Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)

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BA SCORE
88
very good

4,156 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

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Ratings: 4,156
Reviews: 1,424
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 17.65%
Wants: 352
Gots: 843 | FT: 34
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ph2001 on 07-12-2008

The brewer suggests a serving temperature of 42 °F for this beer.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,156 | Reviews: 1,424
Photo of Kromes
3.56/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pitch black with a thick tan colored head. Good lacing down snifter glass.

S: There is a very sweet smelling vanilla and butterscotch aroma coming off of the beer. Overpowers everything. There is a slight coffee aroma in there also.

T: Almost more of the same, the vanilla, butterscotch taste is very, very strong. There are coffee flavors and a slight bitterness that I'm guessing is from the roasted malt. Not bad.

M: Heavier mouth feel. Dry and bitter finish.

O: It's different. Very strong vanilla and butterscotch aroma and flavors.

Photo of prototypic
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Crème Brulee Stout's a very dark brown, nearly onyx color. It's not quite opaque. There's a few ruby highlights around the edges, but not many. Sitting atop is a light mocha tan head that's a couple fingers deep. It procrastinates more than I expected in dissipating. It puts up a hearty fight against the 10% abv. Lacing was sticky and on the lighter side.

Given the fact that I could smell this beer as soon as the cap was cracked, there's no question about its strength. It's extremely aromatic. A short whiff reveals a wealth of vanilla bean and sweet caramel. It smells incredibly sweet and certainly nailed that "Crème Brulee" thing. Smell like a dessert? You bet your ass. Sweet chocolate is very prominent. There's a light coffee aroma that's a welcome surprise. The nose is no doubt impressive, but personally, it smells way too sweet. Very novel smelling beer though. No doubt about it.

Crème Brulee is one sweet beer. I don't mean that necessarily in a good way. It is very reminiscent of a dessert. Vanilla bean and caramel are the dominant flavors throughout. Did I mention how incredibly sweet this beer is? Chocolate malts add more sweetness and a pretty good malty flavor to it. I'm picking up a hint of coffee. That's a pretty nice touch, but would be better if it were more pronounced. There's definitely a hop presence that I didn't pick up on the nose. They add a bitter flavor and balance it (a little). Alcohol is very well masked and is barely noticeable. Pretty impressive for 10% abv. It finishes a little bitter, sweet, and a tad dry. It's not bad. Easily above average. But, it's just too sweet to be any better than that.

It features a body that's on the lighter side of medium. It's way too thin. Big badass stouts need big badass bodies. This one doesn't have it. Somehow it's still relatively smooth. Very light carbonation helps it a great deal, but it really needs to be more substantial. Drinkability's pretty average. It's way too sweet and too strong. A bomber of this stuff is too much. It's a flat out struggle to get it all down. My wife happens to like this beer. Where is she dammit?

Crème Brulee Stout's probably my least favorite of Southern Tier's Black Water Series. It's not a bad beer, but is best served in (very) concentrated amounts. It's extremely sweet and dessert-like. The flavor's pretty good the first few sips, but it grows very tiring very quickly. I don't feel quite as strongly about as some do. I definitely don't love it, but I don't hate it either. I definitely feel that it's a novelty that's worth experiencing, even if only once. Hey, if you're available, I still have a little bit of a bomber that I'd love to share.

Photo of br3wmeister
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours a large light tan head with good retention and some lacing. Very dark brown nearly black colored beer. The aroma is very very sweet. Vanilla ice cream in a waffle cone... yep that's what it smells like. Tastes of burnt cream, vanilla, light nuttiness, and very sweet sugary caramel. Also some light bitterness from the hops. The mouth feel is thick and creamy with a lingering chard/sweet flavor. This is a very very sweet beer that would be difficult to drink a lot of. A good suggestion was beer floats. I might have to finish this bottle with some ice cream.

Photo of Justin_Neff
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: dark colored with a thin-ish, but fluffy head that disappears rather quickly, however it does leave a good, long-lasting, sticky residue on the side of the glass throughout the drink. Wish the head stuck around more.

S: Strong caramel smells complimented with an overwhelming vanilla aroma. I actually really like the aromas.

T: This starts with a sweet vanilla taste, and finishes with a roasted caramel flavor. The sweetness from the lactose is a great compliment to the vanilla, but overall tastes a bit too artificial for my liking.

M: medium-heavy body. Could stand to be a but thicker, but does have a good creaminess.

O: This is a good dessert beer. Would be a good one for a 8-10oz pour. A bomber by yourself is just too much though.

Photo of dananabanana
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

A: Dark brown to inky black, thick white head.

S: Sweet vanilla caramel.

T: Sweet malt, coffee/espresso notes. Bitterness on the back of the tongue.

M: Very creamy!

D: Good, but the more you drink, the more bitter it gets. They took the "brulee" part a bit too seriously, the burnt flavor is too overwhelming to drink more than half a glass of this.

Photo of StinkyFishBoys
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Has the aftertaste of a man who doesn't eat his fruits when his girl in town.

Photo of katan
3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz into a pint

A - Pours super dark, opaque, black, thick. Head formation was quick, mocha colored, but it broke down into a film in a hurry.

S - Sugary sweet, almost like cake frosting. Vanilla is a strong component. Way over the top for what I would think a beer would need.

T - Starts off sweet, more of the frosting like flavors. Vanilla beans are strong. Mid-stream brings in some chocolate, cake mix, still very sugary and sweet. The milk stout comes through. Finishes with a hefty sweetness. The aftertaste has quite a bit of alcohol warmth.

M - A full bodied beer with a relatively low carbonation profile. Alcohol warmth is strong. Super sticky, sweet, clingy.

O/D - An interesting beer, but I don't know how to really judge it. It is so sweet, so strong, and it meets the name. However, as a strong milk stout, I don't know if I would go there. As far the beer, it is filling with a good hit of alcohol.

Photo of AnPiobaire
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This stout pours a rich dark brown to black with a very thin tan head that quickly recedes to the edge finishing in a halo around the stout.

Chocolate and vanilla dominate the nose when initially nosing this brew. It pulls no punches, as it states that it is what it is.

Initial taste of maltiness is quickly overtaken by chocolate and vanilla followed by a buttery caramel finish. It truly is creme brulee in a bottle.

This stout has a rich creamy mouthfell with moderate carbonation. More carbonation that I expected from such a rich brew.

Overall this stout is no doubt a dessert beer through and through. It is very difficult imagining drinking more then one pint in a row. However, as a dessert beer it does the job exquisitely. I would certainly reccomend this brew to others as a dessert beer only. To those who do not like sweet brews keep your distance. I would've scored this brew higher if it weren't so one dimensional.

Photo of heebes
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650 ml bomber
Part of thr LCBO's Winter Warmers.

Pours black with a tan foam head. The nose is very sweet vanilla, caramel, toffee, cream, candy. Taste is similar to the smell; heavy vanuilla toffee flavours, sugary. Mildly bitter finish. Creamy medium bodied mouthfeel. Very sweet, an extreme variation on a stout. Not a revist for me.

Photo of LeRose
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hard to comment on, so I tried to "midline" the rating. Trying to be objective as I really did not like this brew personally, but can see the merit. While a very well made and well crafted beer, the vanilla flavor/aroma was to me very overpowering and sticky sweet. Obviously a high quality brew, but I really am not a fan of the overall too intense, almost artificial, flavor and crème brulee is my second favorite dessert! I think there was enough going on with the base beer to warrant a good review, but personally I just did not enjoy drinking this. It felt like I had to work to drink it, and at the price I paid I was determined. I'll drink Choklat any day, but this was not an enjoyable brew for me. YMMV,

From notes...

Photo of jlindros
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Well, the first time I had this I thought it gave me diabetes it was so sweet. So I threw it in the cellar for a few years to teach it a lesson. Hopefully it learned that and it will be better. No date, but 3 or 4 years on it must have tamed this beast.

Pours a darker but not too dark colored fizzy head covering that fades pretty quickly, it tries to leave lacing but the alcohol shows it another thing or two, and it quickly disappears. The legs, however, are quite nice, and the beer is a dark essence of pitch black color, light keeps trying to get through but gets beaten down.

Nose, holy shit that's the essence of pure sugar! Like candied caramelized candy carmel... wow, candy kettle corn, brown sugar, molasses, plenty of creme brulee aromas, etc etc, oh and plain burnt sugar. It gets lots of cream aromas as well, milky cream and even a little eggy almost, but that could be my brain high on sugar vapors. Also lots of vanilla, lots and lots of vanilla like sugar marinated in vanilla and milk. Then some mild milk chocolate and cocoa aromas, and even a faint hint of espresso.

Taste, bgbggsshhsixjijsijsdofjodjfoajh, sorry sugar seizure! Wow sweet, candy up the... wait where does candy come from? Well there's just sugar everywhere, it's as sweet as I remember and maybe more. The 4 or so years in the cellar jail didn't tame this beast at all! Sugar, who doesn't love layers of sugar on layers of more sugar, brown sugar to start, molasses, candy, toffee, taffy even, caramlized sugar, candied caramel, and lots of creme brulee. Under all the sweet layers, and by layers I mean walls, comes a mild milk chocolate, more cream as well pretty creamy actually, no egg luckily, but again stacks of vanilla rolled in the sugar and cream and then burnt into cola syrup, and flan. Also hint of super sweet Brazillian style espresso. Finish is just ridiculous sweetness, sticky but not nearly as sticky as I thought, a bit more cream and vanilla, but tons more caramelized sugars, mild espresso dripped into pure caramel, and hint of warming booze.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, but like syrup, it even made my lips get that sticky feel like I just at a stack of pancakes covered in maple syrup, mild warming booze (only mild due to the huge eye popping syrupy sweetness), and decent carb.

Overall, well I am really mad at myself for cracking this by myself. If I somehow get through the whole bottle, I won't sleep for weeks, but at least I'll probably go for a 5 mile walk or clean the garage as I'll be so hyped on sugar. Hmmmm, maybe my Brazilian wife will like it since it's so sweet, let me see... her consensus, not too sweet (not surprisingly as she drinks ice wine and puts more than a 1/4 cup of sugar in one cup of coffee), just a bit too boozy and the espresso flavor is too much. Guess she won't be helping me finish it, I'm on my own. Too late to call in reinforcements, I guess I'll just cut it with lots of snacks and try to work my way through it.

Photo of chaz410
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Got this beast at the Grapevine in Fort Mill, thanks Dave for the constantly good service and great selection!!
This beer pours a tar-thick black with a dark kakhi head that vanishes fairly quickly.
Smells unlike any stout I've ever had. Hints of roasted barley, thick, thick caramel, nearly burnt sugar, much like a caramelized marshmellow. There's hints of coffee roast and bitter chocolate amongst the burnt carmel singe.
The taste is very similar to the smell but the roasty caramel (marshmellow) character is more present. There's a thick caramel and chocolate malt linger at the end and a good bit of alcohol burn. Honestly with the thick body, taste, and burnt quality of this beer, the alcohol burn is nearly welcome.
A thick, creamy mouthfeel, exactly what I wanted form this stout.
It's very robust and not easy to drink but worth the time taken to savor this beer.

Photo of arvidkoval
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Dark black body, no head. Lovely vanilla heavy nose... Smells so good! Boozey warming and some vanilla. Kinda bitter. Too much booze. Decent body for an imperial stout. Smells better than it tastes. I wanted to like this as much as Choklat! Booze killed it for me.

Photo of oberon
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

One of the few ST beers I havent had the chance to try,(it came out after I moved away from western NY)if you like creme brulee you will like this beer.Poured a jet black with a frothy one finger light mocha colored head,minimal lace was left as it settled rather quickly.Wow it cant get much more spot on in the aroma,burnt sugar and hefty vanilla/caramel aromas, with slight roast as well.Dessert in a bottle,the only problem is it gets cloyingly sweet in a hurry,big vanilla/caramel flavors with some mollasses as well,only a hint of dry roastiness comes through.My wife loves it and is finishing mine,I respect the job ST did in making this beer,its just to sweet for me.

Photo of gopens44
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

S - somewhere between my wife's International Coffees French Vanilla creamer and vanilla cake batter. Very pleasant but no hints of the beer species to speak of.

T - lot like a vanilla inspired stout that leaned too heavily on extract. Maybe some Bailey's taste. The alcohol presence is a clear and present thing with, finally, a malty backbone.

M - creamy! What else?! Some decent carbonation with a helluva aftertaste borfering on burnt marshmallow.

I just don't know about this. Maybe as an apertif, but it's still a little too imbalanced to truly enjoy on a regular basis.

Photo of iabeerbaron
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wow, awesome aroma for this beer. Smells like butterscotch, caramel, and vanailla. Really nice pour, medium tan head. Flavor was very good, but got to be a little too sweet for me. The vanilla, in particular, was a little too overpowering for me. Bomber bottle is way too much for me. Really unique brew.

Photo of Stevedore
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Split a 650ml bottle with my wife. Served in a snifter 4/20/2015.

A- Darker brown body, opaque, thick brown head with excellent retention time, fair amount of lacing feeding a thick, creamy film and collar.

S- Smells of pure sugar and vanilla bean aroma. That's all it is. It's very authentic, but it's very rich and sweet.

F- A tough one to drink more than a few ounces of, but it's very impressively vanilla-forward with some roasted, burnt malt. It pretty much tastes like what you'd expect. Very intense vanilla bean sweetness.

M- Medium bodied, as stated above, tough to drink due to how sweet it is. But otherwise it's put together reasonably well, good carbonation.

O- Jeezus, this is very sweet and not all that easy to drink. Not a favourite of mine by any means, but it is an interesting concept that they've taken to such an extreme.

Photo of dragonWhale
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

2 year old bottle of Creme Brulee held onto by my old coworker for me to drink with my old bossman. My fault for brewing a terrible beer with a creme brulee tea, my old bossman's least favorite ever decision of mine.

Black with big creamy head.. Smells delightful, creamy, sweet, sugary.. A little too sweet and thick, but overall, not a bad beer, a bit chocolatey. Tough to get down on. No alcohol to this big beer, dominated by the thick sweetness.

Photo of StlHopHead77
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a very deep,pitch black with a minimal,sandy brown head that resulted in a thin wispy,film on the glass.The initial pour revealed a discouraging lack of viscosity.

S-Butterscotch,toffee,vanilla bean and light roasted malts on the nose with a decent amount of lactose coming through.

T-Burnt sugar,more vanilla,baked custard and a creamy,alcohol taste similar to Irish cream.Some synthetic syrupy qualities also.Like the Monin flavored syrups you put in coffee.

M-Thin and lacking in the creaminess I would have expected from this beer.

D-A little too sweet and cloying to be anything other than a slow-sipping,split a bomber for dessert,one and done.

Photo of Aleks_P
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Fitting appearance for the style. Opaque dark brown, almost black, with a heavy and thick tan head.

Smell: Smell is the standout feature here, I noticed the caramel and vanilla aroma as I was pouring it. Smelled like candy. Normally I'd find this a bit offputting, but I did pay for "creme brulee" stout.

Taste: The alcohol is a bit overpowering for my taste, hard to notice the caramel/vanilla (other than the smell) or even the coffee notes of the stout. I was expecting something a little sweeter.

Mouthfeel: Feel the alcohol sting a bit, but otherwise nothing notable. Stoutlike.

Overall: I was disappointed with this one. Admittedly, stouts are not my favorite styles of beer but I've had enough of them to understand the style. Thought the beer smelled great but was disappointed with the taste, the alcohol was not masked and overpowered the beer.

Photo of draheim
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle (bottled 7/13/2011) poured into a snifter. Pours a pretty thin dark brown w/ a sliver of tan head that dissipates quickly.

Aroma is - well, unique. Burnt creme? Vanilla, caramel, roasted marshmallow.

Taste is syrupy sweet w/ a dark roastiness in the background. Vanilla extract, burnt marshmallows, egg custard, and condensed sweetened milk that's been left on the stove too long.

Overall, simply not a favorite. It's different, for sure - but not a beer I'll be drinking again. Bottom line, it's too sweet.

Photo of bfields4
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

On tap at grinder's bar

Pours a very dark black. A nice cinnamon brown head

Smells of coffee and caramel with a sweet chocolate.. maybe even a little bit like a creme brulee.

The taste is spot on what I remember a creme brulee tasting like (it has been several years). Velvety chocolate and caramel followed with vanilla and cocoa a nice roastiness to it too. Very sweet can hardly taste the alcohol.

It has about on average mouthfeel for its style smooth and only lightly carbonated a touch on the thick side for me though.

Would only drink this as an desert or maybe a night cap very nice sweet taste but just far to rich for what I would actually want in a beer.

Photo of FrankSchramm
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Smooth, sweet, big on vanilla.

Photo of ccrida
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into my Deschutes snifter, Crème Brûlée is an inky brownish black with a small, tight and creamy tan head that leaves very light, scattered lace.

Smell is strong and sweet, caramelized sugar and vanilla for sure, butterscotch, some coffee and light plasticy phenols and clean alcohol.

Taste is also very strong, bittersweet and nutty Similar to the aroma, Southern Tier definitely hit the mark for crème brûlée beer with this one. The lactose and caramel give make it eerily resemblent of a Starbucks Caramel Macchiato, which is not something I'm really into. While it may not be for everyone, I enjoyed it enough, although one bottle was plenty, as it was thick, sugary beer with really robust flavor.

Mouthfeel is sugary and slick, with a medium heavy body in the mouth but heavy in the stomach.

Drinkability is pretty good, not as scary as I feared, it wasn't the best thing in the world, but it worked well enough. Something to bust out every once in a while, I'll try cellaring my other bottle for a year and see what happened, as I'm really not sure what to expect, it probably will barely budge.

Photo of callmescraps
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Finally cracking this one open. Been staring at me awhile.

Appearance- Black. Ok, maybe just really, really dark brown. Whatever. It's got about a quarter inch of tan head.

Smell- Lots of stuff going on. Roasty, chocolaty, some vanilla. Almost nutty. Toffee and burnt sugar.

Taste- Sweetness. Just sweet as all hell. Toffee. Sugar, candy. Werther's Originals, or possibly french toast. Almost a sweet maple. A little roast? Look, it's all glazed sugar.

Mouthfeel- Surprisingly light carbonation, not too heavy.

Overall- It's too damned sweet. Just unreal. But it's also very interesting and original.

A for effort. Not so much for execution. I like some of these Blackwater beers, but this one is too damned sweet.

Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 4,156 ratings.