1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Dark Sky Imperial Stout - Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom

Not Rated.
Dark Sky Imperial StoutDark Sky Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

113 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 75
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 11.94%
Wants: 6
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom visit their website
Japan

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 03-01-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 113 | Reviews: 75 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wrightst
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of djeyez
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of Hoppsbabo
4.45/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

* I think mine was aged because the label was different from the current one.

A: Impenetrable black body with a small beige head.

S: Chocolatey with fruity hops – American smelling.

T: Intense but mild if that's possible. Very chocolatey and not very bitter at all. It's certainly American in character. It's hoppy and fruity with smokey fudge in the aftertaste. Tart as well.

O: By a mile the best beer I've had from Japan. Really lovely. Wish I bought a few.

Photo of Rifugium
3.52/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hmm. I would never have guessed this was from Japan. But anyway. Standard stout appearance, dark brown-black--might as well call it black--with a small cap of tan head that receded to a ringlet, leaving some spotty lacing on the glass. Dark roasty malts in the nose, toasted pumpernickel, some vaguely citrus hop notes. Similar in the taste, roasted malts, toasted dark bread, spent coffee grounds, touch of smoke, anise and raisins, faint but noticeable hoppy oils. Body was medium, maybe a tad thin for the style. Decent overall, but nothing I'd see myself going back for.

Photo of Norseman
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of jabo134
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of mpayne5
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of Magery
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.59/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours black with a tiny head.
Nose shows roasted malt, dark chocolate, nutty notes and liquorice.
Pretty similar flavours but less complex, mainly roasted malt, dark chocolate and coffee liqueur.
Needs more carbonation, pretty much flat at the moment.

Photo of DonFrap
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Photo of beergoot
3.86/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Opaque blackness sporting a thick, creamy head; good lacing and sticky clots of foam clinging to the glass. Malt grains give off a light, roasted scent with hints of cocoa and dark fruit. Excellent charred grain flavors, nicely offset by a well-balanced hop bitterness. Smooth, medium bodied; crisp and dry.

A well-made imperial stout, packed with lots of dark ale malt and hop goodness. Subtly complex and nicely balanced. The malt and hop characteristics do a good job of masking the alcohol. Rich, smooth, and darkly delicious!

Photo of neckbracesub
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Ego
3.55/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

eyes...
2 full fingers of dark cocoa head, black but not totally impenetrable, a good amount of carbonation traffic is observed, the head layers out in near flawless fashion, lacing and legs embrace in this very sweet looker, the head fades at a reasonable pace, but mostly this is a really solid looking brew

nose...
boozy raisins, some dry chocolate, a bit of wood must, caramel malts just peeking out from around the corner, nice but nothing amazing

taste etc...
follows the aroma with a bit more depth though, the carbonation makes this drink light but when that initial lightness fades a heavy flavor is laid on ya, the initial blasts are a bit too much in the raisin department for this old beerhound.... it is a bit distracting, the ABV is well hidden on this so... watch out. I suppose the best aspect of this brew is the nice lingering bitter chocolate tone left in your mouth for quite the long after glow...

verdict?
pretty good. it almost strays into barleywine taste territory a bit for me but not bad.

Photo of CaptainNomihodai
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of chanokokoro
4.21/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Fairly aggressively oured from a 12 oz. bottle into an unbranded snifter

A Russian imperial stout brewed in Japan at Baird Brewing Company located near Mt. Fuji. As someone who is very interested in Japanese culture and history and craft beer this brew is of great interest.

Pours an extremely dark motor oil brown capped by a fluffy beige two finger head that slowly reduces to a substantial foam ring. Above average retention, a good amount of splotchy lacing along the glass. Big roasted malt and grain, bakers chocolate, burnt raisins and some espresso notes. Opens with strong dark chocolate, black cherry, roasted barley and grain, dried dark fruit and some port accents. Finishes with abundant bitter hop notes, espresso, and bittersweet cocoa powder and a bit of warming alcohol. Lighter side of full bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation when compared with other Russian Imperial Stouts, smooth and slick. A very solid RIS. A bit lighter bodied than some other brews in the style, but fairly complex and definitely a brew that is worth revisiting. Kampai, indeed!

Photo of claytong
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of DocJitsu
2.75/5  rDev -27.1%

Photo of gueuzeonhigh
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours as a bible black libation.
a small but long lived head

The nose gave off hints of coffee and toasted malt.

The flavor is/was a nice round "saftig" melange of toasted malt, hints of coffee, chocolate,
hops and everything else to "round out" an imperial stout.

A nice cordial mouthfeel followed the flavor hit.

My criticism is that it doesn't quite have the flavor "Whack" or the "gravitas" of a Russian imperrial-- it's in a way a little "soft" or maybe "pillowy"... yes all the ingredients are there of the Imperial Stout flavor.. even the 9% ABV but somehow the tires aren't fully inflated..

But don't get me wrong-- the strong overwhelming flavor "punch" of an imperial stout has its place. But this beer has its strong points-- it's when I'm not ready to duke it out with an "in your face" beer but I want the heavy stance of an "Imperial"-- here it is..

Then I took a look at where it's from-- and WOW! Usually "American Adjunct alikes" come from this place!

I purchased but one bottle- I'm going back for more...

I like I like I like..

Photo of BEERchitect
4.27/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

And so the brewery at the foot of Mount Juji borrows Russian influence when adapting the roasty, alcoholic, and robustly flavors found in stout that shows that there's no limit to the flavors or techniques that influence their beers.

With a certain stouty appearance, the Dark Sky carries a nearly black coloration, if ever so tilted toward brownish hues because of the stain of roasted barley. A turbulent pour from the large format bottle yields a much lighter than expected carbonation that struggles to find a cask-like loosely knit head that's equally stained with tan. After relaxing a bit, the head settles like coffee creme and skirts the surface of the beer intermittently yet consistently.

The aromas of coffee and chocolate swirl about the nose with impressions of coffeehouse mocha lattes. Diving a bit deeper, the underpinnings of scorched toffee, rum-ish alcohol, and esters that belong to cherries, raspberries, vinous red grapes, and tawny port come to mind in the most savory and succulent aromas possible.

With a first draw off the rim, the flavors of the beer seem scattered with the taste of roasted coffeeish grain, cocoa powder, and ash. But as the subtle carbonation evens out, the beer reasonably light zest of carbon dioxide allows the beer to sit heavy on the tongue with an evenly and velvety coat of malt afterwards. Brownie batter, decedent espresso, and heavily caramelized molasses cling to the surface of the mouth with smothering charm.

Where the label boasts the integration of hop flavor and bitterness, I find those elements to be moderate if not understated. The bitterness of the beer are easily rendered from the coffee roast as much as it is from woodish hops. While pleasantly bitter and slightly astringent with the texture of grape skin and grain tannin, the finish is indefinite and powers through the warm alcohol thinning for a linger of robustly sweet malts that meld seamlessly with the next sip.

The pop of the cap provided the assurance of carbonation, but the pour caused caution to the eye. However, the beer's understated carbonation actually accents beer flavor in all its glory and all its flaws. In other words, the seduction of carbonation eludes the beer and leaves it wonderfully naked.

Photo of kaips1
2.75/5  rDev -27.1%

Photo of bluejacket74
3.57/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

633 ml bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with a half inch tan head that stays around for a little while. Not much lacing. The aroma is nice, the brew smells like roasted malt, chocolate, toffee, and some coffee. The flavor is more bitter than I expected it to be since the aroma was sweeter. It tastes like dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, and some licorice. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit coating but it also seems thin for an imperial stout. The carbonation is low. I think it's a solid brew, but I was disappointed in this one since the other Baird beers I've tried in the past I liked a lot. I'd like to try this again in the future, but I think I'll wait a while before I do. $10.98 a bottle.

Photo of Jsenay
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bottle into Russian River tulip

A - Pours a dark brown nearing black with tons of carbonation and a great head retention that lingers for some time. Very thick lacing.

S - Roasted malts, coffee, toffee, caramel, bakers chocolate

T - Huge flavor explosion of chocolate, dates, coffee and cream. Heavy roasted malt aftertaste.

M - Very smooth and creamy up front. Slightly bitter with a creamy and moderately dry/chalky finish.

O - Very delicious. It can be almost too bitter and dry on the finish but, it fits this beer style very well. It also seems that this beer is rather inconsistent due to some reviewers opening bottles that are basically flat/sour/oxidized. Suppose I lucked out with this one. Either way, this is my first beer from Baird and I am definitely looking forward to trying more of what they have to offer.

Photo of kaelingirl
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of champ103
3.48/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark brown, nearly black color. A one finger tan head forms, good retention. Light lace.
S: Roasted malt, plenty of sweetness. Caramel, vanilla, chocolate, coffee.
T: Follows the nose, and pretty standard for a stout. Roasted malt, caramel sweetness, coffee, lots of chocolate.
M/D: A medium-full body. Low carbonation and on the thin side. Not hard to sip on, but one is enough.

Not bad at all, but just average. Enjoyable to try once, but a one and done for me.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Eh. This beer lack balance. Too malty tangy with a sweet edge that just doesn't work. There are some mild smoked tones that don't mesh well at all. It's lacking and poorly constructed. Doesn't work at all for me. A shame too, considering the price.

Dark Sky Imperial Stout from Baird Brewing Company / Fishmarket Taproom
85 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.