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

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Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)

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very good

4,033 Ratings
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Ratings: 4,033
Reviews: 1,380
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 17.69%
Wants: 333
Gots: 774 | FT: 30
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: 4,033 | Reviews: 1,380
Photo of case4816
4.89/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Very dark brown in colour, like dark coffee. Head foamed up to about half an inch, but then shrunk down to a light lacing.

S- Very heavy on the vanilla bean smell, first thing that comes through. Can also smell some of the lactose, very creamy. Also nice roasted malts come through, and a slight bit of hops at the end.

T- Tastes just like a French vanilla, or even a Creme Brulee! it's wonderful. The roasted malts come together with the vanilla to blend into the French vanilla flavour that is very strong but not overpowering. The lactose sugars come through as well with a nice creamy feel. Also the alcohol comes through fairly strong, but it not too strong or bad in any way. Hops are detectable at the end with a wonderful bitter finish that lingers for a short time.

D- I believe I have just found my new favourite stout. So tasty and easy to drink or sip.

Photo of gopens44
3.52/5  rDev -9.7%
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 AdamBear
4.6/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-black, good amount of tan head

S-it smells like a creme brulee times one thousand. I have never known a beer that smells more like the advertised flavor than this. caramel is very evident as well. i don't even have to drink this!...i'll have fun just sitting here smelling this one!

T-mmm wow tastes like a great caramel creme brulee. the taste is extremely strong and very sweet. there's a slightly bitter after-taste.

M-medium carbonation with a very slightly dry finish

D-very, i've purchased this many times and i always enjoy every bit of it! the taste stays extremely well. abv does hit sorta quickly tho.

Photo of Heritage02Rider
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had my first Milk stout this summer in Wis Dell, WI. So when I found STB had one, I made the ride to the brewery to try one. Low and behold there were no stouts on tap that day. Not being deterred, I bought a bottle of Crème Brûlée took it home and enjoyed.

While this is not one of the best milk stouts I have partaken in, it is good and worth a taste. I will have more when available.

A - translucent brown with light minimal creamy head.

S - First thing you notice is the unmistakable vanilla smell. It is rather overpowering, so there is little to no beer smell. (This is not necessarily a bad thing - just different)

T - sweet and strong. The milk (lactose) and vanilla bean adds a sweetness to the strong alcohol flavor with minimal stout flavor. After taste is vanilla for a moent and then it turns to stong alcohol after taste. (this can be a put off for some)

M - silky smooth and a bit bubbly for a stout

D - I had a 24oz bottle in one sitting. I would have had another if I could have, but I only bought the one. I would not drink this all night, but it is decent enough to have one or two.

Due to the high alcohol content you probably should use this as a primer for the rest of the partaking. I have no real idea of a food paring for something this string; perhaps a salty ham would be the best match.

Overall, I liked it, but price is a bit steep, yet I will most likely buy another.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.61/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours black with a slight mocha head. The nose is really quite extreme--even for this series--as it brings forward loads of sweet cream and vanilla along with burnt sugar. In the back are some roasted malts, coffee, and light chocolate flavors. The taste really brings the sweetness forward and it gets to be quite cloying. The mouthfeel is rather thick and a bit of an alcohol burn sets in toward the end. I would really have a difficult time drinking more than 4oz. or so of this, though the nose is incredible.

Photo of mbusster88
3.84/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer smells absolutely amazing once the cap is off. It pours a nice dark stout body, with a nice tan head. The aroma on this is that of butterscotch. Also in the nose are some notes of booze and even some roasted notes. The first sip of this beer is really overtaken by the aroma. Very good smooth stout, however it becomes more harsh as it heats up. Definitely serving it at 42 like described is a good idea. The overall taste on this beer is classic stout, some hops, loads of malt and some cream. However, the real thing here is the aroma. Not a beer to drink quickly, or often. But a nice winter warmer when the snow is falling and you need some heat.

Photo of MbpBugeye
1.57/5  rDev -59.7%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Well, I had this on tap last year. I hated it then, I didnt finish my pint. I also hated Pumpking about this time last year as well, but I have that another shot and now I love it. I grabbed a bottle of this in hopes that it would turn out like Pumpking.

A- Not nice and thick looking like the other Black Water Series beers. Its a clear rootbeer color on the pour and condenses in the glass as a black beer with cola edges. No head retains so there is no lacing.

S- The smell is what I remembered most about this beer. It will stick with you. I cant decide if it is good or not. Its a nice smell, but it is not a smell I can associate with beer. It smells like some sort of scented candle found in a tacky living room all decorated with "rustic country" things that are actually just cheap trinkets made to look old. It smells like Worther's Originals and vodka. There is barely any beer smells coming through.

T- It is how I remembered it. Wildly sweet with a spike of astringent alcohol, like vanilla extract with vodka. Its like someone took the extract used to make Vanilla Coke and fermented it to 10% abv. Its not so bad until the finish and the aftertaste. Thats when the nasty alcohol hits you and things get messed up. It stings the back of the throat with every swallow. The aftertaste is like vanilla vodka with Splenda.

M- Not full enough and too carbonated.

D- I am really fighting this bottle.

Photo of rudzud
4.59/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chilled the bottle as instructed on the label. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a dark dark brown almost black with a light brown slightly less than half a finger brown head that faded leaving a brown ring around the glass with almost no side lacing.

S - Wow, just wow. Never had a beer of any kind that was without a shadow of a doubt exactly what it claimed to be. This claims to be a creme brulee stout, and well..this is liquid creme brulee. You've got the sugary sweetness, of course, but more of a burnt carmel aroma with a very enticing kick of vanilla. Cant stress enough how much this smells like creme brulee.

T - Much like the nose this is huge on the sugary malts and burnt carmel flavors. This is really good stuff. The vanilla could be a bit stronger though. Very close to tasting exactly like a creme brulee.

M - Not sure what others were drinking but my bottle has plenty of carbonation. Low/medium carbonation but still maintains that creamy typical stout feel in the mouth. Considering that this is an imperial stout I'm really impressed by how this feels.

D - From what I understand this is a love/hate type stout. I most certainly don't hate this! Really, really delivers what it promises. While I couldn't drink this every single night, I wish I'd picked up some more to enjoy midwinter in front of the fire.

Photo of scottfrie
3.81/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Big thanks to SneezyAchew for this one.

A: Pours a molasses brown with a thin light brown head that receded into a thin collar that left a few spots of soapy lace.
S: Super duper extra crazy sugar sweet smelling with notes of vanilla and toasted marshmallow jelly-bellies, candy corn-like notes, molasses, caramel, and coffee with cream.
T: Follows the nose with a little bit more caramel and roasted malt notes coming through. Extremely sweet and a bit too dark to be called crème brulée. Very rich. Tastes a bit like a vanilla latte but sweeter.
M: Medium body, sticky, with low carbonation. There is a touch of alcohol present in the finish.
D: Wow. I've never had a beer quite like this. I'm glad I got to try this, and it is a great beer, but I don't think I ever need to drink it again anytime soon. Thanks Michael!

Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured into Sierra Nevada XXX snifter, 1-inch bubbly head with good lacing, appears to be almost jet black, but a touch of gold and red color is seen when held up to the light. The head disappeared rather quickly, so after swirling to agitate it, the aromas are overwhelmingly sweet, and exactly like smelling a creme brulee dessert. The side of Southern Tier Blackwater Series bottles show the ingredients:

Alc. 10.0 by Vol.
25° plato
2-row pale malt
dark caramel malt
vanilla bean
lactose sugar
kettle hops: columbus
aroma hops: horizon

And that's exactly what you will smell. Intense balanced aroma of caramel and vanilla. The added sweetness by lactose is fantastic, as lactose is an unfermentable sugar, so you're definitely drinking sugar. The taste of caramel and vanilla carries right over, and the sweetness hides the alcohol content. You expect this to be a dark beer with mysterious ingredients, but I can't smell or taste anything that isn't labeled on the side of the bottle, as hard as I try to believe they have a secret ingredient. The carbonation is there, but very light...almost creamy like a nitrogenated beer, so big plus for that. I wouldn't even say it's quite a medium-bodied beer, and doesn't stick to the inside of your mouth -- which is a feel of beer that I prefer in darker beers. Next time I drink this, I'd pour it over ice cream. Definitely a must-try. Don't over-endulge on this one.

Photo of BigJim5021
3.77/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

Pours pitch black with a head the shade of Nesquik. Pretty decent lacing too.

Holy hell, this really does smell like creme brulee. I mean, it smells really good, but this is downright bizarre. So on the nose that it's kinda scary.

The flavor is like a cup of coffee with some creme brulee flavored creamer. Again, the accuracy is startling. It's big and sweet up front with deep roast coming through in the end.

Mouthfeel is beautiful. Beyond full bodied, though not chewy. Silky smooth.

This is where it gets sticky, no pun intended (ok, maybe a little). I had no problem polishing off a bomber. On the other hand, I could easily go a year or more without the desire to have another bottle. And seeing as I had to have a good friend bring it back from NYC, that won't be at all difficult.

Photo of thekanna
4.67/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: pitch black with a barely perceptible ring of white head.

S: Gorgeous, syrupy vanilla extract and sugar with layers of creaminess and butteriness lurking underneath. Vanilla sweetness is overwhelming without being cloying.

T: Slightly medicinal and sour roasted malts lead to an aftertaste packed with vanilla bean, burnt sugar, caramel, and creamy perfection. Tastes exactly like how a crème brûlée should, but stands on its own as a fantastic liquid dessert.

M: Thick, oily, and coats the mouth, followed by low carbonation.

D: This is absolutely wonderful, and I bemoaned the fact that I had no more of this after I drank it all from my cup. An incredible beer, and one that I'll definitely return back to if I find it again in the store.

Photo of irishkyle21
4.02/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I could have sworn I reviewed this beer oh well. It has a lightly tanned head and a deep brown almost black color. Some nice lacing.

The smell of this beer is unbelievable. Loads of sweetness, smells like creme brûlée. Some syrup (like pancake syrup) and a little bit of roasted malts.

Tastes pretty much like I though it would. This is one big flavourful beer. Sweet, roasty, warming and one hell of a dessert beer. I can't see myself drinking more than one of these! But they sure are good.

Photo of beersensei305
4.44/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer was poured into a mini goublet. Pours black with no head. As it was placed in front of me you can smell the sweet vanilla aroma... just like a real creme-brulee. The taste is sweet sweet sweet vanilla and reflects it's name. There is a slight malt flavor and you can taste the presence of the high ABV. Overall, a great beer to have once in a while, but too sweet for my taste. I will have it again though.

Photo of civilizedpsycho
3.42/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On-tap into goblet.

Appearance: Pours a jet black color with a very small head with a little bit of lacing.

Smell: Well, it smells like creme brulee. Very appetizing if you like the dessert.

Taste: Has a strong roasted malt backbone with the creme brulee lingering in the background. I expected more of that flavor. Toward the end, it started to become a little tougher to drink.

Mouthfeel: Has a nice, full body.

Drinkability: As I said, it got a little tougher to drink and the glass empties. Plus the high alcohol content knocks it down for me slightly. Good to have one at a time, sometimes.

Photo of SkunkWorks
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh off the success of Choklat and Jahva, it was time to crack open a Creme Brulee. 22 oz bottle poured into a snifter. Served chilled as per the bottle's instructions.

Look: thin, brown head. This is a fairly light beer considering the style. Its definitely not black and is closer to a very deep brown with mahogany highlights when held near a light source.

Smell: this is as potent as Choklat is! I can smell it while the glass is sitting on the table in front of me before I even bring it to my nose. Smells, surprisingly, like creme brulee. Very vanilla with hints of roasted malts beneath and a slight alcohol smell. Exceptional.

Taste: very sweet. This is a very vanilla bean flavored beer! The lactose is noticeable. There's also the taste of caramel and hints of roasted malts as well. The alcohol isn't there in the taste when its chilled but it comes out when it warms up. When its warm, I picked up vanilla, roasted malt, and the alcohol. It becomes more complex but not as delicious as it warms.

Feel: not that thick, surprisingly. Its fairly thin and the alcohol bite comes out when it warms. There's no real bitterness in the beer until its warm.

Drink: very high. If I hadn't intentionally left some to warm up, it would've been gone in a few minutes.

Overall, this isn't the best of the Southern Tier stouts I've had so far but its still very tasty and very unique. Certainly worth a go!

Photo of bernardus1212
2.63/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

On tap at HOB "Thanks Jessica." Poured into a 6oz snifter. Black as night with a white head. the head stuck around for awhile. You can smell this beer from the other room. The most intese vanilla have ever seen in a beer. THe flavor was the same. It tasted like vanilla extract with a little dry hops. I like the idea but Southern Tier needs to consult CCB before trying this. Way too intense. Switched over to a Loose Cannon immediately. As a suggestion, I wouldnt try this in a glass bigger than a flight sipper.

Photo of BigBlacke
4.77/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Where do I start. I poured a bottle of this into my snifter and was speechless.

Without a doubt, the best smelling beer I have ever known. Smells of sweet cream, vanilla, caramel, and roasty coffee. Taste was just as remarkable as smell. Tastes of creme, coffee, caramel, and vanilla coated the palate with a creamy goodness. Sweet but not too sweet. All ingredients compliment each other in perfection. Drinkability suffers just a bit because of its desert like nature. I couldnt drink a whole lot of this at one sitting, but damn I wish I could. Un"F'n"believable. Love it!!!

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.82/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In a pint glass the beer was black in color with a very thin tan head.
The aroma was vanilla, chocolate, and roasted malt.
Vanilla taste, sweet chocolate, and espresso.
Nice enough beer, but way too sweet for my taste.
I could probably drink one of these, but would have a tough time drinking the whole 22oz in one sitting.

Photo of emmasdad
1.79/5  rDev -54.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

Thanks Dan, for the opportunity to try something new, something I would definitely not want a whole bottle of for myself. Pours an intriguing dark brown/black color, with the bare minimum of tan head. Aromas of vanilla, roasted malt, burnt caramel and cream. On the palate, this one was sickly sweet, with rootbeer schnapps, imitation vanilla extract and milk chocolate. Undrinkable, even in moderation. I was told this is a love it or hate it kind of beer, and I believe it. Unfortunately for me, I hated it. Probably one of the worst beers I've ever had.

Photo of Schmittymack
2.56/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Finally tried this tonight at Emmasdad's B-day/Passing the Bar celebration. Poured pretty dark (nice) with a very sweet nose. Tasted sweetness--LOTS of sweetness, almost to the point where I couldn't do more than a few ounces. I guess if you like creme brulee, this might be to your liking. Kinda iffy for a beer, though. Glad I tried this but seriously doubt I'd bother trying again.

Photo of domtronzero
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep dark brown with a big, fluffy, long lasting tannish head. Little lacing.

S - Frickin straight-up creme brulee. Vanilla, sweet milk sugars, chocolate and a little bit of actual malt bready aroma peaks through as it warms.

F/M - These guys nailed it! Awesome full-on creme brulee dessert in a glass. Rich chocolate, vanilla and sweet milk sugars. Thick, full, slick and medium-full bodied. Moderate carbonation makes it easy to put past the gums. Dry finish with a lingering sweet vanilla aftertaste.

D - Such a rich beer, and kind of gimmicky. Great on the flavors and aromas, especially for a dessert beer, but much more than a big glass of this stiff would be hard to put down. Very enjoyable though.

Photo of JMastrangelo
5/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Only slightly less drinkable than its fall cousin, Pumpking, this beer is a perfect dessert beer or something to drink during a cold night by a fire.

A- Dark as any winter's night, with minimal brown foaming at the top.

S- Creme Brulee. Those crazy bastards did it again, it smells just like you'd expect warm Creme Brulee to, while being cold. For me, someone that bakes, that's AMAZING. I can crack a bottle and people across the room have smelled it. But how does it..

Taste- Exactly as it smells, just like pumpking did. Delicious Vanilla and Caramel overtones, dancing around a coffeelike porter taste. The rich, syrupy taste left on your tongue afterwards reminiscent of hot chocolate syrup. Note, this does not taste like any other beer you'll have, be that good or bad. If you're expecting a traditional imperial stout, this is not the beer for you. This is unique and very rich, creamy, and sweet. Barely a trace of bitterness to be found.

Mouthfeel- Traditional imperial syrupy coating. Not too intrusive, but it's there.

Drinkability- Said it before, I'll say it again. One and done. Considering Southern Tier is a respectable but still pricey 7$ a bottle (on average), do you really want to kill two bottles in a night?

Men, if you have wives or girlfriends, even ones that claim they hate "beer", sneak this to them during a fancy dessert on your anniversary or valentine's day. Assuming they like chocolatey/coffeeish tastes, split this bottle between the two of you over a hot brownie, you may make a beer convert out of them yet.

Photo of DoreenAndDave
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer is almost jet black with almost no head. Smell is burnt caramel with vanilla and malt. It tastes, not surprisingly, like a creme brulee stout. Lots of vanilla and caramel. It's got a sweet and almost candy-like finish. The mouthfeel is a little heavy and thick. The sweetness is almost too much. It's a very rich beer---not one to drink quickly. I'm not sure quite what to make of this. It's good and quite interesting, but not a beer I'd want to drink often. It's kinda like drinking dessert. But I could see enjoying one of these a few times a year, especially during cold weather, when I'm craving something heavy and sweet.

Photo of vkv822
3.99/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into snifter.

The appearance is a fairly standard dark brown, almost black with a decent light tan head.

The aroma is overwhelmingly of caramel, with a light touch of vanilla. And while it is quite pleasant, it is an extremely un-beer like aroma.

The flavor is again of incredibly strong caramel and vanilla malts.
Unfortunately I can't really pick up many flavors past this though, so I don't have much to elaborate on besides to say that this is easily the sweetest beer I have tried, and that this beer could easily stand alone as a dessert.

The mouthfeel is creamy and medium to full bodied and very well suited for this beer.
This is quite drinkable, though you would definitely have to be in the mood for sweets.

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Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 4,033 ratings.