for a year or so....

03-28-2004 15:41:37 | More by kbub6f
Photo of Sixpack595
Sixpack595

Michigan

4.22/5  rDev +7.4%

The aroma hits as soon as you pop the cap with a strong hit of molasses and chocolate. Pours a dark brown with a bit of tan head that quickly dies. The smell is very sweet as is the flavor. The beginning is molasses and chocolate sweetness with a spicy hop bite. Toffee and chocolate are also prominant with a touch of licorice. Slick, oily mouthfeel clears out leaving a slightly bitter finish. An impressive beer, not what I normally expect from an RIS, but very good. The taste is quite a bit sweeter than expected, not at all cloying. ABV is very well hidden. I'm starting a new shift at work and need to go to bed about 8 hours before I'm used to. This should help me sleep like a baby.

03-22-2004 02:37:20 | More by Sixpack595
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

3.83/5  rDev -2.5%

Pours a very,very dark reddish brown.Not quite black-a deep deep ruby color but you can still see light through it.No real aroma to be noted-I was suprised of this actually.Most Imperials I have had are screaming all sorts of things at you.Slight chocolate,roastiness but very slight.Great,great flavor-slight sweetness followed by a huge roasted malt flavor.Notes of licorice,vanilla and black currants.Great oily mouthfeel-smooth as silk with a slight alchohol burn in the backround.A great,easy drinking Imperial-Im sure the 12% is in there somewhere.Theres a few other examples Id grab first but a damn fine effort.Will score a few extras to lay down.

03-21-2004 23:28:46 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of cokes
cokes

Wisconsin

4.6/5  rDev +17%

This is the darkest shade of ruby possible. I have no reason not to call this, simply, black. But it's ruby. Trust me. There was probably a head present as well, but it did not exist by the time I finished internally debating the color of this brew.

It's ruby. But pretty much black. And opaque.

This smells of vanilla-tinged bourbon mingled with cocoa, prunes and port. All of this drenched in molasses and maple syrup.
Inhale this and try not to love it.
How to describe it....? "Holy shit" works for me. I could literally sniff this all night. If only it came in powdered form.

But then I'd be depriving my mouth the experience.

Taste cannot possibly live up to the aroma. But nothing could. Though any letdown is transient and ever-so-slight.

Rushes in. Detonating molasses-drowned green raisins and bruised bananas. Rippling brown sugar. Mocha notes are suprisingly subdued, but still existing. Chocolate is huge. And deep. Fragments beautifully into vanilla bean and black grapes. Suddenly, a blast of char appears, and recedes just as quickly. Alcohol is noticed more in flavor that brute force. And it rests some where in between Kahlua, Bailey's, Jamisons, Jim Bean, Capitan Morgans and Sherry. Lightly (though, in actuality, explosively) bittered. Green and leafy. More darkened fruits on the close.
This feels nothing like the near 12% it carries. If anything, it could almost use some additional heft. Well, no, not really.
Given that Avery's big hitters have generally left me cold (or lukewarm at best)...this one is a welcome change. I'm officially warm. Top rung.

Let's smell this again, shall we?

Holy shit.

03-20-2004 06:07:49 | More by cokes
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

4.68/5  rDev +19.1%

Silver foiled, capped bottle of 2002, vintage here. Very dark, mostly opaque pour, with garnet hues on the edges. Not much of a head, an no lacing(not surprising for the 12.2 abv).
Aroma is a "WOW"....Lots going on here to suggest that this will be lots of fun to review. Spices and burnt coffee hit the nose first, immediately followed by lilac floral notes, which are quickly erased by campfire smoke, dark fruits, and licorice. There seems to be some alcohol punch hidden in the background.
Mouthfeel is tantalizing, with alcohol burn and hops bite eclipsed by a savory, creamy, richness that leads into the complex taste.
Complex and delicious, describe the experience in simple terms. You have dark chocolate on the back of the mouth, rum soaked grapes and cherries in the middle, raisinbread for the malt presence, and a European style hops bitterness to further befuddle your senses. The big alcohol is a pleasant, warming experience, hidden behind a wall of a bittersweet hops background playing off the dark fruitiness and toasted malt backbone.
The big abv hides behind the complexity of flavors quite well, but it's hard to disguise the warming sensation this is going to impart. This imperial stout will, absolutely, smother your olfactory and taste buds with flavors and aromas that you will not soon forget.
Very highly recommended!

03-02-2004 03:13:32 | More by merlin48
Photo of bigbubba
bigbubba

Ohio

4.28/5  rDev +8.9%

This is a beautiful black beer with a tinge of redness. The head is big and frothy but dies quickly, but it continues to lace the sides of the glass all the way to the bottom. The taste is excellent, very sweet and malty. Some chocolate and alcohol flavor, and only a slight bit of hoppiness. As fine as this beer tastes, I think a bit more hoppiness might make this beer more enjoyable. Mouthfeel is excellent. Drinkability is great if you ask the mouth, but not quite as good if you ask the brain. I'm definitely feeling this one, but it's hard to drink this beer slowly.

02-29-2004 21:40:09 | More by bigbubba
Photo of RoyalT
RoyalT

Ohio

4.75/5  rDev +20.9%

Intro: There is an English thief among us that steals our prose and claims to have a wit all his own. Alas, the poor dolt is folly, for his pint-sized emasculated unimportantness is second only to the sorry desperation of an attention-starved hormone-injected gender-balanced transvestite on the eve of its wedding night trying to distinguish true asexual desires from pornographic fantasies involving John Wayne, Matt Damon, and an offset fence pole in the back of Mrs. Smyth’s tomato garden. In the end, the bum of the beach that is said to be long is a day late and a few x chromosomes short. Onward to better things . . .

Appearance – The ruby cherry blackness in the body signals that this is a significant Stout of substantial proportions. There’s not much of a head, but I guess when you tip the scales over a 10 ABV it’s to be expected.

Smell – “Complex,” doesn’t begin to describe this RIP. The base itself is solid roasted malts. The beverage then takes its cue from the Grand Cru and throws out a plethora of fruity notes. The Rainier cherries, ripe apricots, subtle bananas, and star fruit are soaked in alcohol. This is not day-old gin at 3.99 a fifth from the Stank Ho Stop & Go, this is fine imported East European vodka unbruised from well-water ice and the occasional eight pound Costco olive.

Taste – This is an event of a lifetime. The myriad notes from the nose all migrate downward to the tongue. A promise is a promise, and this Stout is true to its olfactory word.

The roasted malt base is in effect, strong and supportive. The huge fruits come galloping along. There are even a few hop notes to keep things totally interesting. What a treat!

Mouthfeel – Almost full in the mouth with some moderate dryness. There’s a bitter nature to this one that begs to be hit again.

Drinkability – Work, wife and maybe some mild long-term health concerns are the only things keeping me from drinking a bottle of this every night.

02-20-2004 03:38:36 | More by RoyalT
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

Presentation: A 22 ounce Bomber that was picked up on a recent trip to Phoenix, AZ. A large single metallic blood red label has a picture of Czar Nicholas II as its center-piece. Additional smaller pictures of prior Czars adorn the label; I am not sure which ones, maybe Nicholas I and Alexander III (?). Silver wings and a crown surround the picture of Nicholas II, the words ‘Bottled in 2003’ sit neatly below the crown. It has a very regal presentation, and looks Peter the Great (pardon the pun). Silver foil covers the crown cap. The Royal Statistics are;

1.100 Original Gravity
70 IBU’s
Alcohol 11.9% by Vol.

Labeled as “The Czar Imperial Stout”, it has a very striking label that somehow projects a bold, big, impressive and important presence. Should I bow??

Appearance: A deep ebonyous brown, like a milk-chocolate emblazoned Easter Sunday, the beer is revered and a head rises easily from the dead. Almost impenetrable to the naked eye late at night, yet the nearby artificial light that streams from Ikea’s finest tri-bulb paper covered illuminescent vertical furniture, is easily refracted and flashes through the beers body like the blood curdling and dripping swash-buckling sword of a dashing Knight in the sunset lit heat of a midday battle. Deep ‘red-black-red’ reflections sparkle with rubidicious hints and pulsate with some blackcurrant Ribena twinkles. Light brown foamy head washes the surface like the froth from the ocean crashing on the Beach. Fuck this looks inviting. Infinitesimally small bead like carbonation supports the head like a whole entourage in the Royal Courts. Beers like this are borne into greatness.

Nose: Dark chocolates, caramel toffee, plums and raisins with some rum soaked berries mixed with fuming Port soaked Oak barrels. The nasal cavities are teased by deeply rich and complex odors which prostitute themselves freely as the beer warms. By 60 degrees F, all the clothes are off and it’s an orgyous free for all, with no where to tuck-in the Dollar Bills, except…..

Taste: Alcohol soaked berries sat atop a crisp biscuit malt entrance which reminds me of Garibaldi biscuits that I used to so love when in England. Portly odors pluck sharply at the nasal hairs, who needs a nasal hair trimmer? The higher alcohols effortlessly deliver caramel, currants, dandelion and burdock, thick black liquorice root and Devonian whisky toffee wrapped in a rich chocolate covered raisin roll. A rich complex and decidely non-Atkins dessert explodes in the light chocolate freshly percolated coffee soaked sponge middle of the beer - this is both good, and bad, all at once. The latter third relishes the tease, liquorice extracts saliva from the oral cavity whilst bitter hops shadow box the cheeks and lend an impression of a severe beating, yet the bitterness is nicely balanced malt wise. You’ve had your ass kicked, but by an Old-School Gentleman Boxer that has observed the Queensbury Rules. Nothing below the Belt, and certainly no ear-biting here! This is very good stuff. I bet it ages well.

Mouthfeel: Bold and Larger than Life, it struts its stuff well before it gets into the ring to whip your ass. Beerus Rex. This is a champion for sure.

Drinkability: Unlike the Avery 10 I had earlier, this kicks ass big style, and it is really a very fine and great beer to finish the night (early morning!?) with. I will most certainly pick this one up again when I am next in Phoenix. Damn this is good, and so much better as it warms!

Overall: It cost $6.99, but I think it was well worth it. After the disappointment of so easily beating the shite out of the snotty-nosed wimpy Younger Avery Brother, “Ten”, in the Cloakrooms unaided, it was nice to have had some serious competition tonight from a beer that can at least stick up for itself, duck and dive, and throw a few punches.

Tomorrow I get to fight the Oldest Avery Brother, The Beast, I can’t wait!!

Oh, erm, did I mention I liked this???

02-18-2004 09:10:51 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of Morris729
Morris729

Texas

4.83/5  rDev +22.9%

1.100 Original Gravity, 70 IBUs, ABV 11.9%
Pours ink black in color with just a trace amount of ruby hues and a thick tan-colored head that eventually fades into a collar of lace. My rating of the appearance is based solely on the beer itself, though I’m tempted to award bonus points for the very cool bottle. Nose is toffee, semi-sweet dark chocolate, and some faint aromas of floral hops. Full-bodied and quite smooth with a slightly syrupy texture that coats the tongue and the back of the mouth with each sip. Taste begins with notes of molasses, candied dark fruit, and mocha followed by notes of smoky charcoal, rum-soaked raisins, and warming alcohol. A very rich and very enjoyable imperial stout. I’m definitely going to buy a few more of these to lie down for a year or two.

02-16-2004 01:49:20 | More by Morris729
Photo of tavernjef
tavernjef

Minnesota

3.78/5  rDev -3.8%

Solid thickly mruky black color with very thin slivers of chestnut around the bottom and edges. Very loose and largely bubbled head of tannish hue swims on the surfuce creating a dishwater froth of bubbliness. Lace in sparaticly placed thin stings. Aroma is very average if that, a barely there clean coffee, chocolate roastyness hovers some across the nose but nothing stands out to my sniffing senses, some slight notes of very dark sweet fruityness float in as it warms up. Taste has some more to offer with a resounding warmth wrapped in subdued roasty black maltyness lending little grabs of coffee and dark chocolate. Some welcoming notes of dark fruityness subside next to a bit of hops lending some prune, plum, and molasses. A bit mild, but quite smooth with a good chocolate character with some darker qualities that are nice. Feel is a bit on the thinner side in its body for an Imperial but its quite creamy and some finer warmth lines the palate as well as the back of the throat with a little chocolatey alcoholic bite of mild acidicness. That said, with the thinner body and overall mildness and creamyness, this stuff goes down quite easy. I had this along side with an Old Rasputin and Expedition to compare and it didn't even come close to either so hence its lower numbers. Always good to try a side by side to see where you're at with a certain style when you can. I still wouldn't turn this down if offered, it just could be better IMO.
Still gotta give thanks to Gusler for the bomber...this is gonna make for a long evening...or a short one?

02-14-2004 02:16:40 | More by tavernjef
Photo of erica
erica

California

4.47/5  rDev +13.7%

OK, this one was pretty good. Worthy of a name like The Czar, I think. The colour was very dark, and by the time I got to have some, there was no head left. It smelled very roasty, toasty, malty, carmely. Nice. It tasted very smooth, not harsh or bitter, very malty. Yes. Sweet but not too sweet, and just a hint of hops near the finish. Mouthfeel was good also, a bit thick and creamy- it had 'umph.' Drinkability is excellent, because it does not taste or feel like 12%abv, and the flavour is so well-balanced that I dont think I could get sick of it!

02-12-2004 18:10:57 | More by erica
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.6/5  rDev -8.4%

2004 release, Sampled January 2004
Pours with a thick brown creamy head, a deep black beer with amber highlights rest under the head. Serious aromas of alcohol emanate from the glass. There are aromas of black malt, roasted character, and coffee (though fairly subtle for an Imperial Stout). The body is, as expected, thick and creamy. Wow this is strikingly different. It is intensly sweet, even for an Imperial Stout. The roast character is here but pretty subdued. The sweetness dominates the flavor profile. This beer needs some age to smooth it out. The alcohol is evident in the finish. If I had to rate this as is I would give it a 3.4, based on potential though I would give it a 4.0 after it has aged a few years and smoothed out.

02-12-2004 16:32:07 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Alaska

4.72/5  rDev +20.1%

This brew is definately a good example of this style! The label is awesome with a pic of the czar on it, mine says: "brewed in 2003". This glugs out of the bootle a deep, dark, opaque black colour with some ruby/crismon edges, and a heavy head of tan foam. The head quickly dies, as the bubbles try and make their way to the surface. The aromas are substantial and remind me of Stones excellent version. I smell currants, booze, spicy hops, and deep roasted malts, chocolate, caramel, some lactic notes, and some other dark fruit notes as well. The taste is also exceptional. A creamy blend of booze, dark roasted malts, caramel, chocolate, coffee, currants, dark fruits, and alcohol. The mouthfeel is thick, creamy, smooth, and never really borders on cloying. The drinkability is absolutley excellent for a beer of 12%abv as well. Recommended. This is probably Averys best brew!

02-12-2004 01:29:26 | More by francisweizen
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DarthMalt

Virginia

3.33/5  rDev -15.3%

"Ester"-Hazy!!!

Wasn't that a duke, or something?

Banana esters..."peel"....out on this one! (Ha. HAAA!)
Dear God! Is there anything useful in the body of this beer?! [Fermentation gone awry, methinks!]

A week before Superbowl, and I'm wondering--can I stoke the fire with this baby? I mean, Yeah, it's good--in a sort of Thunderbird way--but Lordy, can't they find a few more non-fermentable dextrines in this puppy to make it a real stout? And how 'bout them roasted malts?

Guinness and Rasputin would not be Happy!!!

...Weren't the Czars shot to death?!

01-31-2004 06:50:32 | More by DarthMalt
The Czar from Avery Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,630 ratings.