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Berserker Imperial Stout - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Berserker Imperial StoutBerserker Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

759 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 759
Reviews: 224
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 8.97%
Wants: 825
Gots: 201 | FT: 21
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  12.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Vicious and viscous, this menacing brew pours opaque black with a creamy maduro-colored head. Its aroma offers seductive whiskey, chewy red wine, dark fruit and lavish tobacco. Berserker Imperial Stout invades your taste buds with in-your-face flavor. Weighing in at almost 13% alcohol by volume, Berserker is completely out-of-control. Give it a good fight. Berserker Imperial Stout was aged in both red wine and whiskey barrels.

Original release of Berserker was at 10.4%, subsequent vintages have gone upwards of 12.7%. When reviewing, please list beer vintage and that vintage's specific ABV.

30 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-13-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 759 | Reviews: 224 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to cosmicevan (Evan) for this one. Sampled at a tasting 1/5/11. 5oz. pour into a Duvel sample tulip. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a viscous .5 finger of coffee colored head that dissipates into a thick ring of the same color that hugs the side of the glass. Beer is a dark, opaque black. Lacing is spotty and with no cling.

S: Subtle. Nose is milk chocolate, sweet soy sauce, prune, raisin, sweet brown sugar, caramel, roasted malt, and cocoa powder. Alcohol is completely hidden here and flavors are pretty spot on.

T: Opens chocolate, sweet soy sauce, sweet plums, raisin, and a slight booziness in the back. Almost all chocolate and dark fruit sweetness with near no roasted malt bitterness to balance this one out... which I appreciate actually. Finish is chocolate and slight alcohol. Aftertaste is more of the same.

M: Medium bodied and with low carbonation. Oily and slick. Silky in the mouth and going down. Very smooth. Finish is rather muted and aftertaste lingers.

D: A very desert-y imperial stout this one showcases the sweet side and really suppresses the roasted malt characteristics. Like a smoother, more balanced, and less intensely sweet ST Choklat. Definitely worth seeking out. This one was a treat.

SpeedwayJim, Jan 06, 2011
Photo of bum732
4.55/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

S: Very rich chocolate, perceived sweetness, some maple, bready, touch of roasty coffee, bourbon medium low. Just a touch of smokiness. More maple as it warms.

L: Syrupy thick, dark black, dark tan head that dissipates to a dusting and ring of foam.

T: Rich chocolate sweetness up front with a prominent backbone. Low bitterness with some soft coffee notes and molasses. Hint of maple and medium bourbon oak into the finish. Slight ash and some tobacco left on the palate. Semi-sweet finish.

M: Medium full body, medium low carbonation. Some heat.

Fantastic, reminding me a lot of Abyss with lots of components working together without being overly sweet like many RIS's nowadays. Maple was fairly low throughout, but not a major complaint. Would definitely drink again.

bum732, Oct 22, 2013
Photo of CoolEthan
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

CoolEthan, Nov 10, 2013
Photo of Photekut
5/5  rDev +14.9%

Photekut, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Stevedore
4/5  rDev -8%

Stevedore, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of JohnnieNepal
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

JohnnieNepal, Jan 15, 2014
Photo of CelticAleMan
4/5  rDev -8%

CelticAleMan, Apr 15, 2013
Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

- 2012 vintage / Cellared 30-Aug-12
- 22oz. bottle poured into stemless wine glass on 1-Dec-12 (aged just couple months).

Rich aromas: plums, molasses, dark roasted chocolate, and mild alcohol presence (for such a big beer).

Immediately notice the thick, chewy texture. Getting a lot of oak barrel with hints of bourbon; not as prominent as in others of style. Some wine/grape quality as well. All this under the prominent roasty chocolate and maple body. Letting this beer sit in the glass for 30+ minutes and warming to room temperature really opened this up in an incredibly complex way and really smoothed all the edges out. Great length. This is one of the more interesting BBA RIS that I've tried, if not the most.

- 2013 vintage
- 22oz. bottle poured into stemless Lost Abbey teku on 25-Dec-13 (fresh).

Same experience as the previous year, which is all good to me. Merry Christmas. Just wish I had another to cellar longer.

Rollzroyce21, Dec 03, 2012
Photo of KVNBGRY
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

KVNBGRY, Feb 08, 2014
Photo of BAsbill
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

BAsbill, May 22, 2013
Photo of 22Blue
4/5  rDev -8%

22Blue, Nov 21, 2013
Photo of DRBiser
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

DRBiser, Dec 18, 2012
Photo of greenspointexas
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

greenspointexas, Mar 23, 2014
Photo of josephwa
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

josephwa, Jun 13, 2013
Photo of thebigredone
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

thebigredone, Dec 10, 2012
Photo of joe1510
4.51/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bomber

12.7%

This is yet another Alaskan gem from the gentlemanly scholar known as AKBelgianBeast, thanks Sir Francis! Berserker? Well, there's no other word to describe this stout than pure coal black. I think light is actually afraid of the oil like black body of this beast. Two fingers worth of one of the darkest heads on planet earth formed on the pour and eventually fell to a skimming. A quick swirl brings it back easily. You know how chocolate milk looks when it's poured with the bubbly top? Well, that's Berserker's head for you. There's a good amount of stick left behind as well .

The nose on this giant beer is insanely complex. Roasty malts on the verge of being charred start things off but licorice, cocoa powder, and blackstrap molasses (in that order) follow closely behind. The bourbon is there but sweetly mild (or is that mildly sweet?). Faint vanilla here and there with sweet earthy sweet hints of cabernet wafting through in the back. Oak is poking its head out with a soft mingling vanilla character. This beer is a complexity bomb, without a doubt.

The flavor actually manages to outshine the nose, I don't know how but it does. Where to begin? Roasty malts, cocoa powder, dark chocolate, licorice, molasses, yada, yada, yada...This beer is a never ending evolution of flavor. The bourbon comes up front, the cabernet on the swallow and both add a touch of sweetness that keeps the roastiness in check. Oak manages to refine it as a whole to make it an absolute pleasure to imbibe. It's tough for me to do this brew justice. I barely ever give away 5s (especially for flavor) but this stout deserves it. Wow!

The mouthfeel is insanely good. Somehow it's so incredibly smooth and airy yet creamy and slick. Again, I can't even bring myself how to get into the descriptors. The body leans toward the heavy, obviously and the alcohol is barely noticeable. How do they do that?

For a beer of this strength the drinkability is amazing. No noticeable alcohol and this bomber is disappearing like I'm a fish. Berserker is one dangerously drinkable beer (cliché? Yes).

Well, what can I say that hasn't already been said? Not a whole lot I guess. This beer isn't even gone yet and I'm already fantasizing about the next. Thanks for this gem Beast, you da man!

Reviewed: 1/17/09

joe1510, Aug 19, 2013
Photo of woemad
4.28/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big-ass bomber that doesn't indicate which year it was bottled, only the month (November) and week (2nd). THe label DOES state that the abv is 12.7%. I think I bought this about a year ago at Enoteca in Post Falls, Idaho, which means it's probably of the 2009 vintage.

Poured a viscousy black color that gives up absolutely nothing when held up to light. 1/2 inch of dark mocha foam soom drops down to a foam collar. Spotty lace.

Big nose. I get sweet and bitter, like mollasses and prunes. Seems a little boozy as well.

The taste starts out like a spoonfull of mollasses that is immediately paired up with some dark, bitter fruit. There's also elements of pipe tobacco, coffee, and way in the back is the maple syrup - just enough to make it's presence known without sending the beer off into cloying land. As it warms, this beer gets more boozy. Slightly dry at the swallow.

Seems a little light in the body for an impy stout, but not to a disheartening degree. Slick, creamy mouthfeel nevertheless.

Outstanding dessert beer that I bought several months ago. Wish I knew for certain whether it was last year's or the year before. Regardless, it's tasty, and seems to be holding up.

woemad, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of cadaugherty
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

cadaugherty, May 08, 2013
Photo of anteater
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle

A: Oily black with a really good looking dark brown head

S: Bourbon, bitter dark chocolate

T: Really rich flavors of bourbon and bitter dark chocolate dominate, hints of espresso and molasses more at the end. Well hidden 12.7% alcohol

M: So thick and so good

O: I think this is better than a lot of the most highly rated bourbon barrel stouts out there. Lots of really well balanced and strong flavors

anteater, Aug 04, 2013
Photo of hooliganlife
3.85/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Blake!

Not sure on the vintage, I believe this is the latest so 2012? Maybe 2011.

Pour was black, little head. Pretty thick looking

Dark chocolate and roasted charred malt. Some sweet bitterness.

Lots of char and roast. Light sweetness, but well blended with the bitterness. Hints of dark chocolate and coffee.

A bit lighter than it looks, mild carbonation.

Pretty decent, nothing really mind blowing.

hooliganlife, Dec 10, 2012
Photo of brystmar
4.13/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage. Thanks to whartontallboy for bringing this last night!

Pitch black pour, mild tan head forms a ring around the surface. There's a significant fault in the aroma that my BJCP-certified gf quickly named, though all I can remember is it smelled like drywall from a construction site. Bleh...

Fortunately, the taste was unaffected: very dark and murky, plenty of chocolate. This is a straight-up RIS along the same lines as Darkness and Zhukov, and (aroma aside) it's just as well-crafted as those.

It's unfortunate that this was opened immediately after an incredible bottle of Cognac DL. I suspect my ratings for Berserker would be higher if that weren't the case. Still enjoyed this one quite a bit though.

UPDATE: The drywall aroma apparently came from my glass, not from the beer. Others who shared the same bottle said it smelled great. My bad!

brystmar, May 13, 2012
Photo of bbadger
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

bbadger, Sep 15, 2012
Photo of jmarsh123
2.75/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours black with a small dark brown head. Little retention and a little lacing. Very sludgy

Loads of molasses in the nose. Anise, baker's chocolate, espresso and soy sauce too. Smells like it's going to be sweet...

...and it is. Sweet molasses again dominates everything. Some good dark chocolate and oaked bourbon come through a bit, but sadly are hidden in the background. The same annoying soy sauce is back from the nose too. Bourbon is restrained and in this case, I wish it weren't as the base flavors are not great.

Very thick bodied beer with appropriately low carbonation style. Alcohol % is very well hidden.

Everyone who tried this was massively disappointed. Nothing seems "wrong" about this bottle, just did not like the flavors. Too much soy sauce kind of ruined everything for me, but even outside of that, not a great fan of the base flavors.

jmarsh123, Nov 05, 2012
Photo of campfirebrew
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

campfirebrew, Dec 09, 2013
Photo of bonkers
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

bonkers, Nov 02, 2013
Berserker Imperial Stout from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 759 ratings.