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Heresy - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,004 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,004
Reviews: 972
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 12.21%
Wants: 99
Gots: 251 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2004

Old Heathen aged in oak (whiskey/bourbon) barrels.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,004 | Reviews: 972 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of hdelavega
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours almost black with a tan head that quickly diminishes to nothing but a ring around the glass.
Ok aroma, some malt, I do get oak, and bit of chocolate.
Lots of chocolate flavors, I get less coffee than I'd expect from this style. No bitterness at the end, all around pretty sweet.
Mouthfeel is pretty interesting, lots of carbonation, kind of a watery finish, feels more like a porter.
I'm a big weyerbacher fan but I think I will stick to their barleywines.

Photo of deg
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A nice, dark, almost black beer. There was a head, but not quite what I expected. It was a chocolate color and faded fast. There was carbonation in the beer when I drank it. I couldn't quite identify the smell. However, the taste was great. Roasty, coffee, some chocolate. A little vanilla. A pleasant warmth from the alcohol.

Photo of inlimbo77
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into Pinocchio's (Media, PA) snifter glass.

A: Pours almost completely black. There are some reddish hues on the edges of the top of the glass. Almost no head on this one. Some tan hints on corners but that is it. Definitely some alcohol feet on the sides of glass.

S: A good amount of Oak on the nose. Obviously, deep roasted malts are in there. Toffee? Caramel? Dark fruit notes as well.

T: Some bite on tip of tongue. Lives in the mid mouth, coats the tongue with the deep roasted malts. Definitely tasted the Oak flavors. Little burn in the back of throat from alcohol burn.

M: Medium to full bodied.

O: B. This one was just good, not great. But for the price, you really can't beat trying it.

Photo of Blueribbon666
4.38/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Poured into dimpled mug, smell of oak from bottle as well as a maltiness that also comes through very thin lacy caramel colored bubbles around rim of mug. I was initially worried how the oak would influence this beer, but it blends well, it's presence evident without being overwhelming. Great mouth feel where the abv is noticed on the finish. Very good beer I would get again as well as more to try from the Weyerbacher brewery.

Photo of shanblur
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a snifter. No freshness date.

A - Pours black with a 1 finger tan head which leaves sparse lacing.

S - Roasted malts mixed with a nice alcohol smell.

T - A strong presence from roasted malts up front. A chocolate taste follows which lingers. A nice warming alcohol finish.

M - Medium bodied with a light carbonation.

I really enjoyed this beer though I did not appreciate any oak aging on the smell or taste.

Photo of jduffy21
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this from a 12 oz bottle in to my Samuel Adams perfect pint glass. This pours dark black, can't see any light through this one. A thick brownish head forms, and it reduces a bit to a nice lacing.
Smells a bit smokey, and I get just a tad odor of alcohol.
Mouth feel is smooth, but thick
Tastes of chocolate, light alcohol flavor and a hint of vanilla bean at the end. Heresy is my favorite from Weyerbacher! I really am becoming a fan of Russian Imperials.

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrids glass on 9/8/11
*From notes

A: A standard pour yields a lone finger head and so-so lacing. It's motor oil black in color.

S: Woody, creamy vanilla. Lovely - I really think the nose is the highlight of the beer.

T: Damn fine. A good amount of untoasted, creamy wood balances the darkly charred grains. There's a decent malt backbone here that handily balances the wood veneer.

M: The beer's only real downfall. It's as sharp as a two sided blade. Rough as all get-out, and needs some serious refinement. Thin. It's lacking body and proper texture.

O: Weyerbacher's Heresy label may suck, but the beer inside is a winner. I was quite surprised how much I enjoyed it, and was kicking myself for letting it linger in the back of the fridge so long. I'll be sure to snag a few more of these next year, and hope they can touch up the rough and tumble feel of an otherwise well done RIS.

Photo of bubseymour
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours like a typical imperial stout with just an ok head for this style.

Smell - Very chocolatey and alcohol/whiskey scented.

Taste - Its decent for an Imperial Stout but nothing really world class here at all. It has a bourbon oak barrel flavor to it but its not necessarily a great taste for this style of beer. Not very complex or smokey like others in this style.

Mouthfeel -actually for an IS its kinda watery more like a regular stout

Overall - A good sipping warmer, but there are several other RIS or IS's that I prefer over this one.

Photo of dgilks
4.28/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An extra received from msubulldog25 in a recent trade. Thanks Brian.

Pitch black with a creamy, dense tan head. Good head retention.

Sharp, roasty aroma with some mild fruitiness. Oak.

This starts off as chocolatey sweet malt with some mild roast. Nice alcohol note and some really good oak. This is really, really nice.

Medium-full body with moderate carbonation. Solid.

A really nice Imperial Stout that stands up against some of the best. Understated but very easy drinking.

Photo of rel
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Poured very dark with a thick tan head.

Smell is of burnt caramel, lots of roasted malts, deep coffee, and some spiced rum.

Taste is very sweet. Lots of roasted malt, a nice woodiness, and strong burnt sugar. Like a flambe dessert.

Thick molasses feel.

It's perfect for a comforting night around a fire on cold night. Like an adult s'more. Not that it tastes like marshmallows and chocolate, but it's that kind of feeling.

Photo of scottfrie
3.28/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into Portsmouth snifter. Thanks to jbck109 for this one.
A: Pours black with a very minimal dark brown that. Head retention was low as it quickly faded into a faint collar leaving a few tiny spots of lace.
S: Strong notes of rich and thick smelling chocolate syrup and fudge. There is a touch of spice to the nose, perhaps the bourbon barrel, and strong notes of toasted nuts. As the beer warms I get more notes of bourbon and a hint of vanilla.
T: Big notes of chocolate and bourbon. The finish is full of fudge and the aftertaste has spicy notes of bourbon barrels and vanilla. The flavors are good just not very potent.
M: Mouthfeel is fairly soft due to a medium-thick body and lively but not tingly carbonation. I wish it had more "chew" to it however.
O: This beer is rather straightforward and underwhelming for a RIS aged in bourbon barrels. It’s good though, and easy to drink. I just wish there was more to it.

Photo of CaptJackHarkness
2.5/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep brown with ruddy highlights good creamy head. Not a very malty aroma. Tasted like burnt chocolate and sour raisins.Very bitter aftertaste.Higher and obvious alchohol content, which is expected in an Imperial. Perhaps this beer is a touch too hoppy!

Photo of rarbring
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer is BLACK, a brown good head with some lacing and good curtains.

Smelling vinous, marzipan, licorice, arrack and some ripe cheese.

The taste is very sweet, caramelized sugar, vanilla, chocolate covered cherries, liqueur. An alcohol presence.

Medium low carbonation, soft and oily, a bit alcoholic, a slightly dry finish.

It looked and smelled super, but the rest was a bit too evident sugar and alcohol for me.

Photo of atr2605
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours black with a tan creamy head with very good retention
S-caramel, chocolate, roasted malt,vanilla, subtle oak
T-sweet caramel up front, followed by the vanilla and chocolate flavor, with the oak flavor lingering in the background throughout the whole tasting. The oak is very well done, it's not overbearing and instead adds a really nice touch to the beer. Hops add balance without contributing a great deal to the flavor
M-full bodied
O- A very enjoyable big beer with lots of flavor and great balance.

Photo of bronco94
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint glass

A - pours dark black with a finger of tan head

S - roasted/smoky malt, oak, wood, hints of chocolate

T - very roasty, oak is very prominent, bittersweet chocolate, a good bit of alcohol taste, more so than the ABV would indicate.

M - thick and creamy, medium carbonation

O - Very good for an easy to get barrel aged imperial stout. The appeal of being able to go into the store and buy this after work certainly adds to my overall opinion of it. It's nice to be able to get a good wood aged RIS without having to stand in line for 36 hours or offer your entire cellar for.

Photo of dtivp
4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark black with a half finger dark mocha head that fades slowly into a thin ring with moderate lacing.

Aroma of roasted malts, oak and hints of bourbon.

Taste followed the nose with roasted malt, vanilla oak, dark roasted coffee and a very nice bourbon finish.

Mouth Feel was medium body with light carbonation, silky smooth with a very nice warming at the end.

Overall this is a very nice RIS, the alcohol feels more than the 8% ABV, so pace yourself and enjoy.

Photo of zeff80
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque jet black color with a small, off-white head of bubbly foam. It left thin trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of oak, wood and mild bourbon notes. There was a nice roasty presence, too.

T - Good bourbon flavor with oak, raisin and a malty backbone. There was some chocolate and molasses flavors, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry , clean finish.

O - This is a very nice oaked RIS. Weyerbacher continues to make good beers.

Photo of ckeegan04
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Black. Not much else going on. Just a thin medium-brown head of foam on top that quickly dissipates into a faint ring around the glass. Impenetrable to light.

S - Big boozy aroma. Lots of oak, a touch of vanilla. Some burnt brown sugar sweetness comes through as the beer warms. Underneath it all is a bittersweet chocolate aroma with just a hint of spent coffee grinds.

T - Bitter chocolate and lots of oaky vanilla. A sweetness comes through as the beer warms but the bitter chocolate with the boozy oak is the dominant flavor throughout. The burn sugar in the nose isnt really noticeable in the taste.

M - Medium bodied with a touch too much carbonation. Very lively on the tongue; not quite as thick as I like out of an RIS.

O - A typical American barrel aged stout. A good beer but nothing spectacular. They certainly know what they are doing with their stout and their barrels though unlike some brewers out there who think throwing beer in a barrel makes it great. Wroth checking out and if you are a big stout fan this is probably one you will enjoy.

Photo of nandemo1
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured dark brown to black with a thin brown head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing.

Smell is sweet with woodiness, fruitiness (cherry) and some chocolate notes. Upon tasting, I'm getting much more roasted malts, chocolate, and coffee with a bit of vanilla from the oak. Not getting much alcohol.

Mouthfeel is very thin compared to other RIS examples I've tried. A bit of carbonation is coming through.

Photo of chefhatt
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i poured this beer into a pint glass, it has a black body with a nice tan 2" head. The smell is of roasted malts and i get chocolate. The taste has chocolcate hints, roasted malts and some coffee on the back of the tongue. I even get a hint of vanilla. It has a nice mouth feel, medium body. Overall a good beer.

Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a FW pint glass...

A - Pours black with a two finger brown head that dissipates very quick. Next to no lacing to be had...

S - Vanilla, oak, chocolate, and some roasted malts. Pick up a little heat in the scent, but nothing over the top. Very inviting...

T - Roasted malts, and dark chocolate up front with some coffee in the mix. Vanilla/oak and a smooth Bourbon warmth come through in the finish. This one is very well balanced. Nothing is out of place or over the top...

M - Extremely smooth, but a tad light for the style. On the higher side of medium bodied with a mid level amount of carbonation...

O - A little thin for my likings, but still very enjoyable. Definitely something that I will be looking to trying again in the near future...


Photo of badboyrsl84
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours beautifully in a tulip glass with a outstanding 2 inch tan head that sits atop the beer

Smell- Dark and milk chocolate. Oaky presence with hints of vanilla and a touch of dark fruit.

Taste- definitely a RIS. Lots of oak taste to this. Dark choclate, raisins, vanilla and nice alcohol kick in the end.

Overall - the oak to this stands out and plays along very well to the beer itself. Perfect with a cigar.

Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Huge thanks to Alewatcher, who threw this in as an extra! Bottled 1-17-11, best by 9-17-11. Awesome to have two dates. Pretty cool label as well.

Appearance: Black as night, with a long-lasting large cap of dark tan foam. Nice looking RIS.

Smell: Definitely in the English RIS, rather than the American Imperial Stout category, with notes of chocolate, lightly-boozy dark fruit, and soft notes of dark roasted grain. Not really getting much in the way of oak. Mild, but quite pleasant.

Taste: Dark fruit predominates, and some of the flavors are almost sweet, which throws me a bit off-balance. Nice, just wasn't expecting it. A dry, roasty bitterness soon balances this out, before fading into a dry, pleasant, and (IMO) perfectly balanaced oaky finish. Medium booze across the palate, certainly not offensive, though just a touch more than I was expecting from a beer of 8%. As the beer warms, notes of cocoa powder emerge, but the alcohol comes out a bit more sharply. It's really the one downside to a beer that's a really nice (somewhat unsual, in the age of ever-increasing-abv) take on an RIS.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full, not really heavy

Overall: I could see really enjoying this in October-December; it's kind of a pity it's released in Feb. There's a really nice balance between roasty/fruity, both tart and sweet/and dry oak, but the booze (again, esp. for only 8%) comes through a bit too strongly and keeps this from being something I'd reach for regularly.

Photo of MrKennedy
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, huge thanks to mulder1010! My share served in a Tripel Karmeliet tulip style glass.

Pours a nice black colour, not super thick, but not too thin. Has a tan coloured head of foam that hangs around for some time.

Smell is complex, nice aromas imparted from the oak, oak itself, a touch of vanilla, some wood and some coconut. Nice and not overbearing.

Taste is a touch oaky with some vanilla and a bit of coffee and chocolate coming through. Consistent and well defined.

Mouthfeel is nice and smooth, easy to drink, the body matches the beer well and is probably lighter than the norm for the style, but in this case with it suiting the beer so well, it does the trick!

Overall, think of a super-sessionable Imperial Stout and this is it, oak-aged, complex, defined and drinkable and this ticks most boxes.

Photo of Krakistophales
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours jet black with a finger of tan head that disappears quickly

S: Right up front, a nice blast of black cherries, then it tapers off into a caramel/toffee/vanilla creamy sweetness, and finishes with slight hints of oak and wood. Very sweet smell.

T: At first, a taste of coffee and a dark roast richness, with the middle transitioning into more of a currant/dark berry sweetness, and the end finishing with some woody/oaky dryness. Rather tasty.

O: A pretty good stout. I've had better, but this is a solid one in its own right.

Heresy from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 2,004 ratings.