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

Berserker Imperial Stout - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Berserker Imperial StoutBerserker Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

898 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 898
Reviews: 237
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 8.99%
Wants: 835
Gots: 233 | FT: 29
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-13-2005

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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 898 | Reviews: 237 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CoryR
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.72/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2008 Berserker. I think this came from Beerzebub. He is the man, regardless.

A - It pours black as a crow with ruby edges and is capped with a persistent film of dark khaki froth.

S - The nose is just so luxurious and decadent. Cinnamon ice cream, streusel topping, dark fruit, dates and figs, vanilla, cardamom, caramelized sugar, fudge, pipe tobacco and oatmeal are all noted. Delicious.

T - This beer tastes fantastic. Maple, molasses and barrel notes are heavily integrated, also something like chocolate-covered prunes. Some oxidation is noted; it is well-integrated though. Oak is present in appreciable quantities, however, it is subtly applied. There is a lot of dark-fruity character. As it airs out, some herbal hops come out and there is an increased sweetness on the finish. Hugely complex and very delicious.

M - The feel is a bit lighter than I expected, but it makes up for it with a silky texture and soft micro-bubbles.

O - Great stuff. Breaking news: Midnight Sun makes great beer.

Photo of anteater
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
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

Photo of jampics2
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of rye726
4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Recent vintage, 12.7%

Pours a thick oily black with a silky espresso head. Nose has fudge, molasses, coffee, oak, caramel, vanilla, red wine, spicy booze, roasty malts and dark pitted fruits. Taste is nice, but lack depth and complexity found in nose. Full creamy body, nice finish. Drinks well.

Photo of DonFrap
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of BAsbill
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of jegross2
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of Resuin
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of mychalg9
4.68/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of campfirebrew
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Zbeetleman
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of KVNBGRY
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.52/5  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.

Photo of sholland119
4.33/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to travisd13 for the chance to try this one.

A-Black, impervious, opaque jet black with a thin pool of brown head. Excellent.

S-Boozy vanilla, some sweet herbiness, dark chocolate, dark fruit.

T-Lots going on here. Sweet vanilla, maple syrup, roasted malt, bittersweet chocolate, bourbon balls and some dark fruit. Some molasses too. Complex and delicious.

M-Medium bodied with just a bit of heft, very fine carbonation is a pleasant surprise.

O-Really terrific. Any alcohol is very well hidden, the flavors are rich and complex but not overly heavy. Worth seeking out.

HV

Photo of JRod1969
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of brotherloco
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bomber. Bottled 2nd Week November 2010. 12.7% ABV

Pours pitch black with the darkest mocha head I've seen in a beer. Foam dissipates quickly to form a thin ring.

Smell reveals the sweet maple syrup and molasses the this beer is brewed with. I'm getting more of the maple. Vanilla notes from the oak barrel aging are also present. Kind of a red wine tinge too.

First sips are silky smooth, but with a pleasant bite to the flavor. Cherry chocolate and coffee maltiness. Very pleasant sweetness. Molasses is stronger in the flavor than the nose. I'm also getting a note of Belgian-style fruitiness. There is a touch of smokey bourbon in the finish.

Fantastic feel to this beer. Smooth, rich, low to medium carbonation. There is real heat given the high ABV, but the feel and flavor make this a very drinkable imperial stout.

Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of djaeon
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of Kopfschuss
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of aerozeppl
4.74/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

demadows went to the cellar for this one. 2008 bottling. Thanks for the share.

A: Super dark. Jet black. Very nice rich and deepcoffee colored head.

S: Oak and vanilla. A little bit of coconut. Chocolate. Roast. Little bit of oak. A touch of boooze in the back. An insanely complex nose.

T: The taste was just like the nose. That little bit of coconut I got just put this one over the top for me. This had everything you want in a Russian Imperial Stout. Very smooth.

M: Full bodied and well carbonated.

D: An amazing beer. World class. I really enjoyed this beer a ton. Highly recommended. Thanks again to dmeadows.

Photo of CrellMoset
4.2/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber, 2008 vintage, courtesy of alaskajoe, a fine trader and a standup gentlemen who threw in some great extras when he was forced to postpone his end of the trade that brought this beer to me because of an illness. This is my "2 years on BA" anniversary beer, and even though the actual anniversary was yesterday, this was the first opportunity I had, so here goes. Poured in to a 22 oz. brandy snifter.

Appearance: Pours a huge, thick, chewy black, oily and slick, with a mildly aggressive pour yielding a head approximately one inch high. The head is one of the darkest I've ever beheld on a beer, a deep, intensely-hued cocoa, darker than I can in good faith refer to as "tan." Burned tan? Let me pull out the color wheel. The lovechild of sienna and russet, perhaps. Regardless, though the color is intense and impressive, the retention leaves a little to be desired - the finger has faded to a few random patches of surface dusting inside two minutes, and the collar is almost nonexistent. The carbonation on this one is evident from the get go, with plenty of relatively (for the style) fast and fine carbonation racing up the sides of the snifter. The lacing is similarly lacking in the retention department

Aroma: Tons of gentle light juicy fruits, cranberries, blueberries, and prunes melding with spicier licorice, a mild hop bitterness, and a smooth, slight alcohol burn. The malts are wide ranging, from dark toffee to burnt coffee.

Taste: Complex and varied. Bittersweet cocoa and toast dominate up front, though they're blended with the most surprising aspect of this beer - the fruits. This one's full of light, fruity notes that generally end a bit of a sour, cleansing quality, but individually present some cherries, prunes, and fainter raisins, as well as a definite tannin-like quality. But let's not forget the other end of the spectrum. Beyond the cocoa and toast mentioned above, there's plenty of earthiness, anise, faint smoke, and even some char. The light and the dark compliment each other surprisingly well, and somehow manage to cover up about 95% of what I would expect would be the average amount of spicy heat you'd get out of a beer that is 12.7% abv, as the 2008 vintage of Berserker indeed is.

Mouthfeel: A surprising amount of carbonation on this one, and a relatively thin body to boot. This is not the thick, viscous, oily beer I had thought it would be up above based upon the appearance, and even after the carbonation calms down, it's still a relatively moderately-bodied brew.

Drinkability: This one was fantastic at first sip, then sort of slipped a little, and really came back in to its own as it hit room temperature. This is about as good as it gets (drinkability-wise) at 12.7%, and it doesn't show anywhere. Amazing with sharp cheddar, solid on its own, I'm thrilled to have the chance to try this one. Though it had its drawbacks - the body to a degree, the high abv%, the head retention - it really shined in others.

Photo of WeisGuy
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of inlimbo77
4.17/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz, 2012 vintage (new bottle design)
Mini snifter

A: Pours out a pitch black color. Half finger dark tan head that faded pretty quickly. Leaves some lacing sheets. Even in the small snifter I can see some alcohol feet here.

S: Really beautiful nose here. Lots of vanilla and oak. Molasses. Good amount of sweetness, caramel and toffee. Those flavors are dominating the roasted malts and coffee RIS flavors.

T: Up front, bitter chocolate and molasses mesh well together. As the flavors move to the middle of the mouth, you get more barrel character. Sweet notes of caramel and vanilla and toffee. Long finish, but still fairly dry on the close. BIG beer. Felt the alcohol, even though it was well integrated.

M: Full bodied. Lots of mouth coating.

Photo of DRBiser
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Berserker Imperial Stout from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 898 ratings.