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Tatonka Stout - BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse

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Tatonka StoutTatonka Stout

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BA SCORE
79
okay

51 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 51
Hads: 117
rAvg: 3.39
pDev: 23.01%
Wants: 1
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse visit their website
Arizona, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 07-04-2005

An imperial stout — a classic style so rich and flavorful that it was once the private beverage of Russian Czars. The profile is malty sweet, hop bitter roasted, full-bodied, alcoholic and deliciously complex. Beer doesn’t get much more intense than this!

60 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 51 | Hads: 117
Photo of Sammy
3.68/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Glendale location. Opaque black with a creamy head, lacey sheets. Would like this one on ask. Smooth, a fuller mouthfeel. Good drinking, more chocolate than their porter. Also higher abv than noted in the past. Roast under control. (253 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
3.11/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at the Plano location.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a tan head. The aroma is full of roasted malt, with a little bit of chocolate mixed in. The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of roasted malt and chocolate, as well as some pine and bitter notes from the hops. The beer is fairly boozy. Medium to thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation. (371 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a full brown, indefatigable, creamy head. The beer itself is pretty opaquely black colored, but shows a hint of clear ruby highlights when held up to the light. The aroma is of roast coffee, a hint of smokiness and rich chocolate combined with a lightly roasted, concentrated caramel note. The taste is smooth and creamy up front with a solid milk chocolate like middle that finishes with a roasty, coffee like dark bitterness. This is a quite well balanced mix of complex malt notes, yet still fairly light for an Imperial Stout. This is very tasty with concentrated burnt caramel notes. (602 characters)

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.82/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not the darkest beer in the world, but good enough, 1" tan head on it, quickly recedes. Good roast quality, smooth nose.

Easy drinking ris, gets fruitier as it warms, kinda divisive, is it pase because it drinks so easy, or is in ingenious because it hides 8% so well? Not a ton of chocolate. Not a ton of anything, doesn't have any one exceptional quality, but it is solid all the way around.

Slightly bitter, some cocoa pops up. I would swear it was a nitro tap, but was told otherwise. (491 characters)

Photo of TurdFurgison
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at BJ's pub/restaurant in Polaris (Columbus, OH). I heard they ship it from AZ since they don't have a brewing license here.

Nice dark appearance with wet lacy tan head. The aroma is burnt and roasted malts, rich and tasty. Didn't get any coffee out of the flavor (I seem to expect that from double stouts anymore), but very good sweet malty flavors.

Probably the best I tried from them so far. Very nice. (423 characters)

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.23/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Nitro pour shows off some nice cascading, light tan foam atop a nearly black brewski. Retention is expectedly great and the lacing is ok.

Nose is a bit faint, but fairly strong for a nitro beer. Black licorice and chocolate malt with some mild, light fruitiness. Whiff of alcohol as well.

Flavor is a little sweet with a burnt, biscuit-bottom maltiness. Shows some toastiness and a bit of roast as it warms. Alcohol is a bit high for the body and malt bill, lack of much CO2 does not exactly help either. Its ok, a fun beer to try and is pretty unique amongst a saturated imperial stout market. I think this would be better with a little less alcohol and cut the nitro. (671 characters)

Photo of Dogbrick
3.8/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draught at the Columbus location, nitro style. Pours flat black with a medium thick and creamy beige head that has good retention. Spotty lacing. The aroma is roasty with some chocolate and malt. Medium-bodied and smooth with a rich chocolate flavor, along with roasted coffee and malt. The alcohol peeks through once in awhile and the 8+% ABV is really the only thing that saves this beer from falling short. The finish has a sweet chocolate malt flavor and leaves a mildly bitter hops aftertaste. Better than expected, but nowhere near the better Imperial Stouts out there. (578 characters)

Photo of jzeilinger
3.06/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours an engine oil blackwith a two fingered, vanilla, creamy layer of foam. The foam layer is so creamy that it almost looks like nitro.

S - Light roasted chocolate, mild cocoa, light pine hopping. For an Imperial Stout, there should be more going on in the nose.

T - Mild dark chocolate, cocoa, maybe some milk, and mildly boozy. I wish I could say more.

M - Watery, thin, and light on the tongue.

D - Needs more body and drinks more like a Guiness on steroids. (472 characters)

Photo of yemenmocha
3.65/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours very dark brown, near black, with tempting aromas of chocolate, light espresso, roasted malt, and caramel. Palate was surprisingly light, especially in flavor. I thought I was served the wrong stout (how could this be an imperial stout?). Some alcohol is noticeable as it warms. (284 characters)

Photo of Overlord
2.93/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A disappointing stout, perhaps slightly above average for this type.

While it pours an impressive opaque black, with a small bit o' head, the mouthfeel is watery, and the flavors are surprisingly weak. Mostly coffee with some smokiness/charcoal laced in, not a lot of chocolate/vanilla to balance it out, and no fruit flavors I could detect.

Not BJs best beer. (362 characters)

Photo of nrbw23
2.26/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A- Pours a black color with a foamy brown head. Head has really good retention and stayed the entire time with the brew.

S- Smell seemed almost stale to me. Roasted malts and powdery chocolate smell.

T- Taste is roasted malts, coffee, chocolate and a touch of darker fruits. Not really digging this one at all.

M- Medium in body and light in carbonation. Has a dry feel to it too.

D- Man, I choked this one down. Not a fan of this one at all. (448 characters)

Photo of Arbitrator
1.91/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

On tap at BJ's Brewhouse in Fremont. I ordered this for the gf since it's the only imperial stout they have on the menu.

A: Pours a pitch black in the glass, with a half-finger of light tan head. It retains poorly, vanishing quickly into a light collar on the brew. No lacing.

S: When it arrived, she informed me that it was too cold (I'm so proud... sniff) and that the aromas and flavors were kind of weak. Well, 30 minutes later, they were still kind of weak. Yeah, I pick out some chocolate, roasted malt. Not much else.

T: See above, I guess. Chocolate, roasted malt, a little coffee, some sugar, and a little alcohol warmth on the finish. Surprisingly devoid of flavor. I could blame this on the nitro-tap, but it's their beer, they know how they want to serve it...

M: Light-bodied. Smooth and creamy. Not terribly boozy, but warmer than expected for something that's "only" 8%.

D: Meh. Given that they usually have nothing else the gf can drink, I may wind up getting this for her again. But if I had the choice of something -- anything -- else that she liked, this wouldn't even be a contender. (1,112 characters)

Photo of BretSikkink
3.63/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Creamy, nitro-tap head that doesn't quit. Look and feel up top of a pub beer for sure. Dark brown color, probably near to black, with some highlights against the afternoon sun.

Nose is undermined by the head, but what gets through is light roasted coffee, a pretty big hit of sweet caramel malt, with some smokiness lingering behind these.

The taste is overly sweet for my taste, but it is nicely balanced by the roasted astringency. Rich drinking chocolate edges cafe latte for the upper flavor hand. Very smooth and creamy, which is pleasing in a way but somewhat detracts from the seriousness of the style.

Well balanced but too light to call itself Imperial. (668 characters)

Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.05/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this in a pint glass at a BJ's in the Sacramento area.
Absolutely pitch black, with no light penetration.
Good one finger head (looked like it was from a nitro-tap) that dissipated fairly slowly.
Aroma upfront was of roasted coffee beans with hints of dark chocolate and dark raisins coming through.
Taste is sweet upfront, with the dark raisin/dark fruits flavor coming through. Mild bitterness comes across in the finish.
Fairly robust, medium to full bodied stout. Mouthfeel was good, fairly smooth stout. Drinkability even with the slightly high ABV was very good.
Paired very well with their smoked BBQ pork sandwich.
Definitely worth a try if you are at BJ's. (676 characters)

Photo of JDV
2.64/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Black pour, just shy of opaque, with a nice lasting tan head. Smell is incredibly subtle at first and opens up with a nice roasty character as it warms a bit. Taste is equally subtle, with light flavors of milk, dark roast, and alcohol. Alcohol is surprisingly evident, and for as mildly flavored as it is, really detracts from the beer. It does have a nicely creamy thick body from the nitrogen however, and has the nicest palate of their beers. Not one I cared for too much but improved as it warmed. (502 characters)

Photo of Bierguy5
3.7/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On nitro tap in Columbus. Yes, nitro tap. Pitch black, no other shades at all. Thick beige creamy head. Good head retention and lace.

Sweet milk chocolate aroma. A bit of dark fruit in the background. Nitro seems to mask the aroma a bit.

Very sweet up front. Milk chocolate gives way to dark vinous fruits. Some black cherry and plumb flavor. A bit of bitterness to back things up.

Medium body, very creamy. Overall, a bit too sweet. Please, no more double stouts on nitro! Would probably bemuch better without it. (523 characters)

Photo of BucannonXC5
3.62/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Actually had this at the La Mesa BJ's.

Poured from a draft into a pint glass at BJ’s Brewery in La Mesa, Calif. Color was black with some brown coming through. Tons of head as I know mine was the first beer of the new keg. Tan lacing on the top that lasted throughout. Film on the sides as well.

Smell was coffee first with some hints of chocolate and roasty malts.

Taste was similar to the nose. Coffee up front, giving way to dark chocolate and roasty malts.

Full body. Creamy texture. Average-to-lively carbonation. Smooth finish.

An OK stout that I think would have been better had I not had the first one of the new pour. I guess I’d have to give it another go. (677 characters)

Photo of soju6
3.58/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at BJ's in EL Paso, TX.

A: Served a very dark mahogany color, virtually opaque. Had a good tan head that lasted with nice lacing to the finish.

S: Has a fairly mild aroma of roasted malt & coffee eith a hint of caramel.

T; Started with a mild stout bitterness and continued to roasted malt and coffee. There was a mild chocolate sweetness and a clean finish.

F: Full body, creamy and smooth. Well balanced. The alcohol is well hidden.

D: Good drinker, but almost a bit to sweet for my taste. I would consider this more of a stout than an Imperial Stout, but it is still enjoyable. (592 characters)

Photo of magictrokini
3.54/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I really like this one, possibly one of the more consistent and quality beers they always have on tap. Very dark pour with a short tan head that lasts. Roasty, cocoa and nut aroma. Chocolatey taste with a dry aftertaste. Malty and not as roasty as the nose would indicate, but very good. Hides the alcohol well, but is a full-body beer. Well balanced with a soft mouthfeel. (373 characters)

Photo of AdamBear
4.19/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-dark brown, thick light tan head

S-rich spicy coffee beans, fairly strong

T-coffee taste hits with an impressive amount of sweetness, coffee comes in more pronounced and dry in the after-taste. this beer is truly like a dessert.

M-very little carbonation but goes down so effin creamy and smooth. its so wonderful, it reminds me of a milkshake

D-abv note starts to come out more, although the abv doesn't seem to hit the other senses. overall taste stays fairly well. its a joy to the end. if i had more time, i would have bought another one (547 characters)

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.26/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I don't know why they insist on serving imperial stouts through a nitro tap. Incredibly smooth and creamy, but it doesn't allow you to taste any nuances of the beer. Very little flavor and nothing to peak my interest. All of the flavors that you would like to see dominant and in the forefront are muted. There are hints of roasted malt, some light coffee and some very faint cocoa. Would like to try it without the nitro tap. (426 characters)

Photo of jujubeast6000
2.9/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Reviewed 5/22/2009 (Draft at BJs Brewhouse, Webster, TX):

Pours a dark dark brown, nearly pitch black color body. Average sized creamy Navajo white head, lastingish. Roasted, coffee aroma. Creamy mouthfeel, bitter coffee taste. Also some bitter chocolate. Gritty taste, bitter, sour coffee. Bleh. A little better as it warms, more chocolately, less bitter. (357 characters)

Photo of BeerWithMike
4.02/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled as part of a flight of 4 while on vacation. Staying across the street from BJ's Brew House in Westminster, Colorado on 7/18/15. Stopped in and had dinner and brews. :) ABV 8.5%, IBU 50 (192 characters)

Photo of MiScusi
3.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark dark brown, but I wouldn't classify it as black. It has a light tan head that has great retention. The head doesn't leave a lacing- it leaves layers of foam down the side of the glass- nice and sticky. The smell that mainly comes through is roasted coffee. The taste again is high on the roast and coffee, but it goes down very smooth. They label the IBU's at 60 for this but it doesn't seem that intense. It is a very nice drinker. The mouthfeel is slick and dry. While this is a good beer, the coffee being present more highly than the other flavors isn't really something I would want to drink large amounts of. (632 characters)

Photo of BierJager89
4.42/5  rDev +30.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

BJ's is all over the place with this one. I had this at the San Mateo, CA BJ's, and I'm fairly certain it tastes the same at every other BJ's.

A: Black with a creamy brown head. Very dark, head stays with the beer all the way down the glass.

S: Sweet malt, bittersweet chocolate, dark roast coffee, smells like a standard imperial stout.

T: Pretty much the same as the nose. Sweet malt, dark chocolate, coffee. Standard, but delicious. Definitely worth a try, at least in the dark beer sampler.

M: Full bodied and pretty smooth.

O: Underrated. Beers from places like BJ's aren't given the consideration they deserve, because of the large number of locations or broad distribution, but the fact remains that this is an excellent imperial stout. (748 characters)

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Tatonka Stout from BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
79 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.