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

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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

3,867 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,867
Reviews: 1,332
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 17.99%
Wants: 299
Gots: 640 | FT: 27
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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 3,867 | Reviews: 1,332 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.63/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tarantula brownish black with blood red highlights. The beer is anything but a black hole and appears barely opaque when backlit with afternoon sunshine. Atop the liquid sits a golden brown sugar colored crown that gets the job done, including leaving attractive sheets of tattered lace on the upper reaches of the glass.

My nostrils don't have to get anywhere near the glass to appreciate the aroma. The beer smells like a flavored coffee drink that's dominated by caramel. I suppose it also smells like creme brulee, but I've only had that dessert once and that was more than 20 years ago. Do I smell coconut as well? Odd.

I can see how Creme Brulee is a polarizer. It's both different and delicious, but it's starting to wear out its welcome as the ounces cruise by. It doesn't seem possible that the brewers created this flavor profile with nothing more than dark caramel malt, vanilla beans and lactose. Then again, why not?

Creme Brulee is billed as an Imperial Milk Stout, but it doesn't really taste like it. That whole burnt sugar/creme caramel/vanilla vibe takes it in an entirely new direction. For my money, Southern Tier's Imperial chocolate stout (Choklat), Imperial coffee stout (Jahva) and Imperial oatmeal stout (Oat) are much, much better. Those first two are outstanding.

It's weird how I still taste coconut. That's in addition to the flavors described above, plus vanilla and melted milk chocolate. The Columbus and Horizon hops provide a background bitterness that keeps the beer from being overly sweet. In the end, it doesn't all come together as well as I'd like.

Considering the style and the ABV, the mouthfeel fails to close the deal. It's a fraction thin and isn't as creamy as it should be. The carbonation wouldn't be as noticeable in a plusher, more velvety brew.

The Black Water Series from Southern Tier contains some of the best beer on planet Earth. Unfortunately, Creme Brulee misses the mark (although not by much) because it pushes the envelope too far in one direction. Some love it, some hate it. I can take it or leave it.

Photo of mikesgroove
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Picked this one up in a trade recently. I had been dying to try it as I had heard some mixed things regarding it. Needless to say I just had to get it. Twenty two ounce bomber that was served at cellar temp and poured into an oversized wine glass.

One of the best pours I have seen in a long time. Rich dark brown, essentially opaque with a huge head of off white foam that reached a height of three inches before finally deciding to come down to around two inches and leave it at that. Huge amounts of side glass lacing just ringing the inside of the glass and thoroughly coating everything that was in sight.

The aroma was just insane. I am not even sure what to make of this one here. Rich and bitter vanilla flavor. A touch of light alcohol, but this was very well hidden. Huge aroma here, my wife complained later in the night she could smell it an hour after the bottle was empty. This was the thickest, most bitter vanilla smell you could imagine. The flavor was more of the same. Now I have heard mixed reviews about this and I can really see why. You have to take it for what it is. This is a dessert beer, this bottle should be shared with like four people as by itself, this is way too much for one person. I was really struggling towards the end, as the flavor was soo insanely sweet, maple sugar, vanilla, molasses, hints of caramel, I mean if it was a kind of sugar it was dumped in this in great quantity. There was a smooth, delicate feel on this with more then adequate carbonation making up the majority of the body. But still, even the aftertaste hung with you for what seemed like a day and a half. A sipper for sure, but something that needs to be shared.

Overall not bad at all, not the best thing, but for what the style is, this was actually pretty damn good. It looked and smelled fantastic, it was just the overall volume of this bottle was a bit much for me. Something akin to a KRE would be much better for this as it is needs to be sampled in limited amounts. A must try though for the novelty of it.

Photo of Knapp85
4.6/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has got to be my absolute favorite Southern Tier release. This beer pours out as a very thick black goop that lets off a thick creamy brown head on it. The smell is unreal, the burnt sugar aroma mixed to perfect with the sweet vanilla extract smell. My nose could stay in the glass all day on this one. The taste is sweet and slightly roasted, one of the best tasting beers I've had that is supposed to resemble another food of somekind. The mouthfeel is a slippery and thick, worth while for a long night of sipping from a snifter glass. Overall I love this beer. I know a ton of people don't but I find it to be a gem. Really want to get this one on-tap someday.

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
1.75/5  rDev -55%

Photo of womencantsail
1.43/5  rDev -63.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A: The pour is a dark brown color with a khaki colored head that settles down to a thin layer.

S: The amount of butterscotch, caramel, vanilla and burnt sugar in the nose is nearly unbearable. I felt like I got a cavity just from smelling it.

T: I thought the nose was bad, but jeeze. This is pure, unadulterated sugar. Butterscotch, burnt sugar, vanilla, caramel, and some sugar on top for good measure. A bit creamy, but who really cares?

M: The body is medium with a low carbonation and a tooth rotting sweetness.

D: I'm pretty sure I am diabetic after having taken a few sips of this beer. So unbearably sweet and sugary without any sort of balance.

Photo of largadeer
2.63/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Appearance: Pours a near-black color, more dark brown, with slight translucency when held to light. Head retention isn't great, but we're talking 10% beer here.

Smell: Intensely aromatic - I could smell this one as soon as I uncapped it. Surprisingly, this does smell like creme brulee - it's got the burnt sugar, cream, butterscotch and vanilla you'd expect. This doesn't so much smell like beer as it smells like dessert. I don't necessarily mean that in a good way.

Taste & mouthfeel: The taste has all the creme brulee character of the nose, along with - thankfully - a bit more actual beer flavor. Bitter roasted malt flavors lend a necessary balance to the sweetness, which is still very much at the forefront here. The finish is bittersweet, bitter eventually prevailing, leaving a lingering coffee note on the palate.

Notes: Got this one from Dyan - thanks dogg. This is fun stuff, but I recommend sharing; a couple ounces is plenty. On a side note, this would make one seriously decadent beer float with a scoop of vanilla icecream.

Photo of oberon
3.45/5  rDev -11.3%
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 ChainGangGuy
4.47/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, near black body with a thinnish, short-lived, light beige head.

Smell: Oh-so sweet-smelling aroma crammed with full notes of roast, vanilla beans, charred sugars, caramel, chocolate and burnt cream.

Taste: Strong flavors of dark caramel, chocolate, roast, unbaked cookie dough, honey-soaked oven-toasted nuts, and fresh vanilla. Tons of sweetness throughout. Southern Tier, like the Indians, used every part of the vanilla bean. Creamy milk, fire-licked sugar crust. Touch of roasty bitterness, but, let's be honest, nowhere near the level needed to even begin to temper the dessert-like sweetness. All of the flavors race across the palate on the way to the coffee-ish finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium-low carbonation. Creamy, velvety, succulent mouthfeel.

Drinkability: All kinds of fantastic. Very yummy, very luscious, very enjoyable. Highly recommended, but beware, as this is a true love it or hate it brew. Hopefully, you'll be in the love it camp.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i should start by saying a bomber of this for a single person is more than challenging. its downright difficult. however, this is a clever one, totally distinct from anything else ive ever had out there. the pours is inky black, just a little brown left visible, with zero head, just a think mocha colored film. the nose is brilliant, burnt sugar, scorched chocolate malt, brown butter, brutal sweetness, this has all the elements of a delicious french dessert. the flavor too is very akin to the genuine article, although it is a diminishing marginal return really, as the sweetness starts to rot the teeth and the gut after about a third of the bottle. vanilla beans heavy through the front end, while the brnt sugar custardy component comes in later. the dark malts last throughout. alcohol also becomes quite potent as it warms up. the feel is thick as any beer ive had i think, super dense, quite custardesque really, as it well should be. minimal carbonation exacerbates this feature. overall im glad i got to try this, because it truly is yummy and unique, but this is not a beer that can be consumed with any kind of efficiency or regularity, it is indeed a monster. the sugar just makes it gnarly to drink much of. the label is brilliant, and the beer is just as good. a must try, but proceed with a couple of buddies!

Photo of biboergosum
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Oak Cafe in Wyandotte, Michigan.

This beer pours a solid black, with cola edges, and one finger of foamy, cloud-top head, which leaves a wall of painted lace around the glass as it gently recedes. It smells of caramel ice cream topping, and little else. The taste is still big with the caramel/vanilla sweetness, but also some graininess, bitter hops, and rather astute booze astringency. The carbonation is low, the body a strong medium weight, sugary, with a forced creamy body. It finishes with a caramel vanilla, vegetal hop character, with some booze close at hand.

Truth in advertising, if ever was - even if things sour a bit towards the end.

Photo of emerge077
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Black, slightly dark brown on the pour. Tan foam and spotty lace. Huge vanilla aroma, pretty right on with the Creme Brulee name. Candy sweet. Not quite as perfect as Kuhnhenn's rendition in the aroma.

Sweet vanilla, brown sugar, maple syrup, with an undertone of chocolate. Earthy bitter hops surface towards the end, lending to the bittersweet chocolate flavor. Roasted malts in the middle too, buried under the sweet elements. Feel is lactic with a boozy kick to it.

This bottle was split 3 ways. If I had more than 8 oz. at a time, that might be pushing it, as far as drinkablity goes. Worth a try for sure, i'll be getting another one to make a float with.

Photo of zeff80
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a small, light brown color. It left little to no lace.

S - It smelled of tons of vanilla, some chocolate and sweet, sweet caramel.

T - It tasted of vanilla, vanilla, vanilla. It really tasted like creme brulee. Caramel, vanilla and touches of toffee.

M - It was soft and smooth with a sticky mouthfeel. A medium to full bodied beer.

D - This is an amazing beer, however, it is a lot to drink at once. I shared it was some family but it was still very heavy.

Photo of TMoney2591
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I do so enjoy beers that stay true to their names. This 'un pours a straight obsidian topped by a finger or so of light tan foam. The nose is a dessert in its own right, comprising buttercream frosting, vanilla, cane sugar, chocolate syrup, maple syrup, molasses, sweet toffee, powdered sugar, and a vague sense of french toast or funnel cake. You know, sweet breads and whatnot. If I could literally eat smells, this would near the top of my list in terms of desireability. Happily intrigued, a taste must be had. A lot of the sweeter notes are still there, but are subdued, allowing some light roasted malts to come through, ensuring a more well-rounded, if somewhat weaker, tasting experience. The body is a rather hefty medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a rich, velevety feel. Damn, I enjoy this brew. Even better, the smell tends to linger in my apartment, allowing me to enjoy its sweet, sweet smell for a few days hence. Good times.

Photo of JAHMUR
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.47/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, what an incredible beer! Of course I got robbed for it... $7 for 10 oz. glass at the Diamond in Brooklyn. I could have just bought a bottle, but in the end I guess it was worth it. Oh, and the bartender refused to give me a sample first, she said that would cost $2!!! But I digress. The 10 ounce glass was probably just the right serving, as it is sweet and any more would have been just a touch too much. It's really a dessert beer, although I enjoyed it right at the bar none the less. Massive amounts of vanilla, caramel, and sweetish, cocoa-accented malts are found in the nose. It actually kind of smells like cake! And that carries over into the flavor. Vanilla. Caramel. Cocoa. Sugar. Butter. Chocolate. And just an edge of roastiness underneath. It's sweet but it somehow manages to keep from becoming cloying, and that's at least due in part to the roasted malts. Remarkably smooth. Creamy. Utterly (pun intended) remarkable. That said, this is a very special beer, and would be perfect for special occassions. Valentines day. Christmas. And it makes an undeniable eye-opener for women who "don't like beer". Oh, and I wonder how this would be alongside Lindemann's Framboise - or even mixed together? I am definitely going to buy more of this!

Photo of nickfl
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours with one finger of medium brown head on top of an opaque, black body. The foam settles slowly and leaves light lace.

S - A sweet aroma of vanilla and coconut with a bready note that makes this beer smell like really good cake.

T - Sweet malt up front with notes of coffee, vanilla, toffee, and a hint of coconut. The toffee intensifies in the middle and more caramel character comes out to play with the vanilla. The beer finishes with a sweet note of caramel and rum with a little bit of spicy alcohol and herbal, turkish coffee.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - If there was ever something that could truly be called a dessert beer, this is it. The vanilla is strong throughout, but it is especially vibrant in the aroma. There is a deep, rich caramel note to the flavor that really reminds me of flan. It is sweet and rich and weird and I doubt that I will find myself craving this particular beer again any time soon, but it is still a very well executed take on the idea of turning creme brulee into beer.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 9/4/08 at Doherty's East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of strong creamy chocolate and vanilla along with roasted malts.

T: The taste is very malty and sweet up front as you would expect from an "imperial milk stout" with strong milky flavors of chocolate and vanilla. There's a mild but complimentary hops presence that brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is sticky.

D: Tasty and flavorful, goes down dangerously easily, slightly filling, deceptively strong kick, very good representation of style, since this beer is so heavy, it's a good sipper to sit down and relax with and also works well as a desert beer.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Fathead's sampler glass from the Steel City Big Pour fest...I'm sharing with family and friends. Pours pitch blacdk with a tan mocha head, fine even lacing scattered on the sides of the sampler glass. Aroma is full of creamy milk chocolate, caramelized nearly burn sugars, a touch of alcohol. This beer smells sweeter than dessert and tastes like cream filled cocolate/burnt marshmellow crusted in caramel. A dessert beer that I wouldn't drink a 22 ounce bottle of unless I wanted to pay for it. Mouthfeel is creamy syrupy but so worth it, I don't think it's designed forme but it's delicious. Drinkability overall agan it's way to sweet and cloying to drink in number or volume but if you taste it your amazed with what Southern Tier is doing with beer.

Photo of Kegatron
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pretty dark black with a very thin tan head. Nose is so heavy with vanilla that it reminds me of Coffeemate Vanilla Whatever-It-May-Be. Highly sugared, very sweet. Flavor is sweet as well. It really almost hijacks the experience. But there is a slight roasted edge that kind of adds a slightly different dimension to it that helps keep it interesting. Overall though, it is very sweet. And knowing how big the bottle is ahead of me, I'm not really sure how I am going to drink it all. Feel is smooth on the liquid, and I mean rrrreeeal smooth. Carbonation is low, but as it should be. This is very drinkable, yes. I think the problem is that the bottle is a bomber. 22 ounces? I mean come on. You need to share this with a party of six people to keep it pleasureable. As a side note to all brewers: The first person to brew this kind of thing and bottle it in say a 6 or 7 ounce bottle might have something interesting on their hands. Bottom line is that this is yet another well made and interesting beer from Southern Tier. I don't know what happened to their brains over there, but hey...keep it up.

Photo of jlindros
3.51/5  rDev -9.8%
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 Slatetank
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 3,867 ratings.