Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial StoutSloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout

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

75 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 75
Reviews: 48
rAvg: 4.43
pDev: 7.9%
Wants: 323
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beersabound on 11-03-2007

SLOTH Belgian-style Imperial Stout is deliberately dark as hell. The pour is slow and sluggish. Its head is menacing, becoming torn and tattered Belgian lace on the sides of the glass as you cautiously consume this brew—sip by insidious sip.

The aroma is sweet from heavy malt and big alcohol with notes of vanilla, coconut and whiskey from the oak. The depth & breadth of roasted malt flavors loiters on the palate while the robust finish lingers, well, forever.

20 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 75 | Reviews: 48
Photo of Thorpe429
3.38/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to AgentZero for making this happen. Served in a Midnight Sun goblet. Pours near-black with a short off-white head and not much in the way of lacing. The nose has a pretty heavy amount of roast with some light barrel character. Some chocolate and just a bit of vanilla in the background. Not getting much from the Belgian yeast at this point. Flavor is similar and fairly muted. Seems a bit oxidized. Heavy malt character with roast and chocolate. A bit undercarbonated. Nice, but just seems to fall flat like it’s well past its prime, unfortunately. Still, very fun to try.

Photo of beersabound
3.73/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

20 IBUs. Sloth is impenetrable to light. The dark brown head with tan tones lazily rests; seemingly not wanting to go anywhere. Wafts of candi sugar, alcohol, roasted malt and dark cherries slowly rise from the glass. The long lasting flavors of alcohol, dark fruit, molasses and chocolate coat my tongue and seem quite comfortable there. Like fleece PJs on a leather couch, the low carbonation and full body relax and sink into my tongue for a good spell. As it unhurriedly rolls in my mouth's confines neither it nor I seem motivated for it to leave. The aftertaste is eternal. This is a sipper for a cold night without much to do.

A noble effort and big beer with some unique flavors. It's a little sweet and rough around the edges right now but I am interested to see how it ages. Wasn't sure what to style to put it in. But I like RIS was more fitting than American Double stout.

Photo of ccrida
3.85/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a bottle of this about 14 months ago, and happy to find this on tap that the MSBC loft. Sloth is a very dark brownish black with a small tan head leaving scattered lace.

Smell is pretty weak for such a big beer. Served on the colder side, but even as it opened up, it stayed on the muted side. Caramel mostly, some char.

Taste is pretty good, a big chocolaty stout, but a bit heavy-handed with the crystal for my taste, which gives it a sharp, malty finish. Less roast then Earth (their milk stout), I'm guessing there's a heavy does of black patent malt, given it that acrid finish (which they struggled to counterbalance with the crystal).

Mouthfeel is extremely creamy, viscous but only medium-heavy bodied, with a smooth, but very long lasting finish.

Drinkability is pretty good. The first few sips blew me away, but the intensity wore out my palate in a hurry. Still, a very good beer.

Photo of hrking
3.88/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in trade from Grumpy. Nice well made Belgian stout that has a great drink ability and well hidden alcohol content. Sweet but not overly syrupy if you've ever had a Darkness this is like a Darkness turned down to about a 7. Malty chocolate with a easy aftertaste that leaves a nice pleasantness on the palate. Pours a dark black with a quickly diminishing head. One of my first brews from Midnight Sun and this is a well crafted beer. Very nice and was glad I had the opportunity to have had this beer.

Photo of CharlieMurphy
3.88/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Still on tap @ Midnight Sun. Preeetty cool.

A: dark black with a VERY minute white head hiding on the shore. Looks deep and abysmal but thin like hot syrup.

S: booze, chocolate sweetness, licorice. Mild overall

T: bourbon for sure but this seems to be very mild and delayed in its presentation, I want to see this is either very old or not 100% bb aged. Notes of coconut, vanilla, port wine, toffee. Again very soft bourbon. Very enjoyable with lots of *Subtle* complexities

M: the body almost reminds me of a new holland stout ( port like ) at least initially. Carbonation is low which is what it is but the body is also very thin. Finishes as elegant yet dominant as Lynn Swan

O: cool to try, but trying to trade for a bottle would be half-ritard

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.99/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is blacker than wesley snipes. There is absolutely no light through it, It is crude oil black. The head is dark tan with good lace and kind of glitters. Good lace. The nose is semi-weak for an imperial stout, it lacks smoke flavors in the smell and alcohol is present. At first taste it tastes more of espresso than coffee and has some chocolate flavor. Molassesy tones in the middle with some sugar. Thick and chewy, yet smooth going down, but the aftertaste has some excessive alcohol notes, by no means abrasive though. A slight (very) hop flavor in the finish as well. The mouthfeel is quite good. Thick and creamy with chewy texture. sugary residue remains on lips and in the corners of the mouth. Drinkability is high for an imperial stout, but i would rather have more smoke and malt flavor in sacrifice. Great brew from the boys at m sun once again. This one will do very well in the cellar. Get it. Get it now! now!

Photo of boralyl
4.05/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark black with no light coming through. It doesn't have much head, but what's there is a dark brown that settles as a ring.

S - The aroma is full of roasted malts. I used to work at an ice cream shop, and it reminds me of our coffee flavored variety. There is also some alcohol present as well, reminds me of brandy.

M - A full bodied beer. It feels quite thick and smooth. It's carbonated well for the style.

T - Chocolate and roasted malts make up the beginning and middle. A small amount of warming alcohol flavor shows up along with some hops bitterness at the end. The alcohol flavor is surprisingly well hidden. It leaves a roasted coffee taste in your mouth after it goes down.

A nice big stout. Has a nice complex aroma and flavor and makes a great beer to sip.

Photo of younger35
4.07/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Received this brew from Mikesgroove not so long ago. This will be the first non hoppy of the Deadly Sins I've had and I look forward to it. Drank from my Darkness snifter.

Deadly Sin 4 of 7.

Appearance- Pours a super thick dark black with a decent enough half fingered dark brown head. A thick collar is maintained the entire beer along with a few random spots of lacing.
Smell- Starts off with loads of molasses and dark fruits. The usual dates, plums and raisins before a deep brown sugar/caramel aspect steps in along with a heavy dose of dark chocolate and coffee. The nose is very intense and does have a Belgium bit of spunk to it. Also a bit of something bourbon like with the intensity of the alcohol and I could swear this was barrel aged. It has that sort of tannic woody aspect. Who knows.
Taste- Wow. Deep and dark with a sort of dark fruit and licorice start. Actually, a lot of black licorice is noticeable throughout the beer surprisingly. Plenty of charred malts keeping everything roasted along with some sweet chocolate and caramel. The milk chocolate is somewhat Tootsie Roll like and the brown sugar aspect actually gets sort of sweet. Maybe a bit of coffee and molasses and a tinge of the 10.5% steps in.
Mouthfeel- Very thick and rich with a big full feel and light creamy carbonation. Absolutely perfect feel.
Drinkability- The beer is very rich and damned tasty. BUT, it has the one deadly sin that I HATE in beers, it's sweet and fairly cloying. Could definitely be worse but now that I'm on my second glass it's a bit much. Tasty brew for sure but one glass is a plenty. Thanks for the opportunity Mike!

Photo of mentor
4.17/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thin layer of very dark browwn head over a pitch liquid. Clingy head hangs. Smells clean alcohol, vegetal, chocolate, mild aromas overall. Decent williamette hop aroma.

Tastes chocolate sweet with balancing alcohol clean. Currant, brown sugar, and a bit of zip. Some roast underneath, but not a potent coffee (tamed and nice). Fuggle-type hop rises up retronasal. Thick liquid and modest carbonation. Highly drinkable.

Photo of cpetrone84
4.18/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had again end of 2011. A few quick notes, lots of rich cake like flavors, notes of fruit in back with some ashy malt in middle. Bright flavors, balanced and complex. Rating based off of most recent tasting.
***
Big thanks to Jeremy for the tasting on this one!

A-pours a viscous jet black liquid with a dark tan, bubbly head that lingers for a moment leaving no lace.

S-the nose is quite nice, notes of chocolate and lots of savory fudge, light touch of oak with a solid dark fruit presence in the back.

T-lots of milk chocolate and vanilla, good roasted presence with dry oak accompanied. ripened dark fruits add sweetness and vinous characteristics with a touch of belgian yeast and a light smoked peat moss behind.

M-very soft, smooth and silky on the palate with a full body that avoids being heavy yet not thin as many barrel aged beers can become.

D-huge flavors that blend perfectly together and brings such complexity. the barrel aging stands up just right leaving a full body with the soft belgian feel. awesome beer!

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an onyx black body topped by a tall, dark tan head.

Smell: Aroma heavy on the roast, and boozey, too. Notes of burnt wood, dark caramel, chocolate, a puff of smoke and, once allowed to warm a bit, a medley of dried fruits.

Taste: There's an intense charred, smokey roastiness upfront followed by a sweet dark chocolate taste to make it bearable. Tastes of caramel syrup, fire-scorced marshmallows, and a bit of fruit. Mild oak character. Medium earthy bitterness that recedes as you approach the finish. A touch of oak and yeast (and booze) for the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: This stout is top notch, Midnight Sun!

Photo of brewandbbq
4.31/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The bottle opens with a rather enthusiastic vent.
Presentation is opaque jet black, with only a half-inch head of brown foam with a stretch-pour.
Absolutely no translucency in the edges when held to a spotlight.
Aromatics are loaded with chocolate cake batter spiked with coffee dust. Heavily roasted, with char and nougat following through.
The mouthfeel is massive. Very thick and chewy, but beyond that there seems to be an elevated carbonation level that allows the brew to somewhat expand on the pallet. Slighty coarse with gummy particulates.
The pallet is full-on, over-the-top Imperial Stout. Rich and lucious dark chocolate, espresso beans, brownie batter, and Hershey's syrup.
Bitterness and hopping in general are restrained, with the bitterness that's present being of the acrid type.
Finishes with a very slow warm up and a hint of dark fruit under the asphault of chocolate and espresso.

A friend and I were lucky enough to do a side by side with Kate the Great.
While the Kate had more finesse, complexity, and drinkabilty, the Sloth was definately a much bigger interpretation of the style.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.32/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 that I received a looong time ago from AkBelgianBeast... I shared the final sin with inflatablechair... Sam and I both very much appreciated the opportunity... Poured into my New Belgium snifter... Thanks again Frank.

1/4" head sticks around.... good lace.. brew is deep dark brown .. not quite black... good red highlites.

Nose is deep chocolate with spicy yeastiness... cocoa and dark cherry... everything meshes very well.

Flavor is the same with more cherry.. fig.. and a spiciness that reminds me of cinnamon.. thick coating body.. smooth carbonation... very rich.. as much Belgian as American.

Very complex.. probably my favorite of the night... incredibly long finish.

Thanks Frank.. I took descent notes.. but I wish I had been more complete..

Photo of Kegatron
4.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled 5/2/08. Shared the entire 7 beer series with fellow BAs Deuane & SierraGS. It was quite a night! Special thanks to AKBelgianBeast for trading me the complete set of these to try.

22 oz bomber into a snifter.

Pours a pitch black with a 1/2 finger of dark brown mocha colored head that shrinks down into a great looking creamy retention around the edges with some thin wisps across the center. Very nice looking lacing is left behind. The aroma is mostly deep chocolate notes and coffee but I'm also picking up some slight yeasty notes and a prickly heat in the backend.

The taste starts off with a roasty bitterness up front that is quickly followed by rich chocolate and caramel notes and some zippy espresso. There is also an underlying current of dark fruit tang and an oakiness to it. The mouthfeel has a medium full feel with a nice amount of alcohol beef to the proceedings but not quite enough to make it stinging. The overall body feels like it all just go a tad deeper however.

Very nice and probably my favorite of the Deadly Sins series. This is just packed with flavor and I liked how the Belgian characteristics stayed on the more subdued side, just lying underneath those other explosive RIS traits. Although a bit beefy, this still drank like a champ for a 10% Stout. I just wish that I had another bottle.

Photo of SargeC
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Intense black brew with a deep brown head that may be the darkest I have ever seen. The head clings to the glass like a magnet.

Smell: Chocolate with hints of caramel and toffee. Touch of alcohol.

Taste: This brew moves slow and steady and has a pleasant sweetness to it. Subdued malt flavors dominate with some yeast flavors poking through. Very bold flavor, but none of them overpower.

Mouthfeel: Full body. Creamy, with a waxy quality. Alcohol warms it up well.

Drinkablity: Very easy drinking and interesting brew. Not as dense or over the top as many imperial stouts, but still has plenty of character.

Photo of alcstradamus
4.36/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours what at first appears to be a lifeless black, but after stopping pouring a late rising half finger of head forms.

The aroma is an incredibly decadent mix of chocolate, toffee, raisins, vanilla, grapes, citrus hoppiness....man, this is just begging me to take a sip.

The flavor is not quite as complex as the nose would suggest but it is still quite good. It starts out with some dry oakiness followed by dusty cocoa. Vanilla and plums in there as well. The flavor profile is very nice for sure, one that keeps me taking sip after sip looking for more.

The body doesn't quite support the flavor. It is medium with low carbonation. Not watery by any means, but either a bit more thickness or a bit more carbonation is needed to match the flavor.

Overall, this is a seriously good beer but probably not worth the effort to acquire. Not sure how it may differ from when it was fresh, but at this point in its life it is damn near a mirror image of the flat bottles of Lost Abbey Angel's Share from last year.

Photo of joe1510
4.37/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber

My neighbor Dave brought me back this bottle from a summer trip through Alaska, thanks Dave! Sloth is a black as night beast that gurgles from the bottle into this snifter. This beer swallows up the light in the room. It took a hard pour to conjure up a fingers worth of head but what's there is so dark it borders on purple. The head dissipates to a thin skimming and small ring after a few minutes. A quick swirl brings the head back to life.

This is a deep, dark, rich smelling stout. The nose alone is intoxicating. There's a huge roastiness off the bat that's intertwined with high cocoa dark chocolate, dark slightly underripe berries and molasses in that order of intensity. The complexity in the nose goes on and on growing deeper and deeper as it warms. The alcohol adds some spice to the overall aroma and there's even some nuttiness in here. The nose of this beer is excellent!

The flavor follows the aroma stride for stride. The big roastiness jumps out right away and is quickly surpassed by deep, dark chocolate with a touch of heavy cream. All the other qualities from the aroma come through in the back and add their own unique touch to this massively rich beer. Clean alcohol fumes heat up the throat and nose without ever getting in the way. I'm having a tough time deciding between a 4 and 4.5 but the more I drink the more I lean toward the latter.

The mouthfeel on this big stout falls right where it needs to. The body is thick and rich without the sticky sweetness. It's completely mouth coating with barely any noticeable carbonation which really helps all the flavors jump.

This beer goes down easy but it will never be an easy drinker. The abv and complexity makes it a 100% sipper. I wouldn't mind sipping it all night though.

Sloth is high quality. I didn't pick up any Belgian characteristics but I did pick up plenty of huge complex RIS. I wish I had a few more bottles of this beer, as it gets near room temp it becomes outstanding. Thanks again Dave!

Photo of irishevans
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours blacker than snipes, shannon sharp, eddie murphy, or even space ghost's mask. the head sparkles almost like there were little diamonds in it, otherwise a toffee coffee color. smells of chocolate, and caramel but more inviting than just a run of the mill stout. the taste is a bit bitter, caramelish with a faint hint of cherry on the finish (though i don't think there is any in the mix). mouth-feel is fantastic, grainy for a stout, perfect level of carbonation, an all around joy to drink. if you want an answer for drinkability see the mouth-feel. damn good beer, period end of story.

Photo of Deuane
4.4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Gorgeous inky black with a lovely thick chocolate colored head. Globs of lacing in the glass.

S-Although only slightly diminished this brew smells very similar to Kate the Great. Chocolate, licorice and smoke in the back. Alcohol warming with a bit of coffee in the background. Amazing how close they are to each other.

T-Leather, chocolate, dark friut, coffee...WOW! This is KTG, jr. Nice dark roasty finish.

M-This is the only thing lacking from this beer. I would say medium body leaning towards medium-heavy...but it just seemed off. I would have expected a more chewy mouth from a beer in this realm.

D-Top notch stuff, really nice. The only fault is the mouth which is a bit disappointing. Otherwise hard to beat. I really was sad to empty the bottle!

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.41/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Midnight Sun right now! Are you kidding me! I am so glad to try this one.

A - Servered in a 12 oz goblet. A very dark brown, but not as black as some other stouts. A nice dark tan head forms and slowly fades to a few bubbles around the edges.

S - Chocolate really is strong here. I don't really get much else. Maybe I am rushing here.

T - A sweet dark chocolate with hints of oak and coffee. Sweeter than I was expecting.

D - Good carbonation and body for the style.

O - A real treat to have this on tap. A sweet Belgian style stout. I really savored and enjoyed this one.

Photo of womencantsail
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tried this previously, but sampled again at Saturday's MS Sins tasting. A clear memory of the beer makes for a much better review...

A: The pour is nearly flat, thick, and black as night. Essentially no head with a few scattered bubbles.

S: Tons of sweet milk chocolate, whiskey, vanilla, and just a hint of coffee. As it warms up, a touch of figs, raisins, and miscellaneous dark fruits.

T: The flavor of this beer is just so smooth and rich. The whiskey and vanilla come through strongly and give way to sweet chocolate, and a hint of coffee. The oak makes itself known at times, and there are some dark stone fruit flavors on the back end.

M: Really exceptional in terms of the feel. Nice and smooth, creamy, and full bodied.

D: An absolutely fantastic beer all around. I wish I had a bottle of this because I've thoroughly enjoyed my few samples of this.

Photo of Sean9689
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tick #350!

22oz bomber.

A - Pours black, no head, thing ring around the glass.

S - Chocolate, coffee beams, cream, slightly bitter, nice roasty notes. Very solid, but coming from MS, it doesn't surprise me.

T - Bitter dark chocolate, creamy rich chocolate, roasty notes, vanilla sweetness, and some oak. So rich and decadent, so f'n good.

M - Full, slick, rich, smooth, bitter finish.

D - Awesome. So good. MS comes through yet again with another winner. Not a whole lot of Belgian characteristics, but who gives a crap, it's good.

Photo of drabmuh
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thorpe at a recent tasting, thank you very much Thorpe, this is a top want for me. At the time of this review, this is #13 on the "Top Beers - Russian Imperial Stout" list on beeradvocate.com. Served in a snifter.

Beer is black and oily, thick with a nice thin head of small bubbles, minimal retention, lacing, and all of that.

Aroma is sweet, liquor, mild anise almost, interesting, a smells awesome.

This was the winner of the night for me. It is incredible. Thick and fudgy with a nice liquor and alcohol notes. I really enjoyed it and would have it again for sure.

Photo of MasterSki
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Joe for providing this one at the pre-NotLA/"Alex is done his dissertation" party. Served in a Word Class Beverages taster glass.

A - Pours a pitch black without a hint of color - although when held up to the light it teases with some reddish transparency. Pours with two fingers of dark mocha foam that settles to a thin cap and thicker collar, minimal lace.

S - Smokey, roasty, Belgian yeast, dark fruits, molasses, and a bit of woodiness. I thought this wasn't barrel-aged, but it confused me, with the notes of vanilla and coconut peaking through. After consulting Midnight Sun's website, I learned it is indeed aged in whiskey oak of some sort.

T - Intense roast and dark chocolate, dark fruits, chocolate, and anise. Alcohol is very well-hidden. Finish is very tannic and smokey, with tons of residual roasty bitterness. Not as complex as the nose.

M - Slick, oily, thick body - it's not Dark Lord, but it's still pretty viscous. Quite low carbonation, The finish is dry and woody. Perfect for the style.

D - It'd be hard to kill 22oz on my own, but I could split this two ways with someone. It reminds me of the good batches of Black Albert, but with some light barrel-aging notes (and none of the funk of Cuvee Delphine).

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thoroe429. Thanks Mike!

The beer is near black and appears viscous and oily. Minimal beige head. The aroma brings roast, oak, lightly sweet. Mild smoke in the aroma with a delicate warming alcohol finish. Relatively full bodied and palate coating. An outstanding example of the style.

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Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.