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Brewtus - Monocacy Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

30 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 30
Hads: 157
Avg: 4.21
pDev: 16.15%
Wants: 14
Gots: 27 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Monocacy Brewing Co. visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BattleRoadBrewer on 02-27-2014

From the shadows of a dark and opulent curtain spring the robust aromas of locally roasted coffee and hardy malt. Deep-seated hop bitterness rallies with these conspirators, delivering a well-balanced thrust of assertive flavor to a bland tyrant. Raise a glass in celebration of liberating taste. Et tu, Brewte?
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 30 | Hads: 157
Photo of WesMantooth
3.99/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The pour is excellent. Very viscous. Black as oil. The very dark brown head isn't real substantial, and doesn't last very long even with a hard pour, but it does retain a fizzy ring the whole time.

Smells like roasted coffee, chared grains, some molasses, and a little bit of chocolate. Pretty well rounded aromas, but the coffee is dominant.

When it comes to flavor, the coffee kicks in your front door and punches you in the mouth. There is a lot of bitterness. Very ashy, like burnt coffee grounds scraped off the bottom of a kettle. There is some nice sweet molasses, and a hint of fruit. I continue to let the beer warm, and it improves for me, but am still having a hard time not being overwhelmed by black coffee.

The body is a mixed bag for me. While the base is very full, and has a nice texture, the carbonation is off. Too fizzy. If it were dialed back, I would be in the 4.25 range at least.

As a disclaimer, I am not a coffee drinker. That being said, I love me some coffee beers. This one is actually bordering on Peche Mortel territory in a lot of ways. I gives me glimpses of other phenomenal beers like FBS, Trillium Night and Day, or Terrapin. It just doesn't integrate that coffee profile nearly as well. I would still recommend it. I suspect a coffee junkie would drool into it.

Edit: I don't think I hung with this one long enough. As I found the bottom of the glass and it was approaching room temperature, it really started to balance out. I bumped my taste and overall score a bit. I still think the coffee flavor is a bit harsh, but this beer is much better warm than cool.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an inky black, minimal light brown head. Smells strongly of expresso, cocoa, smokey, roasted malts. Tastes very expresso forward, tempered by sweeter malts, cocoa, and well balanced. Medium bodied, clean finish.
Overall, great coffee imperial stout.

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Photo of Shroud0fdoom
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle into a Belgian Tulip.

First off, I've been waiting to try this brew for some time now... Today is my lucky Day! Let's get talking about this brew....tus. Off the Jump this thing Pours Massive Black Body! You know what they say, Blacker the Berry, Sweeter da Juice! This brew was crowned with a Deep Mocha Head, quasi Ten FIDY-ish in appearance. This is a Perfect looking Imperial Stout!

I'm all over this aroma like flies on a Turd. This thing is an IMPERIAL COFFEE STOUT! Huge Coffee roast on top of a Sweet Cocoa Body. Mild nutty Notes with a dap of Molasses. This Aroma is banging in its Richness!

Tasting this Should be a Chore.. First picks up a Balance of Roasted Malt sweetness and Coffee. Second wave of Chocolate and Molasses that are Shaking the Tastebuds with excitement! This thing is like drinking a Candied Coffee Bean! This finishes dry with subtle bitterness balancing the sweetness. Aftertaste is still being dominated by Chocolate, Molasses and a touch of Fruity esters (Pear flavor again). The feel on this is Medium-light body with fizzy Carbonation.

Overall: This brew plays the role in astonishing fashion! No obvious flaws on this brew, except the Feel could be Smashingly Heavy with a Smooth Texture. It lacks in that department, but that's personal preferences talking. The appearance on this brew is something to experience. It has the look of Marshal Zhukov and Ten FIDY that had a Coffee Forward Baby. I don't give out fives but this appearance is exquisite. The aroma and flavor has no Flaws in them, IMO. This brew is definitely belonging of the upper tier Coffee Stouts. This is Less bitter than Peche Mortel but has a weaker feel/finish. This brew is Recommended!

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Photo of Beejay
4.01/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a at about the color and consistency of black oil. a very small tan head rises out of the body of a beer, only to disappear nearly as quickly.

S: This is what I want a coffee impy stout to smell like. Rich chocolate, roasted grain, and espresso. The smell is rich, sweet, and aromatic,

T: Roasted grain, mocha, and dark chocolate. Lovely, but lacking the complexity that the aroma promised.. Perhaps when it warms a bit. It does open up a bit as it warms, but the aroma is the highlight for me.

M: Fairly thick but with a somewhat high carbonation for the style.

O: Overall pretty good, but slightly less than amazing.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours out black as night. Rich, dark roast coffee. Damn. This is solid. Medium bodied and carbed, helps to push and coat your mouth in flavor. Short, dry finish. Good stuff. Probably the best non barrel aged coffee stout I've ever had.

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Photo of beachtrvlr
4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very strong coffee flavor with some bitterness. Also a dark chocolate flavor comes through and lingers in my mouth.

Very dark brown in color. Nice tannish brown head, though it dissipates fairly quickly.

I smelled more of a chocolate scent than coffee when I first poured the beer.

Lightly carbonated. Smooth feel.

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Photo of Marraybay
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Was a little worried about the coffee and the booze being overpowering in this one, but it was actually done quite well. Dark pour: not much head. The coffee flavor is indeed VERY prominent and forward, which could be off-putting for some. There's just enough chocolate and sweetness in the finish to counter the above. Not a super sweet beer, but not exceedingly dry either. Note: the booze is fairly buried in the mix.

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Photo of delta490
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep black. no light getting through this. There's a thin cap of mocha-colored head that quickly settles to a light disc across the top that leaves small soapy lacing. The aroma takes a second to open up but big rich coffee and cocoa notes with a hint of sweetness. The taste is a little more restrained, but still good. The coffee is much less pronounced and it tastes more like a dry stout than its aroma would've indicated. Strong chocolate malt with earthy hops and the coffee in the background. The body is also more along with a dry stout, thinner and crisp with a tingle of alcohol on the finish.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.41/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A vigorous pour yields just a fine haze of tan head over what is a deep brown, near black beer. Nose is crazy coffee, a bit of sweetness (maybe dried fruits?), chocolate as the beer warms, Taste is similar: roasted malt, big coffee flavors, some chocolate in the background. Light bitterness. Nose little bite at the back of the mouth, I guess from the fairly mild carbonation. Flavor is good, although doesn’t quite deliver on the delicious, huge nose. Body is smooth, fairly thick body, maybe a little thin for the style. Very subtle fizziness on the front of the tongue. Overall a really tasty beer, one I’ll go back to. And it's local!

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Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty brew. Lots of bitter coffee, some chocolate and spices. A bit thin but it doesn't detract. Second beer from this brewery and both impressed.

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Photo of Morrow702
4.87/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

This is likely my favorite coffee stout to date. I have had the KBS and the BCCS and the Brewtus still wins for me. It's hard to describe... It's this feeling of drinking a quality cup of coffee that's masquerading as a beer. It's smooth. It has a nice aroma, and it's one of the few beers I feel Ok about enjoying with my breakfast :)

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

No date on bottle. Really like the design/artwork/presentation.

Pours a deep mahogany, practically black. Perhaps a little light can shine through it, but only around the edges. Scant tan head that dissipates into a nicely retained surface-film. Some lace.

Smells like burnt roast coffee grounds. The smell is magnificent in terms of strength; very odiferous although one-dimensional.

Tastes like coffee with some beer added. The coffee dominates, though is blended very well with the beer to the point where I'm not totally sure whether I'm drinking a beer or an unusual coffee.

Feel is medium-heavy. Has some substance, has some meat, but not so much so to render it undrinkable or 'thick'. Again, well balanced. Leaves a definite coffee aftertaste and some lingering hop bitterness muddled together.

Ultimately, a pretty fantastic brew IF you're into coffee-laden imperial stouts. The phrase, 'would you like some coffee with your beer?' would best represent this. It is very, very coffee-forward, almost to a fault. If you do not enjoy coffee, do not purchase this beer.

Compared to Flying Dog's Kujo (another Maryland-brewed, coffee imperial stout), well, there is no comparing the two. Brewtus absolutely slaughters Kujo, and is on a whole different level.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle into a teku.

Appearance: Pours a nearly black color. The head is a finger high and tan in shade. Retention isn't very special, but I like the head's creaminess. Minimal lacing sticks to the glass. (3.5)

Smell: This - THIS - is what I like in a coffee stout. Lots of black coffee, counterbalanced by additional roasted malts and dark chocolate. Know what this reminds me of? Founders Breakfast Stout, sans the oatmeal. I also like how there's a nice roastiness beyond just black coffee, and the subtle graham cracker notes, and just about everything else. (4.5)

Taste: Black coffee opens it up nicely. I'll give it about a 6 out of 10 on the coffee intensity scale. It ends with pure dark chocolate, backed by some roasted barley and *maybe* a twinge of hop bitterness. Only thing is, it's not very complex to me - just coffee, roast, and chocolate. Still, those three notes intermingle with one another extremely well. (4)

Mouthfeel: This is NOT creamy like FBS - instead, it's bitter, dry, and a little rough. I could stand to lose some of the latter, but I do like how dry and easy to drink it is (though the finish is still very long). Carbonation is medium, poking through the slightly slender body well. (3.75)

Overall: I've fully accepted the grim reality that Founders will never distribute to Maryland (thanks, Hop & Wine Distributors of Northern Virginia), and as such, I've been looking for that FBS alternative. Wait...this is from Maryland? And it's year-round? Huzzah! In my mind, this can easily hang with FBS in terms of quality and drinkability. Hopefully, this will make its way to the rest of MD, so I can drink the hell out of it. (4.25)

4.12/5: A year-round coffee stout that's genuinely impressive? Done.

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Photo of nhindian
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Within the glass, Brewtus has all the makings of a beer that looks like a freshly pressed cup of Joe. It is a flat black with an especially frothy head that lasts and lasts - it actually never really seems to completely fade away. This leads to lacing to coats all 360 degrees of the glass in a sexy curtain.

Aroma - One whiff of this beer and it's like I'm back in the office; the amount of coffee coming out of this beer is huge and it mixes seamlessly with a sweet chocolate note. It's not overly roasty, but instead takes on a cold-pressed mocha impression.

Taste - Much like the nose, the taste is all coffee and very smooth. More of the roasted bitterness shows up here, as the chocolate falls back into a bittersweet role. Rounding out the flavor is a subtle toasted nut and oatmeal quality that is very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel - The mouthfeel is beefed-up with a thick, creamy texture that benefits greatly from the addition of oats. It sort of reminds me of a coffee milkshake and is a treat to drink.

Closing Arguments- This was a fantastic introduction to this new-to-me brewery. The coffee is spot-on and reminds me of Founders Breakfast Stout in the way that it integrates with the chocolate notes. I could see this being a favorite in the colder months and I will definitely keep my eyes peeled the next time I find myself near Frederick.

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Photo of xcdarrel17
3.79/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Didn't think this was a great example of a coffee stout. Coffee seemed a little harsh to me and not well paired with the stout base. Mouthfeel improved as it warmed.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had this on 2015-04-06 in Columbia, PA from a 12 oz bottle

A - Opaque deep, dark brown with a 1-finger brown head that fades quickly. Just a bit of lace.

S - Coffee and more coffee. Some mocha. Medium roasted grain. Minerals.

T - Rich chocolate, coffee, milk, light char, well-toasted sourdough bread and a metallic/mineral flavor that adds a touch of sharpness in a good way. Aftertaste is well-balanced with all these flavors with just a bit of emphasis on the roasted bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium body and carbonation. Substantial at first but it has some effervescence to cleanse the palate. I really like the feel.

O - This is one fine coffee stout. Getting up there with Founders Breakfast Stout in many ways. Impressive.

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Photo of cjgiant
3.99/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On cask:
Always feel strange rating on cask, so this will be brief rather than full review:
Appearance is just short if nitro, initiall, but fades a tad, still nice foamy edge and lacing.
Nose is coffee with a hint of woodiness, and to a lesser degree, chocolate.
Taste is cocoa, coffee, cola, light bitter woody ending.
Feel is a bit light, but very smooth, low carbonation from cask.
Definitely a decent beer, solid stout; need to see how it seems non-cask.

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Photo of DIM
4.14/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This had black body and it came with a small, dark mocha colored head.

Plenty of roasted coffee beans in the nose, but the chocolate-y malts are more prominent. Very little alcohol to be found. Tastes as the smell suggests oonly better. Light bitternes with strong roasty cocoa and coffee make this a very satisfying big stout. Not as coffee-forward as some, but I appreciated how balanced this was.

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Photo of qchic
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, big coffee all around! This one actually carries the body that I crave from other coffee beers, making it a great dessert beer. Yep, there's roasted malt sweetness, but also a decent amount of bitterness. Love the earthiness of the plentiful coffee. Quite an effort from a little known brewery-which is subject to change if this is any indication.

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Photo of CheapHysterics
4.46/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours black with 2 fingers of tan head that slowly dissipated.

aromas of coffee, coffee, and coffee, with a little roasty sweetness and some earthiness hiding underneath.

Taste is extremely well balanced between bitter and sweet, with coffee, dark cocoa and a little hops played against sweet malts with just a hint of a little earthy, dank, almost mushroomy taste in the background (dank in what I thought was a good way). A little heat from the 8.6% pokes through, but barely.

Mouthfeel is verging on creamy, and it's very smooth going down.

Overall an excellent coffee stout... not generally a style I look for, but this is definitely one of the best I've had in the style.

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Photo of gillagorilla
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into a Burley Oak snifter

A: Pitch black with the slightest head and a miniscule collar.
S: Smells like diner coffee that uses unfiltered, mineral heavy water and has been sitting on the burner for a while.
T: So much coffee. This is like a fresh-brewed pot of drip coffee.
M: Definitely a bit light on the mouthfeel, but that is probably because they blend in so much damn coffee.
O: This has been in my fridge for ages, since I'd never been able to/in the mood to have it at an appropriate hour. I'm glad I waited, because this is a coffee bomb. Talk about a MD gem.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.64/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter glass.

Deep dark walnut brown out of the bottle, good thick viscosity as it fills the glass. Head is quite dark with a big mocha dark brown but only makes about half a finger head. Dissolves to a thin collar, but leaves a good thick leg coating also on the side.

Real big bouquet. Good amounts of ripping bean, but huge notes of peanut butter and dark chocolate. A nice controlled pipping hot warmth as well from the coffee angle, excellently executed with just a hint of mild soft roast quality.

Palate seems to be hitting towards lighter character. Slightly fizzy finish with a mid palate that comes with lots of ripping bean. Slightly oily hop like coating and mild astringency but without any acrid off flavors luckily. Prickly and a bit wet mouthfeel. Good controlled bitter sweetness of dark chocolate on the finish to match with some of the coffee nicely.

It's not bad, but there's room for improvement slightly on the malt angle. The beer for a big imperial comes off a little weak in palate feel and flavor, but a solid decent coffee brewed stout nonetheless with a bizarre aroma to go with it.

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Photo of Devman171
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thick black pour. Big espresso and roasted chocolate nose. Taste is big chocolate and espresso, slight green pepper, but a solid imperial coffee stout.

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Photo of hagbergl
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I discovered Brewtus on a day trip to Frederick, MD. I spotted it in a local cheese/wine/beer store downtown and liked the sound of a coffee imperial stout. When I brought the four pack to the counter, I asked the clerk whether she had been to the brewery, since it's in Frederick--turns out she actually is one of Monocacy's brewers! Pretty cool. Anyway, story over. Commence beer review.

Appearance (4/5): Deep black with a short tan head of perhaps two-fingers (at most). No alcohol legs on the glass (it's by no means a boozy beer and on the lower ABV side for an Imperial Stout).

Smell (4.25/5): This beer is easily one of the most coffee forward beers I've ever had. The nose is blooming with smells of fresh-brewed coffee, with just a hint of dark chocolate. While it's a bit one noted, that one note is pretty great--Brewtus rocks the coffee hard. The aroma intensifies as the beer warms.

Taste (4.25/5): MORE COFFEE! And while the taste follows the nose, it's more complex--you get a wave of coffee bitterness initially, but then you get a sweeter, chocolate covered espresso bean-like flavor on the back end with a nice touch of roastiness (nothing extreme, though). The beer does not have a strong aftertaste, which makes it surprisingly easy-drinking. While drinking it, you're not liable to think it's a very decadent beer. A tasty Imperial Stout that's actually more of a gentle giant than you'd think, given how aggressive many coffee beers can come off.

Mouthfeel (4/5): When straight-from-the-fridge cold, Brewtus can taste a little thin, so make sure to let it warm a little to get the most out of this beer. The feel benefits a good deal from this, though I must say that even when at the appropriate temperature it cries out for more body and a creaminess to compliment the coffee flavor--perhaps the addition of oats could encourage this?

Overall (4.25/5): Monocacy's Brewtus is, overall, a very good beer deserving of serious attention. One of the most coffee-forward beers I've ever come across, it delivers serious coffee stout flavors in smooth waves of bittersweet goodness. The only tweak I'd say the brewers need to make is with the mouthfeel--it could have a bit more body to it. Having said that, this beer is really good stuff from a very young brewery. I look forward to more from them!

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Photo of Omnium
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle > Sensory Pils Glass

A - Pitch black with half a finger of tan head, no lacing.
S - Fresh roasted coffee, by far the most potent coffee aroma I've had in any beer to date. Smoke and some light oak kinda wood tone to it, very earthy tones. Outstanding.
T - Massive roasted coffee flavor, roasted malt, burnt wood, lighter mix of earthy hops. Really good, but also very singular.
M - Drier finish, lighter feel despite the alcohol. Not sweet at all either.
O - Really unique coffee brew, by far the most extreme use of coffee I've had, also more of a dry and robust beer than sweeter, which is a great change of pace.

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Brewtus from Monocacy Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 30 ratings.